Aurora IL.- Basement of the Dead haunted house, just outside of Chicago, was named the #1 haunted house in the world that will freak you the F@#! out by Buzzfeed News. This year they added two new events to FREAK even more people out! Zombie and ‘Walking Dead’ fans, this is your opportunity to prove once and for all if you can survive the Zombie Apocalypse! Inside the Zombie Containment event you are armed with a replica M4 Assault Rifle to protect you and only a FLASHLIGHT to light the way.
The Basement of the Dead, which is known as one of the Scariest Haunted Houses in America, has collected hordes of flesh eating Zombies and you and your friends will have to battle your way out of the Containment Unit! That’s right, you will get a replica laser M4 Assault Rifle that can take out the undead scourge; but only if you shoot them in the head! BE CAREFUL… if the Zombies get too close to you, they send out a signal that will count as a “BITE” against you. This is the most incredible, EXTREME Zombie Laser Tag Experience in the WORLD! When it is all over, you will get a score of how many Zombies you killed and how many times you were “BIT” to see if you survived. If battling Zombies is not your thing how about curing them? ESCAPE Z-51 is a new and exciting escape game you can experience down at the Basement of the Dead Haunted House. You will have 5 mins to either cure the Zombie infected scientist or to stop the Virus from escaping out into the world!
Find more information at www.basementofthedead.com . At the time of the publishing of this story, tickets were still available.
A “Harry Potter” Themed laser tag event is a reality – Only for a short time right in Aurora Illinois!
Story By: Nola “Sissy” Winter
“Harry Potter” fans, there is no need to go to Florida or California for an EPIC wizard event! For one weekend only in Aurora Illinois, Aug. 25th and 26th , you can leave the muggle world behind and become the witch or wizard you knew you were meant to be. The Basement of the Dead, which is known as a world famous haunted house, is transforming into a magical dungeon and you and your friends will have to battle your way out! That’s right, you will get a LASER WAND that is capable of firing spells at dark wizards, giant spiders, werewolves, goblins and many other evil creatures; but only if you have the right flick of the wrist. Explore the ancient dungeon, battle your way out and then re-live the experience over an ice-cold butter beer! You can then challenge your friends to a WIZARD’S DUEL and see who has the fastest wand in the wizarding world! End this MAGICAL night by meeting a dragon and getting a picture with the fantastic beast. At the time of the publishing of this story there are still tickets available at www.wizardoutbreak.com .
IT HAS BEGUN – “Walkers” Zombies Sighted right in Aurora Illinois!
Story By: Nola “Sissy” Winter
‘Walking Dead’ fans, this is your opportunity to prove once and for all if you can survive the Zombie Apocalypse! For one weekend only in Aurora Illinois, August 11th and 12th you can find yourself in the middle of the Zombie Outbreak with only a replica M4 Assault Rifle to protect you. The Basement of the Dead, which is known as a world famous haunted house, will be over ran by Zombies and you and your friends will have to battle your way out! That’s right, you will get a replica laser M4 Assault Rifle with recoil action that can take out the undead horde; but only if you shoot them in the head! BE CAREFUL… if the Zombies get too close to you, they send out a signal that will count as a “BITE” against you. This is the most incredible, EXTREME Zombie Laser Tag Experience in the WORLD! When it is all over, you will get a score of how many Zombies you killed and how many times you were “BIT” to see if you survived. Find more information at www.zombieoutbreakchicago.com . At the time of the publishing of this story, limited tickets were still available.
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This article Hauntworld will rate the best and scariest haunted houses in America 2016.
This article Hauntworld will rate the best and scariest haunted houses, Halloween attractions, haunted hayrides, screampark, most extreme haunted houses, biggest and longest haunted attractions and even the SCARIEST horror movies to watch in 2016. Which haunts have the scariest actors, or features the most extreme screams in 2016. We rate them all! Every year we our main article is the top 13 scariest haunted houses in America but this year we are featuring the 31 scary haunted attractions for the year 2016.
Which haunted houses in operation today have the best and scariest crew of actors, monsters, zombies and creatures that make you SCREAM? Hauntworld unveils the best places to find the scariest actors in America, so be warned if you dare enter these attractions and prepare to see the most realistic make up, monsters, acting and scream machines on EARTH! What makes a haunted house great is their staff. It’s the actors who make unbelievable believable. The actors are the ones who make their victims’ skin crawl. They can make you run for your life, begging for mercy. They are the ones who make a haunted house the legend they have become! Some actors are so extreme and over-the-top, they have the ability to instill such fear that results are blood curdling screams, panic attacks, and even wetting of the pants! If you are brave enough, we dare you to entertain the idea of attending every haunted house on this list. But if you do, prepare to donate your soul at the door, because these actors will certainly rip it from your body! The scariest haunted houses with the scariest actors in America…here is our list:
1. The 13th Gate – Baton Rouge Louisiana – www.13thgate.com: 13th Gate features some of the best makeup artists in America, plus icon characters, custom molded masks, and theatrical costumes. What makes them most unique is all the different style actors, because they have to fill 13 different themes within the attraction.
2.Bennett’s Curse – Baltimore, Maryland – www.bennettscurse.com: Bennett’s Curse has custom silicon masks and costumes made for these extreme scream monsters. Bennett’s Curse monsters mostly fit the gothic themes of the overall event and they pull it off in scream fashion.
3. Erebus – Pontiac, Michigan – www.hauntedpontiac.com: Erebus has a limitless haunt where the actors and animations are allowed to touch their customers for the ultimate “hands on” approach to scaring, and this takes unique training on the part of the actor management staff. Their victims LOVE this extreme approach to haunting!
4. Netherworld – Atlanta, Georgia – www.fearworld.com: Netherworld has the wildest actors in the industry with an over-the-top make up department, custom icon characters, sliders, actors running the parking lot, and 100’s more actors inside all to make you scream! Netherworld has the best actors in America.
5. Basement of the Dead – Aurora, Illinois – www.basementofthedead.com: Basement of the Dead Haunted House proves why everyone has a FEAR of going down into old basements! From scary clowns to realistic zombies Basement of the dead will make you scream.
6. 13th Floor Haunted House – Denver, Colorado – www.getscared.com: 13th Floor Haunted Houses are rapidly becoming a fan favorite across the nation, however they feature some of the best costumes, which create amazing monsters who scare Denver to death.
7. Headless Horseman’s Hayrides and Haunted Houses – Ulster Park, New York – www.headlesshorseman.com: Located outside New York City, Headless Horseman features the best costumes in America with their own year round costume department of make up FX artists who create unique costumes for the attraction year after year. Their best and most notorious haunt actor is of course the headless horseman who rides up and down the hayride haunting the town of Sleepy Hollow.
8. The Dent Schoolhouse – Cincinnati, Ohio – www.frightsite.com: When you visit the Dent Schoolhouse prepare to come across some amazing actors who all play the rolls of evil janitor, principal, teachers, coaches, cheerleaders and dead students. Every bad nightmare you still have of high school you must relive at Dent SchoolHouse.
9. The Darkness – St. Louis, Missouri – www.scarefest.com: The Darkness is celebrating its 20th Year of Fear and some actors, like Scary Gary, have been there haunting all 20 years long! In order for any haunted house to be successful for 20 years, their actors play a huge role. The haunt now features year around actor training that includes hands on costuming training too. The Darkness staff believes awesome costumes lend great assistance toward achieving the ultimate screams out of its victims.
10. Hex House – Tulsa, Oklahoma – www.tulsahexhouse.com: If you watch any of the youtube videos of Hex House you’ll clearly understand how realistic their actors make customers scream!
Basement Of The Dead
42 W New York Street
Aurora, IL 60506
Reviewed By: The Walking Ned
Visibility / Location:Basement of The Dead is just past the casinos in Aurora. There was also a giant tent set up for people to wait in line, I am not sure if it was just up the day I went for the rain, or if it stays up for the season.
Wait Entertainment: They had not one, but two chainsaw people chasing people around, as well as a creature on stilts that could sneak up behind you and take your hat.
Admission:$23.99 on October 1st. Increases to $29.99 later in the season.
Parking: There is limited free street parking available. There is a fee if you park in the nearby parking garage.
Basement of the Dead: 15 Minutes
Shattered: 10 Minutes
LPR: LPR Score = 1.923
LPR stands for Length/Price Ratio. It represents perceived value of an event, by comparing length vs price of admission. Higher numbers represent more value per dollar. Actual quality and/or entertainment value of an event are not factors in this calculation. Click Here to see how this event compares to others visited this year by the staff of HauntedIllinois.com.
Scare Factor:Very High
Crowd Control: Smooth. We never ran in to anyone in the house.
This house is one of the loudest and darkest houses in the area, when you first get in, you start down a staircase in to a true basement of the building. Instead of having vinyl walls on the side, they have it on the ceiling, which makes getting to the basement that much more difficult.
Once you are down there, another set of vinyl walls greets you. Once you get through that, you then go in to a round, hall of mirrors room that ends up being confusing, as you are not sure where the exit of the room is located.
That leads in to a hospital/morgue, which is one of the creepiest settings I have seen. Very dark, very uncomfortable, and very scary. Most of the rest of the rooms are set up like a factory/warehouse maze, set up to be dark and have both people and animatronic creatures pop out at you with loud noises and blinding lights. There are many twists and turns, and shocks throughout. They had a path that had giant animatronic spiders pop out at you that made everyone in our group jump
The best part of all of this is that, although the rooms are really well done and the animatronics are amazing, they keep it simple with the scares: you go in to a dark area, and something loud with blinding lights jumps out at you. You know it is coming, but it still scares you.
There is a great dark maze, which leads in to a church setting, which then leads in to another dark maze that has some great pop outs. I am not sure how the actors spend all that time in the dark, ready to jump and scare you.
The second house, Shattered, is a 3-D house with a twist. Normally, you have the 3-D glasses on with blacklights on as overhead lights for the house. Here, the house is pitch black, and you carry a blacklight flashlight. Also, as a warning, the whole house is just clowns. They are very good at staying still, you do not know which ones are real or statues, until it is too late. And they will follow you quietly throughout the house and scare you when you are distracted by something else.
I am keeping large parts of this vague, because there are surprises throughout both houses that really need no description. This was one of the scariest haunts I have been at in several years, and should be the top haunt in Illinois at the end of the season. If you like being scared, you need to visit this house.
The fastest growing industry in America is the Halloween industry. We’ve seen it grow over the last ten years from a 1-billion dollar industry to a near 15-billion dollar industry. Halloween has grown to levels no one ever expected. Today, we see millions of home owners decorating their houses, turning their garages into haunted houses, changing their backyards into cemeteries and inviting people from around the neighborhood into their own personal HAUNTED HOUSE! Today tens of thousands of home owners buy zombies, monsters, tombstones, and crypts and even use specialized lighting to display and showcase their masterpiece. Many even create CGI FX in their windows. The days of Halloween being a kid’s holiday all about trick-or-treating are OVER! Even moms are getting into the act buying Halloween themed decorations to make the interior of the house Halloween themed as well.
Halloween is not an official holiday. They don’t call off school and work for Halloween. You don’t have to buy anyone a gift or cook a turkey or take your spouse to dinner with cards & chocolates. Halloween is a holiday that millions upon millions of Americans CHOOSE to celebrate and everyone celebrates in different ways. Some take their kids to pumpkin patches and Fall Festivals. Many enjoy decorating their house and yard. Others become obsessed with the haunting of the holiday. Some even build their own haunted house experience right in their own home. And millions visit America’s best and scariest haunted houses to celebrate the holiday! In fact, haunted houses and Halloween attractions now make up more than 1 billion dollars of the ever growing Halloween industry. Every year in March, haunted house owners and operators across America converge in St Louis, Missouri for the National Halloween and Haunted Attractions tradeshow produced by Transworld Exhibits, where these haunt owners can view and purchase new products, monsters, animations, special FX, and more. Watch Hauntworld Video of the Show here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5XGBQzsNYCo
Haunted Houses are going over-the-top bigger, better, and scarier than ever. In fact, haunted houses no longer just compete with other local haunts in their area, but haunted houses across the country. Visiting, attending and traveling to haunted houses is now an America phenomenon as people are using sites like www.hauntworld.com to find the best haunted attractions in the World to travel to attend. America has spoken, and they want HAUNTED HOUSES in the Fall not horror movies and not videos games. They want live, in-your-face scares combined with high tech scares for the utmost in lifelike scares. They want what a roller coaster can’t deliver no matter how high or fast they’re built. It really is strange how big the haunted house industry has become because only a few short years ago the Halloween retail industry wanted the haunt industry removed from their show now they want them back… too late!
We are now also seeing film makers creating horror movies inspired by haunted houses, or film makers utilizing haunts in the off season as film sets for horror movies. Films such as Zombieland rented haunted houses to utilize their unreal sets to film their movies. SYFY Channel recently rented out 13th Gate to film an entire movie. It wasn’t that long ago that horror movies where the staple thing to do during the weeks of October but now the biggest horror films open during other parts of the year. We live in a day and age where content for a digital World is sought and the haunt industry provide the richest forms of drama, colorful characters, and exciting backgrounds for reality television to tv specials. Lastly we are seeing the haunt industry splinter off into all different types of attractions from EXTREME to ESCAPE puzzle solving attractions to Zombie Hunts.. The bottom line is no matter what someone dreams up the concept of scream based attractions are here to stay and who knows where it leads us to next. This is what haunted houses do this is our passion and we present to you a list of can’t miss haunts. The Haunted House industry has been made BEING SCARED a MULTI BILLION DOLLAR INDUSTRY from escape games, haunted houses, corn mazes, hayrides, zombie runs, escape rooms, to even horror based TV shows to fill the void left when haunts close their doors at the stroke of midnight each October 31st.
Now that Halloween 2016 is here it’s time to find the best, the scariest, and the biggest over the top haunted houses and Halloween attractions in America. Prepare yourself for the biggest screaming season in Haunted history.
Haunted House owners and operators have created attractions that are so detailed they remove you from the realm of reality and plunge you into a haunted World you never knew you could experience. So finally, we present you some of the best traditional haunted houses, real haunted houses, haunted hayrides, corn mazes and more. If it’s an attraction opening during the Halloween season, you’ll find it here on www.hauntworld.com. Now sit back for the best 31 haunted houses in America for 2016.
Hauntworld.com was the first website and publication to produce a Top 10, Top 13 or Top 31 haunted house list to help America find attractions. Now many websites and publications produce such lists, but there is only ONE website that helps you find every haunted attraction in the nation…www.hauntworld.com. We invite you to find a haunted house near you and subscribe to our printed Haunted House Magazinewww.HauntedHouseMagazine.com, plus join our Facebook Page or join our Haunted House Forums at forum.hauntworld.com/. Have the scariest Halloween ever with the help from your friends at www.hauntworld.com
1. House of Torment – Austin, Texas – www.houseoftorment.com: This Halloween Season, House of Torment haunted house moves to a new, larger, permanent home doubling in size to span 40,000 square feet. Famed for its over the top production value and creativity House of Torment is proud to consistently be recognized by local, regional, and national media outlets as well as industry associations and trade publications as one of America’s best haunted houses.
This 2016 haunting season, wake up to the Dawn of Evil, a catastrophic virus outbreak is destroying the lives of central Texas residents. The city has become a chaotic disaster area run amok with voracious, maniacal zombies. And then, the most demented nightmares of the human psyche become reality when you enter what can only be described as a visceral manifestation of humanity’s most crippling fears, the walls of The Frenzy will bring to your knees. Up on Ridgepoint Drive just east of town, many souls have perished within the dark walls of Graveside Manor, but no one truly knows what lies beneath.
2. Netherworld – Atlanta, Georgia – www.fearworld.com: NETHERWORLD Haunted House is a self-guided, dark attraction known for its over-the-top special effects, intense make-up, elaborate costuming, skilled stunt actors, unique monsters, unusual themes and chilling detail! To put it simply NETHERWORLD is the total package – an extremely high quality immersive event that merges SCARY, FUN and COOL into a safe environment. More importantly after 20 years in the business NETHERWORLD is still ever changing – coming up with new effects, scares, characters and story lines every season, while still retaining the Halloween feel that brings back guests year after year. World famous, massively attended, and highly respected NETHERWORLD is without a doubt one of the most successful haunted attractions of all time!
This Year Featuring: The Flying Angel! The Lair of The Sea Witch! The Feasting Vampires! The Goloth Invasion! The Attacking Harpy! The Transformation Chamber! The Cavern of The Werewolves! The Blood Beast of the Arena! The Boogeyman’s Return! The Chapel Of The Gargoyles! The Cyclopean Soul Eater and The Doom Stone Unearthed! Experience an incredible avalanche of never ending horrors sure to shock during NETHERWORLD’S 20th year celebration!
This year featuring: The Xenomorphic Terror! The Collapsing Missile! The Blast Off Inferno! The Bride of Proteus! The Melting Core! The Radioactive Roach Infestation! The Mega Slammer! The One Million Volt Tesla Coil! The Spinning Kill Floor! Machine Gun Zombies! Crazed Automatons and the return of the Toxic Foam Room! Total Terror and SCI-FI Thrills Reign during NETHERWORLD Haunted House’s 20 Year Celebration!
3. The 13th Gate – Baton Rouge Louisiana – www.13thgate.com: Blurring the lines between reality and horror, this massive haunted attraction frequently has its guests wondering between screams whether what they are experiencing is real or not. The Attraction’s level of detail, set design, and special effects combined with their impressive actors and incredible makeup effects can only be compared to a Hollywood movie. The attraction features a real snake-infested Louisiana Swamp, claustrophobic cellars, hidden subterranean passages and even a prehistoric ice cave all seamlessly woven together into one of the scariest Haunted Attractions imaginable. If this wasn’t enough, adjacent to the 13th Gate is their secondary attraction, Necropolis Haunted Cemetery. This huge outdoor New Orleans Style cemetery has underground catacombs, nightly voodoo shows and over 400 dark zombie-infested crypts that guests must explore to reach the exit.
New for 2016, guests must wade through a dark flooded sewer littered with the bodies of Jack the Ripper and later make it to the end of a long dark train tunnel before one of two ghost trains make an appearance.
The 13th Gate is one of the Scariest, Most Elaborate Haunted Attractions in the Country! www.13thGate.com
Also located next door is 13th Gate Escape, Louisiana’s Ultimate Escape games. Featuring some of the most detailed escape games in the country, 13th Gate Escape is open year round, 7 days a week. www.13thGateEscape.com
4. The Darkness – St. Louis, Missouri – www.scarefest.com: The Darkness is one of the biggest haunted houses in America spanning nearly 60,000 SCREAM FEET! The Darkness in 2016 has doubled its size by adding a zombie themed haunted house called Silo-X and 3 High Tech Escape Rooms. The Darkness also features Zombie Laser Tag where guests hunt, shoot and kill REAL zombies! The Darkness also features an outdoor scare zone, monster museum, and Terror Visions 3D where crazed clowns are looking for blood. The Darkness itself spans over two floors and features some of the most amazing detailed sets in the World. The Darkness also features over 200 animated special fx, moving floors, falling walls, and monsters around every single corner. The Darkness has been hailed by many in the haunted house industry as the best haunted house in America. The Darkness has been filmed and featured more times on national television than any other haunted house in America because of its amazing realistic Hollywood style sets and fx. The Darkness is located in downtown St Louis and features sister attractions in town called Creepyworld and The Abyss which is under an old brewery.
5. Headless Horseman’s Hayrides and Haunted Houses – Ulster Park, New York – www.headlesshorseman.com: Headless Horseman Hayrides & Haunted Houses, named #1 in America, gallops into its 24th season. Headless Horseman Hayrides and Haunted Houses is a unique, immersive experience with a theatrical theme that changes each Halloween season. This year featuring: The Horseman’s Spawn, a theatrical one-mile hayride, Dark Harvest corn maze, in addition to 7 haunted attractions which include: The Lunar Motel, Glutton’s Diner & Slaughterhouse, The Horseman’s Tomb, Night Shade Nursery & Greenhouse, Dr. Dark’s Black Spider Circus Sideshow, The Feeding presents “The Pain Killer”, Two Raven’s Manor, and illusionist Ryan Dutcher Stage Show.
Headless Horseman continually evolves with unusual monsters, amazing illusions, stunning special fx, unique and original costumes, makeup, animations and frightening detail. Only the courageous will survive the intense encounters with the infamous Headless Horseman. In addition, the creators of Headless Horseman Hayrides and Haunted Houses are proud to present a new concept of interactive, immersive entertainment. A real life escape experience “The Great Room Escape” featuring Houdini’s Work Shop and Poison Plum Lab. A first for the Historic Hudson Valley.
The attraction also includes line actors, four themed gift shops: Magic Moon Gift Shop, Scare Ware, Fear Gear, and Phantom Photo, and five food options: Evil Eatery, Witch Hazels, Croaked Crow, The Coffee Cauldron, and Deadly Donuts. We employ over 350 actors and staff trained to provide a memorable and enjoyable evening for the whole family.
6. Erebus – Pontiac, Michigan – www.hauntedpontiac.com: The theme is time travel Erebus is the result of Dr. Colber who worked for the government to build a time machine. After leaving the government, he worked on the time machine on his own. Successful at sending people back into time, with the only one glitch the time period looked at the people like a virus and wiped them out. Determined to over come this glitch he sent in group after group of his own personnel. Unsuccessful, he ended up broke and lacking the proper personnel to run his machine. Dr. Colber came up with a brilliant idea to disguise his time machine as a haunted house and have the general public help fund his project and use the people going through as human guinea pigs. Michigan is the haunted attraction capital of the world with more then 70 haunts in a 50 mile radius yet Erebus prides itself as one of the most unique haunts in the country by designing and building almost all of our own props in house. You will see things here that were born from the imaginations of a couple guys that have been thinking about scaring people for over 37 years!
7. The Bates Motel – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – www.thebatesmotel.com: The Bates Motel and Haunted Hayride is celebrating their 27th season of screams and fun. Always on the cutting edge, this year’s show has more monsters and pyrotechnics than ever. The Bates Motel is unique in that we build our own sets, props, costumes and makeup in house, so you will only see them here. With incredible attention to detail, stellar acting and unique special effects, The Bates Motel is heads above the competition. Bates Motel also includes a massive Christmas lights display, bonfires, escape rooms, pumpkin patches and much more.
8. Bennett’s Curse – Baltimore, Maryland – www.bennettscurse.com: The legendary Bennett’s Curse Haunted Attraction, in the shadows of M&T Bank Stadium Baltimore, MD is an assault to the senses. Over 40,000 scare feet awaits thrill seekers looking for the very best in Haunting entertainment! Known for its incredible array of giant monsters, skillfully themed shows, and an over the top team of movie quality costumed characters, Bennett’s Curse has reached a level only a handful of haunts nationwide can claim. This year, experience even more fear, with the addition of the all-new bonus show Coulrophobia and expanded asylum themed Ravenbrook Asylum Plus three other amazing shows at one location under one roof, come experience the best Haunted attraction in the Mid-Atlantic and one of the best in the world! Bennetts’s Curse is one of the best haunted houses in America because of the unique characters, giant animations, and over the top monsters who roam, lurking and seeking souls!
9. The Dent Schoolhouse – Cincinnati, Ohio – www.frightsite.com: The Dent Schoolhouse is one of the tightest themed haunted houses in the nation. Taking place in an actual haunted schoolhouse from the 1800’s, the schoolhouse follows the legend of its murderous janitor. Detailed to the max, each scene is right out the 1950’s and looks just like a horror movie. The Dent Schoolhouse is full of state of the art animatronics that make each scene better than the next! The attraction’s theme also is taking place during a vintage Halloween. Carved out human faces, 120 + carved light pumpkins, and an old trick-or-treat stage show greets guests before they get into the attraction.
10. Haunted Overload – Lee, New Hampshire – www.hauntedoverload.com: Haunted Overload is a haunt like no other. Described as The Ultimate Halloween Experience, it blends spectacular handmade sets and oversize creatures with lush sound, lighting and award-winning costumes for a terrifying experience that is utterly unique. Haunted Overload can be found every year on various best haunts lists both nationally and internationally, and in 2014 won the grand prize on America’s Great Halloween Fright Fight on ABC. in 2015 it was listed as Hauntworld’s #1 haunt. Set in an eerie forest in New England, it brings to life the true feel of vintage Halloween terror. Every Halloween the dedicated Haunted Overload crew creates entirely new twists to its trails, and takes each added scene to unimagined heights. Last year the Victorian-themed Abaddon Hall stunned patrons with its detail. In 2016, its incredibly over-the-top Sinister Circus will give horrifying new meaning to the term “Big Top”. Haunted Overload is partnered with the Cocheco Valley Humane Society and gives a percentage of its proceeds to help local animals. It’s located at DeMeritt Hill Farm, a traditional stop for apple picking, blueberries, pumpkins and home-made goodies from the farm store. The farm also offers seasonal holiday hayrides and classes.
11. Hundred Acres Manor – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania – www.hundredacresmanor.com: Hundred Acres Manor Haunted Attraction in Pittsburgh, PA has been featured on the Travel Channel, LA Times, forbes.com, USA Today, Good Morning America and dozens of other national and local news outlets for over 13 years! Hundred Acres Manor features 6 attractions spanning almost 1 mile long leaving patrons begging for a way out for over 45 minutes. Hundred Acres Manor features state-of-the-art technology and special effects throughout all 6 attractions including a dropping elevator simulator and rooms that rock, as if you are in a bayou in Louisiana. Hundred Acres Manor in 2015 also sent its design and built team over to Dubai in the United Arab of Emirates to build the first haunted house in the world famous Dubai Mall. Hundred Acres Manor is a 501c3 non-profit that has donated over $1.5 million to two Pittsburgh charities, The Homeless Children’s Education Fund and Animal Friends. Hundred Acres Manor also features two multi-room horror escape rooms, The Meltdown and Alchemy.
12. 13th Floor Haunted House – Denver, Colorado – www.getscared.com: 13th Floor Haunted Houses are rapidly becoming a fan favorite across the nation, with locations in Denver, San Antonio, Phoenix, and Chicago. The attention to details of production, makeup, and costumes are really what sets this amazing haunted house apart. It’s an incredibly immersive experience that is continuously improving and keeps fear seekers coming back year after year!
This 2016 haunt season at 13th Floor Denver, creep through Slasher: Remix and experience the heart pounding thrills of a classic slasher film. Run for your life in Undead: Abominations, fleeing from the creatures that dwell beneath the earth. Cursed: The Ritual takes you back to before last year’s “Feral Moon” awoke these ravenous creatures, when the living and the undead were revived by the act of necromancy of a local “bokor,” a sorcerer or witch. This voodoo themed attraction rounds out the perfect trifecta of Halloween entertainment!
13. Basement of the Dead – Aurora, Illinois – www.basementofthedead.com: Basement of the Dead Haunted House proves why everyone has a FEAR of going down into old basements! A top attraction in both Illinois and America, this haunted house is located deep in the Basement of a hundred year old building in downtown Aurora, Illinois – just thirty short miles outside Chicago. Fire dancers, stilt walkers, and grotesque characters roam outside the Basement while a live DJ creates a sinister Halloween atmosphere. But immediately upon entering and walking down the steps of the building, it is clear this place would be frightening even if there was not a haunted attraction inside. The decrepit brick walls, old pipes, eerie creaks, along with its cinematic makeup, costumes, and sets make Basement of the Dead a truly terrifying experience. Come down to discover the true stories of the deadly boiler room explosion, mysterious mass murders, occult sacrifices, and demonic hauntings that makes the Basement legendary. The Basement of the Dead also features Shattered 3D, another world class haunted attraction. This circus themed house will keep you screaming with devilish delight. Shattered 3D 2016 features a unique twist, but what would be the fun in telling? Shattered and his clowns dare you to see for yourself!
Halloween doesn’t end there… now here is our list of the next best haunts thru 31 for 31 nights in October. Did a haunted house in your city make our list? PLEASE SHARE THIS PAGE!
In the ’60s, a boiler in a suburban Illinois laundry company exploded, burning two maintenance workers. They went missing, and a year later, other employees began to disappear, their bodies found in the river nearby. The building closed and was never used again…until now. Good luck.
2. Labyrinth of Fear — Fujiyoshida, Yamanashi, Japan
Okay, this place is fucked up: There used to be a hospital at the foot of Mt. Fuji, but business went south when staff started stealing patients’ organs — and this building is *that* hospital. There are even pitfalls and traps to make the whole experience even freakier, which designers have dubbed “horror harassment.”
This 100-year-old factory is a paranormal hotspot and horrifying haunted house attraction. Literally every fear you could ever have comes to life here, and here’s the worst part: You can’t shake that dreadful feeling that real, horrific events happened here.
This place is pretty controversial, because it describes itself as “an audience participation event in which you live your own horror movie.” They even warn you not to wear expensive clothes or bring anything that can’t get ruined.
Holy shit — this place is a mix between a haunted house and an escape game. You’re handed a weak flashlight, travel with a small group to try to escape this absolutely horrifying indoor maze, and be prepared: You WILL scream.
The Ghoullog does a complete redesign every single year, which is an insanely creative way to have people come back. Oh, and if being grabbed is not your thing, stay back: You have to sign a waiver saying it’s okay for cast members to touch you.
Whichever of the two haunted houses you choose, you’ll be surrounded by plague-stricken, undead spirits who are trying to drag you into their underworld of painful suffering. Take a deep breath, it’s about to get rough.
They’re allowed to touch you, and if you pay extra money, you get the ~blood experience~, which involves getting covered in fake blood. Palmerton describes itself as “hardcore,” and not for the faint of heart.
9. Fright Nights at Walibi Holland — Biddinghuizen, Netherlands
There are a few different haunted houses to choose from, but the spookiest might be the Hollywood Mansion, where they re-enact horror movies. You’ll see horrifying villains like the Saw doll on his bike, and demons in pig masks running around. HAHA, NOPE.
From the moment you walk in, this place makes sure to scare the shit out of you. Each year they have an intricate storyline, and the best part is, the haunted house gets even more horrifying as you go deeper and deeper into the haunt.
The Haunted Plantation insists this is more than a haunted house — it’s an entire haunted village. It’s so brilliantly terrifying that it’s been featured on the Syfy network as well as the Travel Channel.
The Woods of Terror claims that the actual bodies of people who perished in the 1940s still lurk in the forest, now known as a “purgatory for spirits.” Now, some seriously pissed-off ghosts haunt the land.
—Katie Martin, Facebook
14. PennHurst Asylum — Spring City, Pennsylvania
Most of the artifacts in this hospital-themed haunted asylum are from the original administration building, dating back to the early 1900s. C’mon, that’s just terrifying.
The McCall family owned this farm for years, until the city built a highway through it and the family disappeared. Rumor has it that Mr. McCall slaughtered his wife and kids, which makes walking around this place at night extra comforting, no?
Set in historic Carver Mansion, there are two areas to explore: first, the upstairs and main floor of the mansion, and then the pitch-black basement that supposedly holds a door to underground caverns. Seems safe.
A Navy vessel called the USS Hornet was sent to the Bermuda Triangle on a confidential mission in the ’70s, and after it returned, some creepy shit began happening aboard. Set on the actual Hornet itself, this bloody haunted house gets inside your head.
—Barbara Barron and Kellee Butler, Facebook
18. Nightmares Fear Factory — Niagara Falls, Ontario
You’ve seen the endless hilarious photos of people getting horrified at Nightmares Fear Factory, but possibly the scariest thing about this place is that what happens inside is such a huge secret that you just have to see it for yourself.
—Mallory Amanda, Facebook
19. Brighton Asylum — Passaic, New Jersey
righton used to hold violent patients in the 1940s, which is scary in and of itself, but supposedly there are events that happened here that “are still waiting to be fully uncovered.” WHAT THE HELL DOES THAT MEAN?!
Only adults are allowed at this beyond haunted attraction that has insane amounts of gore — and some of the gore is real. They advise on their website that it may not be suitable for “immature audiences OR mature audiences.” Have fun.
It was a funeral home back in the day, and now serves as a haunted house during the fall. Its tales of horror started in 2007 with the stories of a mortician who learned how to become immortal, and every year The Mortuary adds a new, terrifying chapter to its rumored history.
Hands down one of the most haunted places in the whole of Ireland, what makes Loftus Hall’s Halloween and year-round lockdown events so horrifying is the fact that it’s an actual ghost ground with spirits looking for revenge. NO THANKS!
—Jessica Coffey, Facebook
23. And Eastern State Penitentiary — Philadelphia
This haunted house will make you nope the fuck out, because the boundaries here are few, if any: You can be grabbed by the actors, separated from your group, and even sent into secret passageways, ALL BY YOURSELF. FUCK, NO. BYE!
For more than a decade, they’ve been bringing scares to the suburbs.
But four years ago, the Seneker family — brothers Jason and Craig, along with sibling David and his wife, Sara — decided to branch out, opening the Basement of the Dead haunted attraction in nearby Aurora.
Now, it’s ranked as one of the top haunts in the country, and was voted the best local attraction by Haunted House Chicago in 2012.
Born and raised in Joliet, the Seneker brothers have been known for scaring up Halloween fun since they were teenagers, Craig said.
“When we got too old to trick-or-treat, we started just decorating our parents’ house,” he said.
“We had this prop scarecrow that sat in the front yard all season long,” Craig said. “Jason would take all the stuffing out and he’d put the costume on. When kids came up for candy, he jumped out.”
The front-yard Halloween display quickly took on a life of its own, drawing fans from around Joliet.
“Every year, we did more and more,” Craig said. The family created an intricate display of otherworldly characters, adding live actors to the mix for extra frights.
Bigger and better haunts
Four years ago, the brothers decided it was time to make their hobby a business.
“We just naturally transitioned into this,” Craig said. “The time was right and the location was right.”
The location, at 42 W. New York St. near Hollywood Casino, gave the Senekers plenty of space to build an elaborate haunt.
“It took months to build,” Craig said. “Every year, we change at least a couple rooms.” The family members also attend an annual Halloween convention to get new ideas and inspiration.
Building on their artistic experience — the brothers previously ran a company that created eerily realistic Halloween masks — the Senekers have created a nightmarish subterranean world inspired by horror films and human nature.
“A lot of it we just pull out of our imagination,” Craig said. “We try to harness the dark — we try to make people see what we want them to see. We play on our own fears of being in a basement in the dark.”
Last year, the business expanded with the addition a 3D haunted house. Visitors enter the haunt via a 3D elevator — quite the bumpy ride — and wind up in the domain of “Shattered,” the deranged clown.
“There’s really not much around here that’s in 3D, so we thought it was unique,” Sara Seneker said.
Each night, it takes 60 to 70 actors and workers to operate the side-by-side haunted houses.
Sara estimated at least 500 guests go through the attractions every night. Basement of the Dead and Shattered are open from 7 to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 7 to 10 p.m. Thursday and Sunday (plus Wednesday, Oct. 30). Anyone still in line at closing time will get the opportunity to go through the haunted houses, she said.
The atmosphere outside the haunt is also nearly as scary as inside, with a live DJ spinning spooky tunes and costumed characters making sure patrons get plenty of scares before they even set foot inside.
The haunted attraction isn’t just popular with guests — it’s also getting recognition from industry critics.
Recently, the Senekers learned that Haunt World magazine had ranked Basement of the Dead the No. 21 haunt in the country. Last year, it was also voted the No. 1 Chicagoland attraction by Haunted House Chicago.
Aurora Illinois’ – Basement of the Dead Featuring Shattered 3D By Hauntworld Magazine
Chicago Illinois Haunted Houses are some of the scariest and best in America! Hauntworld rates and reviews the BEST and SCARIEST haunted houses, haunted attractions, and Halloween events in America! Basement of the Dead Haunted House is located in Aurora, Illinois and has one of the scariest haunted houses in America! Prepare to scream! Sit back and prepare to scream through our review of Basement of the Dead Haunted House. This Halloween you can’t miss the scariest and best haunted attraction in the entire state of Illinois, Basement of the Dead. Basement of the Dead in Aurora Illinois which is just outside of Chicago Illinois is simply put one of the best haunted houses in the country. Their attraction features some of the scariest actors, crazies scenes, and amazing set design, plus one of the industries best 3D haunted houses.Now sit back and read all about the best haunted house in the Chicago Illinois area The Basement of the Dead Haunted House.
Basement of the Dead Haunted Attraction in Aurora Illinois is not the biggest attraction in Illinois, but many consider it to be the best and even scariest. Like most top haunts, the Basement of the Dead Haunted House is run by a talented and passionate group of people who love the haunted house industry, and this group is actually family… a family who through hard work and faith in themselves turned their dream (or nightmare) into a reality.
Jason, David, Sara, Craig, and mother Patrice Seneker along with their aunt and uncle, Tressa and Todd Baraniak, began their haunting life at a home in Joliet Illinois. Every year, the whole family would start working in early August to transform Patrice’s home into a terrifying house of horrors. In October, thousands of people braved their way through the yard and home. After four years of creating nightmares in a home haunt, they wanted more. David remembers, “That’s when I knew we could be very successful at running a commercial haunted house. We were doing all that work for just the joy of scaring people. I knew if we could get the funds and find a place, it could work.” But before the family became professional haunters a different business opportunity presented itself. The Seneker family learned that the mask division of Scarecrow (a company known for their realistic vampire fangs) was for sale. The family obtained the mask molds and began creating foam latex mask out of the basement of their home. The business, Arrival Mask Company, was successful, but the idea of running a professional haunt never left.Todd never did stop looking for a good location to create a professional haunted house. “There are many great haunts in the Chicagoland area and we didn’t want to open a new haunted house in some other haunt’s backyard. It’s not easy to find a good location, and then when you find one, the building owner does not want to give you a lease for just a few months to set up and run a seasonal haunted house.” That’s when Todd learned of an established haunted house that was for sale in the area.
George Carpenter founded Basement of the Dead haunted house in 2000. Right away, Basement of the Dead haunted house won best new attraction of the year from a local Chicago haunted house review group. From there, George and his family successfully ran the Basement of the Dead for several years, but due to an illness, George put the Basement up for sale.
Todd said, “George was happy with the number of people he was putting through, and because of the illness there was not much change to the Basement in the last few years he owned it. It was a very strong foundation, and we felt with the right marketing strategies, renovation of the existing space, plus expansion into unused parts of the building that Basement of the Dead Haunted Attraction could become one of the top haunts in Illinois and in the Nation.”The haunt is located in the basement of a 100 year old building in downtown Aurora Illinois just 30 short miles outside Chicago. Immediately upon walking inside the building, it’s clear this place would be frightening even if there was not a haunted attraction inside. The decrepit brick walls, old pipes and eerie creeks make for a perfect haunted setting…a very strong foundation indeed. So the family bought the business in 2010. Todd fondly recollects, “When we bought the haunt from George, he and his family helped make our transition into the haunt world seamless.”
In 2013, the family’s hopes were becoming reality. Attendance greatly increased, the haunt was named #1 Haunted Attraction in Illinois by the Chicago Tribune Newspaper, and it was also listed in the Top 30 Haunted Attractions in all of America by Hauntworld Magazine. The Basement of the Dead haunted house turned to Facebook and other social media to get the word out about their haunt. Todd explains, “We are very active on these sites. We post pictures and videos not just in October, but all year around. We feel it is good to keep the Basement of the Dead haunted attraction fresh in everyone’s mind and to show them the work we are put in to make us #1 and keep us there. We also run contests on these sites and give prizes away to our fans”.
The Basement also keeps their website www.basementofthedead.com updated with new information throughout the year. By this Halloween season, the haunt will be 100% remolded from when it was purchased. The new rooms going into the Basement of the Dead haunted house are highly detailed, but not overly lit, providing that perfectly creepy atmosphere needed to achieve the utmost in scares. You can see where the Basement gets its soul. Silent Hill, The Hills Have Eyes, Saw, Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Insidious are definitely the horror movie inspirations, but not a carbon copy. David tells, “We believe that if you want to really scare someone, you need to help them forget that they are safe and that these are just a bunch of actors in masks and make-up. We do this by creating rooms that are so believable our customers get engrossed in the atmosphere. Then, the customers can’t help but believe they are in real danger. For example, we want them to think they really could be locked in our broken down walk-in freezer with a humanoid pig freak.”
They also spend much of their time training actors providing them with a good acting base. The Basement of the Dead haunted house has some of the BEST actors in America. From there, the actors are creatively allowed to develop their individual characters. “We give them an idea and let the actor build their own character. We help them do this by putting a lot of thought into the costumes and masks & make-up FX. I am usually very surprised by the depth our actors take their character. This makes them much more believable and terrifying when a customer first encounters them. We are blessed with a very talented group of actors,” says David.
Subtlety in lighting is truly an expertise found inside this haunted house. Lighting is perfect; it’s delicately placed in some parts and purposely absent in others. We asked David to expound on their intent. “Just because you spent a lot of time and money on a room, does not mean you need a ton of light. We believe there is nothing scarier than the dark. All demons, monsters, and boogie men are born from the dark. We purposely harness that primal fear from the second you take foot down into the Basement.”
In 2012, Shattered 3D was created. Shattered 3D is a black lit 3D clown themed haunted attraction. The art inside Shattered 3D Haunted House is beautiful and grotesquely sinister at the same time. From floor to ceiling you are engulfed with artwork that is eye popping. David reveals, “We had the space, and we wanted to do a new haunt. Specifically, we wanted to explore a different way to scare people. The Basement is dark and while we love the dark, we thought the logical thing to do was make a contrasting haunted house. We wanted the most eye-popping blacklight haunted house with the most creative artwork, but we also wanted every actor in Shattered 3D to wear a completely 3D costume and every prop fully painted in 3D. We made sure to build solid scares in every room so our actors could use the 3D to their advantage by blending in with the art.”
They certainly accomplished just that, because last year not only was Basement recognized, but Shattered was too. One haunt reviewer reported, ‘Shattered 3D haunted house is a great haunt on its own, the 3D makes it an incredible haunt.’
The Basement also did a revamp of the line entertainment. By adding two talented stilt walkers, two Stalkaround costumes, a chainsaw, a boom-stick, and a live DJ every night on stage that moves from inside the building out into the crowd. The DJ wears an unbuckled straight jacket along with a zippered, canvas mask while mixing classic rock and heavy metal along with modern beats. Jason told us a story about how his signature move (binding the hands and mouth of customers with Duct Tape) was born. “On my first night as DJ, I was so worried about not messing up the music that I forgot my main job is to scare. I heard one customer say to her friend ‘he’s not scary.’ I knew I had to change her mind, so I looked around my stage for something I could use as a prop weapon to go and terrorize this girl. The only thing I could find was a roll of Duct Tape I used to anchor down some loose cables. The sound the tape makes when forcefully peeled off the roll can be terrifying in the right situation, because it can bring a connotation of being bound and abducted. I leaped down from the stage and ripped the tape out extremely close to the girl’s ear. Once she got off the ground from collapsing in fear (and her friend stopped laughing at her), she came up to me and asked for a picture together. I brought her up on stage and put the tape over her mouth and wrist. The crowd went crazy and from there everyone wanted to be abducted by the DJ.”
Hard workers all around, this family does not rest. They plot, plan and work for the opening of their haunt year round and this year is no different as they plan to allow customers to live out their zombie apocalypse fantasy. Full costumed zombie actors will roam the grounds while customers blast their way (with I-Combat laser tag guns) through the Basement of the Dead and Shattered 3D for the right to live another day. Todd states. “We always want to be pushing the envelope, to give another way for people to face their fears. That’s why we started, we wanted to scare people, and what can be more frightening than having to fight flesh hungry zombies while trying to find a way out of a dark basement?”
In a world crazed for the preparation of a zombie apocalypse, I couldn’t agree more, but whether zombies or mutants or clowns are your affliction, one thing is certain…When you come to the Basement of the Dead and Shattered 3D Haunted House, you will get scared inside, outside, in the dark and in the light!
Getting Up Close and Personal with Terror at Basement of the Dead
by Ryan , October 19, 2014
Sitting in the Aurora, IL city limits is one of the most intense haunts I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing this year. While unassuming on the outside, Basement of the Dead harbors a dark, murderous evil in its depths. Al & Imus Kilya have taken up residence, and visitors who make the mistake of entering this subterranean hell must find their way out while evading the clutches of psychopaths, murderers, monsters, and worse. Those who are particularly unlucky may also stumble into the neon-colored nightmare world of Shattered 3D, a realm come to life from the twisted mind of Shattered the Clown, who, after going on a murderous rampage, escaped into the Basement, and is now looking for some fresh meat for his circus of horrors. At 15,000 sq ft, this haunt has been open since 2003, and current owners Todd and Tressa are always looking for ways to make it even bigger and better. The house designers, brothers David, Jason, and Craig, grew up running their own home haunt, and have turned their passion and expertise into a can’t-miss attraction.
Basement of the Dead is dark, grimy, and visceral. You won’t find large Gothic mansions or moonlit graveyards here. Instead, the entire house is designed to get you up close and personal with the scares. You’ll make your way through sewer tunnels, abandoned back rooms, hallways, and other claustrophobic environments that feel like they oozed out of a sociopath’s fever dreams. The attention to set detail is spot on, and the designers fully capitalize on their location. The theming and set dressing is immersive; even the ceilings are dressed to sell the environment. Special effects and animatronics are used sparingly but effectively to flesh out the sets and help sell the reality of the world. Sound pollution from other rooms is almost non-existent, and lighting is completely controlled to limit visibility to only show what the designers want you to see. You may often find yourself questioning whether or not you just saw something move in the darkest corners.
The scares are aggressive and unrelenting, but are also on a level of intimacy that separates this attraction from other haunts. The actors fully capitalize on the tight quarters to wait until you’re almost on top of them to terrify you. There’s no escape, and nowhere to hide. One particularly effective scare was in a dark section of the maze. We were fumbling our way through the inky darkness after a scare in the previous room, and a whisper, barely audible but extremely close, floated out of the darkness: “I’m still behind you.” It was a chilling moment and drove home the point that the nasties waiting in the dark were close, and in control. Tressa elaborated, “We train our actors to…try and hit people with more than just one scare; to turn around and get them in another scare.” And that follow through for multiple scares was felt throughout the house.
Shattered 3D, the second house at this attraction, is the tonal opposite of Basement of the Dead, but just as effective. Colors are vibrant, and the effective use of different shades of color creates a textured, layered 3D look to the sets. The 3D effect in this attraction is expertly done; nothing feels flat or out of place. Shadows are non-existent, and the sets, props, and characters are cartoonish, larger than life, and sinister. Adding to the visuals is the sound design. Not solely relying on circus music, other little bits are thrown into the audio mix to add a creepiness and cacophony of noises to disorient visitors. The actors are fast, loud, and pop out of the environment at you. It’s unclear at times what’s a real person and what’s a prop. Character interaction was very good, with the actors at the front of the haunt and the elevator being particularly engaging. They set the tone and energy level of the house wonderfully. Shattered 3D is a chaotic journey into madness, effective in its use of discordance and sensory assaults to create tension and heighten scares.
Basement of the Dead is a fantastic haunted attraction, and it’s very easy to see why there was such a large crowd waiting in line so early in the season. For as many people as there are, flow control is handled extremely well in both houses; we never ran into another group. There is also plenty of queue line entertainment, with a live DJ and between 10 to 15 actors outside on an average night.
Long lines are the norm here, but the wait is well worth it. David told us “We’ve got a lot of people running, screaming their heads off, saying this is the scariest place they’ve ever seen in their life.” They’ve even had people wait in line for hours, only to refuse to enter when they get to the entrance. If you like your haunts intense, aggressive, and relentless, then Basement of the Dead and Shattered 3D is where you need to be this season. And be sure to come back in the off-season as well, as Basement of the Dead offers Zombie Outbreak when they’re not terrifying guests, an interactive experience where you can shoot zombies while trying to avoid being bitten.