USS Nightmare Birthday Celebration 2011

USS Nightmare’s Birthday Celebration
By Noah Wullkotte/
Thursday, September 1st City Blood was cordially invited to USS Nightmare’s birthday celebration. The classic haunted steamboat has been in operation for 20 years and has made drastic improvements that helped it become City Blood’s 2010 Haunt of The Year and get recognized nationally.

When we first arrived we figured that this would be a typical media event where you sit down in a well lit room with other peers involved in the haunt industry while enjoying some food and refreshments before taking a tour of the haunt. I was dead wrong.

When I  initially received the invitation to this event, I thought it was a little peculiar that I was only allowed to bring one guest, but I would soon find out why. We arrived at USS Nightmare close to 7 and Jason Ervin was there ready to greet us at the entrance ramp. We figured we were going to be entering the mess hall party room where events are usually held, but this wasn’t the case.

This one of a kind celebration took place inside the Captain’s dining room. Yes, we were allowed inside the dinning room scene, got to sit down at the actual table and be part of USS Nightmare’s 20th anniversary. The room was almost pitch black and the other guests were interesting to say the least.

The Captain’s daughter Anna sat directly across from me while the captain sat there calmy as he creeped the hell out of me. Mitchell didn’t look very well since his skin was decaying and he looked like he had just been freshly dug up from the grave. Anna was dressed like a doll baby and kept giving me the stink eye throughout the night. Even grandma and grampa joined the festivites along with the help Jason or whatever his name was. I think the last poor unfortunate soul who was hired as help was murdered or let go.Grandma and grampa might have been rotting skeletons, but they were still interesting dinner guests none the less. Grandma still had a youthful glow to her after all of these years and you could tell that grandpa was a lady’s man in his time. Classical music played to lighten the mood.

The food and refreshments for the evening included water, wine, baby chickens, sushi, vegetables, fresh rolls and a plethora of tasty treats including a custom cake made just for USS Nightmare’s 20th anniversary. I could have been eating rat meat for all I knew since the only source of light in the room was from the flashing chandalier above, a candleabra and the birthday candles. The custom cake featured a bloody skull and minature chocoloate skulls. I thought it was a little strange that City Blood were the only ones eating and drinking, but thankfully I survived.

After the celebration was over we got to take a full tour of the boat and see what was new for the 2011 haunt season. I won’t go into detail about all of the exciting additions, but I will say that this year’s USS Nightmare may possibly be one of its best. Many areas that the public has never seen before are now open with some surprises along the way. It was interesting exploring the boat without any actors and letting the spookyness of the boat tell the story. I can’t tell you how many times I walked the wrong way because I wasn’t used to the boat being so silent and dark.

For me September 1st will go down as one of the most unique experiences I’ve had at a haunt in my 8 years of reviewing them. I truly thank The Captain, Allan Rizzo, Anna, Jason Ervin, the cook (aka Pumpkin Butt), the help, Steve Schreibeis and all the restless souls that still reside at USS Nightmare.

For more information on USS Nightmare, please visit
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