Monday, October 8, 2012

2012 Michigan Haunted House Reviews

Okay, so this year my boyfriend and I decided that we wanted to hit up every haunted house we could get to! So far we have been to 3 and we are planning to venture further up north and east in the coming weekends to check out the houses there which this will get updated after.
I decided to put reviews up because when I would search for honest reviews I would only ever get the website reviews which you know they delete any criticism. Now lets get this list going! Also feel free to add any that you have been to, even if it is out of state!

Phobia House

Phobia house has just moved as of last year they opened in a new location in Plainwell, MI as opposed to Kalamazoo, MI, this was because of inspection issues. While this place is fairly new, in means of just being at a new location, Phobia House has been running for a few years prior, this is actually their 12 year. On the website they said that this year was new and improved because to be honest, last year was a huge let down from previous experiences at their old building.
It costs 15$ each to go through, this also accompanies about on average, an hour wait time. You go through this house in somewhat large groups which right there kind of isn't the best because then you always have someone either shoving or being an a-hole. This is a guided tour which also kind of disappoints me because they keep you at a very fast pace so you really don't get to enjoy your surroundings or actually take in anything. Another bad thing about groups is that unless you are at the front of the line, you don't get to have anyone pop out at you or see anything cool because they do that when the first few people enter a place so it ruins the surprise. This year the walk through was themed "Nightmares", none of which I really encountered. I came across maybe 5-10 workers total and a lot of them just stood there, not very scary at all... The total time we waited was 55mins and the total time it took to walk-through was about 13minutes, most of which was filler or hanging plastic and the guide talking. There was no climax, no screams, no nothing. I was so horribly disappointed this year that I just don't think I will ever go back. Majority of the people going through were horribly loud high/middle schoolers who ruined the experience, there was a huge lack of content, the price was absurd for the amount we got, and the wait was insane with no available seating.

Don't go!

Niles Haunted House Scream Park
It's only the start of the Halloween season and we have already visited this place twice! We even went through the Haunted house multiple times each visit! This place is more of a fair/carnival themed place, they have vendors and little side attractions as well. To get the full package to do all 5 attractions is 27$, not bad considering all that you get and sometimes they throw in a freebie show.
This place has:
The haunted hayride - Really fun and lasts about 15-20min, great for little kids as you get pulled on a tractor through a field that has a bunch of different showcase things with an announcer going over the story. There are a lot of special effects to this area and even a fire breathing dragon! The theme is the end of the world, normally. Along with a large amount of scenic things there are also actors out there and things that fly out at you and even spray water. It's a lot of fun but the tractor wagon can get kind of packed so make sure to try for a decent seat. This is also normally the longest waiting line.
The field of screams - This is an outdoor/indoor haunted maze, it takes approx: 20-40min depending on how many times you get lost. This is amazing and the line is normally very short and fast moving. The scenic value is high as they have invested a huge amount of time adding props and displays, even waterfalls! They have many actors throughout and occasionally they will help if you get hopelessly lost. The inside parts are more like a haunted house, they even have a fog room which is so much fun because it's like being in a giant cloud! The actors appear and disappear and there are many strobes everywhere to make it that much more exciting!
The Haunted House - This is one of the coolest haunted houses I have been to! It takes about 15-20min to go all the way through and readmission is only 5$! There are a bunch of different ways through with totally unique rooms. There are a huge amount of actors, props, special effects, and lights. You can also ask the workers to send you through a different way so you can experience everything! They have this one room where neon lit ghost images swirl the walls and it feels like you are literally spinning! They have a huge claustrophobia room, many outdoor parts, and mini mazes. The house looks great inside and out and I've gone through a total of 6 times this year, each time seeing something new! I love this place and definitely recommend it!
Memory Manor AND Ghostly Gallows - These are the two smaller houses, the themes change every so often and the average walk-through time is about 10-15 min a piece. They are very nicely decorated, many actors are present and there are also a huge array of props. While these are not as amazing as the main attractions, they are still a fun bonus to get to do as part of the package. The lines are normally horrible for these though because they send only one party in at a time which is nice so that way you get to personally experience everything.

Must go! (there are also normally many places that carry 7$ off coupons in the area!) They also donate their profits to local organizations!

PsychoWard KalamazooThis is the first year that I have been to this place and I really enjoyed it! The price was 15$ for two attractions (Nightmares, Psychoward) and they normally run specials where you donate some canned goods and get a few bucks off. The wait time we experienced was about 20ish min, not bad considering they were decently busy. The walk-through took about 15min each and the visual experience was really nice and set out in the woods and also in buildings/ward. What I liked most about this place is the energy of the actors, they actually ran at you, screamed, and did their best to scare the crap out of people. I actually saw a few people fall when frightened and one girl cried and left early. They did some serious work on their scenery and made everything look very real even the cabin! You normally go through with about 4-5 people total and you can easily lag behind to separate yourself so you get a more personal experience. I really wish they would add some more attractions because what they have so far is pretty amazing! They really made the building look like an old mental ward, there were many different themed small areas and they kept everything at a low light but not pitch black so you could actually enjoy seeing everything. I will for sure be going back to this one!

Verdict:Go see this for sure!

I wrote these under my own free will, everything stated is my own personal opinion and I have not been paid or compensated in any way.

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