Gilbert's 'Halloween House' is a must-see in October

Posted at 4:50 PM, Oct 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-01 00:07:21-04

Robert Cox's home certainly stands out in the neighborhood -- at least during October.

Lighted skulls lay stoic atop make-shift pillars that surround his house. A make-shift graveyard is on the left side of his yard along with a red-eyed werewolf, while a skeleton horse and unnamed rider stand on the right.

As fog rolls through the graveyard (and out into the neighborhood), an estimated 12,000 multi-colored rope lights flicker from the house and change color as Halloween-themed music echoes from the speakers.

It's known as the "Halloween House of Gilbert," a free family-friendly attraction that Cox describes as a "hobby."

"It's just for fun," he says.

During the week he takes on the role of director of financial management for a real-estate company.

He began his Halloween decorating adventure in 2013 with the hope of winning a neighborhood contest. He came in second that year.

Now four years later, he's added more decorations and lights, even retrofitting the front porch and a section along the side of the house into a less-intense haunted walk. Theatrical spiders and undead creatures hang from the ceiling.

Still, he wanted to make sure it was an attraction that the little ones could enjoy.

The lights "dance" to a mix of Halloween-themed songs, like "Monster Mash" and "Thriller," but also less Halloween-y songs, like Usher's Yeah! and the Eurythmics' "Sweet Dreams (are made of this)."

The lights run daily from about 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. and until 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights. During the week, the lights flicker, but the fog and music are turned on on Friday and Saturday nights.

Depending on weather and when the sun sets, those times could change slightly, said Cox.

Updates will be posted to their Facebook page, Halloween House of Gilbert.

The house is located within the Cameron Ranch neighborhood, 3504 E Melody Ln, Gilbert, AZ 85234.

Like the North Phoenix Lights pumpkin display we featured earlier, the display is at a single home within a functioning neighborhood. There is no parking lot or parking attendants, and some homes have decorations while others do not.

Parking is available along the street, just make sure not to block anyone's driveway or park on someone's grass.

Cox does not charge but does have a locked box where he collects donations for wounded soldiers. He said he served in the Army from 1987 to 1992 as a military police investigator.

Over the last three years, he's raised nearly a $1,000, he said.

The lights will run until Oct. 31.

Halloween House of Gilbert
3504 E Melody Ln, Gilbert, AZ 85234