Please note: this review is for the 2019 season rather than the current season.
Submitted: Wednesday, October 23, 2019
If you haven't checked out the Milwaukee Bucks new arena, the Fiserv Forum, you're missing out on something special, it's quite an amazing piece of modern architecture. The area surrounding the forum is a treat, in and of itself. The 30 acres surrounding the Fiserv Forum is known as "Deer District", and is home to some great entertainment, including bars and restaurants, you're pretty much guaranteed to have a great time. I was very excited to learn that this year a new haunt took residence in the area and was appropriately named "Fear District". I had to check this out.
The haunt itself it located directly on the Fiserv lot, so it's very easy to find, although if there's an event happening in the arena, good luck with parking (on the night we went country music star Miranda Lambert was playing in the arena, which made parking a little difficult). The haunt is comprised of 3 separate attractions: Vampire Village, Scare Acres, and Dead Man's Wharf. The three haunts aren't all that Fear District has to offer, as there are at least two areas to buy alcoholic beverages (we are in Wisconsin!), some food stands, carnival style games, and other vendors, including a Bucks team store trailer. There were a few actors roaming the area as well.
Let's talk about the haunts! Well, first let's talk admission... Access to all three haunts is just $20, which in comparison to most haunts in the area, that pretty cheap. We started our adventure in Vampire Village. The lines weren't terribly long, so that was a positive. Once we reached the front we were greeted by a ticket taker who explained the rules, soon after a vampire joined him and silently just stared. This haunt was, as you could guess, centered around vampires. There were coffins, smoke machines, all what you would expect given the name. The few actors in this haunt were great for people in the back as they would follow closely and breathe on you when you weren't expecting it. I was first, so I didn't get this experience. This haunt ends with a pretty good curtain maze. We got turned around a couple time, mission accomplished! In all we were in and out of Vampire Village in less than 10 minutes.
The next haunt was Scare Acres, which is a make shift corn "maze" trail. This line was a little longer and a slower moving than Vampire Village. A worker eventually addressed the line and emphasized that we are to not touch the actors, which led us to believe that someone in the haunt didn't abide by this rule, which would explain the longer wait! Scare Acres is a good idea in theory, there were some really good actors playing demented scare crows, hanging bodies, and tied up (fake) livestock, but the fact that the glow of the Fiserv Forum illuminated the trail, not to mention that the giant sign for the arena can be seen by looking up, the illusion was dulled. This one seemed a little longer than the last, but less fun due to the brightness of the area.
Finally we went through Dead Man's Wharf. Unknowingly we saved the best for last. The line was not long at all, so that was nice. Wanted posters for pirates adorn the walls as you wait to enter, but no actors when we were waiting. Because I was up front, I didn't realize it, but a ghost pirate entered the haunt and followed us the entire time! In this haunt you make your way through many of the typical pirate scenes, a bar, a very cool catacombs scene, etc. This haunt had the best jump scares of the three, I think I was startles 3-4 times! This haunt climaxes with a VERY smoky maze of jail bars, and ends with the 'squeeze through those tight nylon air tubes'. This haunt was definitely the most fun, and seemed to be the most lengthy of the three.
In all, I say Fear District has a good base for what it could be in the future. Personally I found it to be a little tame for my liking, but my wife and friend were jumping and screaming quite a bit, so it is perfect for someone who isn't into overboard frights, and the price is just right! I encourage you to attend Fear District and support this new haunt!