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Thread: Monster Museum...

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  1. Default Monster Museum... 
    #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    540
    Ok guys. Long story short, we've gotten everything in line now. We're using our large building as a Monster Museum, which will lead to our haunt, which is going to be 4 x 986 sq ft carport buildings with walkways in between.

    Reason: It's going to cost too much to get sprinklers going this year. We just don't have the budget. SO! What I proposed is doing it this way. We're classifying the large building as an exhibit, or museum. It'll have low lighting, no mirrored walkways, no strobes and no mazes. We're allowed to scare in this building, but as long as it's not disorienting.

    We were talking about making this our que line. But the thing is, I just think that if we're going to do some really cool sets and monster exhibits, should we make this a que line? Or a walk through?

    I don't have any reservations of buying another small $1,000 carport to put a sheltered que line in and put it out front of it all. So, what would you guys think? Should we let the Museum BE the que line? or let them walk through as part of the attraction itself?

    I figure this question is simple enough, please, voice your opinion. The building is 6,500 sq ft, but only using about 3,500 of it as the exhibit.

    The Fire Marshal LOVES the idea, he said what a great way to think outside the box. He truly believes that we're not just trying to skip around the codes. We told him we're using the codes as a guideline to build within our means.
    The inspector is good with it all as long as we buy our carport permits and keep them 25' from property edges, and provide engineering drawing for the buildings.

    Thanks a bunch guys,

    Dewayne
     

  2. Default  
    #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    158
    Hell ya. Turn lemons into lemonade. You could even pretend this was all on purpose. As the queue line reaches the end of the monster "exhibit" why not some bright caution light with loud speaker saying "Attention please! [something something something]. For your safety we are evacuating the exhibit. Please gather your items and proceed out the safety exit as marked by our staff. This is not a drill." And enter the scare part from there.

    No reason your customers should feel like they got shafted by fire codes. Roll with it.

    Personally, I feel like most big budget prop haunted houses I visited are nothing more than an monster exhibit anyway. They just don't know it.
     

  3. Default  
    #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    613
    Quote Originally Posted by mrfoos View Post
    As the queue line reaches the end of the monster "exhibit" why not some bright caution light with loud speaker saying "Attention please! [something something something]. For your safety we are evacuating the exhibit. Please gather your items and proceed out the safety exit as marked by our staff. This is not a drill." And enter the scare part from there.
    Interesting idea, but I would strongly recommend against that.

    Reason being, that is precisely the type of message that would play (or should play) if there was an actual emergency. That would fall under the "disorientation" heading that the FM is rather not keen on.

    Also, if there was an actual emergency, having experienced that "fake emergency" at the beginning of the haunt, the patrons would think it was another "fake emergency" and all part of the show. At least until the fire dept. goes breaking thru wall panels with axes to evacuate the maze, being that no patrons would be making an orderly egress thru the exit doors.

    Btw, while on the topic, make sure the exit doors are well marked, lit up like Christmas trees, and that no idiot actors start treating them like boo corners - for the actor's sake as well as the patrons'. If the patrons panic and haul a$$ thru the exit doors (which is part of the reason they are there), then those panicked patrons will plow thru those doors and anything standing in the way (such as the above mentioned idiot actor) with the force of a rhino, in some cases ripping the door off the hinges to get out. No joke. That actually happens.

    Quote Originally Posted by Frightener View Post
    We were talking about making this our que line. But the thing is, I just think that if we're going to do some really cool sets and monster exhibits, should we make this a que line? Or a walk through?

    I don't have any reservations of buying another small $1,000 carport to put a sheltered que line in and put it out front of it all. So, what would you guys think? Should we let the Museum BE the que line? or let them walk through as part of the attraction itself?

    I figure this question is simple enough, please, voice your opinion. The building is 6,500 sq ft, but only using about 3,500 of it as the exhibit.

    The Fire Marshal LOVES the idea, he said what a great way to think outside the box. He truly believes that we're not just trying to skip around the codes. We told him we're using the codes as a guideline to build within our means.
    First, congratulations on this stroke of genius. This is what being a pro-haunter is all about. Good thinking.

    Now, as for the idea of the monster museum being a queue line or a walk-thru, well, it's essentially both. 4000 sq ft under the car ports is more than enough space to have a totally rockin' haunt with crap hitting the patrons from all directions, so you don't need to have the museum be "scary", but you do want it to be entertaining.

    Ergo, the monster museum would be both: it would be a queue line with the classic set of lot actors entertaining the people in the queue line (only indoors and not in the outside lot), and they wouldn't be scary but rather be interesting characters - a little weird, a little freaky, a little goofy maybe - letting the customers cleanse their entertainment palates and get ready for the chills, thrills, and fun to be had in the main part of the haunt. It also gives you tons of opportunities to do the rules in interesting and fun ways, vs. someone in a lame-a$$ costume at the front playing "hall monitor", repeating the rules for the umpteenth time, sounding like a droning, broken record, which usually generates more snickers and rolled eyes than rule compliance.

    Also, if you do a really good job of scaring/entertaining everyone in the main part of the haunt, then they can exit back thru the museum, so that everyone waiting in line can see the earlier patrons running out of the maze scared, screaming and laughing. That's free entertainment, builds anticipation, and helps quell buyer's remorse, as everyone in line will conclude that they are getting their money's worth.

    Btw, what are the dimensions of the actual car-ports? They're 986 sq ft, but what does that measure out to, length-wise and width-wise? I get either 29' x 34' or 17' x 58'.

    Something else that you can do beautifully here is have the control room in the main building, with all the power converters and whatnot set up in there, along with compressors, and so on, and then you simply run 12v power to the carport portion of the maze.

    You've got some serious possibilities here.

    In fact, another possibility here is to have the front half of the house be the monster museum, or the front 2/3rds of it be so, and then the remaining part be part of the haunt, tho I'm not sure what that would gain you if you can't do any high end scares at first. You could do some moderate scares, or have some nicely detailed sets and whatnot at first to create high production value, along with some nice pacing and anticipation.

    There is also another option here as well, but I will PM you with that.

    Incidentally, as you get closer to Haunt season and you find that your marketing efforts are going well, I wouldn't be adverse to also getting that front carport for the queue line spillover. If, however, you find that you may have inclement weather for the season, then the carport may not be a good idea.

    Sounds counter-intuitive, but if it's raining hard, people will be less likely to show up at all, even if everything is indoors, and you'll have a smaller turn out, which means that whatever customers you do get should be adequately handled by the inside queue line you are setting up. You don't want to blow $1000 on an additional carport that ends up remaining empty for the season. You might use it to expand for next year, but you'd be hard pressed during the season to repurpose it and make use of it , unless you could put a vendor under it bringing in additional revenue.

    C.
     

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