Six Flags vs. Cedar Fair (and other) haunts?

Thursday, October 13, 2011 2:50 PM
CoasterDemon's avatar

I'm getting the idea that the Cedar Fair parks are heads and tails above Six Flags in terms of haunt vs. Fright Fest.

The only 'haunt' I think I have ever been to is here at my home park, Six Flags Great America. It's always been fun, used to see to have many more 'free' characters and such roaming about. I have only done Mausoleum of Terror once, years ago. It was expensive and the queue was horrendous.

Just trying to get a feel how the other Halloween festivities are. I have a feeling Magic Mountain would be nice, but that's due to it's location near LA.


Billy
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Thursday, October 13, 2011 3:41 PM
beast7369's avatar

The few Cedar Point haunts that I have been to have been pretty lackluster at best. The only redeaming factor was that they were free. This is only my opinion and others may disagree.

The Kings Island haunts were decent the last time I went through them.

As for Six Flags Great America...The new Massacre Medical Center was actually pretty good. Though definitely not worth the $13 upcharge. The other haunts there that I have been to have been lackluster for years.


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Thursday, October 13, 2011 9:34 PM

beast7369 said:
The few Cedar Point haunts that I have been to have been pretty lackluster at best. The only redeaming factor was that they were free. This is only my opinion and others may disagree.

Put me on the "disagree" list


This Isn't A Hospital--It's An Insane Asylum!

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Thursday, October 13, 2011 9:57 PM

I have been to Fright Fest at Great Adventure and Haunt at Dorney. To me, the events don't even compare. Fright Fest in past years only had full 2 trails/mazes, this year a 3rd has been added. They are $7 each, 3 for $15 or $50 for unlimited with front of the line access. There is the Lakefront Graveyard trail which is free but short with not a lot of actors. There is also a family hayride that I believe is $20 for a family of 4.

There are some scare actors roaming the park, but not too many and Frontier Adventures had none this year, in past years it was Bone Butcher Terrortory, with 4 or 5 actors in the area.

Haunt at Dorney has I believe 13 trails, mazes and scare zones all free with admission (and a lower gate price than Great Adventure too). Some of the props like the giant pirate ship in the Cuthroat Island scare zone are amazing. There are scare actors all over the place, even in non Haunt areas like some ride midways. There is a lot of variety too, a 2 story mansion walkthrough, Cornstalkers, the CF standard Club Blood etc.

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Friday, October 14, 2011 12:31 AM
CoasterDemon's avatar

Thanks guys. I know Cedar Fair is the tighter operations all the way around. Another assumption I have come upon is that the Cedar Fair haunts would be much tamer than the ones at Six Flags (not good or bad, just that way).


Billy
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Friday, October 14, 2011 1:48 AM

They haven't been all that tame recently; more and more gore seems to pop up every year. Some of the displays outside are covered up during the day though, since they have the little kid halloween stuff out during the day.

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Friday, October 14, 2011 7:32 AM

Out of the few I have seen:

HHN is the standard, for sure. The last few years have been "meh" though compared to the first few years I saw it. Houses are still good, but the midway "feel" has been getting worse and worse I think. Still the best park event, I believe.

SFWoA/SFO had my all time favorite event though... Fright Fest was a blast, simply due to the entire-park haunt and classical halloween themeing. I loved the "roamers" throughout the park, and it just had the best feel. I would much prefer an event with better midways and less haunted houses honestly. I really miss this event though. When CF changed it over to the "Haunt" it went downhill fast. Never to be the same! Wish it was still around. It may of not been the scariest or had the best houses, but it was the most fun.

Kings Island is really good, reminds me a lot of the old SFO/SFWoA in a way. Midways were great fun with excellent decor all around the park. Houses were really decent as well, we have fun there.

Canada's Wonderland we just went to last week, and it was amazing. Lacked midway scare-zones and such, but the houses were incredible. By far the best outside of HHN I have seen. They also had the best scareactor inside the Carnevil area I had ever witnessed, some double-jointed, crazy man who runs after people completely bent over backwards, jumping and screaming at them. It was so epic. But the houses here were amazing, and at many points really creeped me out because I felt uneasy, which is rare. Especially in something like Cornstalkers which at CP, is terrible. They had so many people inside, all actively watching you and being so close, it just really made me forget reality in a weird way. This happened in a few of their houses, never has that happened to me before. Loved it!

Cedar Point's event is decent, but the houses are lackluster IMO, and the employees do not seem to be in "in-it" like other parks. Low energy, saying "boo" and almost suprised to see you there or something. The midways are alright, but just does not have a good "feel" like some of the other parks. I can't put my finger on it, to be honest. I really think it is the staffing though, more then anything. That is the one big difference from the great events to the lackluster ones. How well your scareactors interact with guests, how well they get into character and their methods to freak people out other then saying "AHHHH" or "BOO!"

Dorney we went to a few years ago and it was pretty fun. I don't remember much about it though, honestly. I did like the haunted train ride though, one thing I feel CP really should invest in. No clue why they don't... Kings Island does, Dorney does, why not CP?

Kennywood we went to last year I believe it was... Had a more classical feel, for sure. But hey, this is Kennywood! We had fun, but felt the event was a bit more "dirty" then other parks, and the staffing was not all that great in the scare-zones. Was worth going to, but is nothing I would miss out on.

After this year, we hope to make Kings Island and CW annual destinations for our halloween fix... As well as hopefully make it back down to HHN again.

Last edited by SteveWoA, Friday, October 14, 2011 7:42 AM
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Sunday, October 16, 2011 12:10 PM

I think CP shies away from a haunted CP&LERR because its actually used for transportation from one place to another, main midway to Frontier Town and back again. The thing about Cedar Point, which I find considerate, is that if you're not into haunts you can avoid them altogether and the rest of the park is completely doable without encountering any scares. So, grandma and the little ones can take the train to Frontier Town and back without having to walk or worry about monsters.

The joke might be on them, though... the truly scary part of Halloweekends is the crowds, right?

And while we're on the subject I need some advice from you guys and gals out there that are familiar with SFOT. I'll be in Dallas next week for the state fair and we noticed the Flags will be open on friday night at 6. So my question is, how immersive is their haunt? Being that I'm a scare weenie ( I was damaged as a child - long story...) I'm hoping to be able to bust out the rides (Texas Giant, here I come) and get out of there without encountering too many scare zones. My only recent 6 Flags experience has been St. Louis and their haunts were kinda few and far between with an upcharge attached, and I'm hoping SFOT is similar.

I can man-up if I have to, but I'll prefer to enjoy the rides at one of my favorite parks without the stress! Thanks for any info, and I hope everyone is enjoying a safe and happy Hallowe'en season.

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Sunday, October 16, 2011 9:01 PM

Cedar Fair parks have been tapping into the knowledge base at Knotts, the granddaddy of all haunted events. A lot of what is becoming standard at the various parks around the country originated at Knotts Scarry Farm, not only the concepts but a lot of the props and effects were built there. They are not heavy on the gore like the Universal events, but they have the art of the scare down pretty good, having attended the last five Haunts at the Farm I can attest to that.

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Sunday, October 16, 2011 9:32 PM
CoasterDemon's avatar

RCMAC said:
Being that I'm a scare weenie ( I was damaged as a child - long story...) I'm hoping to be able to bust out the rides (Texas Giant, here I come) and get out of there without encountering too many scare zones.

I can totally understand. I love Halloween, scary stuff and scary movies, but I get easily freaked out. I don't like stuff popping out at me without me being aware of it; I don't like the feeling of being in a haunted house the whole time - maybe just the 5 minutes I am actually in one. I have issues too :)

One thought would be to perhaps stop by public relations. It may be a stretch, but it certainly doesn't hurt to ask if they have a way for you to avoid being jumped at or howled at. Perhaps a wrist band or something.

Six Flags Over Georgia has a "Ghoul be gone" glowing ring that kids wear, and when they show the ring, the actors don't come by them.


Billy
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Monday, October 17, 2011 12:47 AM

Great Adventure also has "Ghoul Repellent." They are plastic whistles shaped like a skeleton they give to kids and when the kids uses the whistle, the scare actors stay away. I think they are just for kids 12 and under though (and are annoying when you walk through the park and hear whistles every 5 seconds). This year they are trying to keep kids out of the park by closing the kiddie areas at 5:00 or 6:00 .

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Monday, October 17, 2011 7:17 AM

I wonder if Ghoul Repellent works the rest of the year, too?

My other fear was that the Rangers would make the World Series (they did) and there would be a game in Arlington friday night (there isn't). So, so far it's working out and I can't wait for this trip.

Thanks for the advice, fellas, and here's hoping Football Friday Night and lazy scare actors make for a good evening at SFOT!

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Monday, October 17, 2011 5:51 PM
CoasterDemon's avatar

^Hope you have a great time, RCMAC - ride Shockwave for me!


Billy
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Monday, October 17, 2011 6:03 PM

CoasterDemon said:
One thought would be to perhaps stop by public relations. It may be a stretch, but it certainly doesn't hurt to ask if they have a way for you to avoid being jumped at or howled at. Perhaps a wrist band or something.

My guess is they will give you a blank stare, ask "are you serious?", and then laugh at you.... just a guess though :P

I never seem to hear people talk about BGT's Howl-O-Scream at all. I'll be going for the first time and curious how it compares to what I thought was an "average" HHN last year. (also my first and only time).

I loved the old SFWoA / Geauga Lake haunt because the entire park was just COVERED in fog, you could barely see 3 feet in front of you. I remember later that same season they toned it down (or maybe it just wasn't as humid / more wind / etc. I wouldn't be surprised if it messed with the photo eyes on the rides. That was fun.

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Monday, October 17, 2011 10:47 PM
CoasterDemon's avatar

Is all this really cool Cedar Point haunt stuff I have been seeing - included in admission? No extra charges? I wonder why Six Flags lags so far behind...


Billy
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Monday, October 17, 2011 10:53 PM

Yes, except for the mazes that sell the optional 3D glasses for $1.00 (if Cedar Point has a maze that uses them like some other Cedar Fair parks). That's why I don't understand at least in my area how Haunt at Dorney doesn't get even close to the crowds Fright Fest at Great Adventure gets. I originally thought it might be because they switched from Halloweekends to Haunt in 2008 so people didn't know how much better the event got but it's now in its 4th season.


With Six Flags, I think before Red Zone took control, the trails/mazes were free except Brutal Planet at the parks that had it. I think it was in 2008 they started charging for trails at and now raised it even more with the current management. It must not be stopping people because I read this past weekend, the trails at Great Adventure had 80 minute waits and they closed the lines early because so many people were in line.

Last edited by YoshiFan, Tuesday, October 18, 2011 12:26 AM
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Tuesday, October 18, 2011 12:07 AM
CoasterDemon's avatar

^I'm a little more confused now, Yoshi.


Billy
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Tuesday, October 18, 2011 8:01 AM

I remember yeeeears ago, on my 40th birthday, we went to Six Flags in Chicago and they had a couple of haunts/walk-thrus and even back then they were upcharge- I've assumed they were that way all along. They had a terror train ride, too, and I dont think we paid anything for that. They had roaming characters, and some of them were great. I'll never forget the demented hillbilly armed with a shotgun that spent the day trying to marry off his equally demented daughters. They gave every man that passed by the cold, hard (did I say demented?) stare.

Thanks, mfivsdarienlake, but don't worry about me! Being that I act simple where ever I go, I'm seldom afraid of being laughed at! ;)

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Tuesday, October 18, 2011 8:46 AM

Knotts is a seperate gate event. They clear the park out about 5:00 PM, and re open at 7:00 for the Haunt. The entry price for the event increases the nearer to Halloween it gets.

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Tuesday, October 18, 2011 1:40 PM
Alexx Argen's avatar

Many of Cedar Points actors are college kids that do it for a class or charity. They are not paid and many of them are don't put into much effort.
Cedar Point is a toned down version of knotts. They do spend a lot of money and do put good time in effort to cp. but it is a family park so it will always have to be toned down.

In my opinion Universal is the best overall but its a separate charge. But being in the haunt industry I will say it actually is worth price.

Six flags started charging when they started the Alice cooper Haunts.

Last edited by Alexx Argen, Wednesday, October 19, 2011 11:40 PM

Its sad when your best friend asks you the exact running time of a ride. Good thing I didnt know.

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