It is said that a werewolf is a person who changes for periods of time into a wolf, typically when the moon is full. Please also remember that this is folklore and a superstition.


A Nevada couple’s tradition of turning their home into a “Haunted House” at Halloween has led to many traditional and not-so-traditional props.


Fifteen years ago, Cali and Mike Smith added a very interesting prop to their collection. On a visit to their ‘go-to’ shop for unusual items for their haunted house, Cali spotted something that she needed to have.


“I saw a werewolf that I fell in love with,” commented Cali. “It was in the Theatrical Shop in Valley Junction. I saw this werewolf that was on display; I asked how much it was and was told that it was not for sale. It was one of seven that was used as a prop in a movie made by Universal City Studios, and although the one on display was not for sale, they told me that they could get me one of the others. I said — do it.”


Cali said that about two weeks after being ordered, the werewolf arrived.


“It cost me $500.” She said. “Its eyes even light up. They are connected to a battery pack, so we can turn them on when we want to.”


The werewolf is displayed on top of the couple’s television set and is definitely an item of conversation.


“We have used it in our haunted house for the past 15 years,” Cali explained. “The werewolf is a delight to both the little kids, as well as bigger kids. Our point is just to have fun with it.”


Fun is what the Smith’s like to do around Halloween. In the past, the couple opened up their home, after about two weeks of decorating, for people to walk through on the night of Trick or Treat in Nevada.


“We have had up to 1,000 people enjoy our haunted house on any given night,” said Cali. “We don’t do it anymore; we are getting old and it’s just too much work. We never charged anyone to get in, but we held a food drive, which provided food for the Nevada Food Pantry.”


Cali explained that the werewolf is made with a rubber face and lots of fur on its body. She said that it would be difficult to find anything like it for sale at some of the stores that sell Halloween items.


“There are a lot of really cool, elaborate decorations for sale and we have spent a lot of money for them,” she said. “But I haven’t seen anything like the werewolf we have. It’s really a one-of-a-kind item.”


The Smiths find the werewolf to be a very unique piece of art.


“It doesn’t eat much, I don’t have to feed it and it seems to be doing pretty good,” she joked. “It’s still a classic and I don’t think you will find anything like this in any store here in central Iowa.”


The werewolf is a classic. Best information about its origin might be that it was a prop in the movie “American Werewolf in London,” a 1981 production which was then remade by Universal City Studios.


Cali said that she would be interested in selling the werewolf. She posted a photo on her Facebook page, but didn’t have any takers on it.


“It really is a wonderful piece,” she said. “It doesn’t have to be a Halloween prop; it would be great in a Man Cave. It’s a cool piece of art and is in excellent condition. We have taken really good care of it for the past 15 years.”


“We are just old kids,” she continued. “We don’t have children of our own and we have loved opening up our home in the past. We would love to have another good home enjoy the werewolf as much as we have.”


Halloween isn’t that far off. Or if you need something really unusual for a Man Cave, you might want to consider a werewolf. Especially this one — it’s a one of a kind and played a major staring role in a movie at one time.


Watch for the next full moon.