Last week, I had the pleasure of attending Knott’s Scary Farm 2013‘sÂ Preview/Media event. Coincidentally, my bladder control was also tested.
This year marks the 41st year of Knott’s Scary Farm! Hey, there’s something older than me! Yeah! (Just barely.) The Charles M Schulz Theater hosted not only media but season passholders who waited in line in the morning for a wristband and then came back to wait in line to get in! Talk about a ton of dedicated Spooky fans!
I brought a notebook to write notes. Without further ado, this is what’s in store for 2013:
Who was there to showcase:
- Jeff Tucker – Supervisor of Park Shows
- Brooke Walters – (Design Supervisor) Dominion of the Dead; Trick or Treat
- Lara Hanneman -Â (Director of Entertainment Technical)
- Daniel Miller – Â (Design Specialist) Pinocchio: Unstrung; Delirium; Black Magic
- Timothy “Gus” Krueger – (Design Specialist) Dude. With a last name like Krueger… Uncle Willy’s Slaughterhouse; Endgames
- Pinocchio: Unstrung – If I were Pinocchio, I’d be pissed too, and I’d bring my army of puppets to exact revenge.
- Delirium – The stuff of nightmares. Well, a crazy girl’s nightmares.
- Trick Or Treat – What’d I tell you about witches?
- Uncle Willy’s Slaughterhouse – I think this name says it all.
- End Games – Think “Running Man” and “Gladiator” mushed together with a lot more gory death.
But wait, there’s more. The Design Team combined their magically twisted powers to create new and more terrifying mazes to spook the crap out of you.
- Dominion of the Damned – Vampires… and PS – they will not be sparkling…Â
- Forevermore – Inspired by… who else?… Edgar Allan Poe. This guy. He bugged me in 9th grade English. Now he’s back.
- Black Magic – Inspired by Houdini. (Have I ever told you that magicians creep me out?)
- The Gunglinger’s Grave – Maybe their inspiration was Young Guns II. That was scary.
- Mirror, Mirror – This is going to be a maze maze – ie. not just a pathway for you to walk. You will have to figure out how to get out. If I had to go through this, I’d be so screwed.
(I have a video on Instagram if you’d like to hear a short segment.)
Last year, for their 40th anniversary, Knott’s debuted a maze called TRAPPED. Despite the fact that it was an additional charge to experience it, Trapped was sold out all season long. FYI, Trapped had a safe word. (Boysenberry.) I don’t know about you but if you have to use a safe word (hello, 50 Shades dorks), it’s pretty serious. Jeff Tucker mentioned that in some instances, guests called out “boysenberry” in the first 12 seconds of entering the first room!
So it’s back… Trapped: The New Experiment. It will be longer. It will be scarier. It will be based on “new fears” and puzzles. (OH SH*T was my reaction.) There will be a new safe word. (I hope it’s “Schroeder”!) I’d Â like to meet someone who is going to version 2.0, and shake his/her hand for the giant-sized ovaries they have.
Jeff asked the designers what scared them.
- Brooke: Fish in large bodies of water. (Sharknado, anyone?)
- Daniel: Not much.
- Gus: Claustrophobia. (He also mentioned his wife in charge of the checkbook, and he got boo’d for that.)
- Laura: Grasshoppers.
- and for Jeff: Channing Tatum movies (Hahahahaha! I like this guy.)
Outside of the mazes, Knott’s will also have a ton of scare zones. (What else would you call the areas in-between mazes?) Laura Hanneman shared with us four zones:
- Ghost Town – Cursed cowboys (again, see first photo)
- CarnEvil Clowns – Clowns. Nothing scarier than clowns.
- Necropolis – Steampunky Vampires (oooh… wait, no. I value my life.)
- Village of the Dead – Dia de los Muertos x 10000000
There will also be Live Shows and Entertainment around the park…
- Cursed Dancers
- Carny Trash
- Blood Drums
- The Hanging (In my notes, I wrote down “fae hanging” – something with fairies… or fairy tales)
Then our surprise guest came up on the stage! Elvira! Mistress of the Dark! If you don’t know who she is, you can suck it. When I was a kid, I used to watch Elvira’s afternoon movie show on weekends. That’s how I discovered Ghoulies, Puppet Master, and other not-kid-appropriate horror movies.
Elvira is coming back to Knott’s Scary Farm with a brand new show Sinema Seance… after a 12-year hiatus!
Let me show you how crowded the theater was for this preview. This photo is only part of the auditorium.
The preview ended, and the media was invited to a reception to interview monsters, designers, and Elvira.
As I opened the door to the reception, I wasn’t paying attention, and THIS GUY scared the living daylights out of me. I might have peed in my pants a little… and screamed.
Honestly, I could not relax at this reception. I was so tense, trying to not be scared of these monsters who were roaming around. It’s not like I could run away. And there was still light out.
I had a quick chat with the event team leader. These monsters (below) are senior monsters – they’ve been around the block/maze before. There are 1,000 monsters hired during the Knott’s Scary Farm season. They’ve started applications and the re-hire process for the monsters. (Actor auditions are on July 27:Â https://www.knotts.com/haunt/jobs)Â Good luck!
Side note: On my Instagram photo, two makeup artists who created these looks commented on my pic. Follow them if you want to see more Knott’s Scary makeup!
I ended my night with a glimpse of Elvira, about 50 feet away from me. *swoon* The woman of the hour was bombarded by photographers, bloggers, journalists, and other media as she walked to her throne. Seriously, she does not age. *jealous*
Major thanks to the team at Knott’s for inviting me to this Knott’s Scary Farm 2013 press preview!Â
Here’s the info on Knott’s Scary Farm:
Pre-sale Online Tickets range from $38 to $54 per person, depending on what night you choose. (Day of price is $62/pp.)
Trapped: The New Experiment is an additional fee and you will need to reserve a time. Tickets aren’t available yet (at time of press) but be sure to check back on Knott’s Scary Farm’s FB Page or website for updates.
Opening night is September 26th – hey! My birthday! Oh the irony! Then it’s on for almost all Friday-Saturday nights, through November 2. (Check the website for exact dates and times.)
Here is where I tell you to use your brain:
** You can make fun of me about being scared any time, all the time – I’m an adult. But look, fair warning – I would not bring a child to Knott’s Scary Farm. Obviously, you know your child better than I do, so use good judgement if you decide this is going to be a family affair. Child trauma, even in a “safe” environment, is not funny. **
Disclosure: I was invited by the Knott’s PR/social team to preview this event. No monies were exchanged though maybe they should buy me new underwear and a bigger set of ovaries. The above is my honest opinion and review. DUH.