The Skeleton House at 6000 St. Charles Avenue, at State Street, has become a fixture on the New Orleans Halloween scene. In the front yard – and spilling over onto the sidewalk and up into the trees — are more than 100 skeletons wearing costumes with wonderfully punny labels.
The plays on words satirize politicians (Darth Vitter, Bobby Dwindle), celebrities (Dead Astaire, Marrow-Lyn Monroe), well-known local personalities (Scarry Connick Jr., Morris Bat) and these days, the pandemic.
Dr. Anthony Fauci and Gov. John Bel Edwards are a duo. And many of the skeletons are wearing masks, reminding all that the pandemic is still with us.
Homeowner Louellen Berger, the brains behind the funny bones, displayed only a small skeleton krewe last year because of the pandemic. But this year, the bones are back in full force.
Uptown Messenger caught up with some spectators during the full October hunters’ moon.
Friends Jo-Ann Adams and Emma Gross stopped by to see the Skeleton House on their way home from a concert. They live nearby and visit it every year.
Why do they come over? “Because it’s fun!” Adams said. “And it’s so clever and the characters keep getting more detailed.”
Gross chimed in: “I agree, plus there is a lot of thought and energy that goes into putting this together. Every year there are new and different things to see.”
Kade Kuhn drove over from the West Bank with a friend and her two children, ages 14 and 2, as part of her birthday celebration. “My 2-year-old is especially fascinated with the skeletons in the trees,” she said.
The house band features TromBONE Shorty, Terrance BlancHEART, Louis Arm’s Strong and a big-eared piano player “Plays by Ear.” The Terrance Blanchard character has a note about his Metropolitan Opera history-making debut of “Fire Shut Up in My Bones.”
There are skeletons in the trees, walking the fence and out onto State Street. They are coming out of the ground, twirling and gesturing. Emma Gross has it right: A lot of thought goes into this remarkable spectacle.
And what would a Halloween extravaganza skeleton display in New Orleans be without “Go Saints” and Morgus?