2012 Haunt Awards

Season In Review: Rain, Rain, Go Away!
By Noah Wullkotte

Boy, it rained a lot this year. It seemed like it rained cats and dogs every weekend no matter where we went. I can’t tell you how many times City Blood had to change its schedule because of bad weather, but at the end of the season we still ended up touring the most haunts we had ever been to. City Blood toured many haunts we’ve never experienced like Wayne Ave. Haunted Butcher House, Scaredown, Scare Fair, The 7th Street Haunt, The Barber Haunt, The Fear Experience, Cobb’s Haunt and 13 Rooms of Doom.

We also met a lot of great people and a ghost or two. I’m sure Roy is still haunting the old O.C Barber Pig Barn in Barberton, Ohio. We even experienced some paranormal activity this season at USS Nightmare. We were taking pictures inside the boat when all of a sudden our camera and handheld recorder malfunctioned. The equipment started working properly once we exited the boat. It could have been a coincidence, or it could have been spirit activity. No one knows for sure. City Blood had a lot of close calls this season. I was head butted, tackled, hit in my ribs, had a tree branch smack me in the head and a piece of wood broke off of a window and hit me in the cheek. It was a very violent season and I’m thankfully ok.

Haunts all over Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana got great exposure this season. USS Nightmare was featured on an episode of Travel Channel’s Making Monsters and Spooky Ranch was ranked one of the best haunts in the nation by Hauntworld Magazine. This was a first time for Spooky Ranch and a long time coming. Not all exposure was great though. St. Rita’s Haunted House had $1,600 stolen from their ticket booth and there are still no suspects. If you would like to help out then please click here to donate.

It was a very funny season. We dealt with drunks, customers scared out of their minds and a couple of women who wore high heels into haunts. Yes, I said high heels. One of these women had to take off her high heels so she could walk across a draw bridge. Boy, she looked like an idiot. The drunks were out in full force this year and caused havoc everywhere they went. We had one slam their door into the side of our car and all hell broke lose. It was an ugly situation, but could have been much worse. This was an interesting season with many crazy things that happened. We even saw a church protesting against Fright Manor, the next door haunt. They were tempting customers with free snacks and had their loud choir music blaring. It was kind of funny since the church was located in between a bar and a haunted house. The church must be losing their mind, what’s left of it at least.

The Ghostbusters Ecto 1 made quite a few appearances this season. We saw it at The Scare-A-Torium in Dublin, Ohio and The Dent Schoolhouse in Cincinnati, OH. It made its most dramatic entrance at The Dent Schoolhouse. The crowd went wild as the famous car was escorted by police as they drove down the road and parked in front of The Dent Schoolhouse. Bright lights flashed and the famous Ghostbusters horn and theme song could be heard from a mile away. The Ghostbusters would have had a field day at Scaredown in Waynesville, OH. We got a chance to take a small tour of their haunted farm house (aka Devil House) which was closed to the general public because of extreme paranormal activity. One of the workers was actually shoved down some steps and refuses to work inside. Next year, they plan on having the farm house open for ghost tours.

I could call this the year of interactive props because there were so many haunts that featured props that made contact with customers or made customers part of the action. There were monster snakes, a giant hand, spinning cages, coffin rides, an electric chair simulator, demon heads that attack, multiple hellevators and lots more. The props weren’t the scariest part of this year’s haunt season. There were some very spooky locations. I can’t forget the scary sounds we heard while trying to find our way out of Cobb’s Haunt, a Louisville cornfield. We heard coyotes, dogs, screams in the distance and crickets. Damn those crickets.

It was an exhausting season and the first time we stayed at a hotel so we wouldn’t have to drive home that night. We also didn’t stop at one single rest stop. We ate the unhealthiest food possible from local diners, gas stations, Fast Food Restaurants and whatever we could get at concession stands. Some of the restaurants were filthy, especially Steak ‘n Shake. They even allowed homeless people to sleep in the restaurant. Some haunt concession stands had interesting food like cheese on a stick, beef stroganoff, frozen buffalo meat and Goetta Dogs. You know you’re in Cincinnati, when they serve Goetta at the local haunt. I couldn’t believe how many Circle Ks Seymour, Indiana had. They had at least 3 in a 2 mile radius. Seymour is officially the Circle K Capital of the world. Well, it is in my mind.

The City Blood Crew had an incredible Halloween and actually had 16 trick or treaters this year instead of 0 in 2011. We also did something very special on Halloween night that we might never have the chance to do again. We saw the original “Halloween” on the big screen and it was like we were seeing it for the very first time. Our haunt season officially ended on Friday, November 2nd. The final two haunts we toured were 13 Rooms of Doom and Mayhem Mansion. We were pleasantly surprised at how resourceful 13 Rooms of Doom was. Many of its props used windshield wiper motors to help them move back and fourth. They also used low voltage lighting and all natural fog juice for their fog machines. Mayhem Mansion was one of the most intense haunts we experienced all year and was incredible considering it was their final weekend.

As I finish this article, I recall a lot of memories. I remember all the great times we had on the road and the early mornings we would come home from a night of haunting. Every time I smell fog, it makes me think of the haunt season. The season is over, but 2012 will never be forgotten. City Blood had one of our best seasons yet and we would like to thank all of the owners, actors and workers at every haunt we toured. We truly appreciate your hospitality and all the blood, sweat and tears you put into your attractions. We would also like to thank the visitors of City Blood. You make us want to keep improving our site and provide you with the best reviews possible.

We are looking forward to the 2013 season. 2013 will mark the 10th year City Blood has been online and we have a lot planned to make it a very special season. We hope everyone has a safe year and enjoys the holidays. Untangle those Christmas lights and get ready for 2013, the year of bad luck.

Spooky wishes,

Haunt of the Year: Fear Fair (Seymour, IN)
For the second year in a row, Fear Fair has become City Blood’s Haunt of the Year. It’s one of those haunts that has incredible set design and aggressive actors. There’s not a single haunt we’ve ever been to that puts as much time and effort into its horror movie re-enactments as Fear Fair has. They’re spot on and the characters are relentless.

For 2012, Fear Fair built a realistic version of downtown Atlanta from the award winning “The Walking Dead” TV series. The downtown scenes are breathtaking and there are flesh eating zombies around every corner. Fear Fair also set up several cameras inside the haunt to record live footage for people to view on Fear Fair’s website. A select few customers were also allowed to wear a Point of View Camera and be recorded as they walked through the haunt. Fear Fair even had a camera set up inside a special room with a zombie animatronic. It snapped a picture of everyone’s reaction as the prop was activated.

The most amazing thing about Fear Fair is that it’s a charity haunt. The majority of the profits are put towards the Seymour Jaycees. Fear Fair has helped the community a lot over the years by providing defibrillators for Seymour’s police and has helped build a school playground. There aren’t enough positive things we can say about Fear Fair and this is why it’s City Blood’s 2012 Haunt of the Year.

Click here to read a full review of Fear Fair.

The Rest of The Top 10:
#2 The Dent Schoolhouse (Cincinnati, OH)
#3 Dead Acres (Pataskala, OH)
#4 The Haunted Hotel (Louisville, KY)
#5 USS Nightmare (Newport, KY)
#6 The Scare-A-Torium (Dublin, OH)
#7 House of the Dead at Terror Town (Maumee, OH)
#8 The Black Bog (Lebanon, OH)
#9 Baxter Avenue Morgue (Louisville, KY)
#10 The Haunted Schoolhouse (Akron, OH)

Congratulations to all of the winners!
Every year City Blood tours as many haunts as possible and we award certain haunts in different categories. We award haunts in everything from best design to the most controversial scene. Only Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana haunts we reviewed in 2012 are considered for The Haunt Awards and these are the results. We congratulate all the haunts who won.

Haunt of the Year
Fear Fair

Best Ohio Haunt
The Dent Schoolhouse

Best Kentucky Haunt
The Haunted Hotel

Best Indiana Haunt
Fear Fair

Best Haunted Hayride
Sandyland Acres Haunted Hayride

Scariest Haunted Trail
The Black Bog

Scariest Scream Park
Land of Illusion Haunted Scream Park

Most Mind Numbing 3D Haunt
Judgment Day 3D at The Factory of Terror

Best Maze
Toxic Trauma at Scare Fair

Most Difficult Maze
Cobb’s Haunt

Most Extreme Haunt
Dead Acres

Most Interactive Haunt
Zombie City at Asylum Haunted Scream Park

Best Charity Haunt
Fear Fair

Best Old School Haunt
Mayhem Mansion

Best Zombie Hunting Experience
Zombie Alley at Fright Manor

Most Entertaining Side Attraction (not a haunt)
Hot Blooded at Kings Island Halloween Haunt

Best Halloween Event (not a haunt)
Caufield’s Halloween Parade

Best Bang For Your Buck
Scare Fair: 3 Haunts and Haunted Cornfield for $15

Most Improved

Best Acting
The Scare-A-Torium

Best Actor
Damien Reaper at The Dent Schoolhouse

Best Actress
Vivian the Cannibal at Fear Fair

Most Aggressive Actor
Demonic Priest at Mayhem Mansion

Best Queue Line Actors

Best Queue Line Actor
Charley Chainsaw at The 7th Street Haunt

Best Queue Line Actress
Zombie With Doll Babies at Literally, a Haunted House

Most Original Character
Mr. Moss (aka Moss Man) at The Black Bog

Best Haunt Mascot
Warren Vanderdark from The Baxter Avenue Morgue

Best Makeup & Costumes
The Dent Schoolhouse

Best Costume
Dungeons of Delhi’s Warlox

Most Horrifying Masks
The Haunted Schoolhouse

Best Mask
Killer Scarecrow at The Black Bog

Best Theming
The Dent Schoolhouse

Best Lighting
The Dent Schoolhouse

Most Authentic Horror Movie Scenes
Fear Fair

Scariest Scene
The Haunted Hotel’s Hellevator 

Most Bone Chilling Scene
Playground Memorial at The Dent Schoolhouse

Most Interactive Scene
Spinning Cage at Wicked Clowns in 4-D (Hauntville)

Funniest Scene
Outhouse Surprise at Spooky Ranch’s Famous Haunted Hayride

Most Original Opening Scene
Dimensions of Darkness’ Killer Theater

Most Controversial Scene
Cursed Church at Dead Acres

Most Jaw Dropping Set
Dracula’s Castle at The Haunted Schoolhouse 

Most Realistic Graveyard
Castle of Fear at Screampark

Best Use of Darkness
Mayhem Mansion

Best Use of Fog
Kings Island Halloween Haunt

Best Use of Chainsaws
Dead Acres

Best Chainsaw Chase
The Haunted Hotel

Most Frightening Back-story

Creepiest Setting
USS Nightmare’s Haunted Steamboat

Most Impressive Facade/Facades
Lake Eerie Fearfest

Best Props
House of the Dead at Terror Town

Most Jaw Dropping Prop
Abominable Snowman at House of the Dead (Terror Town)

Best Pepper’s Ghost Effect
Psycho Manor at Hauntville

Best Sound Design
Industrial Nightmare at The Factory of Terror

Best Signage
Land of Illusion Haunted Scream Park

Best Concession Stand
The Chambers of Horror

Best Halloween Crafts
Sandyland Acres’ Spooky Gift Shop

Coolest Apparel
Land of Illusion Haunted Scream Park

Best Parking (Safest)
Sandyland Acres Haunted Hayride

Cheapest Admission
$5 Ticket at 13 Rooms of Doom

Most Impressive Website
Land of Illusion Haunted Scream Park

Most Professional Haunt Trailer
The Dent Schoolhouse’s Charles In Charge Video

Best Viral Videos
The Dent Schoolhouse

Most Cleavage In One Haunt
Club Blood at Kings Island Halloween Haunt

The What The Hell Award
Old man stroking a poll and smelling panties at The 7th Street Haunt

Click Here For The Audio Version of The Haunt Awards!