View Full Version : Halloween Haunt Tour

06-08-2010, 05:58 PM
So, the wife and I have decided to take the 22 thru the 30th of October to hit as many haunts as we can. We'd be starting in the Cincinnati area and we want 2 days in the New Orleans area.

We're thinking of making a big circle

Since I work in the business, on the USS Nightmare, I thought it'd be cool to maybe to get a bit of backstage time at some of the haunts, get some pictures and maybe turn the trip into a haunted travelogue. I thought that, being a makeup artist, I could sculpt out something and give one to each haunt I hit--and if they use it, get pix of the piece at each haunt.

So, what I wanna do is set up the route, know who's open when and maximize the haunts we can get to in a little over a week.

My intial thought was to hit Louisville, the Morgue, maybe Industrial Nightmare, head over to St Louis and hit the Darkness, down to Baton Rouge for 13th Gate, NOLA for House of Shock, up and east to Shane's new haunt...yes? Those were the ones that resonated initially when we started talking about this, but we're flexible.

Possibly up to Atlanta after Shane....

What do you think? Anyone in that area that wouldn't mind a visit? Anyone got any ideas?

06-08-2010, 06:04 PM
Your more than welcome to come and visit us! I might suggest also after seeing me hitting Atrox in Birmingham and then on over to Bens at Netherworld. Shane and its tickets and dinner on me! Shane this time!

06-08-2010, 06:11 PM
Jack we did a similar tour last July. We had a blast! If you come to St. Louis to visit Larrys haunts you can go west about 2 hours and visit Fearfest in Columbia Mo.
Necropolis is also in Columbia and both haunts welcome haunters any time of the year. We just had a visit from Nick, a designer for 6flags last week. Had a great time visiting with him.
If you come to Columbia you might check with Kelly at Raycliff Manor in Joplin Mo. and see if he can fit you in down there. Just an idea.

06-08-2010, 10:03 PM
If you're coming south through the Branson, Missouri area, our new haunt will be there. This will be our opening year and we'd be glad to open our doors to you. Also, Branson's Haunted Adventure is nearby so you could do two in that area.

Or if you'd like to see just how old Andy Williams looks you could do that too...

06-09-2010, 07:29 PM
I knew Atrox was near(ish) Graystone, and I think Netherworld was one of the ones that my wife professed an interest in(I've got an interest in everyone so my opinion doesn't count).

Any ideas on an appliance of some sort that'll be distinctive and useable for everyone? It'd be slush cast latex because I work cheep, but it'll be an original sculpt, just for this and the houses we hit.

I do a torn skin with reptilian flesh showing through as a makeup(no appliance) that's gone over well and I thought an appliance of that that might be a possibility--but we're on the water and fishy/reptilian things fit into our background characters easily.

Routewise, St Louis is about 5 hours from where we are, if we leave around 2-3 on friday, we'd hit St Louis at 7-8 if we went straight, but, since we want to hit some Louisville haunts, we have to add on at least an hour and a half--which means getting to St Louis at around 9-10. That'd give us the Darkness in St Louis on the first night plus any Louisville haunts we can hit. After that we might wait until morning to head on because we're not gonna get to anyone else(except perhaps other St Louis haunts) before they close.

I probably should have taken two weeks--but I've got the haunt here to work and two weeks would be too much.

We're gonna head south--I've gotta start mapping this to see if we'll hit Branson. And Necropolis and Fearfest......I think the worst part of this is going to be having to choose, y'know?

06-10-2010, 03:31 AM
Well, since you're coming down to Louisiana, you can always stop by our place in Shreveport

If you happen to pass thru central or Western Arkansas, you'll probly be driving right by our place in Shreveport. We are at the intersection of I-49 and I-20.

We'll be glad to have you, and show off our new design and theme for this year.


06-10-2010, 05:02 AM
If you're going to start out in Louisville, I would definitely hit Haunted Hotel rather than Industrial... it's the far better of Terry's two haunts, Baxter is definitely and actor's haunt, so good choice there.

We would love to see you at Fear Fair, just let me know when you would want to come.

06-10-2010, 05:05 PM
Well, I started trying to map this out on the intarwebs, but I think I need an atlas as a base--I can get a better idea if everythings laid out in front of me.

I've gotta set a base route that's small enough to do in 9-10 days, but big enough that we can see as much as possible--without rushing too much.

We may bypass Louisville because we can hit Louisville any time--we're only about an hour away(We usually do a trip down there each year during the season anyway) Plus, that'll give us more time to play around further west and south.

09-09-2010, 06:04 PM
Well, we finally got the route down--and it's shaped like a huge fish....maybe a pirahna--but flat, definately not 3-D.

We're gonna hit Louisville, St Louis, Shreveport, Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Altlanta, and Huntsville(that's right, Shane--and it's you're the finale Shane this time) So far our definate hits are Haunted Hotel, The Darkness, Ultimate Fear, 13th Gate, House of Shock, Netherworld, Graystone(Disturbia and Arc Mortis,yes?) and Atrox.

We'll try to hit anyone else on the route that we can--it's a long one 2290 miles and about 36 hours of drive time round trip That gives us 7-8 days to see stuff(if we forgo sleep)

We're gonna be giving out an appliance and whatever other swag I can wrest from our stores, and we're gonna get as many pics as we can.

And I may try to do a writeup on it--I talked with someone at Makeup Artist magazine about doing a feature on haunt makeup--he liked the idea and agreed that we're a segment of the makeup industry that doiesn't get a lot of attention. So there's that.

We'd be gratedul for recommendations for decent, fairly inexpensive hotels/motels/lodgings along the way, and we'd love to talk to anyone who we're gonna hit so we can set things up.

Hope to hear from you all.

09-09-2010, 07:31 PM
If your heading towards Atlanta Feel free to stop by and visit us. the website is in my signature. We are all Halloween Fanatics and I think it shows in our production.
Also folklore is opening up this year in atlanta you may want to check it out as well. There are lots Alabama and Georgia haunts many not well known ones but all are plenty of fun.
I hope you guys have a safe trip and great time and enjoy our southern hospitality.
PS just remember if you hear banjos run do not ask questions just run.

Allen H
09-09-2010, 11:19 PM
You must swing by the Dallas TX area. There are about 10 good haunts in the area. It will not be a wasted trip.
I am director of SCREAMS halloween park
www.screamspark.com we have five haunts two scarezones and an additional upcharge attraction. I would be glad to have you, and could arrange a run to see some other haunts. we arent to far from some of your LA stops.
Allen H

09-11-2010, 08:18 PM
I know all about the banjos--I live in Kentucky.

Texas is, sadly, way off the map for this trip. To try to squeeze it in I'd be like a cartoon dad--zipping past as many attractions as possible to get quantity rather than quality. I want to have enough time to really see the haunts we're hitting, talk to the folks running them, and possibly get a look at how they do things(particularly makeup). We looked into some Texas haunts as we were setting this up and we just couldn't do them justice.

Plus, I've gotta get back to the Nightmare for Halloween, y'know? If this tour doesn't kill us, maybe next time we'll hit Texas.

09-11-2010, 10:13 PM
Jack, it's good to see that we made the list! We'll be happy to have you all night if you want and showcase how we designed the place this year. We can show you any behind the scenes stuff you want, and I can try to line up some after hours stuff for you if you want.

Let me know what day you think you'll be here, and I'm looking forward to having you guys here.

09-11-2010, 10:30 PM
Jack, next year count us in!! We are about an hour West of Brad right off I-20 and will be open next year! We will give you the full tour. Food and all. Keep in touch.


09-12-2010, 01:51 PM
Cool, Brad, I'll PM you with our contact info so we can set things up.

Sue, for one brief second I read your screen name as terrormasseuse--and was intrigued...how would that work? Zombie strippers? meat tenderizer and cooking oil to rub in as massage oil....shows where my mind is.

09-12-2010, 10:22 PM
Hey Jack, Glad to hear you are considering Arx Mortis. We have just completed the new haunt and look forward to showing it off. I think you will be impressed. Just shoot me an e-mail and we will be sure to give you the VIP treatment. It's gonna be a great season, look forward to meeting you.


09-13-2010, 04:57 PM
Oh definately hitting Arx Mortis--Shane's one of the first to respond(though, truth be told, Arx Mortis, Disturbia and Atrox were places we were thinking of before I posted anything.

09-14-2010, 04:16 AM
Sorry I haven't posted until now, somehow I have missed this thread. Definitely stop by Folklore on your way to or from Netherworld. We are about an hour West of Netherworld, between them and Disturbia and Arx Mortis. We would love to have you visit us in our inaugeral season, provided we haven' t dropped dead of a heart attack by then! Send me a pm to let me know when you are coming, and we will hook you up. Check out our website for directions.

We did small trips every weekend last year to Alabama and North Carolina, and we had a ball visiting the other haunts. We learned a lot, and made some great friends ( Shane, Paul, and Tony to name a few).

Have fun on your trip, and be safe.

09-14-2010, 04:37 PM
The way things are going, I'm going to have an actual itinerary, instead of just doing the route and hitting things at random.

09-18-2010, 01:41 PM
Well, we are open. Last night was our first night, and a pretty good one at that--busier than last year, and people happy to be terrified.

It got me psyched to think of all the haunts that loom in our future--a little over a month to go.

We can't wait.

10-03-2010, 12:11 PM
Hope everyone's having a good season--we had cold drizzle last night and the lot was full within 20 minutes of opening. That was nice--wondering if word of the changes is getting around.

Well, I said I'd have an itinerary, and damned if we don't. Here's all the definates

Oct 22-- The Darkness, and other St Louis haunts
Oct 23-- Ultimate Fear, Shreveport, LA
Oct 24-- House of Shock, NOLA
Oct 25-- 13th Gate, Baton Rouge, LA
Oct 27-- Atrox, Leeds, AL
Oct 28-- Netherworld, Atlanta, GA
Oct 29-- Disturbia and Arx Mortis, Killen and Huntsville, AL

And a leisurely trip home on the 30th

The biggest frustration here is that everyone's open at the same time--to get in depth at any haunt means sleighting another. But, time permitting, this list will grow.

I'm pulling the last of the trip appliances from the molds today. There are three different ones. Two are torn eyesockets, one fresh, one more decayed. The third is the one I talked about before(a torn eye again--sense a theme?--with reptilian/fishy skin showing through). Generally I paint the centers, the bone, muscle, torn flesh, and underlying skin and leave the edges unpainted so they can be more easily used on your actors. If you want yours left unpainted, let me know and I'll set it aside. Right now, it looks like I'll be able to hand out two per haunt.

The two torn eyesockets were for a progressive makeup. The character rotted as each week went on until he was full-on zombified by Saturday night...and then we'd start him fresh on Sunday.

Can't wait to see you all.

10-18-2010, 09:00 PM
4 days until we start out! The anticipation is killing us. Preliminary thanks to everyone who's welcoming us in--even before we get there, I just want to say you guys are great.

As we say on the USS Nightmare, I hope we get the ship scared out of us

10-21-2010, 05:53 PM
Well, we leave tomorrow, it's crazy time here.

If all goes well, and the wireless works, I'll post updates as we go. If not, the next time a lot of you hear from us, it'll be in person.

We should be at The Darkness by ten-ish tomorrow.

See y'all real soon!

10-25-2010, 04:14 AM
Jack, it was great having you and your wife stop by for a few hours.

It sounds like you really enjoyed yourselves here, and I hope that we gave you a great show.

And thanks a lot for the appliances!! It fits great and the patrons loved the detail work on it!!

I hope you guys have fun on the rest of the trip, and have safe travels back home.

10-25-2010, 09:33 AM
Brad, you beat me to it!

Finally got the wireless working, and we can now say where we've been and what we've seen

Darkness was great. Detailed, scary. LOVED the mirror maze. Very creepy. Loved the mummies. My biggest regret is that we got in way too late to talk with anyone--I think we might've been one of the last groups through. But your guys were dead on.

Ultimate Fear was intense. The story is really great and held to tightly. Loved the victims--who acted like victims, pleading for help, fleeing. The Father was creepy--he's everywhere in the house, always watching and waiting to pounce. The detail was incredible. There was a couch I wanted to take home. And the finale, which is NOT a chainsaw(thank you) comes screaming at your face. Great. God backstage here, and we'll have pictures. The crew was great, motivated, scary. Brad and Zack, keep it up, we can't wait to see what you guys do.

House of Shock was everything you'd expect. Ross, I knew there were pyrotechnics, but oh my god--that blast of flame. It's like watching a building go up all at once. The detail is insane--I could talk about cemetaries and ossuarys(yes, ossuarries--and I think I'm screwing up the speeling) The church, the sewer.....smelled real....detail is intense. And the effects. I've already mentioned the flame, but the drop floor was wild, and things were wet, and the sounds--piercing, panic inducing. Great stuff. And the makeup. We got backstage here, met Ashley and watched her turn out makeup after makeup that looked truly vile. HoS has around 200 actors--I met four makeup artists. Ashley, Asia, Emily and Perry--Perry has a makeup kit bigger than many apartments--and there's everything in it. He supervises something I didn't know about, a lot of HoS actors do their own makeup. And HoS makeup artists have trained them well.

Now we have a few days in New Orleans, to sample the city's natural haunts before heading out again.

I'll update soon


10-25-2010, 10:52 AM
Jack, if you have the time i would recommend taking one of the Haunted History tours, I did one earlier in the year and enjoyed it.

10-31-2010, 10:46 AM
Enjoyed meeting and talking to you and your wife! I hope you guys had a great time and that you arrived home safely! Shane and it's your welcome anytime! Shane this time!

10-31-2010, 12:54 PM
Got home safe about midnight last night. Had a great time, thanks to everyone. I'll update tomorrow, it is Halloween, after all, hope everyone has a great night, busy, profitable, and, above all, scary.

Happy Halloween everybody, I'll talk to you tomorrow

11-09-2010, 04:54 PM
Shane, if that's a four week build, wow. And I know it was, so.....wow.
But more in a sec--

After HoS, we headed towards Baton Rouge the next night. While yahoo maps
tried to keep us from the 13th Gate, we managed to get there about 45
minutes before opening. Met Dwayne and headed back to his amazing
makeup/movie area. For the millionth time--with more to come--on this trip,
I wished our makeup room wasn't limited by the size of the boat. Beautiful
space. Blaine, the makeup head, was working on a mid-transition werewolf
when we got there--great stuff(there are some pics coming) And then we
headed in...

The detail is astounding--it looked disneyesque(in the good way) from the
line area onward. Loved the elevator--and all the bottomless pits. The
hospital ward was a masterpiece. And the nurses(Silent Hill-style) scared
Jett to the point where she didn't want to move. The swamp and the forest-wow.
The 20,000 Leagues sequence--tentacles and giant eyes. The actors were on
point the whole way through--from being disgusting to being deeply in
character. And I loved the brick vortex. Amazing.

From there it was a few days relaxing in NO. I could go on about this part,
but that's probably not what anyone's here for. We love New Orleans, and it
didn't disappoint. Did some house hunting....the bubble has not burst in NO

Then it was off to Netherworld

Again yahoo maps tried to vex us. Fortunately Netherworld is pretty obvious.
We got there and were whisked back to Roy, in the makeup room. Sigh. Big
gorgeous space. We got some video here--Roy zipping through some nice pieces
The boily- face that....someone....didn't get a name...was working on behind him
Ace and his deranged puppet. Loved the statue makeup--thought it was going to
be a 'weeping angel' a la Dr Who, but no--better--extremely animate funerary

Inside, Netherworld is a bit overwhelming for a haunter. Your eyes want to
take everything in, and you can't. Things come at you from all sides--including
above. There is detail layered on detail. And then, there was the second haunt
Dead Salvage. I've been on Hauntworld for years, and in this business even
longer, and I didn't know there was a second haunt. The thing that I gotta
say I loved here was the hanging skins. Hanging heads, bodies, body
parts--I'd seen that(I'd done that) but I'd never seen hanging skins before--

Outside, Netherworld has some really great line entertainment, sliders of
all types, zombies, demons, some kind of pig-thing--you could have a good time
just seeking out the line scares.

Netherworld was a blast.

And then Disturbia

This time we got there with time to spare--and that was great. Shane's new
place is huge. He said it's about 1/3 done(and done well) and gave us a
rundown on the expansion. Disturbia was great as it was this year--the
finished(expanded?) version is going to be overwhelming. Makeup was top notch,
some truly vile things walked Disturbia. I loved the doll. Burned, abandoned.
Eerie. The gargoyles--live and animated. Wow. And that skinned horse.
Damn you, Shane, there's so much. There's the house band, Cornstalkers, that
plays for the line with a scarecrow lead and bubbles of fog. The chainsaw has
room to really chase--inside and out. And that graveyard...

Disturbia was four weeks old when we visited, and in those four weeks it
became an amazing haunt. Shane, and it's OMFG Shane this time, we loved it.

On our trip we missed two haunts, Atrox and Arx Mortis, and we're sorry
about that--but there's always next year.

Thanks again to everyone.
Jack and Jett

Oh, I'll probably update and detail this more, add the pictures and whatnot.

11-09-2010, 08:43 PM
Coming from one haunter to another you made my day! I am so glad you enjoyed the place. I always get nervous when other haunters came by but everyone seemed to have loved it! Just wait and see whats next! I might add when your back in Bama visit Atrox you will love it! If you get the chance we want to see pictures of all the haunts! Shane and it's thanks for the kind words! Shane this time!

11-10-2010, 07:02 PM
I'm gonna get the pictures up, but I gotta warn you, they're mostly makeup. They're going to be attached to the thing I'm putting together for MAmag. But they're good(well, the ones Jett took are good, cameras hate me).

We're actually already talking about heading down to see you next year, so there's that. If we do, maybe we'll put Atrox on the list--but it'll be nothing like this big tour.

Shane, do you think your artists would mind if I questioned them? I talked to Pez a bit, and got pix of some others working, but during work people are too busy for probing questions, y'know?

Brad and Larry, that questions' for you as well. Larry, I didn't get to you early enough to even get a look at your setup, so talking to your artists would add to the trip.

And, hey, Shane, do you ever need elves? I told my daughter about your Christmas work and she loved it--she's short and has naturally pointy ears....


11-10-2010, 08:04 PM
Sure Pez will answer any question for you! As a matter of fact some of DiStUrBiA's zombies will be at TransWorld this year. Shane and it's love to see ya back again! Shane this time!