The History of Holiday Habits

Holiday Habits all started when I was a young kid decorating my mom’s house for the holidays. Each year we would add more, and more decorations; always trying to outdo the previous year.

I started decorating my own house and my sister’s house, in Streamwood, in 2000 and did so until 2005. We now live in Huntley since 2005 and it’s a much bigger production with several family members, friends and neighbors helping out. Today, our decorating/entertaining has two main focuses: Halloween and Christmas. We now have many family members involved in decorating, building props and getting it all set up to entertain the neighborhood and many from miles around.


I have to start out saying “I love the process of setting up for Halloween as much as the day itself. Ok, maybe not quite as much, but very close!” Its gives me a sense of pride, accomplishment and excitement when I see people walk or drive past our house and ask “Are you the Halloween Guy? – Are you adding any more cool stuff? – What’s new this year? – I can’t wait to see it all done!”

Even better than that is, when they say “I love watching your house transform into the best Haunted House Huntley has- I love what you do for the neighborhood- You make Halloween for my kids- I love watching the house change everyday-My kids love your house- Your house scares my kids, it’s so fun to watch- I drive here from miles away just to see your house…” and the best is from a lady that drives down from Wisconsin every year to take pictures in front of our house with her kids. She said “I was visiting friends in LITH and they told me about your house. I love Halloween, so I had to come see it. I brought my kids with to show them and we all loved it! I have been here every year since to take pictures of my kids in front of your house. It’s like our family photo spot.”

Our house is a little different from most you see going down the street, as I’m thnking about Halloween all year and build props year round with a group of friends in Chicago Haunt Builders. I usually start preparing midsummer and start decorating in late August or early September. We usually prepare all the props and start inside the house. Yes, we decorate the halls, living room, dining room, kitchen, family room and whatever I can, depending on time and money. We live with spider webs and spiders hanging around for about 2 months. We have as many as 5 to 15 life size or larger than life props throughout the inside of our house. We do it up inside as much as we do outside. (See the pictures).

The outside: I started the cemetery fence in late August one time and got in trouble with the village. Someone had called on me thinking I was putting up a permanent fence in my front yard. That is off limits in our neighborhood. They asked me to remove it and I told them it was for Halloween and it takes me hours to build. They went and talked, called their boss and questioned if I was telling the truth about it being a Halloween decoration, as it is a 3′ tall steel fence spiked into the ground. They came back and told me I could leave it now, but don’t put it up any earlier than mid September moving forward. Now, I put spider webs on it right away so everyone knows its purpose.

We have a full cemetery with static and animatronic/pneumatic props. The yard fills with fog from our witch kettle, as the music plays from our animated lighting and DMX system; lighting up the props and tombstones with music and sound effects that can be heard several houses away.

We have many visitors all of October, more on the weekends. Stop by and check us out. We don’t charge any fees and always greatly appreciate any donations or help people are willing to extend.

If you find anything offensive, I apologize in advance, as we are only here to entertain and bring enjoyment to the neighborhood and community. Holiday Habits Cemetery caters to a wide age range from young to old. We have numerous effects, props and things that are humorous, and others that cause people to wet their pants and leave screaming. If you have a child that startles easily, we suggest you bring them during the day, when it’s not so scary.

Please note that some props, lighting and effects may not be suitable for people suffering from heart problems, epilepsy, asthma, and or weak bladders, we try our best to provide a safe at-most-fear that will offer you a great scare and a memorable Halloween that will last a lifetime!

Due to raising costs and the need for acquiring more man power, we are asking our viewers for support to help fund the financial needs of the yard haunt. These donations are in no way a means of acquiring a profit, but strictly to aid in the costs of setup, operation and the feeding of our volunteer builders (Holiday Habits generally spends $3,000-$5,000 per year to give you the best scares around and entertain you and your family. Our highest year we spent over $7,000). Your donations will help the charities we support as well as help keep Holiday Habits alive for future years!

Who is involved in creating the Holiday Habits? (meet some of the family and friends below)
Joe is obviously the one with the habit, but he’s getting others hooked too! The decorating and preparation would not be possible without his son Mike, the assistance of others like his nephew Max and Niece Hailey, brother in law Jeremy, friends and neighbors and others all make it possible.

Holiday Habits Entertainment is located at:

10716 Wheatlands Way

Huntley, IL. 60142


It would not be possible without them!

Joe Buedel
Owner, Creator & Designer of Holiday Habits

Mike Buedel

Photographer, Creator & Designer of Holiday Habits website