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Newbie Review Crew Member

Adam (pud27)

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Previous Reviews: 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008

2010 Reviews

Please note: this review is for the 2010 season rather than the current season.

13th Nightmare Haunted House

by pud27 (Newbie Review Crew Member) after attending on Saturday, October 16, 2010 at about 4 p.m.

Fun Factor: Medium Fear Factor: Medium

Review


13th Nightmare, a fundraiser for Dare to Dream Children’s Theatre, is a brand new haunted house located in an old church in downtown Manitowoc. While the haunt is brand new, the people in charge of art direction are anything but. They have experience with other haunts and it shows through from the minute you descend into the catacombs. 

13th Nightmare has a double edged sword when it comes to their location. They are in a mostly residential neighborhood loud music and noise outside are pretty much out, as is the heavy drive by visibility some haunts get. What they do have is a kick ass building. What’s better than a haunted house being in an old building? When that building is an old church building (steeple and all!). Maybe it’s just me, but hearing someone freak out about the devil coming while you’re standing on the altar is almost mind blowing.

Fortunately for us (and unfortunately for them) there was no line when we got there. We chatted with the people running the ticket booth while the actor’s got reset and then we made our way in. The wait is outside, but they do have a small canopy for shelter from rain if needed.

The actor’s were really good. I’m not sure if any of them were a part of the theater itself or not, but they seemed like they have had training. I prefer psychological scares over the standard make you scream type scares that are typical, so this was one of my favorites on that regard. I’d rather have actors following me around or acting behind bars freaking me out than people jumping in my face and screaming. They had one of the best Asylum scenes I’ve seen, and with the high ceilings the church provides, the swamp actually felt and looked like you were outside. 

The only problem I had with this haunt was the length. Coming in at around 10 minutes it definitely could have been longer. With such great actors it would be easy to add some more stories/skits to the rooms to make it last longer. We had the opportunity to talk with the directors after the haunt and they mentioned they had more plans that they just ran out of time to do, which in a first year is understandable. They definitely need to work those ideas in for next year.

 Overall this haunt is definitely above average. In some aspects they don’t look even close to a first year haunt, but in others that is evident. You can tell the people in charge really care about this and want to succeed. They really seemed to take to heart our thoughts and ideas. They have a great start already, and I expect even bigger things from this crew next year. I can’t wait to see how they progress!

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Please note: this review is for the 2010 season rather than the current season.

Youth Go's Haunted House (CLOSED IN 2020)

by pud27 (Newbie Review Crew Member) after attending on Friday, October 15, 2010 at about 4 p.m.

Fun Factor: Medium Fear Factor: Medium

Review

My third haunt of the year was Neenah’s Most Haunted; a haunted house fundraiser for a youth drop in center in Neenah called Youth Go. Celebrating 25 years of fear, this attraction has not lost a thing. I have attended this haunt in the past and was impressed by what they do with what they have.  While they do not use animatronics or holograms, their scenes and actors are more than capable of giving you a good time. Nonprofit haunts are refreshing in that they care more about the experience than the “cattle herding” you can experience at some of the more commercial haunts.

Getting to NMH is a little tricky, but if you have directions you should be fine. I came into town from a completely different area than I’m used to so that made a big difference. I did not notice any signs along the way, but once you are upon the haunt you know you’re in the right place. The building they use is an old city garage that looks like it was abandoned. It gives off a pretty good aura.

They do not have an indoor waiting area, so be sure to dress warm if the temps are cool. There are a few actors walking around and getting in your face. One of the best line actors I’ve seen this year was here. He never once broke character as he stared you down. We only had to wait about 7 minutes, and there was only one group ahead of us. They send groups in about 5 minutes apart, but we still ran into the group ahead of us at one point. That’s not necessarily on them; it could have been us going fast or the other group going slow.

The actor’s were very good, especially considering a vast majority of them are probably in their teens. They didn’t break character, and even if we were lost and needed help finding our way they helped get us straight while using it to enhance their characters.

As mentioned above they don’t go all out crazy on expensive pieces of equipment, but they still build a great haunt. They utilize favorites such as dark mazes and a vortex, but also use some original things such as multiple rooms with things hanging from the ceiling. (You’ll think its original when you see it!) This effect makes it easy to get lost at times.

It took us roughly 15 minutes to get through, which I would say is average. Overall with finding a parking spot, getting tickets and waiting in line we were there for around 45 minutes.

At $10 a ticket this a good valued haunted house. It’s fairly family friendly, and it’s wheelchair accessible (the only one I have ever been to that is) so it gives people who don’t necessarily have the chance to go to experience it. Add in the fact that it’s run for a good cause and you have a win-win.

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Please note: this review is for the 2010 season rather than the current season.

Green Bay Fear Haunted Attractions

by pud27 (Newbie Review Crew Member) after attending on Saturday, October 2, 2010 at about 4 p.m.

Fun Factor: High Fear Factor: High

Review


This was my first time visiting Green Bay Fear/Shawano Manor. Even though I'm from the area I've somehow never found myself out there. Boy was I missing out. Located at the Beja Shrine Center on Bond St. right next to Hwy 41 you get a sense of seclusion even in the middle of town. You purchase your tickets and head through the woods to the waiting area.



This weekend was their first weekend of the year, so the crowds were pretty small. When I first saw the facade of the haunt I could have sworn I was in the middle of the woods up north looking at a dilapidated house. These guys have been around for a while and you can tell; they really know what they are doing! Their use of 3d is what they are known for, and they pull it off well. About the time I was thinking that wearing the glasses wasn't worth it, sensory overload kicked in as they upped the ante with their 3d paint.



The haunt is easy enough to get to, however there are no signs until you are there. Its unique location in the city still makes it feel like you are in the middle of nowhere. The whole location gives off a nice aura even in town.



When you first get there you go up to the ticket booth to purchase your ticket before walking through the woods to the waiting area. They have two options for tickets, one is your basic $13 admission and the other is $23 RIP admission. The RIP admission includes a waiting area with hot chocolate, a bonfire, a live band and a t shirt. The regular admission does not, however it's pretty close by so you can still see and hear the band. There was no wait when we were there so it's hard to say what kind of entertainment they might have when it's busy.



The actors were great from start to finish. The first person we encountered on the way to the house was the bride, and she played her character well. Our realtor greeted us at the door and welcomed us to Hell. He advised us we find a place to live seeing as we'll be there for a while. He explained the features and let us on our way. All the actors after this were just as good, from the butcher to Sparkles and her dad and everyone in between. The scenes were really good as well. The use of 3d was perfect, not so much that was overwhelming and not so little that you felt stupid wearing the glasses. The non 3d areas were done just as well, never more evident than in the theater.



It took us around 20 minutes to get through, and we didn't see or hear another group while we were in there. Their crowd control inside and outside was spot on.



With their take on classic scenes, and original scenes of their own they are not to be missed. If you want to spend your money on a haunt that has experience, quality sets and actors, and provides you with a fun time, Green Bay Fear by Shawano Manor is the place to go in Green Bay!

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Please note: this review is for the 2010 season rather than the current season.

Oblivion Haunted House; The Gathering

by pud27 (Newbie Review Crew Member) after attending on Saturday, October 2, 2010 at about 2 p.m.

Fun Factor: High Fear Factor: High

Review


Our first haunt of the year was Oblivion, a brand new haunt located next to the UW Fox Valley campus. Seeing as we were one of the first groups on their second day ever, I was a little concerned it might be too early to review them. Well, any fears on that were put to rest once the real fears started. From start to finish this haunt is done right. The actor's were spot on, the sets were excellent and the overall atmosphere was chilling. This is a very impressive haunt even without it being their second day. If they keep up what they started they will be haunting us for years to come!



Getting there is a breeze, as they really are located minutes off hwy 441 in Menasha as their profile and website say. I did not notice any signs on the freeway, but once you get close they had a sign pointing the way. Their haunt is located in a non-descript warehouse building that they project their name onto at night. As mentioned earlier Oblivion is located right next to the UW Fox Valley campus, which makes it very convenient. They have been using the campus parking lot for their needs while their lot is under development. According to their website they are expecting to have it completed soon.



We were one of the first groups through, so there was not a lot of waiting to do. The wait area didn't seem to have any sort of organization to it, but that could change later in the evening when a line starts to form. Their entrance is a small but detailed facade with the customary light and music show pounding out metal tunes. They have a concession stand and a few actors walking around while you wait. My favorite costume out here was the miner, there's something about a head lamp and breathing apparatus that's kind of freaky!



The actors were great from start to finish. So good in fact that to pick favorites wouldnt be fair. The new mother, the married couple, the factory worker, the insane and everyone else was done to perfection. All the actors fit their scenes perfectly, and vice versa. The sets were elaborate but not overbearing, with lots of blood and gore where it needed to be, and nice and quaint where that was the needed style. Walking through the house it was very hard to tell this was their first weekend ever.



Crowd control is the only sticky point I could see, and even that was minor. We were there too early to know what it's like in the waiting area once a crowd starts to form, but the inside control was a little lacking. We took an average pace throughout and we almost caught the people in front of us and were caught from behind. It's hard to judge too harshly on Oblivion's part as there are a lot of variables that can factor in but the actors could hold some faster groups in their room and torment them for a while if another group was just through. Other than the one time this happened it was great; and it took nearly 20 minutes to get through.



This is a very good haunt, and an excellent value! With times being tough for a lot of people it is still important to get out and have some fun. At $12 ($10 in advance!) you get a very high quality haunt that will leave you wanting more! They are now on my must see list for future years. If they are this good in year one, I can't wait until next year!

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View my 2021 Reviews




March 7th, 2021 5:33 a.m. CST 13.5