CHARLES TWEED/BRANDON SUN
The Grim Acres Scare Away Cancer Fundraiser features one of the most elaborate haunted houses in the province. Hosted by Brian and Amber Sutherland, all the donations raised go toward the Canadian Cancer Society. The house is open Monday and Tuesday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. and on Halloween from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
A haunted house in Green Acres isn’t just a labour of love for Brian and Amber Sutherland, but a way to put a scare into cancer and raise money to fight the disease that has taken loved ones away from them.
The Grim Acres Scare Away Cancer Fundraiser features one of the most elaborate haunted houses in the province. Hosted by Brian and Amber Sutherland, all the donations raised go toward the Canadian Cancer Society. The house is open Monday and Tuesday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. and on Halloween from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. (CHARLES TWEED/BRANDON SUN)
"We both lost our mothers to cancer and Brian’s dad had a long battle with cancer as well before passing away from pneumonia earlier this year, so we have a personal motivation behind holding this fundraiser to scare away cancer," Amber Sutherland said.
The haunted house, known as the Grim Acres Scare Away Cancer Fundraiser, is located at 1002 Russell St., near Southern Avenue, and will be open from Monday to Wednesday. Hours of operation are 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Monday and Tuesday and 5 p.m. to 10 p.m on Halloween.
This is the second attempt at a cancer fundraiser, having raised approximately $1,800 last year for the Canadian Cancer Society. Donations are accepted at the door, however they are offering the public a chance to see the haunted house for free.
"Last year we started the haunted house as a maze through our garage and we’ve expanded it to nearly three times that size this year," Amber said. "There’s lots to see and hopefully we’ll get a really good turnout. We want to make this bigger and more exciting for people every year. I’m a perfectionist, so if I’m going to do it, I want to go all out."
She added the planning for this year’s 950 sq.-ft. haunted house started in May and has involved 300 hours of labour, building props and preparations. The sets will also include volunteer actors this year, playing scary scenes for the attendees to enjoy.
"It’s a lot of work, but we really want to see an end for cancer," Amber said. "We know it’s taken some very valuable family members from us and we want to find a cure. So it takes a lot of time and a lot of effort, but to us it’s giving back to the community and hopefully we’ll see an end to the disease."
While the Sutherlands say they have spent a fair amount of money to set up the displays, all of the money donated at the door or collected through random donations will go directly to the Canadian Cancer Society.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition October 27, 2012