Halloween explodes on the last street where you’d expect it

DIana Rotelli instructs the students of her ghoul school.

SOUTH KINGSTOWN, RI (WPRI) – A local woman who loves Halloween more than kids love candy, moved to a neighborhood that had more cows and snapping turtles than trick-or-treaters.

So, Diana Rotelli faced that frightening adversity by changing the mood on her tucked away South County road. Fry Pond Road remains dark until you arrive at the former first grade teacher’s home.

“You can see the light as you come over the hill,” Rotelli said.


It’s now a road where grown-up witches in high heals chase grown-up scare crows. One group of four younger revelers, who were helping Rotelli decorate her “cemetery,” each offered a word to describe the display; Spooky. Weird. Creepy. Awesome.

“The neighbors loved it,” Rotelli said when asked how she was greeted when she moved in 23 years ago. “Right away. They were like, oh man, this is so cool. What are you going to do next year?”

So, she did more, now starting the decorating process around Columbus Day.

Rotelli, whose laugh is part Pixie and part Good Witch of the West – as in Greenwich – said there’s no shortage of trick-or-treaters now.

“They find us. They know where I am.”

We’re helping children face their fears. You don’t have to be afraid of things you’re not sure of.”

Back to that witch and scare crow that was spotted running after each other, they also love Halloween and were quite relieved that their display is now one of several on the road.

Rotelli starts decorating around Columbus Day.

“It was such a rural road,” Liz Cavallaro said. “I thought we wouldn’t get any trick-or-treaters.”

Hank Webster, a.k.a the scare crow, also loves the season and was relieved he wasn’t alone in his new neighborhood.

“There’s a lot of room for ghouls. So, it’s a great place to bring kids and get some candy,” Webster said.

If all of the pumpkins, gravestones and noisy décor aren’t enough, Diana the retired school teacher is now a ghoul teacher, instructing the kids on how to recycle their old costumes into decorative ghouls that, after 23 years, now line Fry Pond Road.

“There’s probably 125 out there,” she said, adding a reason for the chilling season. “We’re helping children face their fears and we’re showing them it can be fun. You don’t have to be afraid of things you’re not sure of.”

Maybe Fry Pond Road is one of the reasons some call this town West Green-Witch.

Send your story ideas to Walt at wbuteau@wpri.com and follow us on Twitter: @StreetStories12 and @wbuteau.

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