About Us

Monster Bash Haunted Houses are created every year as a fundraiser in support of Music, Choir, Theater and Arts at Fillmore Central Public Schools, with the High School located in Harmony, Minnesota. The Haunted House efforts are overseen by Monster Bash, Incorporated, a 501(c)(3) charity organization (see the MB Inc page for additional details).

The Monster Bash Haunted House was conceived by Jay "The Scare" Masters as a way for members of the Fillmore Central High School Band and Choir to help fund music trips. Many families had multiple students in the program and the cost of some of the trips could be a lot for families to manage. With the consent of then band director Lane Powell, "Monster Bash" (named that way because the Jazz Band program put on a "Big Band Bash" performance each year in May) was born with a Haunted House effort in 2012. Students and their families work at the Haunted Houses each year, and in doing so, earn hourly credits that are then used to determine what Monster Bash donates to the Music programs to help offset the costs for the biennial Music Department Trips. Because of the success of the Haunts, within a few years, we were able to also start supporting the Theater and Arts programs at the school as well.

The start of our first-ever Haunted House at the Harmony Community Center Gym. We've gotten bigger and better since that first year!

The first five Haunted Houses (2012 - 2016) were held in the Harmony Community Center gymnasium. Props, walls and costumes as they were built and acquired had to be stored in donated storage locations (such as churches, the Harmony Bus Shed, the Preston Bus Shed, a Harmony Enterprises storage building and even what was planned to be a Creamery near Granger, MN!) around the area. Near the end of the 5th season we found out we would be losing a major storage site, and at the same time found out that what was then called Slim's Woodshed (which was a former lumberyard site before that) was coming up for sale. At this point a 501(c)(3) charity (Monster Bash, Inc) was formed to provide the oversight of the haunts as well as its income and expenses. This organization purchased the old lumberyard site with the support of the local Economic Development Authority, and that site has been the "Monster Bash Building" ever since: a place where we could build the completely different Haunted Houses each year and have storage space for all our walls, props and equipment!

It took quite a bit of volunteer effort to help get the building ready for its new purpose. After the building was purchased, 9 months of intensive work ensued to get the building cleaned up, safe and ready to hold its first Haunted House.

Just a couple of our spookiest volunteers that have created plenty of screams over the years!

2017 was our first year in the new location and we had great success. We received a prestigious award from minnesotahauntedhouses.com who awarded us "Best Haunted Attraction" in Minnesota for 2017. From this success we continued to improve the location while creating new, fun and popular Haunted Houses, all done with students, their families and local volunteers. As a result we have also received the "Best Haunted Attraction" award in 2018, 2019, 2021 and 2022 while breaking previous years' attendance records with each effort! 

We continue to solicit donations and grants to improve the building site and acquire additional haunt props for our Haunted House. The building is still a work in progress and is still in need of some significant repairs and improvements. In 2021 we were able to replace our badly leaking roof thanks to the generosity of a number of foundations providing grants. In Fall 2022, grants allowed us to replace the lighting in the queue area. In spring 2023, grants allowed us to repair the front facade and replace windows that had been deteriorating. Grants from the local foundations will allow us to do some additional needed lighting upgrades to LED. See our Grants page for more details! We still have have some other projects on our to-do list: replacing the north entry door, additional electrical work, insulating the entire building starting with the dressing/make-up room and ventilating the queue area are just some of the things that we hope to do in the near future.

Since the founding of the charity, Monster Bash Haunted Houses and related fundraisers have helped offset costs for Music Trips, and provided materials and supplies for the Theatre and Arts departments at Fillmore Central. On the wish list is a hope to eventually provide a scholarship in the near future. To date (as of December 2023) we have donated more than $160,000.00 to support the Band and Choir trips for the students as well as to support the fine arts programs at Fillmore Central High School. 

This is one of the many family combinations that have helped spook guests, build and decorate rooms, take tickets, sell shirts and concessions or otherwise help make the Monster Bash Haunted Houses a great Halloween experience every year!

And, these two might be smiling in this picture, but when they were in character they made many guests scream!

One of the best benefits of Monster Bash isn't the dollars supporting the Arts, but the experience that the students, participating families, and other volunteers get to have working together to create our unique annual Haunts. This is one of a very few activities where parents get to work directly with their sons and daughters on the planning, building, decorating and execution of an event. Parents normally do not get to perform athletically, musically or in other activities with their children when it comes to school-related activities. In those cases, parents are on the sidelines cheering on their kids, or watching from the audience at a performance. With Monster Bash there is the opportunity for students and their parents to spend some excellent time together helping to create yet another amazing Haunted House, and for many that has meant working side by side on our "scare floor" putting scare after scare into our guests!

It has been a wonderful journey from the first Haunted House effort to the most recent one. Along the way, we hope that the Haunted Houses and other efforts of the Monster Bash organization have generated great memories, allowed families to take part in each event together, provided assistance to students to attend Music Department trips that they might not have otherwise been able to experience and helped support the Arts in our rural area by being Different Every Year! 

If we've had the pleasure of scaring you, we sure hope we have earned the opportunity to do it again! If you haven't visited us, we hope to see you...and scare you!...very soon! Maybe this October?! Come and see us!