Burton is well known in the haunt community as "Bad Santa".
Halloween has been a big part of his life and he loves to share
it with those around him. Having been involved with several of
the top haunts around the Salt Lake Valley, Max now brings his
experience of how to scare and make a successful haunt to his
neighborhood where everyone can enjoy being scared and do it for
a good cause.
In 2010 his daughter talked him into setting up a small haunt
in her yard. Little did he know the great reception it would get.
Kids loved it and parents were glad to have a haunt they could
take their little ones through with out having to pay a ton of
money for them.
The next year Max bought a house, across the street from his daughter,
so he could do a larger haunt. With his own place to do it, he
was able to expand the haunt to 3000 sq. ft. and gave it the name
"Scared Haunt". As he started to build the walls for the haunt
he encountered some resistance from Midvale City and they shut
him down. Word got out and the community rallied around him. Neighbors
started calling the news stations and Fox 13 News picked up the
story. After their broadcast, Midvale backed down and allowed
him to continue with building the haunt. The cost of admission
was free and he only asked that people donate a can of food to
the food bank and/or animal shelter. That year the haunt was a
great success and it started bringing the neigborhood closer together.
This year the haunt is nearly doubling in size and, with little
resistance from Midvale, is going forward to be even better than
last year. If you went through the "Scared Haunt" last year and
you think you know what to expect, then guess again! There are
more rooms than last year and new themes with lots of exciting
scares around each corner. New props have been brought in and
Max is using the combined knowlege of his years of haunt experience
and the experience from his friends and neighbors to take this
years haunt to the next level.
a neighbor of Max's, Spencer
Mears saw they both had a love of Halloween and finding new
and exciting ways of scaring/entertaining their neighbors. As
he got involved with the neighborhood haunt in 2011, their friendship
quickly grew and they both wanted to do more to give back to and
improve their community.
Being involved with Scared Haunt, Spencer
has gained a greater appreciation of the love that his community
has for those around them and how supportive they have been as
he and Max work toward building the community and doing what they
can to help those who need it.
Seeing the need for building their community,
working with the haunt has helped Spencer and his family to reach
out to their neigbors and they now host annual block parties as
a way for the neighbors to get to know each other better and build
As someone who has spent his life playing
with electronics and computers, Spencer quickly saw many ways
that he could use his experience with Control4
home automation to improve the haunt and make it more exciting
and easier to manage. He operates as the behind the scenes puppeteer
orchestrating lighting, sound effects, prop control and security.
When he's not playing with the haunt, he and his family run FunAroundUtah.com
and love to spend thier time going around Utah and exploring all
that Utah has to offer. Some of their favorite things to do are
hiking through slot canyons like Little Wild Horse Canyon, river
rafting on the Green River, exploring ghost towns and learning
the history of Utah through old indian ruins and rock art and
checking out museums.