If you have a fear of arachnids then Rob Rowan’s house is not the place for you.
The Maple Ridge man has built a nine metres wide and five metre tall spider that sits on his front lawn, along 221 Street, just south of Dewdney Trunk Road.
It is complete with a mannequin entangled in a web hanging from the spider’s mouth.
“I’m beyond help,” Rowan laughed when asked if he did have help building the spider.
The spider is the latest addition to his Halloween display that has been growing over the last 18 years.
Rowan started decorating because they had no trick-or-treaters the first year they moved into the house.
“We had no one show up at our house the first year just because we’ve got no street lights and no sidewalks. It’s this creepy dark street that the parents look past and go on elsewhere,” said Rowan.
“The kids were kind of disappointed because we just moved from a farmhouse where we never had Halloween,” he said.
So the following year Rowan put out a few decorations and lit up his house a bit. His work truck had a flashing light on it so he turned it on. That year between 10 to 15 children showed up at his door.
Since then the display has grown every year.
Last year his family counted around 85 children and Rowan even asked his employer to sponsor hot chocolate and a tent for parents to stand under at the end of the driveway as their children received their treats.
That’s where he got the idea to build the spider.
He thought why not make the tent into a giant spider that the parents could stand under.
“It didn’t quite turn out big enough for the shelter idea. It turned out plenty big for the yard though,” said Rowan.
The spider is made out of ABS plumbing pipe, plywood, wire mesh, landscape cloth and paint.
It took Rowan two solid weeks of eight hour days to complete.
In addition to the spider he has a fully functional guillotine that chops a dummy’s head off and different characters that jump out at visitors.
Rowan estimates that he has built around 25 per cent of the decorations himself.
“My oldest daughter is a hair dresser so she gets me mannequin heads all the time and I add bodies to them and kill them off in various ways,” he said.
He will also have inflatables on the roof of his house and throughout the yard, smoke machines and eerie lighting.
Rowan says that being a carpenter by trade he comes across materials for his display very cheap or sometimes even for free.
“I’m cheap by heart so I try to keep it as cost effective as possible,” said Rowan.
“But that being said, I definitely do spend money. I would be scared to know exactly how much,” he said adding that if his wife knew, she would probably want a divorce.