While those kids bicker over the Upper Haight, we here in the Lower Haight are more than ready for the big night.
This week we scoured the entire ‘hood in search of the spookiest, most creative, and plain old Halloweenliest decorations in the Lower Haight, and we found plenty of great stuff.
Here’s our list of the top ten most Halloween-ready houses in the neighborhood.
Note: For this exercise alone, we’ve defined the Lower Haight as the area bounded by Oak, Duboce, Divisadero, and Buchanan. No hate mail please.
Coming in at number ten, this one keeps it simple, but wins points for variety. Four pumpkins on the front steps, a giant spider near the door, and stringed pumpkin lights in the window complete the look. Nothing mind-blowing, but a good, inoffensive effort.
To be fair, the only decorations at this location are these jack-o-lanterns ensnarling the limbs of a tree on the sidewalk. But sometimes that’s all it takes.
The eerie orange glow cast by these lights single-handedly makes a trip down this stretch of Waller worthwhile.
While not quite enough to propel it into our top five, this one decoration definitely wins the award for most bang for the buck.
Not only was this the only property on Pierce to make our list, but it’s probably the one that’s the most cobweb-heavy. Depending on your preferences that could go either way, but for us, it works.
They’ve not only adorned the stairwell railings with cobwebs, skulls, and a zombie bride head, but they’ve wisely strung more cobwebs on the sidewalk between two trees and a transformer box. The overall effect makes this one hard to miss.
Cobwebs? Check. Pumpkin-shaped lights? Check. Stairwell witch, front-door skeleton? Check, check. This has a lot of good, standard touches. But what earns it number 7 is the not-at-all-disturbing bust in the front yard. This is a permanent feature of the property, not a Halloween prop — but that doesn’t make it any less spooky.
This house might have an unfair advantage by looking spooktastically awesome on its own. But the residents here have just amped it up by draping an entire floor’s worth of cobwebs over the facade. It really forces you to look up and notice how amazing the house is.
The giant spider doesn’t hurt either.
This one makes the list for several unique reasons.
First, cornstalks! We didn’t spot those anywhere else in the neighborhood, but they definitely scream Halloween to us. Especially since they’re covered in cobwebs.
Then there’s the pair of giant yellow eyes in the window — quite intimidating. And the vegetable-faced pumpkin on the left adds some levity to the scene.
The one note we have for this one? The political signs in the window gots to go. Yes, there’s an election on Tuesday, but Halloween is supposed to be fun and fantasy. Let’s keep our Proposition preferences stowed away until Monday morning, yeah? The goal here is to scare the local kiddies — not bore them.
This one has a lot going for it — a dozen or so carved pumpkins leading up the stairs, a nice field of cobwebs on the front fence, and window decorations including spiders, bats, and a very unwelcoming “GET OUT!” sign.
But it’s the Weekend-at-Bernies-style skeleton chillaxing with sunglasses in a lounge chair that puts this one over the top for us.
The key to this one making the top three is variety. Yes, they’ve adorned the front door with a witch and tombstone, and yes, the banister is covered in cobwebs and string lights. They could have stopped there — but no!
For starters, they’ve hung witches and cobwebs from the tree in front of their house. So, points for expanding the field of play.
They’ve also set up some tombstones at the base of the tree:
And most importantly, there’s this:
A Halloweenism the other contenders on this list are lacking? Sheer gruesomeness. 424 Waller brings it with these bloody appendages. Gives new meaning to the term “tree limbs,” huh? Can I get a what what?
If you’re a fan of old-school Halloween spookiness, this one’s for you. Ravens and vultures, skeletons, pumpkins, a flying witch, at least two oversized spiders, and cobwebs galore. Throw in some dramatic lighting and plain old curb appeal, and this one definitely deserves its spot near the top of our rankings.
But the number one Halloween-ready house in the neighborhood, as determined by Haighteration?
That would be…
If you’ve taken a nighttime stroll/drive/ride down Divisadero between Haight and Page recently, then you’ve probably noticed this one — our number one house in the ‘hood.
Let’s talk about lights. We count at least five illuminated features — strung pumpkin lights on the window ledges, orange and pink christmas lights, and other bright features like a field of blinking Scooby Doo-style eyes (at the bottom right in the pic), a large electric pumpkin near the front door, and a grim reaper with glowing eyes.
Now how about creatures?
Yes, there’s the giant spider, and certainly it’s impressive. But we’re more interested in the skeletons above the front door.
These aren’t just plain old Walgreens skeletons, mind you. These are skeletons in flight — two with white wings, and one above with black, posing expressively.
Are these symbols of good and evil, doing battle at the front door, forcing you to confront your own virtues and demons, when all you came for was a Snickers bar? Simply transcendent.
Oh, there’s also that jack-o-lantern IN a lantern. Meta.
On the ground, there’s a skeleton in a cauldron, lounging almost perversely, being ogled by a field of pumpkins. Is this Halloween pornography? Are the pumpkins the real voyeurs, or are we?
Yes, this house’s decorations tell multiple stories, make us smile, and have boatloads of straight-up visual appeal. That’s why this is our number one Halloween-ready house in the neighborhood.
While these two didn’t make our top ten, we had to give them props just for trying.
Oddly, we didn’t see a whole lot of ghosts in the neighborhood this year. So we were happy to stumble upon this group right here.
Made out of white garbage bags, these little guys are more cute than spooky — not that there’s anything wrong with that.
And finally, not everyone in a major city has the luxury of a front porch with curb appeal. What can you do if your dreams of trick-or-treater-hosting are locked behind an iron gate?
Well, these folks have done their best. A hanging ghost, some pumpkin lights, and a string of mini ghosts turn this uninviting entrance into a… slightly less-uninviting one. Kudos.
So, which is your favorite house this year? Any that we missed? Let us know.
And needless to say, happy Halloween!