Opp campaigning for haunted depot

Published 1:38 am Saturday, September 21, 2013

Opp residents have launched a campaign to hold a haunted house inside the city’s old depot.

Earlier this week, it was announced fire regulations prohibited the city from holding a haunted house type event in the depot because it wasn’t outfitted with sprinkler and an emergency alarm systems.

Mayor John Bartholomew said previously the Downtown Redevelopment Authority was sponsoring the haunted house type fundraiser to purchase a new $8,500 Christmas tree for the city.

Bartholomew said the city can’t afford to install the new systems; however, the city is pursuing grant funds to refurbish the former train depot and plans will be made to include the systems.

This would’ve been the first event of its kind by the group, he said.

“We just won’t have a haunted house this year, and that’s sad,” Bartholomew said. “This was the DRA’s idea, and it was a good one. We weren’t aware of the regulations, and there isn’t another building in town available to us that will meet those. We have to respect the fire marshal’s decision.”

For the last two days, phone calls and emails have flooded offices of the state fire marshal and local government representatives.

At present, locals are asked to hold off contacting officials.

Bartholomew told an Opp radio station that the city is working to find a compromise in the situation.