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Thread: New Reality show to air late sept! America's Haunted House!

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  1. Default Who's producing this? 
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Is this going to be a sci-fi original production, or is another company producing it for sci-fi? Was there an actual casting call posted somewhere? Any info on the sci-fi website yet?

    At any rate, congrats to all on the show, best of luck to ya, any show bringing attention to haunted houses is of course good pr for the industry. Looking forward to seeing it, hate to admit it, but kinda a reality show junkie, they're like train wrecks, you can't help but look.

    Chris Stafford
    1331 Entertainment Group
    Denver Haunted Houses - The Asylum & 13th Floor Haunted House http://www.getscared.com
    13th Floor Haunted House - San Antonio, Texas http://www.13thfloorsanantonio.com
    13th Floor Haunted House - Phoenix, Arizona http://www.13thflooraz.com

  2. Default  
    Re: Good Haunted Houses -

    Ultimately if you have a good haunted house and you live in a well populated area you will ultimately have through put issues -

    There are three obvious answers -

    1) Increase your throughput (Flow/Quality Issues)
    2) Make them wait 3+ hours ( Parking/ This BETTER be good!/Lost Business)
    3) Time Ticket them (Hold lots of people on site, Parking, Lost Business)

    How you do any of these and still have happy customers really points to the quality of your event.

    As far as if you have a great show or not we all know that no critic in this industry or in the media really can say how good your show is, what they experience is a snap shot, a slice of what you do. The truth is found in one thing. Word of mouth of your guests.

    I would say if you are growing your business every year, especially dramatically you are doing great! If you are stagnant or declining you have some problems.

    You have a few things that will keep you from growing -

    1) A chokepoint - ( Bad throughput, bad location, poor population, too much competition)

    2) Poor Marketing

    3) Show Quality

    4) External Forces ( Weather, Sports, etc.)

    You can NEVER get full of yourself and think that you have it all figured out, you always have to move forward full force and evolve and change and improve. You must always watch and listen to your customers - They and only they are the ultimate judges.

    At least in my opinion!

    Ben Armstrong

  3. Default through put 
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Ben if you don't mind me asking what is your attendance at your haunt in October? Based on the size of your haunt, what is a good night (patron) wise that you feel comfortable putting through?

  4. Default  
    Are you the guys from Atrox in Birmingham? Email me and we can discuss. If so I have heard that is a real cool show, I need to get over there.


    Ben Armstrong

  5. Default  
    Also for the sake of the discussion and in a general sense, every year we become more comfortable putting through larger amounts of folks. Years ago it got really not fun a certain levels, but you just keep adapting. The last few years we worked a great deal on refining the operational aspects with all of the standard methods, camera systems, more trained and orgainized staff more signage, etc.
    Of course the greatest challenge is to keep evolving the show to still work at peak attendence and growing the staff to accomodate the guests.

    Since we are open almost every night in October, the way the show runs varies greatly from day to day and week to week, but we prepare based on previous years and it works out pretty well.

    Parking was once a huge issue, I thought an insurmountable bottleneck, but people just started parking a long way away and walking, so it sort of solved itself.

    The peak nights are always a challenge as we all know - but the energy on those nights and the thrill of it makes it worth the work!

    We are actually beginning to research the timed ticketing concept, it might be a way to even things out, but I don't know yet. What we do seems to work for us, I am sure there are many ways to go.

    How do the rest of you handle peak nights? Do you Time Ticket, Run Multi Hour lines, or speed up the show?

    Ben Armstrong

  6. Default  
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Timed entry is definitely the way of the future, but I think that the transition from general admission to timed-entry is always going to be a tricky thing... albeit just for the season when you decide to make the change.

    Here in Pittsburgh, I know that more and more cultural events are making the change and they have all experienced growing pains (people getting a ticket for 2pm but coming at 10am anyway, overselling too many tickets for a certain time, etc) ... yet, they have all said it was worth the hassle in the end.

    As more non-Halloween events start doing this, and thus educating the public, I think it will get easier for haunts to start offering timed ticketing... but it definitely requires a thorough understanding of your own haunt's throughput. I'm sure we'll make the change eventually, but not this year.

    One thing we did learn is that even on slower nights, we still run the groups through relatively close together. At first, on slow nights, we would hold customers for longer at the entrance to increase the gaps between groups ... but we found that the long gaps really impacted our actors' energy levels. It's much easier for our cast to maintain their energy and enthusiasm with short bursts than with too much stop-start-stop-start rhythm
    Scott Simmons
    The ScareHouse / Undead Productions Inc.


  7. Default Edited Video 
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Pataskala, Ohio, United States
    hey guys

    Took the video and tinkered around alil bit for an edited copy...just acouple of things changed but it makes it look better


  8. Default Please 
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    I think some of the responses have been rather childish to say the least. So many people including some big ones, Larry, are obviously upset they didn't get chosen for this gig and are trying in a rather transparent way to express that without actually saying it. Grow up, it's a friggin reality TV show here kids. I am happy as crap for Eddie and the rest of the guys but don't act like your stuff is better than theirs. It's silly and retarded. This is not a professional industry, never has been, never will be. There just isn't enough money in it. And hell yes 10 weeks is more than enough, WAY more than enough. Do you think these guys are going to drive every nail in the place. This is TV kids, they'll be leading a crew here. And no it doesn't have to meet your silly little theories, or ideas or any of the things you all seem to think matters. It has to entertain people and get exposure. If it sucks, who cares. If it's great, who cares. Be happy for the guys, laugh at the silly antics that will go on and move on with your life. Hurt the industry, are you out of your mind. You think the average joe is even going to see this thing. It's going to be a small market at best. You silly silly people you.

    And as long as I'm being pissy lets talk about throughput of those southern haunts someone was pathetically making an attempt to bash. You have no idea what goes on here or what we are dealing with. The big boys down here know exactly what they are doing and have it exactly where we want it. Don't even bother to attempt to try and throw your two sense in unless you have some kind of idea of what the reality of the business model being followed is.

  9. Default  
    Yes..any haunter willing to give up 10 weeks in peak build season for our amusement should be applauded. 10 full weeks ..these guys are quiting jobs, school...putting haunts on hold, leaving friends and family....I know a few of em and I find that time table very... curious.

    I think this interesting thread has gotten a lot of play, maybe more than was originally suspected. I think however it won't go where most of us thought it would when it was first posted. I think maybe some of the more inquisitive Hauntworld regulars should do some snooping, and report back....

    Re The Throughput posts - GeckoFX - I don't know if you are defending me or unhappy with my posts - or talking about some other posts - I can't tell - but I completely agree that every successful event may have a different way of dealing with the curse/blessing of doing well - bigger crowds. I was trying to block out the ways I can see to deal with the issue and sort of laying out what we do. The topic seemed to fit with some of the earlier posts about larger haunts and throughput. If it was found to be offensive it was not the goal.

    It is an evolving process no doubt, I know in this as in all areas of haunting, there can always room to learn, grow and innovate.

    Personally I would like to hear others tell about how they handle this issue, I have gone to Busch Gardens Hallowscream and Universal Halloween Horror Nights to study this very topic, because it is a tough one.

    Ben Armstrong

  10. Default  
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Ravens Grin Inn, 411 carroll st.mount carroll ill.
    Timed tickets requires pre-planning to a degree , but how many people show up on impulse?
    Younger people seem more impulsive, just hop in the car, go for that drive.
    You have to leave some room for the impulsive customers to get in every hour.
    We benfited greatly by requiring many people(People for whom time or driving and waiting is a definate issue) to get advanced reservations by sending us a check at least a week in advance, we can have their tickets counted in the envelope with their name on it, co change to make, they go right in.
    Of course for some reason almost everyone coming here is always 15 minutes late? (Something to do with the curvature of the earth?)
    My best answer here to maintain quality of the show and keep impressing the customers is to be open year-round, spread that October crowd out over the entire year.
    Sometimes I do have to draw comparisons with this entertainment and other entertainment venues to remind the customer that they have to show up on time and behave while the performance is underway and sometimes just like a Broadway play, we can't always begin over again just for you.
    This place has numerous "bottlenecks" that help kill "Throughput", I just strive to make those bottlenecks as diferent and entertaining as I can.

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