Las Vegas Sun

December 9, 2018

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High school student to deliver final scare at family’s haunted house

Homemade Haunted House

Justin M. Bowen

Kevin Brekke has been constructing a haunted house in his garage every Halloween for the past seven years (with help from his parents). Kevin, pictured here on Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2010, is a senior at Green Valley High School.

Homemade Haunted House

A glimpse inside the haunted house constructed in the Henderson garage of the Brekke family is shown Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2010. Kevin Brekke, who attends Green Valley High School, has been constructing the haunted house each Halloween for the past seven years (with help from his parents). Launch slideshow »

Dark Illusions: The Final Fear

WHEN: Oct. 23, 29 and 30; 7 to 10 p.m.; Oct. 31, 6:30-10:30 p.m.

WHERE: 400 Crater Court

COST: Free, donations to Green Valley High School choir, theater programs accepted

Haunted House

Wandering through Kevin Brekke’s garage, a feeling of uncertainty mounts. The makeshift hallways are 24 inches wide, offering an unpleasantly claustrophobic feeling, and the walls are shrouded in black.

The Green Valley High School senior conjures an undeniable sense of dread at his home on Crater Court in Henderson.

But with college lurking for next Halloween, Brekke is preparing to say goodbye to his homemade haunted house, unlike any other in the valley, which has been giving residents the creeps for seven years.

Dark Illusions: The Final Fear, as Brekke has titled his final opus, opens at 7 p.m. Saturday. Admission is free, although donations are encouraged to the Green Valley High School choir and theatre programs. Brekke is a member of both.

Brekke said he wants his patrons to leave with scares they’ll never forget, and after so many years of trial and error, he thinks he knows how to do it.

He asked that not too much be revealed, but here is an example of the ingenuity that Brekke and his father, John, who used to work with animatronics, have shown:

Upon entering the garage through an ever-shrinking hallway, attendees will find themselves in front of a mirror — without their reflection. To pull off the illusion, Brekke and his father placed a two-way mirror in front of a normal mirror, although at first glance, there is only one.

Dismembered body parts and power tools litter the spaces behind the walls and false doors, from which Brekke and a couple dozen of his friends will run the show.

Brekke, who hopes to study math and music next year, has never trick-or-treated. Instead, the idea for Dark Illusions started when he began to help his parents decorate the house for Halloween and greet costumed candy-seekers, he said.

When Brekke was in sixth grade, his first haunted house premiered and now, every year, it’s a new freak show from top to bottom.

Planning begins in the spring, and Brekke and his father start construction in September. John Brekke takes some Fridays off and they work long hours on the weekend to prepare.

Brekke’s mother, Paula, estimates the family spends $700 or more each year.

Over the years, the haunted house project has brought father and son closer, John Brekke said, so he’s sad to see it end.

“We’ve learned a lot about each other,” he said. “It’s been a good thing for us.”

As for Kevin, he said he doesn’t think the end of Dark Illusions will hit him until next Halloween. But for now, he’s just looking forward to the blood-curdling screams at 400 Crater Court, near Fox Ridge Park.

Dark Illusions: The Final Fear is open from 7 to 10 p.m. on Oct. 23, 29 and 30. For the Oct. 31 holiday, the event is open from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m.

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