Tag: Pennsylvania


Waldorf Estate of Fear
6325 Interchange Road
Lehighton, PA

The haunt that got my adrenaline pumping the most this Halloween season was The Waldorf Estate of Fear.  Even though they told me not to run, I did anyway!  More on that in a bit…  Located in Lehighton, PA, Waldorf is celebrating their 10th terrifying year, with three attractions – a hayride (Terror in the Corn), a group walk-through haunt (The Haunting at the Waldorf Hotel), and new for this year, an interactive zombie experience (Infection) where you don a flag football belt and attempt to juke your way through an onslaught of the undead while keeping your vital organs (three flags representing your brain, heart and lungs) intact.

Is It Scary?

According to the Official Website: “Come find out for yourself!!!

The Raven & Black Cat says: Our competitive nature took over during Infection and it’s hard not to get a jolt when a zombie jumps out at you that you are actively trying to avoid – especially while you’re running for your life!  Between the rush of this experience and some genuinely dark sets in the group haunt, Waldorf delivers solid scares.

What We Loved

Infection was an absolute blast.  Upon entering, we were told not to run and rather to just try to dodge the zombies who were coming for our flags.  I don’t know if it had been a slow night and the ghouls inside were extra hungry, but they seemed to be chasing us harder than I expected and as a result I ran.  I totally ran.  I tried to pull a spin move on one of the zombies coming for me, and I lost my balance and fell on my ass.  As I lay there, my head still spinning from dizziness, I quickly imagined the classic horror movie scenes of a horde of zombies descending on a poor soul, ripping out his innards and having themselves a feast.  Luckily for me, the Jaded Viewer selflessly pulled me off of the ground and saved me and my flags from that sad fate.

After Infection, with our adrenaline pumping, we were greeted at The Haunting at the Waldorf Hotel by James Cudie (spelled CU Die), a cross between a demon bellhop and a stand-up comedian.  It was the start of a terrific trip through a haunted hotel that felt real because it’s built out in a space that was previously a restaurant.  The kitchen set was actually a kitchen.  The bar set was actually a bar.  Beyond the great use of space, the haunt was well paced and the monsters inside interacted with us well.

What Could Be Better

The hayride wasn’t on par with the other two attractions at the haunt.  Things started off on the wrong foot when we were instructed by a giant demon pumpkin not to smoke during the hayride – this could have been handled by attendees who are not supposed to be a part of the show as we were starting.  There were some enjoyable cameos by familiar characters and nice sets, but there was too much reliance on actors screaming as loudly as they could as they mounted the wagon.  I was mostly scared for their vocal cords.

Final Thoughts

The Haunting at the Waldorf Hotel is dark, creative, and one of the better group walk through haunts I experienced this season.  But the star of the show is Infection and it’s a blast for anyone who has ever watched a zombie flick and thought ‘I could dodge those zombies easily.’  Guess what, you can’t!  I may have only lost one flag (I assume it was my brain – I didn’t use it much anyway), but I definitely lost some dignity lying there on the ground.  It’s hard to imagine enjoying being chased by the undead more.

Waldorf Estate of Fear 2014 Season

September 26  – November 1

Ticket Information

  • Terror Package (All 3 Attractions):   $35
  • Scream Package (Any 2 Attractions): $30
  • The Haunting at the Waldorf Hotel Only:  $15
  • Infection Only:  $15
  • Terror in the Corn Hayride Only:  $20
  • VIP Upgrade (Skip to the front of the line): Add $15

Age Requirements

According to the Official Website: “There is no age limit, parents must use their own discretion. Our rule of thumb is 10 and over!”

Additional Information

REVIEW: Field of Screams

Field Of Screams
191 College Avenue
Mountville, PA

Imagine it’s Friday night and you’ve just come home from a long day of work/school/doing nothing and your sweetheart says to you, “I really want to have a local teenager run a chainsaw against the back of my legs, tonight.”  And you say, “I was hoping we could go have Italian sausages and some fried dough.”  And they say, “But I want a demented clown to braid my hair.”  And you say, “But I’ve been practicing throwing softballs at empty bottles in the backyard and I think I could finally win you an over-sized teddy bear.”  This is clearly a tense moment, but then you realize together that there’s a place you could go that would make you both happy and you say in unison: Field of Screams!  Field of Screams (saving relationships since 1993) is a terrific reminder that a little fear can be a whole lot of fun.  With three walk-through haunts (Frightmare Asylum, Den of Darkness and the new outdoors Nocturnal Wasteland), and a top notch hayride, along with a series of horror-themed carnival games and food, there are hours of scare-filled entertainment to be had. I’d offer my services to Field of Screams as a marketing consultant, but with a packed house on the first weekend in October, it’s pretty clear that they’re doing just fine.

Is It Scary?

According to the Official Website: “Live in your nightmares as you journey through each attraction and be prepared for the most horrifying experience of your life because Field of Screams takes fear to a whole new level.”

The Raven & Black Cat says: I saw a woman in a full on sprint being chased by a monster with a chainsaw… out in the main entertainment area!  I also watched the bravest preteen I’ve ever seen go nose to nose with the haunt’s inhabitants and barely blink (she had ice water in her veins!).  I had a few moments of anxiety myself, but more than anything I had a great time throughout.

What We Loved

Right when I entered the Frightmare Asylum, a “patient” snuck up behind me and took my arm like we were on a date.  It was sweet and it felt right, but just before I could ask her to prom, a fellow inmate popped up and screamed in my face.  I was not expecting to be touched and it wasn’t aggressive, but that automatically upped the intensity.  The walk through haunts are terrific, however the hayride is the star of the show.  Highlights included a creepy butcher family and some pig carcasses, a barn full of giant snakes and a spooky circus.  I was hoping for once that the spooky circus would be filled with trapeze artists or lion tamers, but nope… clowns.  Always clowns.

What Could Be Better

When I entered the creepy emergency room, the actor said “What are you doing in my emergency room?”  When I entered the creepy power plant the actor said “What are you doing in my power plant?”  “What are you doing in my kitchen?”  “What are you doing on my lawn?”  Guys, I’m at a haunted house, that’s what I’m doing. Encountering creative dialogue when you enter a room can make a huge difference.

Final Thoughts

Field of Screams is at the top of their game combining great sets and effects with engaged actors and clever scares.  A crazy doctor sprayed me with something and said it was Ebola.  That’s an actor having fun, and it translates to a guest having fun.  By the way, should I be worried about the cough I’ve developed?

Field of Screams 2014 Season

September 12  – November 9

Ticket Information

  • Scream Pass (All 4 Attractions):   $33
  • Triple Combo Pass (Any 3 of 4 Attractions): $30
  • Double Combo Pass (Any 2 of 4 Attractions): $27
  • Haunted Hayride Only:  $16
  • Den of Darkness Only:  $14
  • Frightmare Asylum Only:  $14
  • Nocturnal Wasteland Only: $14
  • VIP Upgrade (Skip to the front of the line): Add $15

Discount Tickets

  • 13Haunts Coupon: $8 Off VIP Scream Pass/ $5 Off Regular Scream Pass –Click Here!
  • Join the Field of Screams Mailing List for Additional Coupons and Discounts.

Age Requirements

Not recommended for children under 10 years old.  (They have a non scary daytime event for children and adults who are young at heart at Corn Cob Acres.)

Additional Information


The Bates Motel
1835 Middletown Road
Glen Mills, PA

Hauntsmith Randy Bates has been scaring area residents for over 20 years
with his top ranking haunted attraction, The Bates Motel and Haunted Hayride. Located
just outside of Philadelphia, the Bates Motel, has drawn national attention
with several features on the Travel Channel and in USA Today. So, when I arrived
at Arasapha Farm in Glen Mills, Pennsylvania, I had some understandably large
expectations, but I learned very quickly that Mr. Bates does not disappoint.

Visiting the
Bates Motel and Haunted Hayride is like experiencing the pivotal scene from
every horror movie on your Netflix queue back to back. Not only do they have a
haunted house inside a full size replica of Hitchcock’s famous “Psycho” mansion,
but Arasapha Farm is also home to an equally elaborate haunted corn maze, and
one of the most incredible haunted hayrides in the country.     

What makes the Bates Motel and Haunted Hayride unique isn’t the incredible
Hollywood-quality sets and special effects, but a solid understanding of how sensory
details complete an environment and create tension and distraction for an
audience. For example, no horror movie is complete (or scary!) without a
soundtrack and Bates Motel incorporates detailed customized music and realistic
sound effects to set the tone for each section of every attraction. 

Is It Scary?

According to their Official Website :  “America’s Most Horrifying Motel.”

The Raven & Black Cat says:  Imagine
being surrounded by a series of horror movie sets and special effects in the
middle of the woods. Then add monsters that can touch you.  

What We Loved

A common problem with hayrides is that once the zombies and crazed
killers reach the side of the wagon, they have nowhere to go. This is not the
case at the Bates Motel and Haunted Hayride! When these monsters reach the wagon they launch themselves into it! Realizing
that the usual rules don’t apply creates the ultimate feeling of unease and adrenaline. We
also loved the hayride’s mine shaft section. The sound effects and downward
movement created a chilling claustrophobic feeling of being trapped. Other
highlights include the man-eating crows and gators in the corn maze and the Bates
Motel’s greenhouse and room of taxidermy.   

What Could Be Better

The set design and special effects are so complex and detailed.
It would be incredible to see the same time and attention applied to the acting.
A complex character (with a back story) that reacts to their environment and
moves with intention is more real and infinitely scarier. 

Final Thoughts

The Bates Motel and Haunted Hayride is perfect Halloween entertainment that will scare most and captivate all. Even the most fearless will enjoy visiting the dark and imaginative
world of Randy Bates.

The Bates Motel 2012 Season

September 28 – November 4

Ticket Information

  • Haunted Hayride: $12 – $20
  • Bates Motel:  $12 – $15
  • Corn Maze: $12 – $15
  • Combo Special (All 3):  $25 – $40
  • VIP Pass (No Waiting):  $60 – $75

Discount Tickets

  • 13Haunts Coupon: $5 Off Combo Tickets (Sunday Thru Thursday) – Click Here!
  • Wed., October 17th is Military Appreciation Night: 50% Off w/ Military ID. (All Vets get group rate any night w/ ID.)
  • Wed., October 24th is Family Night: $10 Off the Combo Ticket when you Buy 4 or More.
  • Sign up to have Discount Coupons Emailed to you.

Age Requirements

 Children ages 2 and under are free with a paid adult. 

Additional Information

The Bates Motel

The Bates Motel

The Haunted Hayride

The Haunted Hayride

The Bates Motel & Haunted Hayride

The Bates Motel & Haunted Hayride


Pennhurst Paranormal Association
Church Street & Bridge Road
Spring City, PA

Have you ever watched a marathon of ‘Ghost Hunters’  or ‘Ghost Adventures’ and wondered what it would be like to venture into an abandoned historic building filled with the tortured souls of the deceased?

Well, now you can. Pennhurst Paranormal Association is offering both Private and Public Investigations of the Mayflower Building, one of the oldest buildings on the Pennhurst State School campus. When it was built in 1908, the school was known as the Eastern Pennsylvania State Institution for the Feeble-Minded and Epileptic. It was designed to separate developmentally and intellectually disabled individuals from traditional society.

Unfortunately, there were no guidelines for admittance; in addition to diagnosed patients, the School was also home to the criminally insane, unwed pregnant teens, wards of the state and disobedient children. The expansive 1,400-acre estate wasn’t intended to be a dumping ground for anyone deemed undesirable to society, and within two years of opening there were reports of overcrowding and understaffing. Despite the grandiose exterior, children spent years in cribs, conditions were unsanitary and unsafe, physical and sexual abuse ran rampant and many patients died within its walls.

Pennhurst Paranormal Association gives you the opportunity to connect with some of the spirits that still roam the abandoned campus. 

Pennhurst State School circa 1934

Pennhurst State School circa 1934

It’s 9pm, as we slowly make our way down a bumpy, unpaved road.  Thanks to the full moon we can see Pennhurst Asylum looming in the distance. I can’t help but wonder what the hell we’re getting ourselves into and if it’s a good idea to spend the night in such a terrifying place. As we pull up, we’re greeted by Mara, a member of Pennhurst Paranomal Association…who also happens to be a medium. We sign a waiver and go over the rules for the night: No Provoking, No Séance or Ouiji Boards and No Alcohol. That’s it? Then Mara takes us on a tour of the building. She points out particularly active rooms and tells us about what she’s experienced at Pennhurst — whispers, footsteps, objects being thrown and people being pushed down stairs. You don’t need to hear her spooky stories to know that something is looming within the walls of the Mayflower building. When you look past the peeling paint and graffiti, remnants of daily life in the Asylum are a chilling reminder of the horror that happened at Pennhurst – adult sized cribs, rubber furniture with restraints, communal showers and windowless classrooms.

Before our imaginations get too carried away, John and Katie from South Jersey Soul Searchers take over the group. John is the founder of SJSS and hosts the Dead Air Paranormal radio show.  Katie is SJSS’s case manager and lead investigator. They introduce us to a slew of technological gadgets to assist us – electro magnetic frequency meters, the ovilus ghost box, thermal gun, laser scope, and a plasma globe. Since many of the spirits are children or child-like, they also bring candy and toys to entice activity. Night vision video cameras and audio recorders are used to document the investigation, later they’ll review them to see if we can catch an Electronic Voice Phenomenon. EVP recordings are the holy grail of ghost hunting and actual proof that spirits are trying to communicate with the living. We grab a video camera and head out to explore the epically creepy building. Pennhurst’s Paranormal investigations allow you the freedom to choose your own experience. If you’re a veteran hunter or just crazy enough to want to wander alone, you’re welcome to. If a guided experience is more your style, you can spend the entire 6 hours with John and Katie. We chose to do a little of both.

So, did we meet any Ghosts?

We’re not sure. We’re new in the paranormal circuit and it’s definitely something we’d like to continue exploring. We didn’t see any apparitions or feel anything touch us, but we experienced some interesting moments throughout the night:

When we were in the back stairwell, the ripped window screen shook when we asked the spirits to play with us. We thought it could be a fluke, so we asked for a repeat and the spirit gladly obliged, two more times.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_s2nBAKXFQE?feature=oembed&wmode=opaque&enablejsapi=1&w=640&h=480]

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rvInq6GvywM?feature=oembed&wmode=opaque&enablejsapi=1&w=640&h=480]

We also had a fascinating experience with a ball on the 3rd floor. Once again, we asked if anyone wanted to play. At times, it seemed as though the ball was rolled right out of my grip and later, I could feel the ball pushing into my hand. It was surreal.

There was a closet door on the 3rd floor that seemed to be locked shut. John had each of us take turns trying to open the door. One by one, we knocked on the door, asked to be let in and tried to open it. As I pulled on the handle, I could feel the door start to open, suddenly it was violently pulled back to shut. Other members of the group had a similar experience and there was some banging that seemed to come from within the closet.

So… that was really creepy and weird, but the Jaded New Yorker in me has to ask:

Could there have been three strong gusts of wind moving the ripped window screen? Was the ball some kind of trick? Was there someone actually locked in the closet?

I could create a hundred excuses, but my gut tells me, No.

Pennhurst Paranormal Association separates itself from the Halloween haunted attraction. The owners have dreams of restoring all the historic buildings and educating the public about the atrocities that occurred there.

All I know is that we’re dying to go back. We had a blast exploring the equipment and techniques used to connect with the other realm. We’d also love to have a historic walking tour of the property and explore the other buildings—especially the tunnels. I know it sounds crazy, but 6 hours definitely isn’t enough.  

The Pennhurst Paranormal Association offers both private and public paranormal tours and investigations from March through August. Tickets are $125 each for the public investigations and $1,000 for private investigations with up to 20 guests.  

 If you’d like to learn more about the dark history of the Pennhurst State School, watch “Suffer The Little Children,” the 1968 NBC10 Expose on Pennhurst State School (below) or Read the Autobiography of Former Patient, Roland Johnson.

Additional Information

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YG33HvIKOgQ?feature=oembed&wmode=opaque&enablejsapi=1&w=640&h=480]


In October, we reviewed the Pennhurst Asylum Haunted Attraction, but tomorrow we return to Spring City, PA to experience Pennhurst Paranormal. A 6-hour Paranormal Investigation of the Mayflower Dormitory Building on the abandoned campus of the Pennhurst State School & Hospital .

The Pennhurst Paranormal Association offers both private and public paranormal tours and investigations. Tickets are $125 each for the public investigations and $1,000 for private investigations. Care to join us tomorrow? Buy Tickets Now

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter from 9 PM – 3 AM EST to Live Chat and Receive Photo Updates during our 6-hour Paranormal Investigation.

Additional Information

  • Official Website
  • Pennhurst Paranormal Facebook Page
  • Twitter 
  • Pennhurst Asylum Haunted Attraction
  • 2012 Pennhurst Asylum Review

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    The Haunted House/Daniele Montella

    The Haunted House/Daniele Montella

    Still celebrating Halloween? The following Haunted Houses are open this week:


    Gravesend Inn Haunted Hotel
    Brooklyn, NY

    Open  Nov. 5   |  Tickets: $6.00

    Blackout Haunted House
    New York, NY

    Open Nov. 5 – 10   |  Tickets: $50.00

    2012 Review

    Blood Manor
    New York, NY

    Open Nov. 8 – 11   |  Tickets: $30 – $60

    Discount Tickets   –   2012 Review

    Killers: A Nightmare Haunted House
    New York, NY

    Open Nov. 9 – 10   |  Tickets: $30 – $60

    Discount Tickets   –   2012 Review

    Times Scare Haunted House
    New York, NY

    Open Year- Round   |  Tickets: $27.00


    Terror Behind The Walls
    Philadelphia, PA

    Open Nov. 10   |  Tickets: $29.50

    2012 Review


    Las Vegas, NV

    Open Year-Round   |  Tickets: $25 – $60



    Our 2012 Haunted House Tour Begins Tomorrow!!



    Our First Stop is Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia, PA. We Begin with a Daytime Tour of the Historic Prison and Return at Sunset for Terror Behind The Walls.  

    Then we’re off to Spring City, PA for Pennherst Asylum, which is housed in the remains of the abandoned Pennherst State School and Hospital. It’s going to be a historically creepy day. 

    Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to Live Chat and Receive Photo Updates about these two Amazingly Disturbing Historic Locations.