HAUNTS – Dead Rising – IL

Dead Rising

IMG_7369.JPGDead Rising is an intimate haunt located in the back area of a strip mall near a McDonald’s in Crestwood, Illinois. (The McDonald’s is key for anyone needing to use the restroom, as this haunt doesn’t provide restrooms.)

Dead Rising isn’t your typical walk through haunted attraction with winding dark corridors and monsters popping out with shaker cans, it is much more interactive. After purchasing my VIP ticket to bypass the 30 minute wait I was placed with 4 youth from the general line. The actor tried to split up the groups of friends and place one from each with me, however I do believe the entire line knew each other. I didn’t ask, but had the impression they were somehow a large group of classmates.

IMG_7362.JPGThe groups are limited to around 5 people due to the immersive nature of the scenes and the space in the small rooms. I have been attending many haunts alone on my Midwest trip, so it was kind of fun to be placed with kids that were so excitable. At one point they nearly trampled me to escape a clown. I enjoyed watching the actors interact with them more than my personal experiences.

I felt like the opening elevator scene took an especially long time, but other than that the scenes were effective and timed perfectly. The actors did a great job of playing out their scenes. I personally found it to be more of a fun immersive, than a scary haunt. I won’t be in town for their adult event, but I spoke with someone about it and apparently it’s an even more immersive version including blood splatter, adult language and more. It’s a unique event and a good stepping stone for those interested in immersive haunts.

 

HAUNTS – Undead Acres – IL

Undead Acres 

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Undead Acres is known for their zombie paintball ride with several scenes and many zombies to shoot. They also have a walk thru haunt, paintball shooting gallery, food stand, photo ops, bonfire and GOATS! Yep, goats…you can feed ‘em.

Undead Acres was the third attraction I attended on the last Sunday of September 2018, so when I arrived at nearly closing time it wasn’t nearly as busy as I expect it will be later in the season. I was able to look around, but had no real wait to get on the haunted trail. A guide summoned me to follow. I walked alone behind the cloaked figure through several scenes. They didn’t tell an overall story as a whole, but individually they were recognizable as the staple haunt scenes including clowns, butchers, monsters and even a young person in a yellow raincoat spouting, “You’ll float too.”

IMG_7378.JPGThe actors made very challenging physical choices for their characters from rapid crawling, falling and more. Their physical strength, flexibility and dedication impressed me. The overall creepiness of the location being outdoors in the open along a trail was effective. I like the use of the guide.

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Overall, it is a haunted trail with a lot of heart. I did not participate in the paintball experience. If you are in the area, definitely stop by Undead Acres and shoot some zombies. Be sure to say hi to Lily the goat for me.

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HAUNTS – Midnight Terror Haunt – IL

Midnight Terror Haunt 

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Midnight Terror Haunt in Oak Lawn Illinois is a wonderful story based haunted attraction. I was most impressed with the skill shown by the actors in this haunt. It’s rare to experience a walk through haunted attraction in which every character you encounter appears to be a theatrically trained actor. I am happy to give this cast and crew a standing ovation. The storytelling in Midnight Terror Haunt is wonderfully executed. The scares are plentiful. I enjoyed the use of levels and actual mazes aspects throughout. The sound and lighting effects were well done. The set and props at times were very impressive as well. I highly recommend checking out Midnight Terror Haunt if you find yourself in the Chicago-land area.