TERROR IN TRAIN TOWN
Terror in Train Town is a fun Halloween event by the Bloodshed Brothers at the Southern California Railway Museum in Perris California. Unfortunately I was running late and they were about to close for the evening when I arrived so I was only able to see the two walk through haunts. It appeared as though there was a few carnival style games and a ride on their midway that I missed.
The Darkness was dark and disorientating, as it should be. The Hyde Street Haunt was not especially long, but full of fun scares. I was impressed by the decor, it had a truly creepy vibe. This haunt reminded me of my childhood and the type of haunted houses that would have terrified me in my youth. It’s not a big budget event like Knott’s or Halloween Horror Nights, but rather a fun and frightening event filled with heart and passion for creating screams and laughter in the audience. I had a lot of fun and look forward to seeing what they do next year!
On January 1st I was busy eating healthy food and celebrating #NewYearNewMe when I received an odd message from someone called Bl4ckM4ss. I had been specifically selected to experience a new reality? Respond with my interest? What does that mean?!?!?
So I responded.
I received a date, time and secret location with instructions to arrive alone wearing clothes I didn’t care about. Honestly I was a bit uncomfortable with the whole thing. Was this another immersive/ARG/extreme haunt…or was it some actual crazy cult group or psycho killer’s elaborate plan to torture and kill me? No-one seemed to have heard anything about this Bl4ckm4ss aside from their social media presence. So I did what any sane person would do and showed up alone.
I still don’t know who’s behind Bl4ckm4ss, but I survived to tell you about it. However, they specifically asked that I not give away too many details since it is an ongoing experience.
Bl4ckm4ss is a “new augmented reality” but the waiver and initial email reminded me of an extreme haunt. It is not as physical as an extreme haunt, which is good because I don’t really enjoy extreme haunts. I have a few lingering injuries that prevent me from attending anything too physical. I was easily able to do this event without injuring myself further. However it is quite intense at times.
Fear is such a personal experience. Everyone’s past is different and that shapes their fears. I personally found one section of Bl4ckm4ss especially terrifying because it triggered flashbacks to a traumatic experience I had a decade ago. I was actually quite impressed with myself for not calling out the safe word. I was also pleased with the choices I made. I left the event feeling overwhelmed with emotion. I was also a bit chilly. (I recommend dressing in layers if you get cold easily.)
I appreciate the invitation to step out of my comfort zone. It was a great way to begin the new year, a short journey in self discovery. I’m looking forward to seeing what they do next.
If you would like to experience Bl4ckm4ss for yourself read the information below:
Who is BL4KM4SS? We are augmented reality. We give guests a theatrical immersive experience.
Creators- We are BL4KM4SS. You ask, we provide.
Current Show- “a Prelude”- accepting applications for interested parties.
DATES: February/March – By invitation only.
March 15-17, 29-31, April 1-5 and April 5-7- By application only
Future dates: TBA
Contact Info- firstname.lastname@example.org for an application to be considered for future shows.
Cost?- “a Prelude” will be $50 per person, Approx 1 hour solo show.
The Haunted Lodge (Scareventures) 2018
We were warned not to go in the woods for fear of a half man half elk creature…but we continued anyway and luckily lived to tell the tale.
My husband and I went to The Haunted Lodge last night while down in the San Diego area attending haunted attractions. This was our second stop of the evening. I wasn’t sure what to expect since it appeared to be a plywood maze built in the front yard of an Elk’s Lodge. However, I was quite impressed with the set design and attention to detail. The actors worked very hard. The costumes and make up looked good. It told a story and even had a couple of moments that were very in line with immersive theatre in the way they have you sit in the scene and become a character in the story. Overall we had a fun time.
I especially enjoyed the opening two scenes because they set up the story and tone for the adventure to come. Both actors in the beginning did a splendid job of communicating the story in a fun and creepy way. I also enjoyed the photo op (on my own phone) at the beginning because it fit in the scenario well and left us with a memory to post online.
After sitting around the campfire listening to the tale of the monster to come, we were given a red flashlight and sent on our way into the maze. We encountered many ghouls along our path.
We caught a scare from the anticipated ElkMan a little early on while in one of my favorite scenes. The set up was great and had us skeptical that we were really entering a safe homey cabin no matter how much the actors tried to convince us we were safe. It was wonderfully done.
I also really enjoyed the tent area. I’m sorry we couldn’t save you young man, we had to save ourselves!
However the maze kept going and seemed to go a little off track from the tale at times. It was fun, but lost that beautiful storytelling from the beginning as we progressed through the attraction. I did enjoy that the haunt staple “monster with chainsaw” fit into the scene in this attraction. So many times it’s random, but they made it work well. Great job to all of the designers and actors.
Overall it was a lot of fun and I’m glad we got to experience this attraction. I recommend checking them out if you are in the El Cajon (San Diego) area.
*More photos from this event on Instagram @TheHauntGirl