View Full Version : *NEW HAUNT* In NEED of advise !

10-28-2010, 09:05 AM
Hey guys my name is chris from southern wisconsin. I have been in this industry for over 10 years from Actor, Makeup artist and Safety. There's a few of us who have worked together for a long time now and we are looking to start our own haunt now as we know were looking at 25,000 $ to start up. So we decided to start out by doing a haunted Hay Ride with actors good scenes some pneumatics and a corn maze we have about 90 acres and parking for 1000 cars lol were hoping to make enough $ from this to open our haunt for the next season does anyone have any advice on making a good haunted Hay Ride succeed ? I know a lot when it comes to haunted house but we have never done a themed hay ride and corn maze Help !!!!

Mr. Haunt
10-28-2010, 09:30 AM
I am a home haunter, but I will give my 2 cents worth. I'm not sure if $25000 will get you a lot for a hayride, you have to factor these costs;

Repairs to tractors
Repairs to wagon
Electric Generators
Safety Equipment
Fuel for generators
Power Cords
CB Radios for tractor drivers
Upgrades to tractors?

So just with this stuff alone will cost you at least $10000 or $15000, could be more???
Just brainstorming with all of this, but if you have all of this or at least some of them will help.

I know I have not mentioned all the fun stuff, props, lighting, costumes, ect...

Mr. Haunt

10-28-2010, 09:01 PM
outsource tractors- if you are in a farming community some farmers may want to make some extra $ and they take on the responsibility of tractor maintenance.

chuck weber
10-29-2010, 03:22 PM
work at a haunt first. learn all you can the good and bad. learn from honest people you can trust that will steer you right.. don't rush into it. you're gonna need alot of $$$ and people with experience to help you out. there will be BAD TIMES. ask any haunt owner. (just the tip of the iceberg and a few ideas I just thought of) THERE IS ALOT MORE. stay truned here. talk to haunt owners on this forum. you will learn from these great people. good luck !!!!! ps- dependable help? don't count on it. hard to find great dependable people. there are many out there, but finding them will be a chore. security security security.................have fun going after your dream !!!!!!

chuck weber
10-29-2010, 04:15 PM
BATES MOTEL HAUNTED HAYRIDE PAR EXCELLANCE (NONE BETTER!) if you wanna learn, learn from the BEST. Randy Bates and his crew have it down pat. take a trip to eastern pennsylvania. (near philly) it will be worth your trip if you wanna learn. Mr. haunt has all the facts too. he's an ace. Take his advice. like a G-6 .

Mr. Haunt
10-30-2010, 07:32 AM
I agree to talk to others that do hayrides, but I have found it hard contacting my local haunts by not getting a reply. They might see you as a threat to compitition, so this forum is a great help.

I'm not a pro haunter, but I like to help brainstorm ideas with everyone. I don't know everyrthing either, but have learned a lot from "how to" videos and asking questions to haunters on this forum.

I have this suggestion; start with a haunted trail your first year, this will keep your overhead low. Best part of this is, when you transission to your hayirde, you can incorperate the use of your props and scenes that you used for your haunted trail. This way you won't have to start from scratch and you will have some profit to work with your second year being open.

Those are just a few things that I would consider first, and who knows maybe your haunted trail would be a GREAT HIT and then you can keep haunting this way. I personaly like the idea of keeping the paytrons on the same level of the actors. Haywagons give seperation, but I'm not against them.


Mr. Haunt

10-31-2010, 01:44 PM
The most important thing you need to do is wright a business plan.
That will tell if you can afford to start a haunt. Remember a haunted
house is a business and you need to treat it that way. So start with a
business plan.

There's an old saying, When you fail to plan you plan to fail.

10-31-2010, 06:16 PM

I have been haunting now for 11 years and I got my start by putting together a Haunted Hayride here in Georgia. We ran this attraction for 4 seasons as a fundraiser for the local fire department. I can tell you this a hayride is alot cheaper to operate and run nightly than an indoor haunt but there are issues that haunted trails and hayrides often deal with such as difficulty finding a good location and weather. We were sucessful but not without alot of pains the first couple of years. The things I would reccomend you think about before doing anything else is to find a FLAT location without any hills. Our first year we had an issue with tractors climbing one particular hill that did not seem to bad but when a little dew fell in the evening and long lines caused our wagons to be filled to max capasity it created several intense moments not to mention a severe safety hazzard. We had better success the second year with a different location with minimal slope.

There are several hayrides locally that kinda took our idea when we moved indoors and are running very successfully. Like some of the other posts i will recommend finding dedicated help otherwise you will be in a hurt of trouble when you have a long line and the actors bails! I think at one point we had any family, friends, and bored teen from the community acting in our first couple of haunts. We tapped into our local high school drauma dept. and since they were volunteering for a charity they got credit for there school project.

I hope some of this helps and I would be glad to give you some of the insight I have if you have a question. I did these for four years so Im pretty familiar with the operation and maybe can help you out.