Haunted houses aim to scare socks off guests

The organizers of the North Olympic Peninsula haunted houses want to try out their scare tactics on area residents.

The Carnival of the Twilight in Port Townsend and the Haunted Vacation in Port Angeles are ready to scare the socks off of anyone brave enough to test their fears.

The International Order of the Rainbow for Girls and DeMolay of Port Angeles will present an annual haunted house at the Clallam County Fairgrounds, 1608 W. 16th St., from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. today; from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 30; and from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Halloween, Oct. 31.

This year the spooktacular theme will be “Haunted Vacation,” co-chair Dorine Hunter said.

“The kids get together and come up with a theme, and then we design a floor plan and a maze around it,” Hunter said.

The students also dress up to play the parts of the haunts.

“Some will have masks and some makeup. The kids have a lot of creative freedom in what they do with their character,” Hunter said.

The students plan to learn from the last three years, and use tactics that worked well before, she said.

“There are parts of the haunted house that worked really well in the past, and of course we will work to reincorporate those elements,” she said.

Hunter said she isn’t sure if the event will continue past this year.

“We are in need of replacing a good majority of our materials,” Hunter said.

“It will depend on how well this year goes, probably, to see if it will be worth doing it next year.”

The community has been supportive, she said.

“Westport [Shipyard] guys came out and volunteered to build the walls,” she said.

“We have had a real blessing from the community.

“We know that the community enjoys having this, and have gotten a lot of positive feedback.”

The set will be empty and the lights will be on for small children and those with special needs to attend from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

“The idea is for people who might get easily spooked this will give them a chance to walk through and get oriented in their environment and then if they feel brave enough they can come back next week and go through and have a good time,” Hunter said.

“Because our main idea is for people to have fun.”

Admission is $4, or $3 with a donation of canned food for the Port Angeles Food Bank.

A gift certificate giveaway of free pizzas from Michael’s Divine Dining will take place today and Saturday, Hunter said.

For more information, phone Dorine Hunter at 360-457-7636.

Port Townsend

In Port Townsend, Hauntownsend at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds, 4907 Landes St., will feature a throwback to a 1930s carnival, complete with an old-style freak show and dark house haunted house, executive producer Ted Krysinski said.

“The idea is that it is a 1930s carnival that got stuck in time,” Krysinski said.

The haunted house and other events kicked off on Tuesday and will continue through Halloween.

The Carnival of the Twilight is open from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. except on Halloween, when it will be open until midnight.

Tickets are $15 per person at the gate and $13 online at www.hauntownsend.com.

Today, an adult-only Legend of Creepy Hallow costume ball is planned, with discounts to get into the haunted house later.

Tickets are $25 at the gate or $20 at www.theexproject.com in advance.

“It will be a lot of fun, dancing and hors d’oeuvres with a live band and a best costume contest,” Krysinski said.

The ball will benefit the Exponential Project, which connects mentors with people or groups as they move toward achieving a purpose or goal.

The haunted house will prey on psychological fears, Krysinski said.

“It is more about the psychological things than about the more modern Freddy Krueger kind of gore,” Krysinski said.

This is the first year that his production firm, TLK Productions LLC, has handled the event.

The haunted house is off to a good start, Krysinski said.

“The actors have been really great, and it is sure to pick up more and more as it gets closer to Halloween,” he said.

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Reporter Paige Dickerson can be reached at 360-417-3535 or at [email protected]

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