Buck Blackhurst - Web Editor , Alexa Nielson - Copy Desk Chief
It’s spooky season! Which means time for candy and scares. It also means haunted attractions are open for the month of October. There are quite a few to choose from, but they can be a bit pricey. It can be difficult to pick one to go to, as you don’t want to waste your money on something that will disappoint. Here in Utah county, there seem to be two attractions that are most popular: Nightmare on 13th and The Haunted Forest. We’ve decided to try them out and give some feedback on each, as well as give our preference as to which would be best to pay a visit. They both open at 7:30 p.m.
If you’re up for the drive, Nightmare on 13th is in South Salt Lake City on 1300 south. On a Thursday night at 8 p.m., the line to wait was not too long, around 20 minutes. That is not a bad wait time, especially considering that there was a promotion on that particular night for cheaper tickets. They had things set up around the line to keep you busy and entertained while you wait, such as an animatronic dragon and fake figures to take pictures with. Best of all there was a live video stream from one of the rooms inside the attraction itself showing people getting scared and giving you an idea of what you’re about to get into. It was a good attraction if you love the jump scares around every corner. But with that being said, it literally was around EVERY corner. The excitement and mystery of not knowing when they’re going to jump out at you wears off as you get used to it and just expect it. While they did have a very good variety of characters and setting, it felt very repetitive due to the fact that they were all trying to scare you in the same way. It was a very well-put together place, just constantly very in your face.
If you’re looking to go a little more local, The Haunted Forest is in American Fork on 6000 W 6400 N. On a Saturday night at 8:30 p.m., the line was incredibly long. The wait time was around an hour and fifteen minutes. This was not fun, also taking into account you’re outside on a Fall night, which means it’s very cold. There was a stand with hot chocolate being sold, with a firepit set up as well. They also had a projector set up, playing short clips from horror movies, alongside a “live” band titled “Griselda and the Grave Diggers”. They were really just animatronic monsters that sang special Halloween renditions of songs. This provided with good entertainment for the wait. The actual attraction itself was a lot longer than Nightmare on 13th, so if you plan to go to this one, plan on it consuming up at least most of your night, if not all of it. Because the attraction was outside, it was much more creepy, making your situation feel more real. The scares were also very spread apart, making it harder to expect the jump scares as much. There were not as many jump scares, though, more of the playing with your mind kind of scares. It was a very cold night, so for safety reasons, it seemed as though they had to pull some of their actors. An enjoyable experience, just extremely long.
Ultimately they are both good options, it just depends on your mood. If you want to be scared more, go to Nightmare on 13th. If you want more of a creepy, realistic experience, The Haunted Forest is more your style. Keep an open mind when attending and remember to have fun!