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Thread: Age of your Actors

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  1. Default Age of your Actors 
    Join Date
    Mar 2012

    Do you guys hire anyone under 18 to work in your haunt? Are there reasons I shouldn't? Maturity issues? I have a lot of 16 to 18 year high school students asking.


  2. Default  
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Cleveland, Ohio
    When dealing with minors, there are different labor laws (they vary from state to state) with restrictions regarding curfews, etc. Also, with minors, you need to have their parents/legal guardians sign off on all paperwork (and you should include a parentla permission slip too).
    Katie Lane
    Raven's Wolf Art Productions (www.ravens-wolf.com)

    Bansheette Morningstar (www.bansheette.com)

  3. Default  
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Aside from the legal issues...everything you just said is true.

    The haunt I work at is 90% volunteer, meaning it's 90% kids under 18.

    So that's at least 15-30 of them depending on our turnout. IF you have enough people that are older, I would hire them instead...unless you know a particular teenager is mature enough.

    We had a woods trail where customers walked through.
    Common problems on trail:
    teens making out
    less supervision being spread out more
    leaving their scare zone for some random ass reason - To talk to the other volunteers
    all of which leads to not being ready

    And regardless of where they were in the park, there are these issues:

    Still more texting
    Trouble controlling themselves: ego, temper = when enough is enough and when to back off, losing their temper to unruly customers, or customers that just like to laugh AT them
    Most of them do not treat your costumes with enough respect

    And this is with volunteers who were not new.

    there's some other stuff too.

    some of these things can be remedied by telling exactly where to be and what to do.

  4. Default Those damn kids ...... 
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Raleigh, NC
    I have about a 50/50 split between adult and teenagers this year, between two haunts. I get approached by a lot of kids wanting to be part of the haunt, but only for the scaring part. When it comes to the building part, they are no where to be found. That's why this year, the kids who show up to help unload the trucks, do all the heavy lifting and grunt work that comes with building a haunt get the first crack at an acting role. Shows their dedication to the haunt and gives me an opportunity to get to know them a little better, and determine where they best fit.

    Of course, I have some adults that are just as big a problem as kids - wandering off and leaving their post for whatever reason, falling asleep in the coffin (actually happened last year), losing their temper (happened a few times last year), and showing up late for makeup. I'm still training them!
    Travis "Big T" Russell
    Big T Productions Inc

    Owner and Operator of "The Plague" and "Camp Nightmare"

    Customer Quote of the year: "Damn, I pissed myself"

  5. Default  
    Join Date
    May 2012
    South Florida
    Hey mrfoos,

    Here is another thread that might be useful to you:


    Hope this helps!
    Sinister Woods Home Haunt

  6. Default  
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Quote Originally Posted by BigT View Post
    falling asleep in the coffin (actually happened last year),

    LOL! Sounds like the setup for a youtube viral video.

  7. Default  
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Quote Originally Posted by Sinister Woods View Post
    Hey mrfoos,

    Here is another thread that might be useful to you:


    Hope this helps!
    Thanks Chad. I swear I looked in the archives first but didn't see that.

  8. Default  
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Oklahoma City, OK
    I typically try to stay away from anyone under 18 but I might allow on a case by case situation for reasons already mentioned. I usuall pull volunteers in from college dram departments that are willing to give students extra credit for participation for the season (season not just once) this ensures you are staffed better. I also design my haunts to be able to do without certain acting positions in case I'm short that night.

    Kids tend to get bored and wander around or not get timing right. As previously mentioned there are certain laws and what not you have to worry about. Not to mention that a haunt that I knew the owners had used both adult and under 18 and there was an incident where a minor was sexually assaulted one night at the haunt. Talk about EXTREME BAD PUBLICITY! Especially when you had nothing to do with it...

    So I try to not use minors...


  9. Default  
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Quote Originally Posted by Haunter View Post
    So I try to not use minors . . .
    I'm in a similar situation. I have a mix of different ages, and I'm not sure who I will be working with until a few weeks before the production, apart from one or two key players.

    Fortunately, the event is for one day, so I don't have to deal with any long term issues.


  10. Default drop panel 
    fright Guest
    Even if you hire anyone under the age of 18, you could always just put them in a drop panel.


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