Festive frights aren’t that far from your neighborhood. Michigan’s Thumb is a prime example.
CLAY TWP., Mich.—The myth of Morrow Road, just off I-94 at Wadhams in St. Clair County has been shared for generations.
According to local legends, a woman named Isabella lost her son in 1890. Her son, a toddler in most versions of the story, is supposedly still seen on Morrow Road. So, too, is the frantically-searching Isabella. People report other spectral signs of haunting on the road as well, like ghostly orbs..
From this simple origin has spawned spooky theories about what happened to them on the road, chilling retellings at local Halloween parties for nearly 150 years, and even a film project. But in addition to being a spooky local legend, Morrow Road is just a road through the backwoods of Michigan’s thumb.
In fact, rural Michigan is brimming with haunted experiences for the brave or fool of heart. Just in the thumb, some exciting October adventures await among small towns and humble streets waiting to be discovered.
A lot of the best haunted experiences for the spooky season in October come from ordinary places, like quiet roads or people’s farms. And if you’re looking to travel the Thumb of Michigan looking for stories like Morrow Road, places with family-friendly frights, consider traveling to Morrow Road as part of this string of exciting Halloween adventures.
St. Clair’s Morrow Road
1890 S. Bartlett Rd., St Clair, MI 48079
That myth comes alive on a one-mile trail following both Isabella’s journey and that of her lost toddler on self-guided tours of a haunted outdoor experience. Morrow Road offers trick-or-treat events Oct. 9, 15, 16, and 22 for a spooky chance to gather candy along a haunted country lane.
On top of that, the nonprofit promoting Morrow Road offers a special Lights Out night on Oct. 14 and a VIP night Oct.28.
Armada’s Haunted Barn
17985 Armada Center Rd., Armada, MI 48005
A great stop before Morrow Road is Armada. Specifically, Blake’s Cider Mill. In addition to all its family fun activities like corn mazes and a petting farm, Blake’s boasts a scary haunted barn for all ages.
To help the kids with the haunted barn experience, they encourage parents to bring little ones to see the haunted barn in the daylight, without their actors present, to help remind them the scares are all in good fun.
On top of that, they provide other Halloween attractions like a haunted hayride, zombie paintball, and more as part of their ‘spookyland’ October festivities.
Lapeer’s Past Tense
1965 Farnsworth Rd., Lapeer, MI 48446
Don’t miss this haunted cider mill attraction in Lapeer. Past Tense After Dark bills itself as a premiere provider of frights and scares! This one is best suited for older kids, as it can be pretty spooky!
Much like Morrow Road, Past Tense connects itself to a local legend of an “unspeakable evil” that haunts Lapeer’s Farnsworth Road. From the spooky stay at the Farnsworth Hotel to it’s spooky corn maze and hayride. But if you brave the terrors, Past Tense will have warm doughnuts and cider waiting for you on the other side.
Yale’s Haunted Hotel
119 S. Main St., Yale, MI 48143
Another spooktacular hotel in Yale shows exactly what small-town Michigan with rich history can bring to a season of spooky delights. Decades of the Dead takes place in a 1901-constructed hotel and highlights the lives that have come, and gone, through Yale.
The hotel is undergoing renovations which may affect it’s 2021 schedule, but it’s certainly worth a visit for families interested in things like ghostly orbs and rich, rural Michigan myth.
Capac’s Haunted Village
5411 Hackman Rd., Capac, MI 48014
Salem’s Haunted Village in Capac is a great stop for all ages in another piece of rural Michigan’s thumb. Salem highlights their large barn that “seems to have some haunted activity” and a “ride into the deep, creepy night by horse-drawn hayride” that are sure to send thrills and chills.
Salem is open every Friday and Saturday in October, and challenges Michiganders to find their scare-crafting actors and brave their village of frights, unless, as they put it, you’re a chicken.