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Curator Cheryl Walters designs a tombstone for the upcoming Halloween program, "Edgar Allan Poe: Victorian Master of the Macabre," at the Lapham-Patterson House (TeresaWilliams/Times-Enterprise).

THOMASVILLE — Get ready for plenty of Victorian thrills and chills with an up close and personal evening with a master of the macabre.

Lapham-Patterson House will present its 19th annual Halloween event, “Edgar Allan Poe: Victorian Master of the Macabre” on Oct. 27.

“It’s hard to believe this will be 19 years,” said Cheryl Walters, curator. “If you stop and think, Edgar Allan Poe is associated with horror, terror, the supernatural, weird and everything else combined. There are Poe nights in October across the country. Many of his most famous stories have come to be associated with Halloween, like ‘The Tell-Tale Heart,’ ‘The Black Cat,’ and, of course, ‘The Raven.’”

The evening consists of readings of some of Poe’s famous works in the darkened house and spooky refreshments after the program.

There are six readers scheduled to entertain the audience with oral performances of Poe’s chilling tales and poems.

“Everyone wanted us to do a Halloween event and some people think this is the scariest house in Thomasville, although I can’t understand why,” said Walters.

The house will be decorated with ravens, cobwebs, carved pumpkins, tombstones, bones and bats, adding to the ambiance, said Walters.

“The museum has been closed to do some repairs so we’ve had a little more time to work on things,” she said. “We’ve been carving tombstones to put out front and digging up bones around the place!”

The LP House is the perfect place for a Poe event, said Connie Wood.

“Edgar Allan Poe is very Victorian and he is very appropriate for an event at an old Victorian house,” said Wood, a member of the Lapham-Patterson House Society board. “There are programs at the house throughout the year that give the community a real flavor of what it was like to live in 1880s and 1890s. The attitudes were totally different than ours so this is a good opportunity for that. A lot of people like Poe and there are so many houses in town from that era. We’re fortunate to have a house put out there to the public to let them see more about what life was like in olden time.”

Nita Lynde, a society board member, said the event is great for children and wished more would attend the evening.

“Not many children come, but I think it would be a great experience for children,” she said. “I’d like to see more involved in it. The program is all about very ghostly tales that are read in a darkened living room. There’s treats for everyone...it really is something I wish more people would attend. It’s so much fun.”

Walters said people travel from the surrounding area to attend the event and encouraged people to make advance seat reservations.

“Nothing beats sitting around in the dark in an old house having scary stories told to you by candlelight,” she said. “It certainly turns on the imagination.”

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