Friday, September 23, 2016

[HT2016] Haunt Tour 2016 Week 2 Preview!

Well, it's time to hit the road again once more after taking a weekend off. That happened for a variety of reasons, and while things aren't totally settled, I'm getting a little antsy and need to get back out there to hit a few places up. Haunts make the fox happy and that's what'll happen!

Anyway, this week, the official Week 2 of Haunt Tour 2016, finds me headed to a couple of haunts in Ohio. The first on the list is Bloodview Haunted House in Broadview Heights, just outside of Cleveland. Not only is the one of my favorite all time attractions, but they won the Best Overall Haunt award back in 2013. I can't wait to see what improvements and changes they've made since the past visit.

One big time winner would be enough for the weekend, right? Well, I thought so too until an opening appeared on the schedule and we decided to slide Wells Township Haunted House into the mix.

Last year was our first visit, and they impressed us so much that they too managed to snag the Best Overall Haunt category for 2015 tour. Craziness how that even became a thing, but it did and I'm so excited to be going back and seeing just what they've cooked up for this year.

So, while there might be a couple of other surprises that come along, those are the two haunts that I know will be hit and both of them are so good they've taken top honors before. This year we'll have hit all three of the best haunts that we've visited over the past years in the first two weekends! That's just not right on so many levels, but it's soooo good.

Additionally, I'm really looking forward to having our PR manager, and scare actor, Maddie with us during the Bloodview visit too! There could be a surprise guest making it for that one as well, but I'm not 100% if they'll be able to make it. If they can? Wow. In that same light, I'm not sure if anyone will be joining me for the Wells Township trip, but I'm hoping that another haunt industry professional and close friend will be able to.

In other news, I'm still working on getting the video reviews up from Week 1, and I hope those will be out soon, just taking a bit more time than I'd like but things are settling enough to where those should be finished up and ready go in the next couple of days. There's also been some changes to the list of haunts that we're going to be hitting this year, a few notable places falling off but some really kick ass ones getting added too. I'll have more on that soon!

And there ya have it, it's another crazy 450+ mile trip over two days in search of the insanity and there's a lot that I'm looking forward to capturing on this one, just what that is? Well, you'll have to stay tuned. Right now it's time to hit the road, just remember...

Sweet Screams and Pleasant Nightmares!

[Haunt Review] Field of Screams Serves Up Four Times the Insanity for 2016

Another of the Haunt Tour week one visits, and this one was during the Field of Screams hospitality and media night. What does that mean? Well, as far as the main show goes, not much was different, as it was a regular night of operation, and we just got a little extra pampering. That said, the quartet of attractions offered is definitely one of the most insane that we've had the pleasure to experience.

I don't just say that cause they fed us and gave us cold drinks on a night where it felt like our skin was melting off either, there's a ton of things going on here and so much that's so wrong, but so right that it would be insane to call it any other way. Sure, a couple of things didn't hit the mark fully, but overall? Really have a hard time not having fun here.
  • Date Visited: 9/10/16
  • Review Team: +Kitsune Hazard, +Filip Muncan 
  • Rating: Really Damn Good
  • Recommendation: Definitely worth the trip out there if you're within the Philly area, you won't be disappointed.
  • Likes: Den of Darkness and Frightmare are just amazing and totally in your face, love the actors and how insane it is to get through them.
  • Dislikes: Wish there was less dead space in Nocturnal Wasteland, so much potential that just seems to be wasted.
  • Pro-Tip: The later in the season you go, the more tempting those VIP passes will become, truly can be a life saver. Also, there's a lot of physicality here so be prepared to crawl, climb, and slink through all kinds of tight places!
  • Video Review: COMING SOON 
Disclaimer: We did make our visit this year during the Media and Hospitality night, which gave us some pretty cool perks and of course free entry. That, as always, did not influence any of the views or opinions that shape our reviews.

So, with all of that out of the way, let's get down to business.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

[Haunt Review] Pittsburgh's Hundred Acres Manor Doubles Down on New Scares for Their 13th Year of Fear

Okay, so it was opening night, and that means it's Hundred Acres Manor time around here. Sure, a few things were definitely a little hinky here and there but have to say that the two time best overall haunt award winner, Hundred Acres Manor, is already in serious contention for it once more. Featuring 6 themed areas, including the new additions of Hallows' Eve and The Breach, along with their two escape room experiences, they just keep adding to the insane legacy that has given this haunt such a reputation over the past 13 years.

Not only that, but they've changed up the entire way the outside of the haunt is lit via LUXE Lighting and the results? Completely astounding. The new queue line area and general atmosphere has been totally changed and it's hard to believe just how transformative it is until you see it in person.

What the creative team behind Hundred Acres Manor achieves every year is nothing short of amazing, and it's no wonder that they've been rated as one of the best by us (and many others) so consistently.
  • Date Visited: 9/9/16
  • Review Team: +Kitsune Hazard
  • Rating: Excellent
  • Recommendation: If you haven't been, go. If you have? Go again!
  • Likes: Totally in love with the Hallows' Eve addition for 2016, absolutely incredible.
  • Dislikes: The pacing seems a bit thrown off by The Breach, but it was better the second time through,
  • Pro-Tip: To avoid big crowds, go on a Sunday or week night, it's always a great show!
  • Video Review: COMING SOON 
Disclaimer: We were invited out by Hundred Acres Manor and were given tickets, as well as access to some areas that others may not get to see. This, as always, is just so that we can do what we do and give you the best coverage possible.

Alright then, let's get down into the details...

Thursday, September 8, 2016

[HT2016] Haunt Tour 2016 Week One Preview!

Haunt Tour 2016 kicks off in just 2 days with our first visit of the year, Bethel Park's Hundred Acres Manor! Holy crap is that a scary thought, hard to imagine it's already here. Anyway, after that, it's a mad 200 mile dash across Pennsylvania to see just what this year's Field of Screams has to offer on Saturday. I'm really looking forward to getting back on the road, things have been to quiet this year and getting to see Halloween rise up out of the ashes of summer is a truly magical experience.

Yet, no matter how much I wish it wasn't true, the start of the year is always a bit slow and filled with surprises since I just never know who's going to be open when. That and it is kind of nice to have a nice little warm up before things get insane and we're hitting up 5-8 haunts in a single weekend.

So, for now it's just those two events for the first leg of this year's tour, but I think that's enough as we haven't been to Field of Screams since 2014 now, and a lot has changed over at Hundred Acres Manor for this year as well.

For more on that, check out our week one preview video.

And there ya have it, a look at the nearly 500 miles that week one of Haunt Tour 2016 will span and just what the haunts we'll be visiting have in store for us. Stay tuned for all the news and live coverage of our experience coming later in the week!