View Full Version : Q Line Entertainment

12-16-2008, 10:41 AM
Now I know all of you guys have used this method. Have some actors out front scaring the people waiting so they stay tender and don't get to ancy or bored even. But what about a different type of Q LINE ENTERTAINMENT. Has anyone tried to have actual shows. Like the big boys do. Have a professional sword swallower or a scary magician or a stage show. I mean all of these aspects add to the prestige and characteristics of the big time players. At Horror Nights or Scary Farm from the moment you enter you are immersed into this big time show. At pro haunts it feels like your going to a decorated maze. So back to the main question has anyone tried this or heard of someone trying this. Pros Cons.

12-17-2008, 09:45 AM
I've seen sideshow type acts as well as fire breathing as Que line entertainment.

I'm a big fan of having more theatrical improv actors work the Que line because they can bounce between scaring and entertaining the crowd.

12-17-2008, 05:42 PM
We've used magicians and fire eaters, and the fellow who pounds six inch nails up his nose. The line can take an hour to get through so we don't want them just standing there, bored. We always terrorize them whenever we go past them to get to different sections of the haunt (leaping up to the platform and climbing over the banister is always a hit, as they always think that six foot platform somehow protects them). My favorite entertainment was two years ago when some religious protestors put up a picket line. Talk about free advertising!

Jim Warfield
12-17-2008, 09:09 PM
I try to inspire people to get reservations so they don't have to stand in a line or wonder when they might be getting in here.
They spent 60 to 90 minutes IN the house, now someone says I have to entertain them while they are outside too?
What could be better than the free-for-all random nose-picking contest?
How about the open alcoholic drink hiding competition when the Police happen to drive passed?
Many years ago some customers created their own Q-line show by playing Demolition Derby with their cars! Yes they did! Everyone was driving really large old Buicks, Pontiacs so peeling the chrome moldings off and trading some paint was not a "Biggie".
I was informed the next day they could have been ticketed for something like :"Public Endangerment" if something flew off and clobbered someone or something.
Two to four nights in October the Chamber of Commerce sponsers a wagon ride to the cemetary that begins next to my house for a historical tour of the nocturnal resting place on that next hill over..
I wrote their original script (since I know all this old stuff called history) but I am not really affilliated and I have nothing to do with it anymore.

12-19-2008, 09:17 AM
Last year at our home haunt we had the following in our Q-line
-Professional Knife Juggler
-DJ playing some tunes to get the crowd hyped up
-Concession stand selling hot chocolate and cider
-Went down the line and handed out candy
-Announcer talking to crowd and keeping them awake
-Charity organization booth set up
-Very cool light show going on
-3 to 4 actors working the line

It all worked out wonderfully, people had a blast in the line.
Also i realized that your que-line atmosphere effects the entire show.
We had a bunch of people through the weekend before with just a plain que-line and they didnt scream at all.
Next weekend we made the que-line essentially a party and people were scared out of there minds lol, it was amazing how much the que line affects the haunt

Jim Warfield
12-21-2008, 08:30 AM
Parking lots surround three sides of my house, I don't own them the city does.Charitys sometimes set up during October to sell things and one time about 15 feet from my front door two women were set up acting nuts, trying to sell hot chocolate, a very good item when it gets October/cold here,but the misinformation and confusion they also handed out to customers and potential customers approaching the front of my house was Very aggrivagating to have to constantly correct to keep things moving somewhat smoothly here.
Confusion is a big piece of haunted entertainment but not confusiopn as to admission prices and availability of the next show or how long of a wait it might be.

12-22-2008, 07:08 PM
Those are great Q Tips Nick. And I think you are right about getting people in the proper frame of mind early on. I find that if you work them and get the excited in the first room or better yet, outside the door, then they are hard to calm down for the rest of the night and are much easier to get screaming all the way through.

We have a couple of freight elevators in the front door, like train doors that slide open. We close them between groups and YANK them open and YELL at the next group the when we're ready for more meat. 95% of the people jump, even though they know it's coming coz it happened to the people in front of them. Sometimes, I think KNOWING it is going to happen make it even WORSE, coz the suspense of when drives them nuts.

Getting them in the right mind set is so important, I find myself working the position most the time. (It also controls the traffic flow, so getting it just right is pretty important.) I usually yell one of three things when the door rips open:

"Punishment Time! Step inside and pay the price!" or--

"It's YOUR TURN to SUFFER! Say farewell to your family and friends!!" or--

"They're all DEAD and YOU'RE NEXT!"

You can see the doors in our promo. They've become such a vital part of the show, we included them in the ad (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8PKcDUkz9VU) to help plant that fear in the customer's mind before they get there.

Once inside, I give them to rules, which I spice up with warnings about the rats and spiders and such. I also tell them to NEVER run, because it only attracts the monsters. The best way to avoid getting eaten is to scream a real high pitch, it pierces their bat-like ears. "The men who are acting calm and tough now usually do it the best, coz they sound like little girls when they scream!"

On a good night, I can get a dozen or so people to chicken out before going more than ten feet inside. The usual type to back out are women in sandals, as I convince them the rat menace is real. (Of course, there's no refunds, naturally.) When they do leave early, we make a big show of it and you can see the expressions of worry cross some of the other customer's faces.

I notice when they are in the main lobby, and hear the screams and alarms going off from the other patrons in other parts of the haunt, they start to freak out even before stepping inside the Hellevator. They don't know what's around the corner, but they hear the other people screaming and they become afraid to find out! Fear is infectious, and highly contagious. And once that momentum gets going, it's almost impossible to stop.

Jim Warfield
12-22-2008, 10:46 PM
As I would be giving a warning and some information about what they were going to be experiencing here , right almost on cue a scream would be heard right through the wall from the thing I was just describing ! Perfect!! and the scream was genuine from a real customer getting scared.
Screams heard through a lathe and plaster wall with 2 by 6's framing with paneling on one side..some screams, huh?
the scream would be coming right through the wall behind my lit up meon sign that says:"The Ravens Grin Tours: Humor-Excitement-Premature Death-
Physical and Mental Risk!

12-23-2008, 06:36 AM
I have a second year haunt just outside of Baltimore, MD. We have a haunted hayride, and a haunted corn maze. In our midway, we have live bands scheduled for almost every night. Some bands have a huge local draw, while others are just starting out. For the small bands, they sold tickets to raise their own funds.
Other than the bands, we did not budget any Q Line entertainment, until we had a 3 1/2 hour wait on October 18. We then scheduled a magician for 4 of the last six nights, and a sword swallower for the last night.
We didn't have the crowds to merritt the extra costs of line entertainment. Other than the 8:30 rush, the entertainers had to look for people to entertain.
I believe I made a hasty decision hiring these showman for the end of the month. Looking forward, I will probably hire one of them for our 4 busiest nights.