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2007 Trail of Screams Review
Ravens Grin

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Trail of Screams
@ YMCA Camp Winnebago
5804 N. Main Street
Rockford, IL 61103

Visited: 10/12/07


Visibility/Location: The entrance of this event is easy to see if you are coming from the South.  They had a backlit arrow sign near the road, showing you where to turn.  There was also a "Trail of Screams" sign on the utility pole near the entrance, but due to the dark red letters, it didn't really stand out.  If you are coming from the North, trees may obscure the view of the arrow sign, so you might miss the turn if you aren't looking carefully.  If you follow Mapquest directions, you should have no trouble finding this event. 
Wait Entertainment: There were a couple of actors interacting with the crowd.  One of them was a character on stilts that reminded me of the monster from the movie "The Village"
Admission Price: $10.00

30 Minutes *  
= Since people move through haunted attractions at different rates, your time will vary.

Scare Factor: High
Crowd Control: Crowd control was great.  I never ran into any other groups.


The tour through the Trail of Screams began in the Haunted Manor, with an open casket scene. Patrons were read the rules in a creepy video played on a flat-screen television inside the casket. After that, the tour continued through the rest of the rooms of the manor, which were all highly detailed. The covered ceilings made the rooms darker,  more creepy and claustrophobic. After passing through the manor, the rest of the tour continued outdoors.

This season there were no tour guides. One of the people in our group was given a flashlight and we were told to make our own way through the woods, following the path laid-out by rope stretched along either side of the trail.  The dark wooded area was creepy enough and having no guide definitely made the tour even creepier. Along the winding path, there were various scenes set up for us to explore. The Circus Sideshow was entertaining. To enter the scene, patrons had to crawl through a box on the side of the building. Once inside, there were glowing UV-reactive paint splatters, as well as clown characters painted on the walls. Three evil clowns taunted us until we made it to the exit. I enjoyed the Butcher Shop that featured intestines and a side of beef hanging from the ceiling. There were also shrink-wrapped packages of body parts like eyes, brains and hearts. The packages even had printed “Cannibal Meat Market” labels on them. I thought that was a nice touch. In another room there were white ceramic tile walls that were smeared with blood. As we entered the scene, an actress jumped out of a hiding spot yelling “Help! He’s going to kill me!”. Among the other scenes, my favorite had to be the old farm house. While walking through the living room, bedroom and especially the kitchen, it reminded me a little of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre. In the kitchen there were saws on the wall, as well as body parts and blood streaks everywhere.  This scene was very detailed and the actors were especially convincing. 

The Trail of Screams group definitely took it up a notch this year. The actors’ performances were more intense and believable than they were last season. The actors has great costumes and make-up that was consistent with the scenes they were in.  They had an adequate amount of actors in the scenes, but elsewhere that was not the case. It would have been nice if there were a couple of more surprises / actors in the walking paths between scenes, as there were quite a few dead areas along the trail (no pun intended).

Oh, keep in mind that you should wear comfortable shoes when attending the Trail of Screams, as there is a considerable amount of walking required.

Kudos to the Trail of Screams crew. They did a great job this year. This event is a great value, providing a 30 minute tour for only $10.  I really liked the idea of eliminating the guides, as it made for a creepier experience overall. Be sure to add this event to your list of Haunt visits this season.

Click here to find out more about this event.




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