Nolan Moon constructed the walk by himself, using tarps, pallets and caution tape to create a winding path for walkers. Mikayla Patel / The Forecaster

Nolan Moon has always loved Halloween and, in the spirit of the season, the South Portland resident will be putting on his second annual haunted walk outside his home this weekend, designed for trick-or-treaters and thrill-seekers of all ages to enjoy some frights and scares.

The walk will be held Oct. 27, 28 and 31, from 7 to 10 p.m. in the woods outside of his Dawson Street home.

Moon first came to love the art of scaring when he worked as a scare actor for Universal Studios, which he described as “the most fun I’ve ever had.” Last year, he had the idea to create his own haunted experience for people in the community.

“I decided I wanted to do a scare walk,” he said, using materials like free pallets he could find, caution tape and black plastic from Home Depot to block off different areas of the walk as people are guided through.

Moon invited friends of his into the fun to volunteer as scare actors and startle participants. There was more enthusiasm than he could have expected, he said.

“I had cars showing up from the other side of South Portland,” he said, and eventually had to send visitors and trick-or-treaters home because he did not want to keep his actors working for too long.


Moon said the whole experience made him more excited about upping the ante this year.

“It’s so much fun seeing that reaction from people,” he said.

Moon said that while the walk is open to all, he doesn’t recommend bringing young children through, but that if parents do choose to do so, actors will modify their scares to accommodate them. The crowd was mostly around 8- to 12-year-olds last year, he said, with some younger kids and some teenagers.

He also emphasized that the walk is completely hands-off; actors won’t grab or touch anyone walking through.

John Bettencourt, Moon’s friend and a volunteer scare actor, said that last year’s walk was a blast and, while he’s taken a look at the haunted walk this year, he can’t wait to see it in action.

“I’m just excited to see what it will look like when the sun goes down,” he said. “It’s a really fun time.”


He said that much of the fun comes from “catching people off guard” and seeing the reactions that they can get from people.

Moon is especially excited for the addition of two new animatronics to the walk, which he said he’s looking forward to seeing people’s responses to.

Moon said he’s received positive feedback from many who came out last year, as well as excitement to see what’s in store for this year’s walk. One parent reached out to him to say that her son who’s autistic sometimes gets judged when trick-or-treating for being “too old,” but the haunted walk offered the opportunity to participate in the trick-or-treat fun in an engaging way without that fear.

Moon said he’s gotten offers from people to pitch in in some way or support the walk.

“I’ll accept donations,” he said, “but I don’t expect it or need it.”

Bettencourt said he’s been impressed by the effort Moon puts into the walk, how much time he dedicates and how much he’s able to accomplish by himself.

“It’s very impressive to see,” he said.

Bettencourt said he’s excited to “have a good time and be ready for next year, when I’m sure it will be even bigger.”

The walk is located at 46 Dawson St. in South Portland.

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