Last night, we were hit with a pretty big storm, and it brought lots of rain with it. My haunt managers still decided to open the haunt, though. Being stationed in the outside portion, I can't say I had a really great time. We didn't get a whole lot of customers, and had to shut down before 10:00 because the building was beginning to get flooded. All in all, it was a pretty miserable and unproductive night. In your opinion, should haunted houses close down for bad weather, or should they remain open and tough it out?
Dr.Mandrake, you sound like a standup guy. I run an outdoor attraction and would never operate during the rain for the mere torture it would put on the actors. I wouldn't ever expect them to put up with it. Pretty cool that you are committed enough to stay with it. We all want more of you.
A haunt, like any other business should stay open during good or bad weather (excluding outdoor haunts) if they are advertised to be open during that time.
Gotta take the good with the bad.
Obviously if it's a safety factor, then any business should consider that risk and close. But if safety isn't a concern, then press on.
If anything, the actors get paid and get a break before "hell week".
we added an outdoor addition this year, and our first night open it poured for the first hour. and we had people "WANTING" to go thru it in the rain and we gave them the option to go out early before, or go thru it all. and i was suprised that people enjoyed the effect.. now if it was STORMING I would not let it open.
mrfoos, thanks! I love doing the haunt so much in general that a couple not-so-great nights don't really dull the experience too much. What I was most worried about was that my new $100 mask, which was made mostly of sponge and hair with a little bit of latex, would be damaged by the rain, but thankfully that was avoided.
Tom, we learned the next night that a tornado actually had touched down somewhere in our area, but we weren't affected at all, thank God. Also, we're a charity, so we don't get paid at all. We just show up because we love to do what we do
We are a one-night show and have adapted our set up to be under tent and cover 'just in case'... Well, the last 2 years have been a mess. Hurricane Sandy 2 years ago. Torrential downpours throughout the night, wind. If we could do it the night before or after, we would, but most customers we get would rather combine trick or treating with their kids with their visit with us.
Even with all the crap weather over the past few years, we still get a good turnout.
If a haunt is going to say 'rain or shine' then they need to go all the way. I'm just happy when I don't have to wear my thermals under my costume...
Here is an opinion for you take it for what its worth...
1) If its a SLOW night NO NEVER EVER! I will close 110% on a night that should be slow anyway. I'd lose money first and foremost.
2) IF you are talking one of the busiest nights of the year yes we'd have to open but we've faced this many times before and dealt with it just fine. If there was a tornado warning or super high winds I would NOT open for safety issues alone. But if you are simply talking about rain yes we would and we can do it.
First we have tents for our customers to wait in so they don't get soaked and sometimes when its raining and lets say pouring we stop everything we get the actors inside the customers wait under the tents or whatever... when the rain breaks we fire up!
Additionally we are PREPARED for rain... you show up that day EARLY and you gravel gravel gravel the place so water can't collect where actors and customers walk.
You make sure electrical boxes and outlets are covered ... and you are simply PREPARED FOR IT!
I would NEVER make an actor working in the pouring down rain we'll wait it out... like you said its not super busy because of the rain SO you simply make sure you have a place for customers to wait and actors to wait without being rained on... when it breaks FIRE IT UP.
The other issue is if I know its going to rain we try to open early and we go faster to get customers through to beat the rain... it slows down naturally we close.
We had one night of rain. We were not prepared for rain in the woulds no shelters just make shift. It was our busiest night of all. definitely added to the ambiance.
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