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2004 Raven's Grin Inn Haunted House Review
Ravens Grin

Raven's Grin Inn Haunted House
411 North Carroll St.
Mount Carroll, IL 61053

Reviewed: 10/02/04

Visibility/Location: This event is tucked away in the small town of Mt. Carroll, at the end of a dead end street. Signs in the main section of town tell you which way to go. If you follow the directions on their website, you will have no problems finding the Raven's Grin Inn.
Wait Entertainment: While you are waiting for a tour, there is plenty of eye-candy to keep you occupied.  This spooky-looking building is covered with vines and surrounded by strange & unusual props.  There is also a covered outdoor waiting area, in case of inclement weather.
Admission Price: $10.00

1 Hour and 10 Minutes+ *  
= Since people move through haunted attractions at different rates, your time will vary.

Scare Factor: Medium.    
Atmosphere: The atmosphere is initially set by the unique appearance of the house and surroundings (pictured above). This vision really gets your imagination flowing and effectively sets the mood for your upcoming tour.  The mood is further enhanced by the collection of curious props and displays throughout the attraction.
Crowd Control: Crowd control was excellent.  Since it was a semi-guided tour and the staff spaced out the patrons appropriately, none of the groups ever ran into each other.
Other Customer's
Most of the customers who I spoke with thought that the "Bed Slide" was their favorite part of the tour.  A few patrons commented that the Raven's Grin Inn was the most unique attraction that they had ever attended.


Built in 1870, the building that is now known as the Ravenís Grin Inn has had many identities. Since the time it was built, it has been everything from a car dealership to a brothel. It has also been (and is currently) a haunted attraction that is open to the public. 

As you wait outside, the huge structure looms over you, filling you with an eerie sense of anticipation. Keep in mind that this isnít your typical haunted house. In fact the term ďhaunted houseĒ doesnít do it justice. You wonít find typical house characters like Jason or Freddy, nor will you find a spinning vortex tunnel like most haunted houses have. This attraction has a style all its own. I guess the Ravenís Grin could be described as a haunted fun house, with equal portions of fright & comic relief, and definitely a lot of entertainment value. 

What some people donít know is that not only is it a commercial haunted attraction, it also has a real haunted history.  At the start of the tour, you are given a brief history of some of the supernatural happenings that have been observed throughout the years. Unexplainable things have been happening in this building since the mid 1920ís. Strange sounds, mysterious apparitions and other unexplainable phenomena have been observed and documented by the owner Jim Warfield. Perhaps the best-known apparition is the ďLady in WhiteĒ, who has been seen by many people over the years. She most often appears in the wine cellar, the most haunted room of the Ravenís Grin Inn. 

After you learn about some of the haunted history, you continue on through the house, winding your way through tunnels, crawl spaces and slides.  On your trip through the Raven's Grin, you will see many odd & creative displays and props, spawned from the delightfully twisted mind of the owner, Jim Warfield.  As part of the outdoor portion of the tour, you get to see Jim's old "spookmobile" that was hit from behind by a semi doing 80 MPH, with him in it!  How could he have survived such an impact?  Or did he...   

The most popular part of the house seems to be the slide in the "Bad Dreams Bedroom", which shoots you down from the top of the house into the stone wine cellar, which is 24 feet below the surface of the earth.  It is such a wild ride, it has been made an optional part of the tour.

The Raven's Grin is also quite a value, compared to other haunted attractions.  For the affordable $10 admission price, you get over an hour of entertainment.

If you are looking for a totally unique experience, this is it! The Ravenís Grin has developed quite a following and has actually become somewhat of a legend in the Chicagoland area and beyond.  It has been featured on television shows like HGTV Extreme Homes and Wild Chicago. Believe me, it is a totally unique experience. Itís something youíll have to see for yourself.

Note: The best time to visit the Raven's Grin is in the off-season, when you can avoid the huge October crowds and get a more lengthy, in depth tour. If you visit on non-October dates, you also have the benefit of Jim Warfield, the creative force behind the Raven's Grin, guiding the entire tour. Because The Raven's Grin is open year-round (301 days a year), you can drop in nearly any day for a tour!


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