Conventions & Mixers
Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion may be closed for an extended period, but fans of the classic attraction can get their fill at WELCOME FOOLISH MORTALS: A Haunted Mansion Reunion at the Immersive Ghostly Retreat (Fullerton, CA). The talents behind various Haunted Mansion projects are gathering for an afternoon of meet & greets and autographs, while guests also get to explore the Ghostly Retreat, a Haunted Mansion-inspired Airbnb designed by Jeff Schiefelbein. This unique event presented by Jeff DePaoli (“Dizney Coast to Coast” podcast) takes place on Sunday, February 25th, beginning at 1:00 p.m. Admission includes access to the Ghostly Retreat, an original print of Haunted Mansion inspired artwork by a Disney illustrator made especially for this event, a chance to meet the special guests. and have them autograph the artwork for a one-of-a-kind keepsake.
Scheduled to appear are former Imagineer Tania Norris, who worked on the original Haunted Mansion and designed the iconic purple wallpaper; former Imagineer Joe Lanzisero, who was the design lead on Mystic Manor in Hong Kong Disneyland; animatronics master Garner Holt who developed props and animatronics for Haunted Mansion Holiday; Kirk Thatcher who directed Muppets Haunted Mansion; and Disney illustrator Rick Law. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. A limited number of tickets are on sale now for $100 per person. This independent event is not affiliated with The Walt Disney Company.
Calling SoCal Horror Cosplayers, Actors, Videographers, and Content Creators of all mediums – join the Haunted Attraction Network at Slashers Axe Throwing & Ales (Costa Mesa, CA) for a creepy Valentine’s gathering on February 7th, 2023. This is the perfect opportunity to make your creepy holiday content and work with others for collaborative content. Attendees will receive exclusive access to the venue and unlimited axe throwing. This month’s theme is “Monster LOVE” and we courage content and costumes to fit the “Valentine’s” theme. Interested individuals should reply to this newsletter e-mail for instructions.
Creep, I.E., Con takes place this weekend, February 2nd – 4th, at the Ontario Convention Center (Ontario, CA). The event features horror celebrities, a show floor with over 200 exhibitors, mini haunts, horror arcade, horror speed dating, and more. Tickets are on sale now starting at $30 for Friday admission, $40 for Saturday admission, $35 for Sunday admission, and $70 for a three-day pass.
Haunted Attraction Association
The Haunted Attraction Association is finalizing the memorial segment of their OSCARES awards program. If you know of a haunter who has passed away in the past year, please reply to this newsletter e-mail with their name, age, haunt, and date of their passing.
U.S. Haunts & Events
Tickets go on sale Friday, February 2nd for The Spooky Swap Meet IV: The Next Nightmare! General admission starts at $19 for timed entries throughout the weekend, with a VIP ticket allowing exclusive access the first hour on Friday for $29. This year’s Spooky Swap Meet takes place April 26th – 28th at the Heritage Square Museum (Los Angeles, CA). Featuring 60+ vendors selling a mix of used Halloween decor, props, and new merchandise, Spooky Swap Meet has sold out each day of the event since its start in 2021. In addition to shopping, guests of all ages are encouraged to trick-or-treat at Heritage Square’s seven Victorian-era manors, whose exteriors have been decorated and “spooked up” for the weekend by a curated selection of professional and amateur haunted attraction designers, including LA Haunted Hayride, A Mr. He Slasher, Art’s Sideshow, and more. Guests are also invited to participate in an immersive ghost-hunting experience created by AdamJess FX.
Monster Bash (Harmony, MN), a 501(c)3 non-profit organization benefitting the Fillmore Central music and arts programs, is planning to expand. The Booster Club for The Arts Committee hopes to raise $200,000 over the next three years to fund an expansion of the program. The expansion will include: a permanent garage for their hearse, adding 450 sq feet of storage space and an additional 1,500 square feet of space to the haunt. Since its founding, Monster Bash has donated over $160,00 to the Filmore Central music and arts programs – donating $25,000 in 2023 alone.
Realm of Darkness (Kaukauna, WI) was recently featured in a local news story from NBC 26 Northeast Wisconsin. The broadcast story highlighted how co-creators Dalton Polomis and Ben Hurst work year-round to update and improve the haunt. The pair hope to add an escape room and other activities to turn the haunt into a year-round venue.
The Haunted Majestic (Huntington, WV) seeks storytellers for their 2024 season. The haunt is looking for local authors, ghost tour companies, and others to perform on their midway stage this October. Selected storytellers will receive a free vending table to sell their books or advertise their business at the event. One storyteller will be featured each night of the event. Storytellers should be “willing to do a few brief but captivating and eerie readings per hour throughout the evening.” The haunt also seeks off-season workers to help with set design, construction, costume-making, scheduling, and other administrative tasks. Interested parties should e-mail [email protected] to apply.
International Haunts & Events
A haunted house has been built in Pakistan’s Jallo Wildlife Park. The “Ghost Bungalow and Snake House” features a haunt and a section filled with dozens of native and foreign species of snakes. This is the first haunt to be built in any Punjab Wildlife park. Political figure Akhtar Lava (aka Lahore Da Pawa on TikTok) attended the opening ceremony and applauded the new facility, commenting that recreational facilities like the haunt provide citizens entertainment and relief from concerns such as inflation, unemployment, and political uncertainty.
Film / TV / Books
Former *NSYNC singer Lance Bass will share his love for Halloween in his debut children’s book, “Trick of Treat on Scary Street”. The book follows a set of trick-or-treaters heading down Scary Street, led by a “charismatic and maybe unreliable guide.” “Writing a children’s book about my love for Halloween was an absolute blast,” says Bass. “This project became my little adventure—a joyous mix of discovery and thrilling fun. I hope this book brings as many smiles to your family as it did to mine. It’s a captivating journey that celebrates the magic of Halloween for kids and kids-at-heart alike!” Artwork for the book was created by French Illustrator Roland Garrigue. The book is on sale now at Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and other sellers.
AMC has released the final trailer for the highly anticipated “The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live”. The series premieres on February 25th on AMC and AMC+. In this series, Andrew Lincoln and Danai Gurira return to their iconic roles as Rick Grimes and Michonne. The six-episode series will center on events from the ninth season of “The Walking Dead.” AMC’s synopsis is as follows: “A changed world changes the love story of Rick Grimes and Michonne. Kept apart by distance. By an unstoppable power. Can they find each other and who they were in a situation unlike any they’ve ever known?”.
Gore Galore has released a new prop: Gnome w Gnives. This 3-foot tall figure is cast in a durable self-skinning foam with steel armature and steel base and sealed with a weather-resistant rubber coating. Learn more about Gore Galore and all their products on their official website and check them out at the upcoming TransWorld’s Halloween & Attractions Show at booth #735.
Just for Fun
A recent Cracked.com article featured 20 funny scareactor stories provided by Reddit commenters. From running into walls, code browns, and unexpected responses, this list will surely be relatable to many haunt staff members.