St. Charles family’s Halloween display priceless to visitors


St. Charles resident Chris Donabauer goes above and beyond every year with his extravagant Halloween decorations.
Photo by Andrew Rogers

Video by Andrew Rogers. 


620 Nancy Drive, St. Charles, is not only the home of Chris and Sara Donabauer, but also the home of a highly anticipated and annually welcomed Halloween display.  

For the past 16 years, Chris Donabauer has been putting out an assemblage of Halloween decorations flowing from his 1,000-square-foot yard, to the garage, driveway and onto the roof.

His collection of skeletons, werewolves and spooky ghouls has earned him a reputation around town of being as dedicated to Halloween as Clark Griswold is to Christmas.

The Halloween assortment takes Donabauer around of month of 8- to 12-hour days to set up. In September he starts pulling his 300 boxes of decorations from every corner of the basement, attic and shed to put on display.

The goal is always to have the whole display out by the beginning of October so people can enjoy the view all month long.

Which they do.

Nearing the end of October the dazzling display attracts hundreds of visitors a night according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The family also gives out over a thousand pieces of candy to trick-or-treaters every year on Halloween.

The display grows every year. Donabauer’s mother, who lives with the family, orders a couple thousand dollars each year on new decorations for the display.

Over the years, the display has accumulated a worth between $50,000 and $100,000.

However, in the hearts of people in St. Charles and around the world who come to visit the display, the Donabauer yard is priceless.