Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Indy ScreamPark boasts of 5 terrifying attractions all housed in 1 location. Unfortunately, the most terrifying thing about the scream park has nothing to do with its attractions.
I've broken this review down into 3 easy to read sections: "The Attractions," "The Price," and "The Horror."
Bedlam 3D is a neon-filled funhouse with a few mad-clowns thrown in to scare some folk. They pass out those cheap cardboard sunglasses and let you wander through bright rooms lit with blacklight, so it feels like the walls pop out at you. It's a fun little attraction, but not very scary.
There were only two highlights here for me. One was the crazed clowns in their cages. The cages were set up so that you had to keep turning in loops, and you never knew where these guys were going to be able to jump up next to you. Clowns really do scare me, so I was a bit biased here.
The other highlight was the vertigo/vortex/spinning room (or whatever you call it). These things seem mandatory in any haunted house these days, but they're still pretty cool. Here's an example:
Kurayami was my favorite attraction. Supposedly, "kurayami" is Japanese for darkness, and that's all this one is. You wander around in pitch blackness and every once in a while someone will throw a Snap-n-Pop at the ground to scare you. That this was my favorite attraction should tell you a bit about the rest of the park.
Apparently, things are much scarier if you take common English words and translate them into the language of old WWII axis powers. Following that theme, Indy ScreamPark brings us Nachtmahr. "Nachtmahr" is German for nightmare. Scaaaary.
This attraction was just a classic haunted house. It was themed in some sort of castle style, with lots of old scary people and zombie-types. Just think, "Okay there's five mannequins and I know one if them is about to jump at me." That's pretty much the whole attraction. Here's a picture of some of the zombie-types.
The biggest problem with this one was that we went through long stretches of hallway where nothing happened. I kept waiting for something to jump out of a corner or a wall or something, but there was just nothing. We even had time to run through the hallways ourselves, trying to scare each other. It was like they were just short staffed that night or something. Speaking of which, Indy ScreamPark is hiring actors if you're interested: Job Hunting
Backwoods is one of two outdoor attractions at Indy ScreamPark. The theme here seemed to be walking through the woods in the middle of an inbred, Virginian hill-jack town. And all of the residents like to capture and torture any visitors who happen to wander through their woods. And all of their victims happen to be girls who spend their days being mutilated and shot with staple guns.
Honestly, this attraction goes more for the disturbing visual scare over the jump out of the dark scare. You are given a glow stick and told to walk along a trail that leads through the woods. Obviously, it's best to do this attraction after dark. The trail leads to various shacks and outhouses, filled with scenes of gore and violence. Then there's the token guy with a chainsaw at the end. That's about it.
Dark Harvest is a corn maze. That's all I know about it. Read "The Horror" to find out why. As everyone knows, wandering through the corn is always scary, so this may have been a good attraction. Here's an example of what may be there:
Sunday & Thursday = $20
Friday & Saturday = $25
VIP Sunday & Thursday = $30
VIP Friday & Saturday = $35
You can also save by getting a group discount, or on the VIP passes by buying tickets online. See Here. I cannot recommend this highly enough: BUY THE VIP PASS!!! Seriously, just think of it as the normal price. See "The Horror" if you want to know exactly why.
There was also a $5 parking fee, that I don't believe is mentioned anywhere on the website. For $5 you get to park in a huge field. It would be really scary to see what happens to that field when it rains.
The "Monster Midway" has a few overpriced games. Shoot the ball 20 feet into the under-sized rim for $3.00. Or Zombie paintball, where you shoot at zombies with a paintball gun. They also had beer and probably some other beverages. Bring extra cash if you get thirsty/hungry.
The most horrific thing that happened during our visit to Indy ScreamPark involved waiting in line at Backwoods. We had already gone through the three indoor attractions and decided to save the corn maze for last. So we hopped in line at Backwoods.
We get in line, and there's no way to see how long we're going to have to wait. After about 10 minutes in line, we ask one of the girls working there how long the wait will be. She says 20 minutes. 20 minutes later we ask again and she says 40 minutes. Here's a tip: If you don't know how long a wait is going to be, don't just pull numbers out of your bunghole.
When I went to the front to see what was taking so long, I was told they were letting the VIP line in at a ratio of about 2-3 groups for every one general admission group. This was happening even though there was literally no VIP line (they were just walking right through and into the attraction), and the general admission line was one and a half hours long. It was incredibly ridiculous and frustrating. We tried voicing our opinion to several of the staff members there, but unfortunately, all of the staff were high schoolers who appeared to be winging it on their own. Although it is much needed, I doubt there is a standard policy on how to work the VIP line. Needless to say, our concerns fell upon deaf and prepubescent ears.
Then when we finally got into Backwoods, there was more ridiculousness. Although they let in 5-6 people at a time, it doesn’t take long to catch up to other groups. So by the time you get to the last shack, there are 20 or more people trying to get in at the same time. If you’ve ever been to a haunted house, you know how frustrating it is to walk into a room after “the scare” is over. When we got to the end, the guy with a chainsaw was already out in the open just walking up to everyone. It was much more humorous than scary.
Again, it just felt like they were understaffed. They should have had people at different stations throughout Backwoods to slow down traffic and make sure each group got to experience “the scare” in every shack.
It was just a huge disappointment and the experience at Backwoods literally ruined the entire night for us. It took so long in that line, that we didn’t even have time to try out Dark Harvest. It was a pretty big bummer since we had tried to “save the best for last.”
So to sum it all up, if you decide to go to Indy ScreamPark, get the VIP pass. You’ll be miserable waiting in line if you don’t. This park will probably be a great place to visit in the next few years when they figure out how to properly run a “theme” park. In the meantime, you can probably find better ways to spend $35.
Fox 59 Story
***Disclaimer - I was given one free general admission ticket for writing this review.
Posted by Arthur at 8:14 PM