Judge: Haunted Garden in Silver Spring can only be held for 2 ni - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Judge: Haunted Garden in Silver Spring can only be held for 2 nights

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A judge in Montgomery County says a Silver Spring realtor may hold her elaborate Haunted Garden event, but for two nights only, not five nights.

Neighbors have complained for years to county officials about the crowds drawn to the big Halloween displays in the backyard of Donna Kerr. An attorney representing the government said the realtor is using her residential property for a commercial event because 12,000 fliers inviting people were sent by Kerr's company, Pure Energy Real Estate. Kerr disputed that in court, pointing out she charges no admission.

Neighbors and county officials also expressed concern about traffic on narrow streets that have no sidewalks -- streets that are poorly illuminated after dark.

District Judge Patricia Mitchell declined to issue a permanent injunction on the basis of commercial activity in a residential neighborhood. But the judge did express concern about public safety. She limited the planned five-night affair to just two evenings: Friday and Saturday on October 25 and 26 between the hours of 6 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Afterward, Kerr told reporters she is somewhat concerned that compressing the event into two evenings may make the streets more crowded than ever.

In District Courts in Maryland, either party may appeal a ruling to the higher Circuit Court. The attorney representing Montgomery County said officials will consider their options in the next day or two.

Related Story:

Montgomery County not thrilled about Halloween display in Silver Spring

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