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    Tuesday, October 07, 2008

    Report on my Halloween Haunt Excursion

    Ok. so as promised here's my update on my very first ever trip to Halloween Haunt (Knotts Scary Farm)

    Overall, I did enjoy the trip/event. It wasn't nearly as scary as some people kept making it out to be. (The hype was more than the actual scare).

    We got in like 45 min. early as we bought the dinner tickets ("The Boo-fet")...and that was worth the price alone just to get in before the park got crowded! We knocked out a few rides & mazes right away with barely any line. That was great!

    While we were waiting to be let in, they let us ride on Ghost Rider (one of my favorite wooden roller coasters, even though it does scare me cause of the drops - I have a thing about heights and falling ;-). Although doing that ride SO soon after eating might not have been the wisest choice...but oh well. We still had fun.

    The first stop, once we were let into the park, was the Log Ride, or "Pyromaniax" as it was renamed (and redecorated). It was one of the rides that had people stationed throughout jumping out at you. We barely had to wait in line (which was awesome) while they finished testing the ride (and presumably getting all the scarers in place) and we were soon led to our log and on our way. I must say that was the only time throughout the night that they people jumping out at me actually got me like *each and every* time! LOL! And it was pretty much the only time throughout the evening that I *actually screamed* from being startled. It was Fun, though. I really did enjoy being startled on this ride. =) They did a good job. And it was a good thing I was wearing my purple rain coat and my Keen boots, since I was sitting in the front and got a good share of the splash zone on me. (Not enough to get me thoroughly soaked, mind you...just a good splatter all over the front of me =).

    Next up - the Black Widow's Cavern. (aka the slow moving mine trade ride). We were stuck in a cart with a bunch of screaming teenage girls. Ugh! The decor was pretty cheesy, but it was all in good fun. In all honesty, though there was *one* huge spider creature (marionette type thing) that was partially shrouded in fog that jumped out at the cart, and I did have an involuntary reaction to pull away - but it was hard to not when something that big comes towards you. =).

    Afterwards, we headed back through the park towards the Mystery Maze and the '13 Axe Murder Manor' (aka the 'Victorian Manor'). This was a well done maze. And it was especially spooky as our first time through there were few others wandering through with us...which made the suspension of reality a bit easier (especially in the darkened rooms). A few people actually managed to get me to start (or on some occasions at least slightly start) a few times while going through this maze (especially in the darkened rooms, when no one else was around and the scarer was well hidden). Overall, I liked this maze, and at the end of the night, I believe the three of us had come to agree that this particular maze was the best of the ones we had gone through.

    Another maze where someone got me was the 'Labyrinth' located in "The Gauntlet" (aka Camp Snoopy). It's a new maze, and it was really neat (all fantasy creatures and some things/decoration that reminded me of the movie Pan's Labyrinth). When I was distracted to turn my head and look at a monster/statue that was part of the decor (when the Mulvey's pointed it out), I turned my head back to look forward at where I was going...and found a creature/scarer inches from my face! I certainly did start! (The Mulvey's loved it! =).

    Later on in the evening, when we were going through another new maze, the "Corn Stalkers" (a cursed cornfield in Kansas with some fo the evil minion of the Wicked Witch of Oz) that had some potential for being scary...but there were too many people going through it. One scarer dressed in all black and hidden up and to the side of the doorway to a barn like structure actually got me to start as he stuck his fingers (with these little clicker things) right in my face as I was pushing aside the shredded black curtains that covered the doorway. It was a good hiding place! I didn't see/expect that scarer at all! Near the end of the maze, one of the scarers got Jenn really good as she was passing by the outhouse type structures (and of course a few people were using it as hiding spots).

    I think the one that distrubed me the most (not scared, just distrubed) was the Slaughterhouse. While my least favorite (not as distrubing though as the Slaughterhouse) was the Killer Clown Kollege. Clowns just aren't that scary to me (except for the one in the movie It...but that's a whole different story! =).

    When I was a bit nervous going through the mazes, especially earlier in the night when I didn't know what to expect, there weren't many people in the mazes (or the park) and I was still fresh on all the hype of being scared, I started using nervous laughter to help me 'buck up' and get through the mazes. But after a while...I just didn't need that anymore. And I started laughing at other people's reactions (those who actually were truly frieghtened) when one of the scarers zeroed in on the person/people and started tormenting them. It was actually kinda funny...especially when I saw 4 teenagers (2 boys & 2 girls) huddled together - arm in arm - trying to navigate the 'Alien Annihilation' maze without being picked on. It was just amusing to me. How funny is that?

    Guess I'm just more scared by scary movies since I get all caught up in the imagination world and in this one I can separate out the real vs. the imaginary and I can usually spot the people hidden, etc.).

    So, and after a while I started 'taking point' in going through the mazes, since the workers inside didn't really faze me (though they tried). I just grinned...and stared them down. I got pretty good at spotting the various hiding places of the scarers (and telling which ones were manicans and which were real people just holding still...waiting for someone to pounce on and scare).

    Of course, it was kinda hard to be scared when the park got full and you were just slowly walking through the maze, following along the line of people ahead of you (with more people behind you). That kinda took some of the 'scare factor' out. (That's probably why we liked the mazes we did earlier in the evening better - less people so it was easier to get scared).

    Anyways, we did every single one of the mazes (scattered throughout the park) and three scare zones (and the 2 themed rides) and got in 3 shows.

    Our first attempt to the "The Hanging: Oils Well that Ends Well" (which is the must see show for pretty much everyone since it lampoons all the recent pop culture stuff for the past year) was unsuccesful as the crew/program had technical difficulties that kept it from going on at the first scheduled performance. But we did eventually get to see it. It was interesting (sometimes crude, but overall pretty funny).

    When our first attempt to see The Hanging failed, we moved on to another show on our list. We went to the Charles Shulz theater and saw "Fangs - a Vampire Show" that was described as Comedy meets Vampires. It was ok - basically a chance to dress people (dancers/singers) up in sexy 'vamp' clothing and have them perform song/dance numbers that were 'vampire themed'. And then when they needed a costume change, they'd trot out two guys that were the comic relief and kept some weak form of a plot moving along. The funny thing is that I actually prefered the comic relief sections to the rest of the show! =) I would have liked it if there was more of those two guys. But whatever. It was...different, to say the least.

    The last show of the evening for us was The Hypno-Chick. Now normally I'm not too fond of hypnotists...but this gal was good and that particular show ended up with some real characters as participants. It was hillarious! We had a great time laughing at the silly antics of the participants. (Especially two in particular who made it memorable: the blonde girl and this one 'cool' guy...for lack of a better way to describe his attitude). The Blonde's reaction to the suggestoin of a stampede was just, well, beyond words! Her antics definitely set the tone for the night.

    Around midnight, we had hit all the rides & such, so Jenn & I each decided it was time for a carmel apple. (Yum!) We were passing by a candy shop in the Old West section (just as you get to the area with the train station, etc.) when we realized that they probably had carmel apples. And we were right! We each got a carmel apple (with nuts - and sliced up for easier eating) and the three of us sat on a bench outside, people watching while we ate our respective apples.

    But by 12:20am we were tired, had finished with our carmel apples, and since we had just about done everything, we decided to call it a night.

    And that was it for us.

    That's my experience at Halloween Haunt this year!

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