Spooky Ranch 2011 Review

Spooky Ranch (Columbia Station, OH)
“Old Enough To Drink”
By Noah Wullkotte: Jollypumpkin@aol.com

Every year City Blood visits Spooky Ranch in Columbia Station, OH. It’s a place where you can get scared, relax, get a bite to eat and just have a good ole spooky time. This is a place where you can bring your entire family and not spend much money on quality entertainment. Our drive up to Spooky Ranch took around 4 hours from Cincinnati, OH. The drive up was more boring than I could ever imagine, but Spooky Ranch is worth it.

The place was packed considering it was before 8 PM and Spooky Ranch had only been open for 40 minutes. The ground was very muddy, but this is how it usually is in Columbia Station, Ohio. So, be prepared and wear your boots. After we parked the car, we walked to the ticket booth which had a line that was a mile long. Spooky Ranch has been around for 21 years and has built a reputation over the years as a great haunted destination for fun. So, don’t be surprised by the large lines at the different haunts and ticket area.

The first haunt we went through that night is Spooky Ranch’s Famous Haunted Hayride. There were around 50 people on the wagon with us and everyone seemed pretty excited. It’s understandable since the weather was great for a crisp fall night and there’s just nothing better than a haunted hayride with ones you love. Spooky Ranch’s Famous Haunted Hayride is a ride through traditional and cutting edge scenes. You’ll travel past a man who sits on the toilet in an outhouse. All I’m going to say is that you will definitely get wet. Other scenes include a pet owner with one vicious dog, a chainsaw ghoul attacking you from above and more. Some scenes have been eliminated from the hayride like the flame shooting pumpkin. Hopefully, it returns next year. It has been one of the rainiest seasons in Columbia Station, OH and the trails were very muddy.

The most exciting part of the hayride is Spooky Ranch’s Haunted Barn. This could be considered a separate attraction on its own and is the most intense and dramatic area of the hayride. After entering a spooky looking barn with a large door that magically opens, you’ll enter a dark and scary barn. This is where the fun really begins. Spooky Ranch’s Haunted Barn has over the top animatronics like a flying vampire bat, a cellar door that shakes violently and a large giant that springs to life. There are some surprises that I won’t give away. All I can say is that the wagon is part of the horror show inside the barn.

The Haunted Hayride lasts around 20 minutes and is very exciting. After hopping off the wagon, we were ready for Crazy Clowns 3D. But, all we could hear were girls screaming because Matthew Underwood from Nickelodeon’s Zoey 101 was there signing autographs. I’m not a fan, but I’m not a young teenage girl either. Crazy Clowns 3D is a 3D attraction with beautiful artwork and scenes centered around the circus, the carnival, clowns and an array of different themes. Put your 3D glasses on and let this haunt come alive in full 3D. Like I just said, Crazy Clowns 3D has beautiful artwork in just about every room you enter. You’ll walk through a cemetery, an Egyptian temple, a fun house, etc. The actors are very enthusiastic and some even shoot you with air guns. I thought that was a nice touch. The Haunt lasts around 10 minutes, but could be less or more depending on your pace.

Last, but certainly not least is Extreme Nightmares. Extreme Nightmares is the most intense attraction at Spooky Ranch. It’s also the best designed. The majority of attractions at the farm have incredible facades that were built by co-owner Derek Vitas. He used wood from Ashburn Trees and built the facades from ground up. It’s pretty amazing what this guy can do. Extreme Nightmares starts off with a confrontation with Rat Man who has an intense bond with furry creatures. If you have a fear of small rodents, then you’ll be freaked out in the first room. Will you have the courage to kiss the rat? This scene starts the haunt off right and the rest of Extreme Nightmares is a blast.

Extreme Nightmares features highly detailed scenes and many scary surprises. The makeup at the majority of the haunts at Spooky Ranch is pretty impressive and that includes Extreme Nightmares. This haunt has scenes like a forest that’s inhabited by a large rat creature, a graveyard and even an outside storage room that has a hidden door in a coffin. This is a great haunt that lasts close to 15 minutes. It was the highlight of my Spooky Ranch Experience and hopefully you’ll feel the same way.

Haunted Houses can be a little scary for young children, so Spooky Ranch offers a small fun house that is appropriately called Funny Fun House. This attraction is meant to entertain young children and those that are young at heart. It’s similar to the old style fun houses that used to be at carnivals. You’ll walk past fun house mirrors, travel through a vortex tunnel and enjoy flashing lights and colorful scenes. After you are done with all of the attractions, don’t forget to buy something good to eat or drink at the concessions area. Spooky Ranch has French Fries, funnel cakes, hot chocolate and more. It’s a carnival atmosphere at Spooky Ranch for sure.

Spooky Ranch even has a Halloween store with t-shirts, crafts, masks and more. During the daytime, you can bring your child to the Rockin’-R-Ranch for the Old West Pumpkin Fest. This event takes place every Saturday and Sunday from noon until 5pm. Visit www.clevelandhayride.com for more information. Ticket prices for the attractions at Spooky Ranch range from $10-$18. Please visit www.spookyranch.com for all of the details. Spooky Ranch is a fantastic Halloween event that you need to bring your family and friends to. Don’t miss out!

Final Stab For Each Haunt
The Famous Haunted Hayride (Includes Haunted Barn)
Length-9  Design-8  Props/Animatronics-9  Acting-8  Scare Effect-8  Final Stab: 8.4

Extreme Nightmares
Length-8  Design-9  Props/Animatronics-8  Acting-9  Scare Effect-9  Final Stab: 8.6

Crazy Clowns 3D
Length-7  Design-7  Props/Animatronics-7  Acting-7  Scare Effect-7  Final Stab: 7.0