Fright makes right: Halloween displays collect food for needy
BY STEVE METSCH firstname.lastname@example.org October 19, 2012 12:50PM
The Kramer household, 12302 S. 68th Court in Palos Heights, is participating in Haunts Against Hunger and will be collecting food items for donation to the Worth Food Pantry. | Brett Roseman~Sun-Times Media
Haunts against Hunger
Local Halloween yard displays where food items are being collected, the hours, and the charity that will benefit. Each display is open through Halloween:
Lockport: Thanatophobialand, 305 MacIntyre St., dusk to 9 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays, dusk till ? Fridays and Saturdays, Lockport Fish Food Pantry.
Orland Hills: Dark Shadows, 16741 S. 88th Court, 6:30 to 10 p.m., Together We Cope.
Palos Heights: Raven’s Nest Manor, 12302 S. 68th Court, dusk to 10 p.m., Worth Food Pantry.
Park Forest: Shabbona Cemetery, 127 Shabbona Drive, dusk to 10 p.m., Rich Township Food Pantry.
Plainfield: Souls of The Forsaken, 2205 Stonehaven Drive, dusk to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, Green Acres Food in Plainfield.
Plainfield: Resurrection Cemetery, 6601 Goldhaber Lane, dusk to 10 p.m., Interfaith Food Pantry.
South Chicago Heights: The End, 3027 Miller Ave., dusk to 10 p.m., Greater Chicago Food Depository.
Steger: Darkside Studio, 3204 Phillips, dusk to 10 p.m., Worth Food Pantry.
Worth: Horror Land, 11560 S. Nagle Ave., dusk to 10 p.m., Worth Food Pantry,
In addition, the Fourth Annual Worth Halloween Haunts Against Hunger Awareness March is scheduled from 5 to 8 p.m. Oct. 28 at Worth Village Hall, 7112 W. 111th St. The Worth Food Pantry will benefit.
Updated: November 22, 2012 6:19AM
Thom Kramer has been scaring people for years. Ditto for feeding people, and he wants to keep doing it.
The Palos Heights man, who runs a Halloween display called Raven’s Nest Manor outside his home, 12302 S. 68th Court, started collecting food items for the needy five years ago.
The food drive, called “Haunts Against Hunger,” is being conducted at yard displays in Illinois, California, Nevada, Oklahoma and Pennsylvania.
Several Southland houses are in the mix. Each collects nonperishable food items for a local food pantry.
New this year is the collection of food for pets, per the request of actress Linda Blair, of “The Exorcist” fame, whom Kramer got to know through his photography business.
Visitors are asked to bring nonperishable food items when they visit the participating Halloween displays. There’s no charge to see the displays, but the donations are welcome.
In past years, all the donated food was given to the Greater Chicago Food Depository. Kramer likes the organization, but “it only serves Cook County,” he said, “so if you’re out in Plainfield or Will County or DuPage (County), it’s kind of doing a disservice to your direct community. So we came up with the idea that people collect for a legitimate food pantry in their area.
“That’s one way people can see how much it directly affects those around them,” he said.
The idea caught on, as he has collected more than 350 pounds of food items each of the past two years.
“We want to help the area around Chicago, but the goal is to go national. That’s how Linda Blair came into play,” Kramer said.
Through his side business, Tinseltown Photography, Kramer has worked at events at Hollywood Boulevard movie theater in Woodridge, where he met Blair around Halloween last year.
“She’s a big animal advocate, rescuing dogs that are at-risk. She mentioned it would be a great idea to not only collect food for humans but for animals as well,” Kramer said. “We found out many of the food pantries collect animal food and, in many cases, the animal food goes off the shelves faster than the human food. We decided that starting this year we’d collect animal food as well as human food. Linda liked the idea and we started talking more about ‘Haunts Against Hunger.’ ”
Blair has recorded a promotional video that can be seen by visiting www.hauntsagainsthunger.com.