Here is the Haunted Attraction Industry News for June, 20th.
If you would like to receive this in your inbox, CLICK HERE
Disneyland Resort has announced more details surrounding its Halloween season celebrations. Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort runs from September 2nd – October 31st. Disneyland park will feature Mickey & Friends in new Halloween attire, the return of Jack Skellington and friends at the Haunted Mansion Holiday, “Halloween Screams” projection and light show with added fireworks on weekends, and Main Street Pumpkin Festival. At Disney California Adventure Oogie Boogie has transformed Buena Vista Street with a Halloween makeover, Guardians of the Galaxy – Monsters After Dark will return each evening, and Radiator Springs celebrates the season as “Radiator Screams”. Pixar’s Coco and the Spirit of Día de Los Muertos will come to life at Plaza de la Familia in the Paradise Gardens area. Oogie Boogie Bash – A Disney Halloween Party returns for 24 exciting nights September – October featuring immersive treat trails, character experiences, special decor, frightfully fun parade, commemorative keepsakes, and Villains Grove – a trail through the worlds of Disney villains with ethereal scenes filled with color, sound, light, and shadow.
Conventions & Mixers
Midsummer Scream has announced Universal Studios Hollywood’s Halloween Horror Nights will return for a panel at this year’s event. On Saturday, July 30th in the Grand Ballroom, HHN Creative Director and Executive Producer John Murdy will engage with fans to provide an exclusive look at the Universal Studios Hollywood design process and details on this year’s slate of haunted houses. Tickets to Midsummer Scream are on sale now starting at $32 – $47 for Single-Day General Admission, $63 for Weekend General Admission, and $135 for the Gold Bat Pass.
In a June 15th Facebook post to the Fans of West Coast Halloween Convention group, West Coast Halloween Convention President and Founder Ed Roberts addressed concerns regarding the organization’s non-profit/charity status. Due to tax-related issues, the WCHC has temporarily lost its nonprofit/charity status. Roberts commented on the issue, stating, “I assure you that this is only a temporary suspension and our charity status is being reinstated retroactively and any donations and purchases will remain as a donation to our 501c3. I would like to thank you for your patience.” In a comment on the post, a representative from the West Coast Halloween Convention’s Facebook page stated that the taxes are filed and that they are in the process of getting their 501c3 status retroactively reinstated.
CreepyCon Halloween & Horror Convention returns August 26-28, 2022 at the Chilhowee Park & Exposition Center in Knoxville, Tennessee. Catering to fans of Halloween, horror, the paranormal, haunted attractions, special effects makeup, costuming, and more, the event features shows, performances, contests, and a large vendor floor. Want to show off your skills? Contests include: Zombie Beauty Pageant, Creepy Costume Contest, Scream Queen Competition, Rot the Runway, and Creepy Doll Contest. Sign-up today on CreepyCon’s official website to participate.
Ghosts of Summer Halloween Convention is coming to the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon on August 5th & 6th, 2022. Created by a group of friends, the event was inspired out of love for the Halloween-season’s celebrations in the Portland area and a desire to bring all creators, patrons, and enthusiasts under one roof. The event will feature a 30,000 sq. ft exhibit floor, mini haunts, escape rooms, game rooms, panels and make & take sessions, immersive horror theatre, horror films, and more. View a list of currently confirmed exhibitors and haunts here.
The Ohio Haunters Association will host its next meeting on Sunday, August 14th, 2022 at 1:00 p.m. EDT. This last meeting before the haunt season begins will take place at Carnage Haunted House in Columbus, Ohio. Attendees will experience an afternoon of networking, education, raffles, and a tour of Carnage Haunted House. Scareactor and performer Terry Rook Jr. will be the speaker at the event. He will give helpful guidance on actor training – including basic concepts and learning activities/techniques you can teach your team.
Auditions / Casting Calls
Busch Gardens Tampa (Tampa, Florida) is accepting applications for Howl-O-Scream Entertainers. Applicants must be at least 18 years of age, and be available the majority of event nights between 5:00 p.m. – 2:00 a.m. Performers are expected to supply their own black pants, black socks, black shoes, and black shirt. As an added perk, performers who work a minimum of 26 of the 29 dates will receive a 2023 Fun Card (Annual Pass).
Lake Hickory Haunts (Hickory, North Carolina) is now hiring actors and staff – including ticket sales, concessions, security, parking attendants, and more. Fill out their online application to apply. Volunteers under the age of 18 must have a parent or guardian complete a waiver to participate.
The Haunted Forests (Newfane, New York) is seeking actors and operations staff for their 2022 season – which runs September 16th- 28th. Training begins in August and pay ranges from $16 – $20 per hour depending on experience and casted position. Applicants must be 16+ years of age for Operations Staff positions and 18+ years of age for Actor positions. Actor positions include scripted acting for the Hayride and free roam scareacting for the Haunted Barn and outdoor scare zone. Learn more and download the application from the event’s official website.
U.S. Haunts & Events
Become a Ghostbuster in the new location-based virtual reality experience, Ghostbusters VR Academy. Sony Pictures Virtual Reality (SPVR), in association with Ghost Corps, is launching a new VR experience in over 400 Hologate locations globally based on the hit Ghostbusters franchise. “Sony Pictures Virtual Reality is all about making wishes come true. Ghostbusters VR Academy, the new location-based VR training experience, will continue to expand the world of Ghostbusters in a way that honors the legacy of the franchise and offers something entirely new,” says Jake Zim, Senior Vice President, Virtual Reality, Sony Pictures Entertainment. Players will be able to train to be a Ghostbuster in an academy setting and race a new flying version of the ECTO using Hologate’s vehicle motion simulator. Ghostbusters VR Academy is expected to be available by the end of 2022.
Evil clowns will invade Nightmare Dungeon Haunted Attraction (Greenville, SC) June 24th – 26th as part of their 2022 Nightmare Clownz event. The haunt has reached out and invited clowns from other haunted attractions and area groups to take part in this summer haunt event. The clown infestation will reach every corner of their 120+ year old 2-story cabin in the woods. Tickets are on sale now for $25/person.
Carnage Haunted House (Columbus, Ohio) will open its doors this summer for its Xtreme Terror event on July 29th – 30th. The event promises to be “more immersive than ever before” with new costumes, new characters, updated sets, and new scares. The special event includes 1 haunt and costs $10 per person. Tickets are on sale now.
The Boozy Cauldron is an immersive 4-part Cocktail experience and interactive show where guests are taken on a magical journey themed to wizards & witches. In a recent Haunted Attraction Network interview, Show Producer Ryan Wieczorek, discussed the event’s origins – with inspiration from Harry Potter and other fantasy novels – and future plans. Reservations for The Boozy Cauldron are held nightly and restricted to a small number of guests for a 90-minute experience. The Boozy Cauldron has been traveling the nation and only appears for a limited time in select cities. Upcoming locations include Topeka, Kansas City, Little Rock, Memphis, Orlando, and more. See their full touring schedule and purchase tickets on the event’s official website. Ticket prices vary by venue.
In the wake of recent violence against live performers, Scott Swenson discussed the importance of performer safety in episode 67 of A Scott in the Dark. Scareacting can bring out the fight or flight response in attendees, which can lead to guests lashing out at the actors. Scott suggests a variety of ways to keep your actors safe:
1. Design for Safety – have escape routes for your performers, so they can move away from unruly guests. There should always be more than one way out so no one gets cornered or trapped.
2. Build Protective Equipment into Costumes – build in a chest plate or covering into the costume to prevent accidental groping in camo rooms or black light dot rooms. Sliders should have knee pads, wrist guards, and other protective gear.
3. Consider the Direction of the Scare and Where the Guest Will Likely Retreat To – don’t have your customers scared into a corner, as if the fight or flight response is triggered and there is no “flight” option, a guest may lash out.
4. “Make the Scare – and Get Out of There” – train performers to scare and quickly return to a distance away from punch range.
5. Have Security in Place with a Security Plan – if a scareactor does get in a confrontation with a guest, have the actor or a nearby performer go to security, point out the individual, and explain what occurred so security can handle the situation.
For a limited time on June 16th Home Depot opened up sales for their classic 12′ Skeleton and their Inferno Skeleton. As with previous years, both styles sold out within hours of release.
Film & TV
During Monsterpalooza 2022, attendees received a behind-the-scenes look at the new documentary, Spooktacular. The film discusses SpookyWorld, one of the original scream parks and Halloween destinations in America. The panel featured SpookyWorld founder David Bertolino, along with the documentary producers.
Upcoming Haunt Events
Podcast Episodes You Might Be Interested In
Time Management Strategies For The Busy Haunter
Coming up – How to Effectively Manage Your Time When Running a Haunted Attraction. Scott Swenson explains how working “time smart” will prevent your event from creeping up on you.
Get a Sneak Peak of Evil Intentions’ 2022 Season
We’re going on-location to Evil Intentions in Elgin, IL to learn about their 2022 season. Evil Intentions is known for its ‘jungle gym’ rooms filled with actors choreographed to original music. Today we’ll hear from owner Mike Fitzpatrick about what makes the haunt successful and what they have planned for 2022. We visited Evil Intentions on June 10th during the Midwest Haunters Convention Haunt Tour. Watch the video.
How Many types of Haunt Scares are There? (The Scare Factor)
Join Bryan (Team Skelegore) and Tiph (Team Terror Techies) to discuss different types of scares you will experience at haunted attractions.
Haunted Attraction Industry News for June 15th