A visit to California’s Great America on a spine-chilling evening will reap screams of terror at the amusement park’s Halloween Haunt. Halloween Haunt opened on Sept. 21 and will run through Oct. 28 on select dates and times shared on the amusement park’s website. Certainly, Halloween Haunt is living up to its motto, “Fear is waiting for you.”
Professional actors in theme costumes and ghoulish makeup jumped out at guests in haunted mazes and scare zones. “Tooth Fairy,” a new maze, reminded guests of the physical pain of losing teeth that marks early childhood. This labyrinth brought guests to sobbing children, blood-splattered dental offices and a grim encounter with a demonized tooth fairy. “Zombie High,” a returning maze, revived the adolescent angst of high school with nightmarish teachers and dreadful learning spaces. Experiencing a more sinister kind of Southern hospitality, guests received small flashlights to tour “Madame Marie’s Blackout” (formerly called Madame Marie’s Massacre Manor), where the unsettled spirits of a blacked-out Louisiana manor loosely roamed. A reconstruction of London’s Big Ben was the gateway to “Ripper’s Revenge,” a new scare zone, where unearthly city dwellers lurked about.
The engaging magic act of Ed Alonzo, The Second Great Showman, is one of Halloween Haunt’s live shows. This year, Alonzo returned with a new show. Tricks included Alonzo’s swallowing of a balloon sword, making his performers seemingly appear and disappear out of thin air, and releasing himself from a strait jacket with a furry twist.
“We have eight mazes, three scare zones and five shows that are especially for Halloween Haunt,” said Lorraine Woodcheke, Communications Manager at California’s Great America. Regarding park refreshments, Woodcheke recommended a fan favorite, the Black Widow Churro Sundae made with black ice cream and a dark churro. This treat is available for purchase during Halloween Haunt and The Great Pumpkin Fest.