If you're looking for a "traditional" haunted house, full of actors disguised as monsters that jump out at you and sets out of horror movies, this is not it. If, however, you are looking for an off the wall, much more personal journey through one man's somewhat demented mind and genuinely haunted home, then this show is for you. If you were to mix together Ripley's Believe It or Not, an art exhibit, a haunted house, a parade of homes tour, a one man stand up comedy routine, a night spent around the campfire telling ghost stories, and a history class, you might be somewhere in the ballpark of Raven's Grin Inn. Maybe.
You start your journey in the living room of the home, which doesn't sound so scary, but after you've listened to Jim Warfield, the evil genius behind the haunt, spin the tales of true life ghost stories that have taken place right in the very same dimly lit room you're sitting in, things will start to get a little creepier. From there you'll be guided through the "home" where you'll laugh, probably scream a little, and feel a lot like a kid in a very macabre playground. There are many, many rooms, props, sight-gags, and hiding places Jim uses to keep you on your toes. There aren't many traditional startle scares, but those that are there work very well. The majority of this show is Jim, his comedy, and his creations. He makes a specific point of this right at the start of the show--that his goal isn't to terrify you or to cause eternal nightmares--but to instead give you a great show. And that he does!
Word to the wise, go with a group of friends that know how to laugh at good and bad jokes alike and have a good time, even in the oddest of circumstances. The group you're with at Raven's Grin Inn can really set the tone for the entire experience.
If you're looking for a long show, try to go on a week night or during the off season. We were treated to a three hour tour on a somewhat slow night, which was a lot of fun, but can get a little tiring as there is a lot of walking, crawling, and sliding to do in the house. From what we have read, during a busier night, tours tend to last 1 to 1.5 hours---but we were very happy with our "3 Hour Tour"!
Overall, Raven's Grin Inn is a one-of-a-kind experience that you can't really label a "haunted house" in the traditional sense of the word. It's really more of a creepy full-immersion experience, a very macabre show and tour through the eyes and mind of Jim Warfield, who is as unique and fun as they come. In our opinion, this is a show not to be missed--but definitely be ready for something very... very... different...
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