Scary story contest yields thrilling results

Be afraid. Be very afraid.

This year, when we put out the call for scary stories from students in elementary, middle and high schools, we weren’t disappointed. About 200 writers tried to spook us, and many did.

To start the stories, we gave students the prompt, “I was walking home from school on an unusually dark afternoon when I felt a pair of eyes staring right at me.” In students’ imaginations, those eyes belonged to vampires, hairy beasts, old ladies and even Halloween ninjas.

After much deliberation by Journal-World staff judges, we chose the top story from each grade level. Our contest winners are Maria Matamoros, elementary school; Ryan Leibold, middle school; and Carolyn Weiler, high school. Read their scary stories here.

Each category had a few top stories, so the runners up will be posted at Look for stories by these writers online: Raeleigh Heck and Marian Frick, elementary school; Noah Haas and Stephanie Reed, middle school; and Caleb Woodard, Katie Guyot and Conor Hiatt, high school.

We appreciate the hard work these students put in to give us a fright, and we hope you will, too. So read on — if you dare.