Scott Swenson​

For over 30 years, Scott Swenson has been bringing stories to life as a Writer, Director, Producer and Performer. His work in Theme Park, Consumer Events, Live Theater and Television has given him a broad spectrum of experiences. After 21 years working with SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment as the Director of Production, Scott formed Scott Swenson Creative Development LLC. Since then he has been writing live shows, creating and implementing themed festivals and developing communication based training classes. Much of Scott’s work has focussed on seasonal entertainment.  He was co-creator and Creative Leader for the first 15 years of the “Howl-O-Scream” event at Busch Gardens Tampa, during which time he wrote and implemented over 50 haunted houses, shows and scare zones. From 2014 to 2017, he was the Writer and Creative Director for the historically based atmospheric theatre piece, “The Vault of Souls”.

SCOTT'S POSTS

Fear Factory

Fear Factory Paves the Way for a Successful Haunt Reopening

Following its successful reopening, Fear Factory provides guidance for haunts reopening during COVID-19 On May 29th, Fear Factory’s annual Halfway to

halloween dead

Is Halloween Dead?

A rational look at the prospects for haunted attractions this year and for your haunt in particular Episode 46 of my A Scott in the Dark podcast (recorded

Remembering Robbi

Remembering Robbi: Lessons Learned from a Reluctant Haunter

By Scott Swenson For over 25 years, I was lucky enough to have Robbi LePre as part of my life. She played many roles. She was my mentor, my boss, my

Phases of Recovery from COVID for Haunted Attractions

Phases of Recovery from COVID for Haunted Attractions

Approaches to Addressing a Crisis—Which Haunts Should implement All the Time By Scott Swenson Welcome back to the dark. I based this blog on Episode 45 of

diversity

The Power of Diversity in Your Haunted Attraction

Use Diversity in your team, in your scares, within your industry, and in your products to strengthen your haunt. By Scott Swenson Welcome to the dark. This

pivot

Don’t Panic, Pivot Your Haunt

Creative strategies for haunts and haunters to move through the COVID-19 pandemic and emerge on their feet. by Scott Swenson Episode 42 of my podcast, A

haunted attractions

So Now What? Haunted Attractions COVID-19 Edition

This unprecedented situation provides an opportunity for haunts and haunters to become more creative and support one another. This blog is based on Episode

october haunt

The February Meeting to Prepare for Your October Haunt

Get started early in the year to be better prepared for the Halloween season Welcome again to my blog, this one based on episode 40 of my A Scott in the

actor safety

Actor Safety in the New World – a Guide

We’ve always focused on actor safety, so build on what you already do well to care for them after the pandemic. By Scott Swenson We, in the haunt industry,

HAuNTcon-2020

HAuNTcon 2020 – a Weekend in New Orleans

Seminars, a panel discussion, and chats with folks from Dark Woods and Raybourn Creative I recorded Episode 39 of my A Scott in the Dark podcast at the

A Visit to the 2019 IAAPA Expo

A Visit to the 2019 IAAPA Expo

Discovering what’s new and trending in the haunt and theme park industries Episode 38 of my A Scott in the Dark podcast was recorded at the 2019 IAAPA

Transitioning your Haunt to Christmas

Transitioning your Haunt to Christmas

A Haunter in Christmas Town: How to Do a Changeover from a Halloween to a Christmas Event This blog is based on Episode 37 of my A Scott in the Dark

after party

The After Party – Bringing Haunters Together All Year Long

by Scott Swenson This blog is based on Episode 36 of my A Scott in the Dark podcast, which came right on the heels of Episode 35. I wasn’t planning on

The Power of the Paranormal — A Chat with Jill Witecki of Tampa Theatre and Jeremy Rettig of Genesis Paranormal Services

The Power of the Paranormal — A Chat with Jill Witecki of Tampa Theatre and Jeremy Rettig of Genesis Paranormal Services

This blog is based on Episode 34 of my A Scott in the Dark podcast, entitled “The Power of the Paranormal,” in which I had the great opportunity to look at

‘Tis the Season - Summer is the Time to Start Preparing for Halloween

‘Tis the Season – Summer is the Time to Start Preparing for Halloween

This blog is based on Episode 33 of my A Scott in the Dark podcast, which was called, “’Tis the Season.” This wasn’t a Christmas episode. No. It was

Tips and lessons for folks who think they might want to create a haunt

Planning Your Haunt’s Success

Tips and lessons for folks who think they might want to create a haunt by Scott Swenson This blog is based on episode 31 of my A Scott In the Dark podcast,

Listeners’ Choice

Listeners’ Choice, Volume 2…

…in which Scott talked about how he got into the haunt business and a few other topics. This blog is based on Episode 30 of my Scott in the Dark podcast.

Transworld 2019

Transworld 2019

Highlights from my visit to this year’s Transworld in St. Louis, Missouri It’s time once again to step into the darkness… This blog is based on

haunt questions and answers

Welcome to Volume 1 of Listeners’ Choice

…in which I answer a few burning questions from listeners Welcome once again to A Scott in the Dark. This blog is based on my Episode 28 podcast, which was

haunt

Interviews with Friends at the 2019 HAuNTcon in New Orleans

TRADESHOWS ARE THE BEST PLACE TO MAKE FRIENDS AND GET EDUCATED ABOUT THE HAUNT BUSINESS We’re going to do something a little different in the dark this

Tradeshow

Attending a Parallel Industry Tradeshow

What haunters can learn from participating in tradeshows outside the haunt world In this blog, I’ll be talking about my experiences at The Special

Shopping for Your Haunted Attraction Year Round

Shopping for Your Haunted Attraction Year Round

How and where to find bargains on stuff for your haunt throughout the year Welcome to my first blog of 2019. Since it’s right after the holiday season, I

Installing “ Dark ,” my First Haunt in Canada, at Fort Edmonton Park, Alberta

Moving into new territory with the installation of a haunt at a historic site in Canada I was thinking this blog should probably be called A Scott After

haunt season 2019

When the Tide Comes in, All Ships Rise

All the reasons to support fellow haunts and haunters – especially in online public forums. Welcome, once again, to A Scott In the Dark. We’re

haunt

The Four Levels of Haunt

The Importance of Targeting Your Haunt to One of the Four Demographic Audiences Welcome to the Dark! Here we are at the crux of the Halloween season.

The Director is the Lens, Not the Sun

The Director is the Lens, Not the Sun

What’s the role of the director in a haunt attraction, and do you need a director at your haunt? I’m really excited about this blog, which is based on

The Overlap Between Haunted Attractions and Theater

The Overlap Between Haunted Attractions and Theater

All the reasons for haunters to get involved with their local community or professional theater Welcome to this blog, which is based on Episode 17 of my A

Make It Cheap

Make It Cheap

Tips and tricks for using your creativity to have the most awesome haunt ever… and save money In this blog based on Episode 16 of my A Scott in the

Renaissance

Learning from Ren Rats and Fairie Folk

Discovering the similarities between Renaissance Faires and haunted attractions by Scott Swenson This article is based on Episode 13 of my A Scott in

Communication

The Art of Communication

How to Communicate with All the People in Your Process—from Creation to Production By Scott Swenson This article is based on episode 12 of my

haunt season

How to Make it to the End of the Haunt Season

The key is: consistency, consistency, consistency by Scott Swenson Welcome back to the dark. This blog is based on Episode 9 of my A Scott in the Dark

The Pros and Cons of Shows and Cons

The Pros and Cons of Shows and Cons

How to decide which events and shows to attend, and why they’re important to you and your haunt. Welcome, once again, to the Dark. In this blog, which is

https://soundcloud.com/hauntedpod/a-scott-in-the-dark-episode-7-auditions-and-how-to-survive-them

Auditions and How to Survive Them

Advice for how to make an unforgettable—in a good way—impression during an audition This blog is based on Episode 7 of A Scott in the Dark—which I refer to

How Much is Too Much?

How Much is Too Much?

When it comes to creating an extreme haunt, how do you know when you’ve crossed over the line? This blog is based on Episode 6 of my A Scott In The

How to view criticism as a gift that can help you make your haunt the best ever

You Suck!

How to view criticism as a gift that can help you make your haunt the best ever Here we are with another blog, this one based on Episode 5 of A Scott in

Gone are the days of setting up your haunt and getting a CD of that “ooooaaaaa” sound that every single ghost animation used to make.

Did you Hear That?

Audio completes your haunt environment and makes it real. This blog is all about audio and why it’s a key element in the development of your attraction.

The Care and Feeding of Actors

The Care and Feeding of Actors

Actors make or break your haunt experience, so you need to take care of them. This episode, which is based on the third episode of my A Scott in the Dark

Marketing Monsters

Marketing Monsters

How to create monsters to market for you outside your haunt This blog is based on the second episode of my podcast series, A Scott in the Dark. It’s

Shining a Light on… Santa Claus

Shining a Light on… Santa Claus

Too tired to read? Listen to this article instead: Creating Memorable Moments with a Traditional Character By Scott Swenson Yes, you read the title of this

The Basics of Actor Intake

The Basics of Actor Intake

Jonathan and Crystal Talk to Japes Palles about how actors and haunts can find a good match. This blog is based on episode 179 of our Haunt Weekly podcast,

A Scott in the Dark

The Very First A Scott in the Dark Podcast—The Basics

Offering a great new information source for haunters This blog is based on the very first episode of the A Scott in the Dark podcast. I was so excited to

Shining a Light on... Teams That Last Through the Season Event

Shining a Light on… Teams That Last Through the Season

Too tired to read?Listen to this article instead:   By Scott Swenson Every seasonal event requires a dedicated team of eager and talented individuals.

first impression

The First Seven Seconds: You Have Less Time Than You Think to Make a Powerful First Impression

Too tired to read? Listen to this article instead: By Scott Swenson On July 30, 2018, Gantom Lighting & Controls hosted its second annual Leadership

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