‘We’re into mak­ing mon­sters’

Screams are fair game at Phan­tom’s FreakShow haunt

Annapolis Valley Register - - NEWS - KINGSCOUNTYNEWS.CA GREEN­WICH Sara.Eric­s­son@kingscountynews.ca

You are fair game to get haunted the sec­ond you stand in line at Phan­tom’s FreakShow.

The psy­cho­log­i­cal games start at the very be­gin­ning, ac­cord­ing to haunt de­signer Aaron Peer­less.

Ev­ery step you take, and ev­ery scream you make, they’ll be watch­ing you.

“Peo­ple know the FreakShow now. We of­ten see com­ments on­line like, ‘I don’t know if I can do this again this year,’ be­cause peo­ple are so scared,” he says.

Peer­less and his part­ner, Jaimie Corbin, be­gin work on the event’s pro­duc­tion six months be­fore Hal­loween. Corbin over­sees cos­tume pro­duc­tion and makeup de­sign, while Peer­less works to craft a blue­print on how to piece the whole scene to­gether.

He says Corbin can spend up to 3.5 hours get­ting each ac­tor into full cos­tume and makeup - some­thing the cou­ple, who co-own Kentville’s Phan­tom Ef­fects, takes pride in.

The event is the stuff of night­mares, caus­ing many a screams at Stir­ling’s in Green­wich, the haunt­ing lo­ca­tion for the past four years. Peer­less says he ac­tu­ally finds scar­ing peo­ple “ther­a­peu­tic,” so it’s safe to as­sume he’ll do plenty of scar­ing again this month.

“It’s not very of­ten you get to open your mouth and shout ‘Wel­come to the FreakShow, you meat­bag,” he laughs.

“We’re into mak­ing mon­sters, so it’s fun, and it’s what we do best.”

The event had its best-yet open­ing night this year, says Peer­less, and stayed open an ex­tra 30 min­utes to ac­com­mo­date line­ups. He owes part of that to the new and im­proved corn maze, which has been shrunk and made “more po­tent,” with 12 haunteers fol­low­ing peo­ple around as they make their way through.

The event also in­cludes sec­tions like cathe­drals and liv­ing rooms, each with its own psy­cho­log­i­cal trig­gers that get peo­ple go­ing.

“We don’t have a story that the haunted house fol­lows – it’s more of a ran­dom thing, and that’s what scares peo­ple the most,” says Peer­less.

The event also raises money for the IWK Hos­pi­tal in Hal­i­fax.


Aaron Peer­less and Jaimie Corbin of Phan­tom Ef­fects, a spe­cial ef­fects busi­ness in Kentville, have cre­ated an­other haunt­ing FreakShow this year, and say they had their best-ever open­ing week­end this year.

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