Bookmark and Share  















The Asylum Haunted Scream Park –Attraction Review

Review by Nic Brown

 

Halloween has been my favorite holiday as long as I can remember. I love horror, I’m interested in the paranormal and the fall is my favorite season. Add it all up and Halloween is a perfect fit. Even as a kid I loved the holiday, a time when you could play dress-up all day and even get candy for your trouble! What a great idea. Of course it was only later that I learned the origins of many of the traditions of the season, but rather than detracting from the fun, the darker history behind the holiday’s fun just added to it.

 

One of my favorite things to do each year at Halloween is take in some of the haunted attractions. I love a good scare as much as the next person and a Haunt can fit the bill nicely. This year I decided to go for more bang for my buck and less traveling by giving The Asylum Haunted Scream Park a go. I’d first learned about The Asylum from a documentary film called “Monsters Wanted” which followed Richard Teachout and Janelle Nash as they sank their life’s savings and a lot of hopes and dreams into creating not just one ‘haunted house’ but four distinct attractions at one location. After seeing the blood, sweat and tears that they put into getting the park up and going, I knew it would be one I had to visit.

 

The park opens for business each year around the middle of September and runs on Friday and Saturday nights through the weekend before Halloween. Most of the park’s attractions are outdoors and that does make for some problems if the weather doesn’t cooperate. In fact this year they lost three of their scheduled open dates due to heavy rains. However, on the Saturday evening when I visited, the weather was perfect; unseasonably warm temperatures meant that I didn’t even need a jacket.

 

The Asylum Haunted Scream Park is located just south of metropolitan Louisville, Kentucky, off of Interstate 65. The last mile of the drive adds to the spooky atmosphere as you leave the lights of the city behind and enter a more secluded region. Parking is not a problem at the attraction, although the lot is not paved. Upon entering you can immediately see the park’s first attraction, a free carnival-style midway running along one side of the park. It features nightmare versions of traditional carnival games including the ‘poop shoot’ and zombie target practice. There are also vendor booths, and a small stage which has a freak show running on it. Costumed cast members constantly move among the crowds to help pass the time while waiting to get into each of the park’s three paid attractions: Exterminate: Zalien Attack; Darkness Falls, and Zombie City.

 

Exterminate: Zalien Attack is a fun concept that is much more interactive than your typical ‘walk through’ attraction. This one is based on the film “Overtime” and has guests fighting their way through a warehouse/laboratory filled with zombie/aliens. The attraction has the feel of something you would expect from Universal Studios or Disney (with more violence and horror aspects of course). The park worked with the filmmakers to create the attraction and it features a video introduction by the cast of “Overtime” including one of the film’s stars, professional wrestler Al Snow. Once inside, guests are given their weapons, paintball guns without the ammunition. Thus armed, visitors make their way through the warehouse’s interior where zaliens wait to attack. The group must fight their way through and the zaliens go down when shot, but be careful, if you don’t shoot them, they might just get you.

 

Then there is Darkness Falls. This is the most traditional of The Asylum Scream Park’s attractions. It’s a 40 acre walk through a haunted trail. There are several things that make this attraction fun. One is its length; visitors spend 30-40 minutes walking though the attraction. Different points feature different themes and according to the guide at the start of the attraction, the themes and layouts change from year to year to keep it fresh. This year’s trail included the usual jump scares, but also a number of unique surprises including a slide tube guests must follow to escape an evil clown house, performers on zip lines who provide unexpected aerial scares, and perhaps the most interesting of all, a church that appears to have been possessed by something other than the ‘Holy Spirit’. Overall a good trail type haunt with plenty of quality sets, make-up for the actors and effects.

 

The final paid attraction at The Asylum Scream Park is Zombie City. This was my favorite of the haunt’s attractions because it had something that I found unique compared to other haunts I’ve attended: it had a story and was interactive.


Guests enter Zombie City in your typical small group setting, 5-8 people seemed to be the norm. An Army officer, looking a lot the worse for wear from his close proximity to the infected, warns the group about entering the city and provides more ominous back story including the source of the infestation, the Pandora virus, and the fact that the army tried to nuke the site, but the bomb didn’t go off.

 

Another guide, this one a ‘freelancer’ shows up and confronts the army representative. They scuffle and the group has to hurry into the next area as our army host becomes much less friendly and more zombie-like. The zombie bounty hunter type is the group’s guide through the city. At one point the group meets the doctor behind Pandora and he presents the group with a vial containing the only sample of a cure for the virus. The person holding the vial is instructed to get the serum to the CDC representative waiting at the other side of the city. Then one of the group has to volunteer to help end the Dr’s misery as he’s infected. This kind of interaction is unusual for a haunt and the theme of the attraction takes on an even more narrative feel with the ‘quest’ aspect. This is enhanced further by several acted out scenes that happen as the group moves though the city and it culminates with handing over the antidote and being chased away by the hoard of infected. Definitely a fun experience thanks to the quality of the sets, the well developed storyline, good actors and good make-up effects.

 

Overall, the Asylum Haunted Scream Park is a fun Halloween haunt that provides enough different attractions to keep guests entertained even when they are waiting in line for some of the main features. It is unfortunate that the haunt is vulnerable to inclement weather and guests should come dressed appropriately for spending several hours outdoors. That said, the organizers have put on a first class haunt that provides good scares and lots of entertainment for a reasonable price. So if you’re looking for a good Halloween haunt check out The Asylum Haunted Scream Park… if you dare!

Get more info and tickets by visiting their website: http://www.asylumhaunts.com

 

 


Listen to a Bestseller for $7.49 at Audible.com