View Full Version : Haunted Pool

09-26-2007, 02:16 PM
I work at a YMCA which is doing a haunted forest theme. I would like to incorporate the 25 yd indoor pool as a swamp. But I need some ideas... has anyone seen something like this before?

Here's what I have for the big scare:
A swamp thing pulls an actor into the water and 'drowns' them. After the swamp thing pulls the victim underwater, they will use scuba equipment placed on the bottom. I have a few certified scuba divers willing to help with this one.
Issues: How do I hide the actors/equipment? Would a fog machine be enough?

Gore Galore
09-26-2007, 06:31 PM
I think it would be neat to do a grimlins bit.
Harbor freight bottom lights making the pool water appear green with lots of bubbling water giving the illusion something is brewing under water.
Then you can have your monster burst out of the water.
You could also do chilled fog so it lays on the surface of the water and helps prevent patrons seeing into the water too well.

A huge octopus tentacle reaching out of the water.

Or a toxic waste dump scene.

Greg Chrise
09-26-2007, 06:35 PM
As it is a swamp, some foliage is floating that is really pool boards or other floaty type things with camo net or similar decorations.

There might actually be a small boat in the water that the tanks are lashed underneath.

When fog hits the water, usually warmed by a pool heater, it dissappates really fast.

Turning off the underwater lights will certainly help the effect but dimming the room lights or having them completely off and adding a little ambient light will need to have some kind of railing or guard along the pool edge.

Said little boat could have half eaten people, skeletons from the past?

You can also add a makeshift waterfall that is plastic built up on the side walk of the pool, runs down on the patrons view side and then runs back into the pool using the pool water the pump hanging in the pool water as a reservoir. This obstruction is another way of hidding things.

You can submerge landscape cloth and hold it on the bottom with bricks covered in more black cloth and then black wet suits are ninja like. This obstructs the normally white pool plaster bottom and easily gives a totally different look to the place.

You can go nuts with styrofoam blocks or sheets and make floating rocks or pretend docks or even a volcano. Anything that floats becomes some other expendable floating scene element. One liter coke bottles, bubble wrap what ever.

You can take a combination of plastic soda bottles and large 4 by 8 sheets of styrofoam and make a rather large hull of a ghost ship that floats toward the side. A little bt of wood or PVC pipe framing.

Volley ball nets become big fish nets for that huge shark that also becomes a land shark? Candy Gram!

Perhaps you have floating bodies? Clothes with styrofoam or packet with packaging peanuts. Be sure to not get the ones that bio degrade in water.

Of course you can have monsters doing a cannon ball and threatening to splash the passers by.

Heavy mill trash bags with just a little air trapped. You might have an actor smothered by this though unless they use snorkels.

floating coffins.

skeletons on the bottom with diving gear that didn't make it.

Poles of the volley ball net can hang plastic to become a big partition from one side to the other.

The ropes with little floaty things and black plastic become big snakes moved around by long sticks on the head area like a chinese dragon. A larger version of this might be an actor in a floating costume with a bunch of tentiacles.

You could always do the 3 stooges "Niagra Falls, slowly I turn" bit and then have barrels fall from the diving board with screaming like they just went over the falls.

Floating tombstones. Complete floating masoleums.

Of course colored lighting transmits really good underwater so it might be half blacked out and the other half glowing red with Satan having a leisurely drink in a pool floating chair waving to the patrons.

Another cool thing about pools is you can put gas under the water and fire shoots up and nothing catches fire.

You can do compressed air blasts from under water.

Maybe the jaws theme plays and yellow barrels pop up from below.

Simply decorating the deck so the patrons don't come right up to the edge gives you the whole side of the pool to hide behind.

And on a final note, two words, POOL PUPPETS.

Greg Chrise
09-26-2007, 06:43 PM
You could do the scene from Titanic with the frozen people mucking about.

You could have the entire half submerged city of Atlantis the whole length of the pool.

It could be a complete floating dark ride! Or at least you have to get from one end to the other by boat?

You have to walk across aligators to get over one corner?



Anything with a blow hole like Uncle Wally!

Greg Chrise
09-26-2007, 06:55 PM
Little floating cities that Godzilla and Gammara pop in on! Be sure to include bad over dubbing and happy oriental jams. "Lok Jimmie, Godzilla is not happy."

The creature from the black lagoon complete with his catch in a 50's full bathing suit and hair do. Grandma is that you?

The horror of syncopated swimming!

Floating snickers bars! Radio controlled!

Greg Chrise
09-26-2007, 07:02 PM
Shark fins.

Submarine periscopes.

Aqua man!

The gill man from Hell boy?

Scrubbing bubbles from hell. Soap the pool! Crazy lights and bubbles from beneath.

Do the Valdeeze oil slick! Penguins turning into vampires!

Big industrial labels that it is the cities water treatment plant. 55 gallon drums floating marked toxic waste.

Matt Marich
09-26-2007, 07:09 PM
I am reminded of a special effect that I saw a tech do on a film I worked on called "Mikey". He took a standard shop Vac, connected the hose to a ring of PVC tubes and submerged this ring. The ring had holes drilled into it. The shop vac hose was set to the blow feature and the tank was filled with smoke. As soon as it was turned on, the water began to bubble and the smoke raised from the water to produce a faux bubbly steamy jaccuzi effect. Pretty damn cool! I think the ring was only about three to four feet down so this may take some experimenting.

Good Luck,


09-27-2007, 03:36 AM
Wow cool Ideas, please be sure to incorporate some type of safety into this scene, keeping the guests away from the pool for one and providing a non slip surface surrounding the pool, all of that water thrashing and splashing is gonna make for a accident waiting to happen.

Jim Warfield
09-27-2007, 05:57 AM
Safety is very important so in the intrest of safety and keeping costs down, you could very safely create those numerous pool effects in a nice new clean toilet bowl!
Pretty Scary!!!!

Matt Marich
09-27-2007, 07:25 AM
Jim do mean "Dropping the Kids Off at the Pool?"