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Dr. Giggles
01-17-2009, 07:41 PM
Hey everybody im just wondering because im seriously considering open a semi/full year around haunted house. What are the pro's and con's that everybody knows/sees?

Allen H
01-17-2009, 08:26 PM
Your location would be your deciding factor, both for traffic and for overhead reasons.
I have worked for Both Terror on Church st and Skull kingdom when they were open. Do not bother opening in Jan or Feb as there is no Business. That was true for the Orlando FL, Market, there may be great winters near a ski resort or something.
However I would recommend not doing it, year round is hard. It is bad for your psyche. In my experience year round haunts breed surly, depressed actors. Its the environment, they soak up the darkness and noise and have to get on a "night shift" schedule.
What I did not like the most was the fact that what I loved became another day at work. In a seasonal haunt you can be excited and work for the season all year but it is still special when the season gets there, the guests are then the new random element that you look forward to.
I recommend working for a year round haunt somewhere for a season or two (I did for about 10 years) and seeing how they function. For me half the fun is the chaos and the problem solving that you MUST do at a seasonal haunt, thats where I shine. At a year round attraction it runs like a well oiled machine, people clock in and clock out.
Just my two cents,
Allen H

Dr. Giggles
01-17-2009, 08:48 PM
Wow Allen, you make VERY, VERY good points. I never looked at it like that as haunt acting is my passion...but your quiet right. I really appreciate the advice.
Thanks very, very much!
-Zackary J

Jim Warfield
01-17-2009, 09:36 PM
If I Wasn't Open year round, what would I have done tonight?
Six victims, er people ,showed up at 7:30, yes it's winter here in northwestern Illinois and it is slow this time of the year but when people do show up they get quite a SHOW!
Three couples out for a night, the one woman was taking her date to places in this area that he had never been to before and she was laughing the most !
The other two couples had been here before , some of them home on leave, everybody here tonight had fun! (Especially me!)
I present a show that suits ME! (Maybe it wears on me less this way?)
I'm not screaming in someone's face, no bloody gore found here, they get startled, they may scream, jump, then I hope they laugh, which they often do, which also resets their emotions for the next fright. (Keeps it fresh!)
I did give a more "Adult" front room routine and they were all enjoying the nuttiness of it, I had good practice deciding how to time my delivery for maximum effect and what tone and cadence of voice to use.(Keeps Jim involved and mentally stimulated as I am studying myself.)
Maybe for most customers my "Haunted House" is a large percentage "Comedy Club"?

If you are open in the summer be ready to cater to your most common customers the familys with kids. Sometimes little afraid kids.
We have someone cry out in the first room , we bring out the "Puppy", "Kitty", make all nice-nice to keep the ticket buyers happy. Make fun memories, people return.
A summer haunt location should be near other tourist destinations, we have camping near here and an incredible state park and the widest spot of the Miss. River and we are 3 hrs. due west of Chicago. Of course this location could be better, that is until you look at this houuse, a perfect structure, it's a haunted house!
Allan's perspective and advice is right on . My difference here is it's all my "Baby", I am a committee of ONE. If someone doesn't like something here, I did it, if they love it, I did it.