Latest US travel trend: haunted houses

Haunted houses as a form of live entertainment

NBC points the way to eight places representing a new brand of theme park in the USA – the haunted house as a form of live entertainment.

Cutting Edge in Fort Worth, Texas, is a meatpacking-plant-turned-madhouse with dark dungeons and corridors full of zombies, killer clowns and mutant rabbits. The Dent Schoolhouse in Cincinnati has a serial killer janitor in the basement and dead children in the playground, a crazy cafeteria lady, sadistic gym teacher and psycho school nurse.

“It’s like they take you back to the 1950s,” says one visitor. “It’s just plain creepy.”

Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia is set inside a 184-year-old prison, with ghoulish guards and insane inmates. Guests decide whether to watch the action or become part of it.

Erebus in Pontiac, Michigan, is crowded with zombies, dinosaurs and killer monkeys, while scary attractions at Headless Horseman in Ulster Park, New York, include six haunted houses and a corn maze.

House of Shock in Jefferson, Louisiana, contains freak-show performances with spikes, hooks and body parts. House of Torment in Austin, Texas, is a scary shopping mall with “armies of genetic mistakes, bloodthirsty vampires and cannibalistic savages”, as NBC puts it. And Shocktoberfest in Sinking Spring, Pennsylvania, is a haunted house that visitors are encouraged to tour in their underwear.


[photo courtesy Headless Horseman]