Scaremare, one of Liberty’s longest traditions, will be canceled for the first time

Almost 50 years in a row.

Scaremare, one of Lynchburg’s premier fall activities, and a popular avenue for Liberty students to obtain Community Service hours (CSER), has been canceled for the first time in it’s almost 50-years of operation, starting their first scare and evangelism experience in 1972. 

The Rawlings School of Divinity issued a statement regarding the cancellation. 

“It is our desire to keep the health, well-being and safety of our students, staff and patrons our utmost priority. We anticipated by now Virginia’s Governor would have ended the temporary restrictions on events and activities due to COVID-19. As we approach September, Governor Northam shows no indication that Virginia will complete Phase three of the temporary restrictions in time for Scaremare this year, so we will be unable to host this harvest time event that receives over 25,000 people each year.”

Scaremare is used as a witnessing opportunity for those in the Lynchburg community and surrounding areas, as attendees are presented with the Gospel message at the conclusion of the haunted house experience. This year would have marked the 49th annual Scaremare. The School of Divinity said it looks forward to hosting Scaremare in 2021. 

Promotion of the 2020 event was already underway, and volunteers and staff were set to start working on the major event shortly after arriving on campus.

Each night of the event involves between 120 and 150 volunteers, and even more students are involved in the preproduction. 

“I’ve had a lot of my friends that I worked it with last year call me and we’re all super upset that such a staple in the community—tons and tons of people come out for this—got canceled this year,” said Madison Bane, a Liberty student who has worked Scaremare several times in the past. “It is so fun working it each year and see so many people go through and making so many new friends while you’re working. You see all these people and you know at the end they’re going to get to hear the gospel be presented. Such a powerful tool is no longer happening, it’s kind of sad.”

Brittany Slaughter is the Asst. News editor for the Liberty Champion. Follow her on Twitter @BSlaughterReal

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