Advertised as "Chicago's
Interactive Haunted Attraction", this event delivers just that. In many
ways, it reminded me of the movie "Saw". Based on your actions,
various things would happen. Throughout the attraction, customers would flip
switches, push buttons and perform various other tasks, which triggered special
effects and/or allowed them to continue to the next area. You really don't
see this kind of attraction every day and I think it's refreshing to see
something that is different from most of the other haunted houses out
It was quite obvious as soon as I walked
in the door that this attraction had a circus sideshow theme. Near the entrance,
there was a glass display case, containing a petrified spider web, shrunken
heads and other oddities. The surrounding walls had wide red/white vertical
stripes, resembling a circus tent. The ticket booth was also themed like
the ticket window of a circus trailer. The tour began with an introduction,
given by a pair of "living" animatronic marionettes, which were
suspended over a small wooden stage. After some entertaining back-and-forth
banter between the two characters, which included relaying the rules of the
haunted house, the marionettes set up a nice surprise ending to the scene. From
there, patrons moved through various areas, most of which were related to the
central theme of the attraction. In many of the scenes, there were
great soundtracks and lighting effects.
In the execution room, there were
flashing lights and dozens of pushbutton switches mounted to the back
wall. Customers were split up into two groups, to engage in a competition
to soon see who could push the correct button the fastest. When the right
button was pushed, the winning team was announced and a cool special effect was
In the play room, dolls were attached
all over the walls. Two short doll girls with porcelain masks, wearing dingy
dresses, approached me asking "Wanna play?". They were very
My personal favorite was the fortune
teller room, which was also one of the most detailed areas inside the house. In
this scene, a fortune teller rocked back-and-forth. The table in front of her
had a crystal ball, tarot cards and flickering candles. "Bela", a
Gypsy character in the scene, asked me to pick a card from the tarot deck. This
set up a nice scare that I didn't see coming.
Moving through the attraction, it seemed
to pick up momentum, getting creepier and creepier as I went along. Toward
the end, there were some really demented clowns. One of the clown scenes
featured red/white striped walls, with multiple bloody body parts and intestines
hanging from the ceiling. As I walked through, an evil clown stalked me to
Overall, the actors did a great
job. The most convincing actor was "Bela", in the fortuneteller
room. His costume was authentic and his accent & demeanor were convincing.
The girls in the playroom were creepy and the clowns at the end were
sinister. The roles were well thought out and the actors never broke
character. There was a mix of acting styles in this attraction.
While the majority of the actors had lines, giving more of a theatrical
presentation, there were a few pop outs, as well, to take you by surprise.
Is this event an all-out "scare fest"? No. That's not what they were
going for. It was more creepy than it was scary. Was it interesting
and entertaining?… Absolutely.
If you looking for something that is a
little bit of a departure from most regular haunted attractions, this event is
for you. Be sure to add this haunted house to your list of visits the
season. Not only is it very entertaining, it is also a great value.
To find out more about this