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NateTheGreat
12-27-2009, 01:35 AM
So our first year at FearOverload was very successful in Sacramento, CA and we had the idea of next year keeping our lease on the building until the end of December to add a Christmas event. We were thinking we could have a Santa and have pics with him and possibly a Christmas House that would be similar to a haunted house except not scary but very cool and Christmas themed. We would have this entirely new "Christmas House" painted on the back of every Haunt panel of wood and would simply flip them. Has anyone tried something like this or a Christmas event? Any ideas? Success? Failure? Advice?

-Nathan

Darkblood
12-27-2009, 09:25 AM
I'm interested in hearing responses too!
I was going to ask about this!

Kirk

Rocky Mountain Terror
12-27-2009, 01:04 PM
I have a very similar idea!!! My idea also includes a small tree lot and a commercial Christmas light desplay. We have one in Denver that uses a lot of haunted house style special effects (lazers, projectors, etc) for the Christmas light event at Hudson Gardens. I went to it for the first time this year and it was AMAZING! I think there's a lot of potential in this idea. I'd love to hear what everyone has to say about it.

sophisticatedterror
12-28-2009, 12:05 PM
Well just look at what spookywoods does for christmas and 7 floors of hell....both have christmas events...both pretty good models of christmas events
I cant think of the url for 7 floors christmas event but here is spookywoods.

kerseyvalleychristmas.com

Darkblood
12-28-2009, 01:16 PM
I just found Rodney Geffert's (7 Floors of Hell) attraction.
Looks spectacular!

http://www.christmaswinterwonderland.com/

Kirk

NateTheGreat
12-28-2009, 02:27 PM
Wow nice find! That looks amazing. Does anyone know if it is profitable or needs lots of advertisement?

Jim Warfield
12-28-2009, 05:27 PM
Or anyway those archives between my ears..in the past most people that have tried a Christmas/Haunt things bemoan that it was alot of work and expense...but it didn't pay off so well.
Who is coming to see it?
Grandparents bringing little Grandchildren it seems like mostly. How much is the average person willing to pay for this experience? $3.00 a person?
There are these two drawbacks, not enough customers and everybody can't justify spending more than pocket change.
Now for my disclaimer:"I have never tried this myself, almost anything can work or be made to work with enough time and money spent towards it. Sometimes "Luck" and "Talent" come in together and success is greater than expected...sometimes..."
Just trying to help.

FablesStudios
12-31-2009, 11:18 AM
start small and see if people will come..

Peter T
FS

mikeq91
12-31-2009, 12:05 PM
We opened a christmas event for the first time this year and it went okay. We're on a farm, so we had a hayride around the farm with a light display set up, then a walk-through of Santa's workshop with photo's with Santa at the end. The farm we are on also sold christmas trees. I think the only thing that kept us from being successful was a lack of advertising, but for our first year we weren't terribly dissapointed.

From my experiences:
Plan, plan, plan, and do everything you possibly can before the Halloween season (especially if your using the same building as your haunt). There will not be much time between closing your doors for the haunted house and opening them for the Christmas event, and this time should be solely dedicated to converting halloween to christmas, not building christmas stuff or planning christmas room designs.

If you do a kids event in October, cross advertise. I know this is one of Tony W's main points at Spookywoods, since its essentially the same customer base.

A very simple concession stand worked for us, especially hot chocolate.

Prepare for bad weather. We were open Fri-Sun for 5 weekends, which I origionally thought was excessive, but with the rain and a blizzard the last weekend we only could open 2 days every weekend.

It may be a little late, but now is the time to load up on Christmas decorations with post-christmas sales. Online light suppliers generally have sales that go into the spring so check those out too.

In closing, I agree with Peter, start small. Christmas events are a whole other animal and its hard to really get a feel for how they are to be run, advertised, etc until you have a year under your belt. That being said, they are definitely a great oportunity that I think all haunts should look in to.

Hope that helps,
Mike