In­ter­ac­tiv­ity part of Hal­loween fun

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - LIFE - By Beth J. Harpaz

Vir­tual re­al­ity, spooky Airbnb rentals and the start of a fi­nal sea­son for Dis­ney­land’s Twi­light Zone of Ter­ror are all part of this Hal­loween’s freaky fun.

Here’s a sam­ple of what’s hap­pen­ing around the coun­try. Check with in­di­vid­ual venues for dates, times, prices and ages.


It’s the fi­nal Hal­loween sea­son for Twi­light Zone of Ter­ror at Dis­ney­land in Ana­heim, California. If you visit af­ter twi­light, you’ll get a chance to free fall in the haunted el­e­va­tor shaft in to­tal dark­ness. The tower closes for good Jan. 2.

Also at Dis­ney­land this sea­son is the “Fright­fully Fun Pa­rade” at Mickey’s Hal­loween Party, fea­tur­ing grin­ning ghosts, Dis­ney vil­lains and the head­less horse­man from Sleepy Hol­low. Two other at­trac­tions have been given hol­i­day makeovers: Space Moun­tain is Space Moun­tain Ghost Galaxy and Haunted Man­sion is now Haunted Man­sion Hol­i­day, com­bin­ing themes from Hal­loween and Christ­mas.

In ad­di­tion, there’s a gi­ant Mickey Mouse jack-’o-lantern on the theme park’s Main Street, U.S.A., and the Mex­i­can “Dia de los Muer­tos” tra­di­tion is cel­e­brated with a skele­ton dis­play in Fron­tier­land, near Ran­cho del Zocalo restau­rant.

In Lake Buena Vista, Florida, Walt Dis­ney World hosts Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Hal­loween Party, Mickey’s Boo-To-You Hal­loween Pa­rade and a green-and-orange fire­works dis­play called Hal­loWishes.


Hal­loween Hor­ror Nights at Uni­ver­sal Stu­dios Hol­ly­wood in Los Angeles in­clude the trans­for­ma­tion of the theme park’s fa­mous tram ride into a “Ter­ror Tram,” themed on the story of a celebrity clown turned mur­derer, created by hor­ror-genre film­maker Eli Roth. The Hol­ly­wood park also fea­tures a “Walk­ing Dead” at­trac­tion that opened this past sum­mer.

New for Hal­loween at Uni­ver­sal Orlando Re­sort is The Re­pos­i­tory, a vir­tual re­al­ity ex­pe­ri­ence in which par­tic­i­pants undo an an­cient curse by fol­low­ing clues through rooms in an old ware­house.

Hal­loween Hor­ror Nights at Uni­ver­sal parks on both coasts also fea­ture haunted houses, scare zones and freaky mazes. Many at­trac­tions are themed on hor­ror films like “The Ex­or­cist” and “The Texas Chain Saw Mas­sacre.”

Zom­bies, Vir­tual Re­al­ity and More

Ac­cord­ing to the Haunted At­trac­tion As­so­ci­a­tion, tech­nol­ogy and in­ter­ac­tive ex­pe­ri­ences are play­ing a big­ger role in Hal­loween than ever be­fore, with es­cape rooms, vir­tual re­al­ity mon­sters and zom­bie bat­tles.

It’s Fright Fest sea­son at Six Flags parks. At Six Flags Over Ge­or­gia in Austell, Ge­or­gia, in ad­di­tion to mazes, scare zones and more than 400 zom­bies and mon­sters, guests can don VR head­sets to ex­pe­ri­ence an in­ter­ac­tive vir­tual re­al­ity roller coaster, Rage of the Gar­goyles at Dare Devil Dive, that in­cludes a sim­u­lated heli­copter ride and a fu­tur­is­tic bat­tle with gar­goyles.

At Eastern State Pen­i­ten­tiary in Philadel­phia, the “Ter­ror Be­hind the Walls” at­trac­tion chal­lenges guests to be­come part of the story of es­cap­ing what was once an ac­tual pri­son. Guests can ei­ther ex­plore the pri­son and watch, or they can mark them­selves for in­ter­ac­tion with the freaky pris­on­ers.

At Creepy Hol­low Haunted House out­side Hous­ton, guests can play a vir­tual re­al­ity zom­bie first­per­son shooter game wear­ing VR head­sets. The Fear Fac­tory in Salt Lake City of­fers a VR haunted house. Lake EERIE Fear Fest at Ghostly Manor Thrill Cen­ter in San­dusky, Ohio, of­fers five haunted houses in­clud­ing “The Haunted Mine Ride,” a mo­tion-the­ater ex­pe­ri­ence us­ing VR tech­nol­ogy to cre­ate a roller coaster with 4-D ef­fects.


This un­dated im­age pro­vided by Eastern State Pen­i­ten­tiary in Philadel­phia shows a scene from the site’s “Ter­ror Be­hind the Walls” Hal­loween at­trac­tion.

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