WALLINGFORD — For the last three weeks, Vince Proto has been assembling his “Circus of Souls” Halloween display in preparation for the big night.
“It’s all for one night, a lot of effort for one night,” said Proto — one of several homeowners in the Dutton Park neighborhood whose elaborate decorations have attracted crowds of trick-or-treaters through the years. “But when you see the joy people get from this, it means a lot. If we make one kid, one family happy for that night, it’s worth it.”
Almost every inch of Proto’s front yard on North Main Street is covered in skeletons, skull heads and creepy monsters. To go along with the amusement park theme, there is a roller coaster track with a “crash cart” along with carnival games and booths.
“Every year it has been growing,” Proto said. “The amount of traffic we get here, people constantly stop and admire what we do. I always tell them to come Halloween night.”
On Halloween night, trick-or-treaters will be greeted with surprise characters, creepy circus and Halloween music and colored lights to give the house an eerie look.
Residents in the area stop while walking or drive by slowly to see what Proto has added over time. Jazmyn Ward is new to the area but quickly realized how big Halloween is in the neighborhood, which attracts trick-or-treaters from throughout town.
“It started out small, and has definitely evolved,” Ward said. “It’s amazing to see, he’s put in so much work. Everyone always talks about this specific place on this specific street.”
Before the pandemic, more houses on North Main Street featured elaborate Halloween displays. Due to the pandemic, some haven’t decorated as they have in the past.
But the town is still expecting over 2,000 trick-or-treaters on Halloween, prompting police to announce road closures.
On Sunday, North Main Street, between the intersection of High Street and Cedar Lane, will be closed to all motor vehicle traffic beginning at 4:30 p.m. Parking is also banned in the same area beginning at 3 p.m.
Master’s Manna, a Wallingford food pantry, will be set up on North Main Street near Proto’s house collecting nonperishable food and money donations from 4:30 to 8 p.m.
One family will even have a live band on Halloween night.
“It’s a great thing, I’m glad to be a part of it,” Proto said.