For being a locally-run haunt (with many volunteer scare-ers, no doubt), the crew at The Catacombs did a commendable job. Being located in the basement of St. Pascal's Church lends a definitely eerie vibe from the get-go.
Before the 'rule room' was a staging area with a chance for a free photo op. The rules were briefly explained in an opening scene that resembled a wake, although the ghoul was in half-character as he reminded us "please, guys, no cellphones inside the haunt, that's just not cool." After descending several sets of stairs, you enter the church basement.
I think the natural setting worked well, with exposed steam piping, furnaces and chain link fencing surroundings. They pumped fog in for an added effect. What The Catacombs lacked in high-octane scares, they made up for it in personnel. There were LOTS of costumed actors inside, way more than I anticipated for a haunt of this nature. While many of them were of the growling, in-your-face variety, several were of a more passive nature that provided nicely subdued scares.
Given that this wasn't a widely-advertised 'mega haunt', my expectation level for quality of scenes was low. I was pleasantly surprised on a few occasions, notably the butcher's scene, which was replete with gruesome glass display case and bloody meat parts strewn about. Some scenes (like the one previously mentioned) had a great amount of detail--much more than I was expecting--while others seemed unfinished. In fact, many areas were prop-less or without characters, but I attribute this more to budgetary reasons (and abundant space) than anything else.
Overall, I think the St. Pascal's crew did a nice job with their haunt. Although it's not a lengthy event, it's relatively inexpensive, and knowing that you're venturing into a dimly-lit church basement makes the experience that much cooler. I would recommend this to anyone in the area seeking milder thrills and chills.
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