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Tag Archives: Knott’s Scary Farm
In October, we brought you a detailed look and review of everything new at Knott’s Scary Farm, including Paranormal, Inc. and Dead of Winter. This past Halloween season was monstrous in scope for us, to say the least; with 46 stops along the way between mid-September and the beginning of November, the amount of images, video and content in general that we collected is completely nuts! Now that we’ve moved out of the Halloween season, we’ve been sorting everything out and presenting it to you bit by bit here on the site; most folks who have been Theme Park Adventure fans for any duration of time will tell you – around here, Halloween is the gift that keeps on giving! That said, it’s finally time to circle back to the granddaddy of them all, and finish our review of Knott’s Scary Farm 2015 with a look at the mazes and attractions that returned this year to Buena Park.
Knott’s Scary Farm has evolved into such a massive Halloween event, that its lineup remains fairly intact from year to year, with the exception of a couple old mazes fading away, and a couple new ones cycled in to replace them and keep the haunt fresh and exciting for returning guests. Many of those returning guests are an army of hard core Knott’s fans, who wait almost year-round to learn what the new attractions at Scary Farm will be. They rush in to the Knott’s presentation at ScareLA to get the first news of what’s to come, and then gather at the park itself shortly thereafter to witness the annual full reveal event that is hosted in the Charles M. Schulz Theatre. Just the unveiling of things to come at Knott’s Scary Farm has become a thing!
With the event being so multi-faceted these days, it’s impossible to cover Knott’s Scary Farm in one review or story here on the site as we do with most other haunted attractions during October. In order to get the new maze information out to the public and fans as quickly as possible, we’ve agreed with Knott’s to review all new attractions first, and then let the major Scary Farm review follow in the weeks to follow. That said, this year’s event featured two brand-new mazes and one haunted attraction, which we’re excited to discuss and share with you now!
It’s a tradition going back to 1973 here in Southern California; the sun flickers and drowns over the horizon, nightfall creeps across the land, and fog billows from Ghost Town and other areas of the theme park as it writhes in pain, transforming from Knott’s Berry Farm into the world-famous Knott’s Scary Farm!
Okay – perhaps it’s not so dramatic; and to be honest, fans get just as excited reading that makeup and wardrobe operations have commenced in the early afternoon hours backstage in the fabled Warehouse P at Knott’s, and techs are making last-minute checks on fog machine juice and lighting inside the mazes and scare zones as media assembles for the opening night of Knott’s Scary Farm in Buena Park! That’s exactly what transpired on the evening of September 24th; for Theme Park Adventure, it continued our 21st year covering the granddaddy of all Halloween events (the first event being the 2015 Scary Farm preview in August).
Paranormal, Inc. is one of those mazes that somehow rises above the rest when it comes to fan hype; it’s never usually something that is planned from the very beginning – it just kind of jives with what people are excited about and through word of mouth (and a little bit of marketing magic), becomes the sight unseen fan favorite before Scary Farm even begins. We’ve seen this in the past, most recently with last year’s Voodoo attraction in 2014. There’s no really solid reason as to why this happens – it just is one of those things that we’ve seen time and again play out at Knott’s, as well as other major theme park haunts.
This 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.
The 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:
Knott’s Scary Farm, the largest, most haunted experience in Southern California, has unveiled a new spine-chilling maze and more for its 43rd annual event. The notorious event returns for 24 horrifying nights September 24 – October 31 and features 11 mazes, three Scare Zones, two live action packed shows, five Skeleton Key Rooms, and a thousand monsters lurking in the fog. Whatever you’re imagining, it’s here… at Knott’s Scary Farm.
New for 2015:
- Escape the icy grasp of the chilling Snow Queen in The Dead of Winter. Backed by with a ravenous beastly army of resurrected Viking warriors, she is hellbent on avenging her beloved family’s murder, and preys upon any unsuspecting visitors who foolishly enter the borders of her icy domain.
Toon TERRORtory was a short-lived attraction, lasting only two years at Halloween Haunt – 1996 and 1997. Guests would enter the maze from Ghost Town; the footprint was in the California Marketplace, roughly where the gate/secondary entrance is today near the base of GhostRider’s lift hill.
In a departure from typical Halloween Haunt mazes, Toon TERRORtory was one of very few “humorous” mazes in the history of the event. Maze designer Todd Faux, along with creative direction and input from Chris Williams (yes, kids, that Chris Williams) created an alternate reality cartoon world for the strange attraction, using well-known characters such as Speed Racer, and Beavis and Butthead, along with pre-war era-inspired monsters/characters as well!
ScareLA, the Southern California Halloween convention, is excited to announce its expansion to a new venue, the Pasadena Convention Center for the event’s 2015 edition on August 8 and 9, 2015. The move will increase the con’s show floor to over 100,000 sq. ft. to accommodate a growing list of vendors, attractions, and entertainment. Tickets presale is scheduled to launch within the following week with aggressive discounts for fans and e-mail list subscribers.
“ScareLA 2015 is off to a great start with our expansion into the Pasadena Convention Center,” said Lora Ivanova, ScareLA Executive Producer and Co-founder. “What that means for our fans is: more spooky vendors, easier access to classes and stage content, bigger interactive haunt exhibits and hotels within walking distance for anyone coming from out of town or wishing to make this a true mid-summer Halloween staycation. Our team is busy curating our 2015 programming and cannot wait to share our scary passion with Los Angeles this August!”
Theme Park Adventure has been covering Knott’s Scary Farm’s Halloween Haunt each year since 1994. In fact, I often refer to the mid-late ’90s as the “Golden Years of Haunt”. Knott’s began its annual spook fest in 1973; over the next decade, it would grow into a Southern California tradition, attracting thousands of guests each night. By the time TPA was embraced by the Haunt family in 1994, the Scary Farm was a must-do event for scores of Halloween fans, and we were in the thick of it all, snapping away with cameras and letting our video tape roll.
One of our favorite things to do back in the day was spend hours in Ghost Town, watching the street monsters roam about and do their thing – whether it was scaring guests senseless, acting corny, or simply pulling off outrageous gags with each other and passersby… often at their expense! In short, because I could go on for hours, the Ghost Town Streets monsters of yesteryear were much different than they are today; it’s not a matter of who or what was better. In 1997, when these four pictures were taken, Knott’s was a very different animal than it is now. In 1997, Halloween Haunt was caught somewhere between its gritty origins and guerrilla-style production and the multi-million dollar spectacle that it is today.