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Thread: Just signed my lease, any tips for a first year pro haunt?

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  1. Default  
    #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Near Charlotte NC
    Posts
    1,054
    Make sure your actors are hired well in advance and properly trained. they are the backbone of your haunt. All the permits, props, animatronics, and scenes won't matter if your actors are terrible or unmotivated...
     

  2. Default  
    #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Mesa, AZ
    Posts
    115
    Get those plans into the city! Ours came back 3 times the first year with them wanting or needing different things. Haunts are not something they encounter everyday and it is a learning process for all. Be prepared for anything they might throw at you.

    Best of luck to you!! It is the hardest, but definitely one of the most rewarding things I have ever done.
    http://darkscares.com/

     

  3. Default Newbie in FLorida TOO!! 
    #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Cape Coral, Florida
    Posts
    18
    What part of Florida??
    I'm down in the southwest and I'm planning a maze about the same size +/-4000 SF.

    I have partnered with a costume shop so I don't have to deal with biz license and the only only thing the
    Local Gov. says I need is, well really nothing as long as I have under 500 people at a time there are no inspections required.

    It sounds to good to be true but I can't find anyone to contridict this info.
    THere is a permit required and proof of insurance and a seperate permit if I put up a tent over 10' sq.

    LJ
     

  4. Default Florida? 
    #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Charlotte North Carolina, United States
    Posts
    349
    Hey guys it is my second year and I am just outside of Sarasota Florida if you guys want any help just Private Message me and I will help both of you as much as I can. I am also a General Contractor so if you have any building questions I usualy can help with those as well. We did just under 8K in attendance our first year.

    Good Luck
    Shawn
    http://www.twistedwoods.com
     

  5. Default Congratulations on your new haunt 
    #15
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Orange Park, Florida
    Posts
    72
    Hello,

    I just wanted to congratulate you on your new haunt. I had spoken with you last fall and you really seemed to enjoy building your home haunt. I am happy to hear you made the leap towards building a pro haunt. I look forward to seeing it.

    Good Luck,
    Robert Travis
    Scenic Art Productions
    ScenicArtProductions@Yahoo.COM
    http://www.facebook.com/scenicartproductions
     

  6. Default  
    #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    69
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom View Post
    Congrats on your contract.

    I know you mentioned "talking" to the fire marshal but you really need them to come out and "physically see" the place. Walk thru the building with them and express your ideas of what your plans are. What looks good on paper can sometimes be a total surprise in person (this goes for any inspectors). Get aquainted with them and show you're there for them. You inviting them out before even getting started will show them you are serious AND concerned of doing it right and to their specs. Then after the build, reinvite them to come visit. Believe me, it will make a difference. Inspectors are the best friends to have

    I owned a dark ride and had the "amusement inspectors" (Dept of Labor). If you do choose something in the amusement industry, keep all parties (inspectors) informed. For me, the amusement inspectors were easy to work with, if you get with them early, not just after you did something.

    For the most part, if you keep the inspectors/marshalls involved with everything "from the start", you will be surprised how much easier life can be.

    Good luck with your haunt.
    Thanks bud. It's definitely good advise to keep them in the loop.

    Quote Originally Posted by screamforadream View Post
    Claustrophobia doesn't count as an amusement, or at least not here, and we have some pretty strict rules in CT.

    But dont just do the squeeze walls, take the onadira way out and use half a claustrophobia wall and mount it on the top of your wall panels, your customers are more likely to react to that way of doing it because EVERYONE knows about the regular way...
    So you're saying a three way inflatable wall? As in both sides and ceiling? hmmmmm.....that sounds pretty cool. I'm going to have to talk to the guy that makes it to see if he'll sell me a third side. I bet he will. Seemed like a really nice guy when I talked to him last. I saw his stuff on ebay (think his name was maser).

    Quote Originally Posted by Badger View Post
    Make sure your actors are hired well in advance and properly trained. they are the backbone of your haunt. All the permits, props, animatronics, and scenes won't matter if your actors are terrible or unmotivated...
    Many of the actors worked at the local pro haunts last year so they definitely have experience (pro haunts as in Universal Studios / Busch Gardens).

    Quote Originally Posted by Dark Scares View Post
    Get those plans into the city! Ours came back 3 times the first year with them wanting or needing different things. Haunts are not something they encounter everyday and it is a learning process for all. Be prepared for anything they might throw at you.

    Best of luck to you!! It is the hardest, but definitely one of the most rewarding things I have ever done.
    You're talking about the drawings that are supposed to be to spec right? If so I'll get working on them sooner rather than later then. I need to get some equipment as I've never drawn a to spec sheet. I wonder if they have computer programs that are easy to use that I could use?
     

  7. Default  
    #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    69
    Quote Originally Posted by Laughing Jack View Post
    What part of Florida??
    I'm down in the southwest and I'm planning a maze about the same size +/-4000 SF.

    I have partnered with a costume shop so I don't have to deal with biz license and the only only thing the
    Local Gov. says I need is, well really nothing as long as I have under 500 people at a time there are no inspections required.

    It sounds to good to be true but I can't find anyone to contridict this info.
    THere is a permit required and proof of insurance and a seperate permit if I put up a tent over 10' sq.

    LJ
    If I told you I'd have to kill you... 8-)

    Quote Originally Posted by Bradenton Haunted Trail View Post
    Hey guys it is my second year and I am just outside of Sarasota Florida if you guys want any help just Private Message me and I will help both of you as much as I can. I am also a General Contractor so if you have any building questions I usualy can help with those as well. We did just under 8K in attendance our first year.

    Good Luck
    Shawn
    http://www.twistedwoods.com
    I saw your groupon last year. I never got to go but wanted to so bad. I'd love to get together with you and maybe do a local deal (I'm about an hour from you) where we can each promote the others business by handing out discount coupons to the others house.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scenic Art Productions View Post
    Hello,

    I just wanted to congratulate you on your new haunt. I had spoken with you last fall and you really seemed to enjoy building your home haunt. I am happy to hear you made the leap towards building a pro haunt. I look forward to seeing it.

    Good Luck,
    Robert Travis
    Scenic Art Productions
    ScenicArtProductions@Yahoo.COM
    http://www.facebook.com/scenicartproductions
    Thanks bud, I've been scaring people at my house for years. I thought it was time to throw my towel in the ring and see if I have what it takes
     

  8. Default  
    #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    613
    Quote Originally Posted by fearforyourlife View Post
    You're talking about the drawings that are supposed to be to spec right? If so I'll get working on them sooner rather than later then. I need to get some equipment as I've never drawn a to spec sheet. I wonder if they have computer programs that are easy to use that I could use?
    My brother-in-law owns one of the top Architectural firms in Boston, doing major commercial projects, and, believe it or not, they use Google Sketch-Up. It's easy, it's free, it's 3-D, and once they have the basic designs on a project, they can easily send it to clients for approval at various stages, without the clients themselves having to have any special, proprietory software.

    Quote Originally Posted by mrfoos View Post
    I wasn't aware there was a national price formula based on the square footage of the haunt.
    There isn't, but there is one for time spent. General rule of thumb: $1 for 1 Minute.

    Quote Originally Posted by fearforyourlife View Post
    I plan on working on making this extremely realistic and gory.
    How gory?

    Quote Originally Posted by fearforyourlife View Post
    I'm focusing on an older crowd.
    What age range?

    C.
     

  9. Default  
    #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    69
    Quote Originally Posted by BrotherMysterio View Post
    1. My brother-in-law owns one of the top Architectural firms in Boston, doing major commercial projects, and, believe it or not, they use Google Sketch-Up. It's easy, it's free, it's 3-D, and once they have the basic designs on a project, they can easily send it to clients for approval at various stages, without the clients themselves having to have any special, proprietory software.



    2. There isn't, but there is one for time spent. General rule of thumb: $1 for 1 Minute.



    3. How gory?



    4. What age range?

    C.
    1. That is awesome to know! I'll definitely try it out, Thank you!

    2. Makes sense.

    3. I don't know how to define it other than I'm trying to make things as realistic as possible. Lots of blood, lots of mutilation etc.

    4. I'm focusing on the 15+ age range. I'm more interested in the 18 and over crowd, but will allow older teenagers in, I will however warn on the website that younger kids should not be in the house without parental consent and if they do come in the parents have no one to blame but themselves if it is too gory. I'm tired of local haunts that tone things down for younger kids. It's about time that they older crowd that actually has money gets a chance to have something catered to them.
     

  10. Default  
    #20
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    330
    Quote Originally Posted by fearforyourlife View Post
    I'm focusing on the 15+ age range. I'm more interested in the 18 and over crowd, but will allow older teenagers in, I will however warn on the website that younger kids should not be in the house without parental consent and if they do come in the parents have no one to blame but themselves if it is too gory. I'm tired of local haunts that tone things down for younger kids. It's about time that they older crowd that actually has money gets a chance to have something catered to them.
    Your already discriminating against age?

    You need to have a mind set that every age has money. If it's kids or young teenagers, their parents will pay. Just post a sign at the ticket booth of the younger kids warning stuff and be done with it. Don't judge the age, just take their money. And as for toning it down for younger kids, I did that for 8 years and worked out great!!! But to each their own on that one.

    You might want to expand your horizon being a beginner pro haunter. You're going to need every dollar you make for it to be a successful first year.
    Tom
    Creator of the Dungeon
    WWW.BRICKTOWNAMUSEMENT.COM
     

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