Hour Haunted House:
From the outside view,
you really couldn't tell that this event was held in
trailers. The tall facade hid them from view. Because
all the scenes were enclosed in trailers, that actually made the
event creepier, as many of the rooms and hallways were smaller
and tighter. Not only that, but the lower ceilings helped
to establish a claustrophobic feel. The mood of the event
was first established with the facade, then continued inside the
foyer, then throughout the rest of the house. In the foyer, you were
told the history of "the oldest house in
Downers Grove". This particular room featured torn, dingy wallpaper,
eerie lighting and a clock-ticking sound in the
background. Before you were allowed to continue, you were
given a warning: "All residents vanished without a trace".
Many of the rooms throughout the house were highly
haunted study was one of the most detailed rooms with skull
sconces, bookcases, an old reclining chair and a
fireplace. Inside the attic scene, which was
illuminated with an eerie green glow, you came across dusty old trunks, golf
clubs and other things that you would normally find in an
attic. Many of the scenes, like the closet
hallway, had some great hiding places, where actors could jump
out unexpectedly. Throughout the house there were also a
couple of animatronic surprises to keep you on your toes.
As you exited to the outside, you had to zig zag through a detailed
graveyard, complete with numerous gravestones, trees, spooky
lighting and a nice painted backdrop.
I really enjoyed the
hidden exits that were spread throughout the house.
Without obvious exits, patrons were at the mercy of the actors,
which gave you sort of a helpless feeling.
Like in previous years,
this attraction exuded the Eleventh Hour's theatrical flair.
Most of the actors had speaking parts, they knew their roles well and
stayed in character the entire time. The only exception
was in the disheveled bedroom scene, where the actor just stood there and didn't really say
much. The theatrical characters acted as a great
distraction, which allowed other actors in hiding places to
catch you off guard. Their performances were good, for the
most part; however, sound effects sometimes drowned out their
monologues. I wish that some of them had projected their
voices a little more, so everyone in the group could hear what
they were saying. Most of the actors were in
appropriate costumes and make-up. There were a few who
were only wearing dark clothing, but they were the ones who were
popping out of hiding places to scare people, so costumes weren't
really necessary for their roles.
Chain Reaction was an
outdoor event. It was a maze that had been crafted from
lengths of chain-link fencing. Because of the way it was
there was no way to see how to get through the maze. Very
creative! All you could see was fencing in every direction. To further disorient
you, loud rock music was playing and strobe lights reflected off
the fencing. Along with the multiple dead ends, you had
actors adding to the confusion by sending you down the wrong
path. If you lucked out, you could find your way to the
exit quickly, but of course that all depended on the path you
took and the turns you made. There were some people who had entered the maze before me
still stuck inside, after I had already made it to the
Overall a decent showing
by the Eleventh Hour, with what they had set up. Unfortunately my visit was on their
opening weekend and all the attractions weren't completely
operational, which was a little disappointing. I think it was really nice of the management
to not punch tickets that night, allowing all attendees to get in
for free on a later date, when everything was up and running.
I'd definitely like to check it out later in the season.
here to find out more about this event.