Season of Fear Creeps Near

Today is one of those days when fall and the haunt season feel so tantalizingly close it’s almost painful. By this time next week the Fear Finder may very well be in my greedy little hands! And that is, of course, a very important document for myself and the Haunt Trinity. As much as I try and get an early start on planning our trips, prior to the release of the seasonal newspaper there’s a lot of guesswork. The status of several old favorites and former mainstays remains in question and probably will until I crack open the pages of the Fear Finder.

FIVE HAUNTS IN LIMBO

One haunt shrouded in mystery that we are interested in is Extreme Scream, after moving to Waterford in 2010 the treasured haunt didn’t run last season and unfortunately I’ve yet to see anything that suggests it’ll return in 2012. I don’t know why Extreme Scream didn’t run last Halloween season, but it does cause me to wonder whether or not things went well at the new location in 2010. Formerly located on Telegraph in Taylor, my great hope is that Extreme Scream returns to its roots this year.

Another old favorite that seems to have vanished is The Lab. The operators apparently lost possession of the building after the 2009 season and did not run in 2010. I spoke with somebody involved with the haunt prior to the 2010 season and she said they (the operators) were “optimistic” that the haunted attraction would return in 2011, alas it did not. Just today I discovered that the website has also disappeared. Until further notice I have no choice but to consider The Lab lost to time.

An Ohio haunt that may have experienced a similar fate is Chainsaw Creek. This multi attraction event last ran in 2009 and from what I can tell from their Facebook page it seems as if they had planned to operate in 2010 but for reasons unknown, did not. The website for Chainsaw Creek had vowed to return with a permanent location in 2011. Chainsaw Creek had formerly been located in the immense parking lot of Toledo’s Franklin Park Mall — it’s certainly possible that the relationship between mall management and haunt management went sour but I’m not certain. What I do know is that Chainsaw Creek did not run in 2011 as the website had claimed it would. Currently a very similar message can be found on the Chainsaw Creek homepage in regard to the 2012 haunt season.

Last year we paid our first visit to Krazy Hilda’s and found the experience quite enjoyable. Krazy Hilda’s has called a few places home over the years but in recent years has settled into a location in Saline, Michigan. After our visit last fall I exchanged a few emails with the operator who revealed that the haunt was staffed entirely by volunteers, a fact that impressed me greatly — most volunteer efforts do not display the kind of professionalism that Hilda’s had to offer. Unfortunately, she also informed me that business had been slow and that closing up shop was a very real possibility. I emailed the operator a few weeks ago but have yet to hear back. I hope that this doesn’t spell doom for Krazy Hilda’s.

The final haunt in question is the fabled Demonic Demons. We experienced this haunt just once but it was a trip that will live on in our memories forever. Demonic Demons was housed in a building on Wyoming Street in Detroit and in 2010 Jason, Brad, and I experienced a haunted adventure here straight out of our childhood nightmares. Sadly, when we attempted a return  trip last year it was to find the building foreclosed or condemned or both. According to Zioptis this particular haunted house is infamous for having a spotty history. It seems to pop up one year and then disappear for several only to reappear once more. I am hopeful for a resurrection but as of now no new information is available.

THE OPEN (HAUNTED) ROAD

In 2011 we hit a record nine new locations and in 2012 we’ll look to break that number once more. While this year’s list is not yet complete a few routes have been plotted. Fellow haunt brethren I encourage you to peruse this list and leave me some feedback. With your suggestions and the impending release of the Fear Finder, it is my hope that any voids will soon be filled. Keep in mind that the order in which these outings are listed is not meant to be chronological and in no way does it reflect the date on which we will make the trip — those decisions will be made at the next phase of the process.

Night #1: Erwin’s Orchard (South Lyon) Slaughter House (Fowlerville), A Nightmare on Elm Road (Webberville)

Night #2: Darksyde Acres (Jonesville), Uncle Dickeys Wrong Turn (Hudson), The Haunting (Adrian)

Night #3: Westland Haunted Woods (Westland), Haunted Hallows (Westland), Westland Jaycees (Westland)

Night #4: Haunted Schoolhouse and Laboratory (Akron, OH), Bloodview (Broadview Heights, OH)

Night #5: Wyandotte Jaycees (Wyandotte), Realm of Haunted Minds (Romulus), Psycho Path (Flat Rock), Scream Machine (Taylor)

Night #5: Deadly Intentions (Warren), House of Fear (Hazel Park)

NIght #6: Exit 13 (Mt. Morris)

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9 Responses to “Season of Fear Creeps Near”

  1. Since the time of this post I have received confirmation that Chainsaw Creek is no longer running. I’ve also discovered that Chelsea Feargrounds will not operate this season nor will The Haunting in Adrian. It gives me no pleasure to break such news but those are the facts.

    • Wha wha wha??? Why is The Haunting not gonna be operating this year?

      • It sounds to me like the operators are simply burnt out for the time being or simply cannot dedicate the time to the haunt that such a project requires. The following is from the Haunting’s website, “Sorry we will not be open for the 2012 season. Who knows, perhaps in the coming years the Haunting will return. But for now it’s best to give it a rest.” This is an attraction that has run for 18 consecutive years, sounds like this may not be a one year hiatus.

  2. Any information on another of our favorite, disappearing attractions, The Nautical Nightmare?

    • I’ll admit that I’ve given up on the Nautical Nightmare in recent years but perhaps I’ll do a little poking around to see if anything new has surfaced.

      • I can tell you what happened to the Nautical Nightmare.
        After the last year it ran in River Rouge, Michigan the vessel began emitting hazardous chemicals and the EPA condemned it.

        How sad, we totally adored its wild mix of old and new.

        I just now stumbled upon your website, and must say you guys are doing a GREAT job!

        We can’t wait for the upcoming season, starting early this year with a Friday The 13th occurring in September.

        Tom Simpson

      • I truly appreciate the info, Tom. The disappearance of the Nautical Nightmare has been a mystery to myself and my haunt cohorts for several years now. I did however speak to some people involved with the restoration of the Ste. Claire and the group plans to reopen the boat as a haunted attraction in September 2014.

        I’m thrilled that the haunt season will come so early this year with September featuring a Friday the 13th — and of course I look forward to reading your reviews at Zioptis. I owe you a thanks as a matter of fact, Tom. It was your website that in part inspired me to record my own thoughts on haunted attractions — so thanks!

        Don’t be a stranger — feel free to post here often; I love a good dialogue on all things Halloween, horror, and haunted houses.

  3. Where is jonesville? Darksyde acres sounds sweet.

    • Jonesville is approximately an hour and a half west of Monroe in Hillsdale County, and Darksyde Acres is indeed schweet! That trip is a shoe-in, we will be returning there this year. Also gang, I found out today that Krazy Hilda’s will be back for 2012! They’ve relocated from Saline to Chelsea.

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