Pirate staff and faculty compete in a festive door decorating contest


Stephanie Fox and her family decorated their front yard to resemble a scene from the movie “Ghostbusters.” Her two sons posed in between the skeleton decorations.

Throughout October, the Halloween spirit brought some vitality to Park University. Many offices participated in the 6th annual Halloween decoration contest hosted by the Staff Advisory Council.

On Nov. 2, SAC announced the winners by email. The winners of this year’s door decoration competition were Adam Stone from facilities in the individual category, the payroll office in the small group category, the Camp Pendleton campus in the large group category, and Stephanie Fox, assistant director of student success, in the work from home category.

Rachel Lorenzen, payroll reporting analyst, played a large component in the win of the small group category. For the purpose of trying to match both the Park spirit and payroll theme, they decorated their door as a treasure map. There was a pirate ship in the Underground decorated as a skeleton cave that tied into the treasure map decoration of the payroll office in Mackay Hall. Outside the office was a treasure chest covered with cobwebs, which was guarded by two skeletons wearing pirate hats.

The treasure chest was handmade by Lorenzen with cereal boxes. Lorenzen said she loves being creative, yet since her daily work is filled with crunching numbers, she does not often get a chance to be creative. So she said she really enjoyed doing some crafts outside of her regular work. The winning prize was $30 to a restaurant of their choosing.

“We would probably go to a pizza place,” Lorenzen said.

Fox, the winning contestant for the work from home category, submitted a picture of her festive front yard. Her family recreated the movie scene from “Ghostbusters” in their front yard, where two skeleton “Ghostbusters” used proton packs to fight off a blow up marshmallow man from the movie.

The most creative part was the proton flow. Fox fixed the PVC pipe to the skeleton with a rope and hung it above the tree. The theme of the film is hunting and capturing ghosts, which Fox wanted to portray because the film is a childhood favorite. Fox and her family hope to bring more joy to the community during the difficult period of the continuous COVID-19 pandemic.

When Fox learned that she was the winner of the competition, she said, “We love Halloween so we really wanted to do it up big this year. We’ve had cars stop to take pictures and thank us for doing this and tell us how much fun it is. I’m filled with joy to know that my Park University family enjoyed it too!”

Fox has two little boys, Ashton and Aiden, who were the biggest helpers for this project. They will use the $15 Amazon Gift Card from this competition to buy crafts and art supplies for them. She believes that art can inspire a love of learning and creativity.