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Read Other 2014 Haunt Reviews's
2014 The Catacombs Review

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The Catacombs
Church Basement
6143 W Irving Park Road
Chicago, IL 60634

Visited: 10/18/14


Reviewed By: The Shadow
Visibility/Location: Very easily found off of Irving Park Road in the Dunning neighborhood of Chicago. The entrance was well-lit and several inflatable tube men guided the way. Street parking was free and ample.
Wait Entertainment: They had Halloween music playing near the entryway and several costumed characters roaming the hallways inside. There was a clown with an axe, a dead santa, someone in a Michael Meyers mask, and an unnerving sheep-head nurse.
Admission Price: $9.00
Parking: Free

10 Minutes *
* = Since people move through haunted attractions at different rates, your time will vary. Note: The time shown here represents the actual time spent moving forward through the attraction. Time spent waiting in queue lines, staging areas, intro scenes, rules rooms and when traffic jams cause patrons to come to a halt, has been subtracted. 

LPR: 3.888
LPR stands for Length/Price Ratio. It represents perceived value of an event, by comparing length vs price of admission. Higher numbers represent more value per dollar. Actual quality and/or entertainment value of an event are not factors in this calculation. Click Here to see how this event compares to others visited this year by the staff of
Scare Factor: Low-Medium
Crowd Control: It appeared they sent in groups of no more than 6-8 at a time. Flow inside the attraction was fine, and we were able to progress through at our own pace.


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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