View Full Version : Side attractions at the exit

07-18-2008, 04:52 PM
I would like to put a few side attractions at the exit of my haunt. Thought it would be a good way to squeeze out a few extra dollars from guests. Anyone have any good ideas on what works?


Dr. Giggles
07-18-2008, 06:51 PM
Er im assuming your a commercial haunt haha? I wouldnt put the side attractions at the exit because if your haunt is actually scary enough to charge money then they should be running straight through the exit, out in to the parking lots, and to there cars. There should be no reason for em to stop...i would put the side shows in the beginning like charge them, then ask if they would like to add like 5 or 10 bucks to the ticket and they get the sideshow package?

Just my two cents

-Zackary J

Jim Warfield
07-19-2008, 07:15 AM
You are trying to squeeze a little more profit from your efforts that you put into the main attraction. Whether or not you want to or need to put more effort into promoting and operating another side attraction, for the amount of money it will bring ,.....it might not pan out?
Might not be worth the extra effort?
If your customers need a little more "House Time" inside the actual attraction, then what seems like a side attraction within the main one could be made to add what hopefully would be thought of as an extra value/experience for the same money.
If the customers are piling up waiting to get in then ignore the side attration on those nights if you need to.
The customer is paying for..something which will involve effort and time on the part of the people inside hopefully entertaining them with something happening anyway, just dress it up, make it sound and look extra and special and go with it.
Extra money comes back as happy returning customers, bringing more people with them, this is where I would put my efforts.

07-20-2008, 03:21 PM
Well I have seen a couple haunts do Zombie Paintball. They have a large tarp as a backwall and sides. Then they took chopped heads hanging from wire/fishing line? Then charge a fee to use a paint ball gun and shoot at the floating heads. I guess you could win free admission tickets to the haunt if you hit a curtain amount of heads.

07-20-2008, 04:40 PM
We are going to be letting some parents from our other business run a fund raiser this year... not realy at the end but it could be. We are building them a gypsy wagon and they are going to charge a few bucks to give out palm readings and fortune telling. I think they are going to have a blast with it and it will be an "extra" for our haunt.

07-20-2008, 05:20 PM
Yes I have seen the paint ball thing and that is fun...

Also try and but a used trailer haunt or a used dark ride...or even have a carnival set up. All ideas. Larry

Jim Warfield
07-20-2008, 05:38 PM
Fortune Telling will possibly upset some people who see any such thing as evil or satanicly inspired.
People really get upset when a fortune telling situation reveals hidden truths by accident. And why were those "Truths" hidden? Because somebody wanted them hidden for a good reason.
I have seemed to have this nack, unwittingly so.
"I see that your sister got impregnated by your pet beagle!"
(Now what made me blurt That out?)

07-21-2008, 12:04 AM
Fortune Telling will possibly upset some people who see any such thing as evil or satanicly inspired.
People really get upset when a fortune telling situation reveals hidden truths by accident. And why were those "Truths" hidden? Because somebody wanted them hidden for a good reason.
I have seemed to have this nack, unwittingly so.
"I see that your sister got impregnated by your pet beagle!"
(Now what made me blurt That out?)

WHAT?!!! I hate to be the bearer of bad news but the entire holiday of Halloween is based upon pagan rituals. I realy dont think that anyone who is willing to go to a haunt is going to be very upset about fortune telling?!! Might be wrong but it just wouldnt make sence.

Jim Warfield
07-21-2008, 06:23 AM
Customers are strange and just because we see something as being a certain way doesn't mean that they won't be picking and choosing as to exactly what offends them.
Just as some people won't like having certain masks or monsters in a house with them, lines can be drawn as far as where religion comes into an act, event or sideshow offering.
Some see the Bible as saying all ghosts are evil and are to be ignored, carry this over to Oui-Ja boards, a deck of cards, fortune telling, seances....
People do seem to pick and choose what they feel comfotable or uncomfortable about.
I don't want any Oui-Ja boards in my house because of what happened last time in 1970 with one. This is a haunted , haunted house and many people have had those experiences here. Just last night I was told about another one from a customer who also is a haunt worker elsewhere...he believes now!
Far be it for me to be telling anyone what to do, I'm just trying to be helpfull and bring up things that some of you may not have experienced or realised, then you do whatever you wish.
This is just the typical mindset of many first-borns, to be helpfull and warning, gotta keep those younger siblings out of harm's way, you know.
I was the firstborn for my parents with siblings to follow.

07-21-2008, 05:09 PM
We are intending to bring a great show to our guests this year. The haunt is plenty big,(45 min tour), and well staffed. But the businessman in me says "don't leave any money on the table". If I can squeeze out another $2,$3 or $4 per person on side attractions, then that adds to my bottom line.
As for the exit, my guests do go running out of the exit screaming. However, the exit to my haunt empties into a huge area that has been used as a gift shop. The gift shop has never done well, so I thought of using this space for side attractions and help generate better revenue from this space than the gift shop did.

Any other ideas would be greatly welcomed!

Dr. Giggles
07-21-2008, 05:37 PM
Well I have seen a couple haunts do Zombie Paintball. They have a large tarp as a backwall and sides. Then they took chopped heads hanging from wire/fishing line? Then charge a fee to use a paint ball gun and shoot at the floating heads. I guess you could win free admission tickets to the haunt if you hit a curtain amount of heads.

I would only advise that if you have $$$$ to spare. Because i personally play on a paintball team, and for the amount of time paintballs last or how fast people use them its to expensive. For one box of paintballs ((2000)) which usually lasts 3-4 hours is 45$ and up. . . I mean if you get lots of people per night it probably wouldnt be that bad but you would have to get guns and all that. Its pretty expensive.

Well thats m two cents

-Zackary J

Jim Warfield
07-21-2008, 06:25 PM
When paintball guns first came out I test-fired one several times, liked it, bought it. Then after the first 20 shots the balls began ripping apart inside the barrel and it became a paint gun (forget my balls!)
Then after this happened I had to thoroughly clean the barrel which seemed to require alot of time and water, shoot a few more balls and it would do it again! Very frustrating to plan an assasination of a major public figure and your paintball gun embarasses you like this!
What was wrong with this gun, or me?
(Try answering the first part of this question, it should be alot quicker to do.)

Dr. Giggles
07-21-2008, 06:52 PM
Er it would be easier to answer that question Jim if i knew the model, like tippmann, proto, or maybe Spyder? But one reason is it might of been to humid ((makes the balls soft and likely to break)) or it just might be the FPS((turned up to high)). Or perhaps even the barrel, you might be buying balls to big for the barrel so they break inside. But if you want PM me with the brand of gun and all that. Oh and is it a pump action? If so you would probably want to buy a special kind of paintballs.

-Zackary J

Greg Chrise
07-21-2008, 08:23 PM
Maybe your balls are too old?

Now that paint ball is so much more common, I would think the supply of paint balls is refreshed on the shelves and out of the warehouses a lot faster, hence fresh balls. Not old balls that have lost their elasticity.

Even so, it seems it is just the nature that some balls do not make it out of the barrel but quite a few do. I think also the quality of the balls has increased over the years. The equipment it takes to make them is quite the deal

I watched as some local guys put on a paintball booth after getting the idea at a convention. They had perhaps 4 walls by 6 walls with a roof and a front counter. They made more than I do getting a percentage of a charity haunt. I immediately after the season began thinking what could be better?

I would have a sign in 3D using great foam, perhaps add carpet to the front side walls and counter to kll the noise a bit, so it could even be at a rural event and not be shut down because it sounded like the civil war down the holler.

I thought I could just take my attraction and make about 10 such side events and go crazy at all the events I know see thousands and tens of thousands of people. They had a few pnuematic props bobbing about to try to hit.

A side attraction might only get 10% of those exiting an event and a second haunt might only see between 50% to 85% depending on wether it was sold as a package at the front or not. If you are expecting people to spend more money in a different event after having already done one, it is tough and becomes a thing where the customer, especially one that brought a few people just wants to leave as cheaply as possible, let's go, we did what I said we would do, maybe next year.

Having a side anything really becomes a match for the kind of customers. I watched people trying to sell toy cars at our event of all things and they didn't sell one. They were outside in the cold for two nights and made a donation anyhow to the event. But, it was a sad display of just because there is a line of people doesn't mean there is a ton of money to behold.

I know people that do face painting and they can make a whole lot more money at a fair and their experiences trying to work even a large event turned out lack luster in comparison. It depends also on the expectations of the vendor/curator. If you were expecting to pay rent for a large warehouse, you will be dissapointed. If the intention was to make sure there were things to make sure your cutomers experience was good and satisfying and you profited $50, then it is something to do.

Other things I saw as popular were rather large 3D attactions with lights and various things for only $2. Getting your picture taken in a coffin for $3. Again these were at very high number of customer haunts and even 10% of this can be great. But, 10% of almost nothing is nothing.

Other side attractions might be a horror movie museum for $1. Scaryokee for prizes rather than an entry fee at all. A total different stage for a magic show and costume competition. No charge for any of that, just customer satisfaction OR the reason they might have come? The opportunity to walk out with $100? So like Las Vegas, 95% lose but they did show up and buy a ticket to the main attraction unless they are truely poor.

In a round about way, side events can be free yet bring in more customers because there is so much to do.

George Maser
07-21-2008, 09:30 PM
We have a fortune teller that uses a machine to give the customers a small electric shock. Very effective as a side attraction. This will be year #10, our exit survey says it's a hit. George Maser 864-761-7223

Dr. Giggles
07-21-2008, 09:43 PM
Well that seems a little dangerous doesnt it? I mean what if it short circuits and gives a customer a slightly larger shock then intended and they loose the feeling in their arm? No offense i like the idea but it seems a little dangerous.

-Zackary J

07-22-2008, 08:51 AM
We have always been very excited about sideline attractions. In this area we have alot of corn mazes that have corn cannon's, train rides, pumpkin patches, etc. So our customers have come to expect more than just a walk thru haunted house. We have dedicated alot of time and energy into developing side events. We started a laser maze challenge. You need to make your way thru a laser field without getting getting penalties and get the fastest time. We give out awesome grand prize each year. This has not only been good for the haunted house but took off at a national level and are being sold all over, even Kennywood has a laser maze now. I would highly recommend people looking into side line events.
It can be way more the a extra $3.00


07-22-2008, 10:39 AM
Great pict! Those laser mazes look awesome. great idea

Dr. Giggles
07-22-2008, 05:40 PM
Very cool! I really like that maze idea...i was thinking about doing something similar in my haunt this year.

07-22-2008, 08:43 PM
Thanks for the kind words about the lazer maze.
It's a fun add on to the haunt and our customers love it! We also have a trailer unit called the vault so we can hit the road in the off season.
And no we dont pull it with our hearse...LOL


07-23-2008, 03:04 AM
very cool Idea!

07-24-2008, 04:40 AM
We had one of our wagons with a fortune teller in it at the exit of our haunt Scarevania and people went nuts for it. She had a line all night long of people wanting to see the inside. It was a great way for that extra attraction and income.

Jim Warfield
07-25-2008, 05:57 AM
It was here for a night or two. The guy sold about ten tickets.
Maybe the outside of the structure looked too small to offer much fun to people?
I guess that it was one of three ever built, the guy was given this one, didn't have to even pay for it but it was alot of work lugging it around and setting it up .
...and to think it almost got set up in my backyard!

07-29-2008, 08:22 PM
Maybe a mini haunt for younger kids? I have had some success with that in the past. Nothing too big, maybe 2 or 3 rooms, more visually stimulating then scary.


07-29-2008, 11:18 PM
A mini haunt for the kids is a great idea!! I may try that myself this year.
I think that carnival games with a halloween theme would be a way to make a few extra bucks. "Bloody Duck Pond", Blood Bottle Ring Toss", stuff like that. Get prizes from a place like Oriental Trading .

damon carson
07-30-2008, 03:31 PM
Jim Im kinda late chiming in on this post about your balls! LOL! Paintballs this is! But I had to laugh out loud at some of the reasons why they were ripping on you. Ha ha! Maybe your balls got frozen? It is cold in the winter up there in Mutt Carrol you know Jim! If it was in the winter months and you left them in the trunk or car overnight they might have froze then when they thaw out they are very good. Just a thought. Bad bicycle wrecks can rip your balls as well! OUCH! P.S I like those Ideas about the bloody duck pawn and the oriental trading prizes. I think everything should be Halloween from start to finish! It adds a nice touch. Even if you have a magician I think he should do like a horror magic act it makes it more interesting.

Haunting Copy
08-01-2008, 01:02 AM
Call me a dork, but I like the idea of having photos taken with one's favorite classic monster (Creature from the Black Lagoon, Wolfman, e.g.) or maybe an actor from the haunt itself.

Would something like this work well to pacify customers while they wait in line (but after they've paid for the haunt)? Those who choose not to have their photos taken can at least enjoy watching those who do. :)

It might even be relatively simple to make an arrangement with a local photo studio, whereby the haunt receives a portion of the sales, without having to do much of the work.

08-04-2008, 05:48 PM
I was just up at kennywood getting a look at the awesome new dark ride, and I saw that laser maze.

it had a constant flow of people at 5.00 each, I can only imagine how much it'll do during their haunt season.
they had a TV monitor outside so folks could watch the progress of the people before them. so it served as it's own line entertainment as well

08-04-2008, 09:15 PM
Ok Gravely We all know you rode the darkride 5 or 6 times,
But what we want to know is how fast was your time thru the lazer maze??
Where you faster then all those kids LOL