Haunted Attractions

One area of themed entertainment that is near and dear to our hearts as fans has always been haunted attractions. Since 1994, Theme Park Adventure has devoted much of its time and energy on showcasing haunts, from yard displays to major theme park productions; we love it all, and always tell our readers that Halloween isn’t just a holiday for us – it’s a lifestyle…

Insane Clown Posse and More Announced for Rob Zombie’s Great American Nightmare 2015

Great American Nightmare Insane Clown PosseAnother night of music has been announced for Rob Zombie’s Great American Nightmare — the ultimate Halloween horror event — at Odeum Expo Center in Villa Park, IL. Detroit-based horrorcore/hip hop band Insane Clown Posse, rock band P.O.D., along with artists Stitches, Young Wicked, and Dope D.O.D., will perform at Rob Zombie’s Great American Nightmare on Saturday, October 3.

When Insane Clown Posse (ICP) emerged from the darkness surrounding Detroit’s underground music scene in the early ‘90s, the world had yet to imagine the impact that the hardcore hip-hop style spawned by these two artists–Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope–would bring to bear on mainstream music. Shunned by mainstream music players like MTV and castigated in the media, banned from radio airwaves and yanked from the shelves of “conventional” retail outlets, ICP was dealt a hand that seemed destined for swift and certain failure. Instead, the duo amassed a following of millions of fans endearingly called “Juggalos” and smashed through the ceiling of music industry expectation.

Tickets for the October 3 show at Rob Zombie’s Great American Nightmare are on sale and start at only $35. Tickets include the concert and haunted attractions. Tickets purchased at the door (if available) will start at $45. On October 3, doors open at 5:00 PM and the concert starts at 7:00 PM.

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Anubis Paintball Adventure Coming to Queen Mary’s Dark Harbor 2015

Queen Mary Dark HarborFear lives here at The Queen Mary’s Dark Harbor as the torrid history of the haunted ship rises from the deep October 1 – November 1, 2015. In addition to Dark Harbor’s horrific new maze, Lullaby, that tells the tale of the ship’s youngest soul, Scary Mary, the annual fright festival is thrilled to unveil the all-new Anubis Paintball Adventure.

Those who dare will venture into the tombs of Anubis, the Greek Egyptian jackal-headed god of mummification and the afterlife. In Anubis’ underworld, guests will test their skills in an LED 3D paintball battle against the most terrifying gaggle of mummies, monsters and myths.

The brand new Lullaby maze will take guests on a frightening voyage with Dark Harbor’s youngest soul, Scary Mary, who has haunted the Queen Mary ever since her horrific drowning in the poolroom in 1952. Dark Harbor will also welcome the new Side Show of Freaks and Oddities and the Side Show Bar that will bring guests up close into the grotesque world of freaks.

The Ringmaster, The Captain and their band of spirits including Samuel the Savage, Graceful Gale, Half-Hatch Henry and Scary Mary will be joined by over 200 grizzly monsters and ghouls that will be plotting terrifying tricks and treats throughout the season of fear. Dark Harbor’s signature haunts Deadrise, Soulmate, B340, Circus and the Voodoo Village will be wrought with more horrific monsters than ever before.

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Wes Craven – Bringer of Monsters and Nightmares

Nightmare on Elm Street Movie PosterNovember, 1984. My grandfather and I were in the restroom of the Crest Theatre in San Bernardino, California after seeing Madman. When I noticed in the newspaper that the movie (it had become a sleeper/cult classic of sorts in the early ’80s, playing with other horror films around the country long after its initial release) was playing at the Crest, I asked my grandfather to take me – and away we went. As we washed our hands, my grandpa asked if I wanted to stay and see the movie that Madman was playing with as a double-feature; something or other about Elm Street. Neither one of us really knew much about it, but figured we’d give it a shot; if it sucked, we’d leave.

That second-thought film was indeed, Wes Craven’s A Nightmare on Elm Street, and for the next hour and a half, we sat silently in that theater, completely transfixed by what we saw on the screen. We left the Crest that evening buzzing about this new monster – with a charred red and green sweater, crumpled fedora, and a blade-tipped glove that slashed his victims in their dreams as they slept. We didn’t realize it at the time, but we’d just witnessed the birth of one of horror’s most iconic characters – Freddy Krueger.

Wes Craven’s career was a good one – and he unleashed an impressive list of terror on moviegoers that includes The Last House on the LeftThe Hills Have EyesSwamp ThingThe Serpent and the RainbowShockerScream, and Red Eye, to name a few. His films were mostly all received very well by horror fans, and the character of Ghostface from the Scream series arguably has become the most famous mask in cinema since John Carpenter’s Halloween. In my mind however, what towers above all else is the Gloved One – Freddy. And this is where we can easily bridge Craven’s world to that of themed entertainment.

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Knott’s Scary Farm Preview 2015 – Thoughts and Discussion

Trick 1This week, Knott’s Berry Farm revealed all that fans can expect when they pass through the gates and into the fog-filled scare zones of Knott’s Scary Farm 2015. Tons of media outlets were in attendance, Theme Park Adventure included, and reports of the new attractions are abundant online.

What I would like to do here is simply jot down in post format, what I’ve been discussing with fans on our Periscope broadcasts of late – some personal opinions, thoughts and ponderings regarding Scary Farm 2015’s lineup. In no way is this a definitive break-down of all that in store at Knott’s this Halloween; I am simply going to comment on a few of the most talked-about additions, and then wait patiently like the rest of you for opening night, September 24th.

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Knott’s Scary Farm Unveils its Terrifying 2015 Lineup of Shows and Attractions

New Scary Farm Logo 2014The 43rd annual world renowned event, Knott’s Scary Farm, returns for 24 horrifying nights September 24 – October 31 and conjures up never before seen experiences and show-stopping entertainment including three new bloodcurdling mazes, Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, in an all-new stage show and the return of the groundbreaking Special Ops: Infected – Patient Zero.

Three new terrifying attractions will debut this year, with more astounding special effects and richer back stories than ever, including:

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Final Details of Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights 25 Revealed

An American Werewolf in London at Universal Orlando's Halloween Horror NightsThis year, Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights will celebrate 25 years of scares, screams and terror by bringing back some of the most iconic and blood-curdling stories from event history. This year’s event will feature nine disturbingly-real haunted houses, including one of the highest-rated houses ever, An American Werewolf In London. Guests will also relive their favorite sinister stories from Universal’s Entertainment Team in horrific new ways. Here’s what to expect at this year’s event:

  • The return of the fan-favorite house, based on John Landis’ critically-acclaimed horror film, An American Werewolf in London – a fiercely-immersive experience that pays homage to one of the greatest lycanthropic stories ever told. This year, the wolves are more ferocious and hungry for human flesh… and their pack has expanded.

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Big Worm’s Sherwood Scare Home Haunt to Return for Halloween 2016

Sherwood Scare ExteriorThe season is off to a mixed-bag start, with the announcement of some really exciting new haunts, and at the same time, others that we really love fading away this year. Sadly, another home haunt – a phenomenon here in Los Angeles, honestly – Big Worm’s Sherwood Scare will not be making an appearance for the 2015 season.

What’s taken place with Sherwood Scare is honestly, very similar to what we wrote about a week ago regarding The House at Haunted Hill going on hiatus this year. Jacob Chase, the creator and lead creative force behind Sherwood Scare is an accomplished writer that is involved with the film industry here in Los Angeles. The good news is, he’s been made a potentially career-changing offer than he simply cannot pass up; the down-side is, it conflicts with putting on the haunt this season.

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A Glimpse Into Tampa’s Newest Haunt Experience, The Vault of Souls

Vault of Souls ImageAs the back to school buzz and fall festivities approach, The Vault of Souls has launched a YouTube channel and released a sneak peek video into their cavernous basement to give anxious guests a glimpse of the sinister souls waiting to terrorize them.

The Vault of Souls is an all-new Halloween concept that crosses theatrical performance art with a non-traditional haunt experience, wrapped in a paranormal 1920s theme. Guests are encouraged to explore the cavernous crypt without abandon to seek clues and insights into The Vault’s dark and sordid history.

In addition to the bone-chilling basement show, The Vault of Souls features three nightclub experiences ranging from modern elegance in The Vault, a raucous 1920s Gin Joint and a subdued spiritualist bistro featuring psychics and tarot readers that will offer guests insights to the future.

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Mickey’s Halloween Party Grows to 17 Nights at Disneyland in 2015

Haunted Mansion HolidayHalloween Time at the Disneyland Resort receives a Diamond Celebration infusion for 2015, making the season shine as never before as Halloween Time sparkles with Diamond Celebration décor and entertainment. The one-of-a-kind celebration of chilling, family-friendly fun will begin Friday, Sept. 11, and continue through Sunday, Nov. 1, with 17 nights dedicated to Mickey’s Halloween Party.

The popular, separate-ticket Mickey’s Halloween Party expands to 17 nights beginning Friday, Sept. 25. The after-hours party treats guests to an array of special entertainment, along with traditional Halloween Time fun. For the first time, the Paint the Night parade, new for the Diamond Celebration, will be presented at Mickey’s Halloween Party, along with a new superhero-themed dance party at Tomorrowland Terrace. These offerings are in addition to the Halloween Screams fireworks spectacular, a guest favorite that is exclusive to Mickey’s Halloween Party. Adults and children are encouraged to dress in costume for the party as they trick-or-treat throughout Disneyland park for a scary good time.

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TPA Mixers Say Goodbye to Summer, Hello to Halloween 2015

TPA_Summer_Nights_2_4156Theme Park Adventure’s final Summer Nights mixer of the year was held on Sunday, July 19th at Don the Beachcomber in Huntington Beach. We had a tremendous showing of themed entertainment fans, haunters and industry folks – the vibe was amazing and the party was rockin, despite Florida-like heat and humidity! The weather was crazy, and so, we were thrilled to see so many TPAers brave the freeways in the rain to come join us for the last mixer of the summer.

Last mixer of the summer? Yep. In August, Theme Park Adventure was consumed by ScareLA. If you don’t know, Johanna Atilano and I make up 1/2 of the ScareLA core production team, so our schedules leading up to that convention are pretty wild; the week after ScareLA was D23 Expo in Anaheim, which we attended, and no doubt, many TPAers did, too. So, that pretty much killed August for an official TPA mixer of any kind.

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