The Best Halloween present EVER, minus the Therapy for the child

I have to admit that I always worry about a haunted hayride on opening night. It has all the potential problems of a first night theater show opening, plus the actors. Tech week is about 7 days, 23 hours and 30 minutes short. You don’t know what the last minute lighting you set up during the day will look like until it gets dark, and by then, it’s too late. It’s all too late.

It can be a bit scary at times.

As we go into our third night, I want to say that the first two nights have been great. All the scene scripts work, the actors are loud, the timing is right and the all the props and lighting have been working properly 95% of the time. Even Mother Nature is cooperating. We have a full moon in a cloudless sky and it’s chilly, but not too much.

Now let me preface this next part with saying that our haunt is part of a family Halloween festival. It’s a bit scary, but when we have a lot of kids age seven to twelve coming to have a good time, we don’t want to mess them up permanently by making them pee themselves. They get on the wagon a bit scared and maybe scream a bit during the ride, but they all survive and generally remember only the morbid parts that made them laugh. I think a good motto for us would be that you can’t have “Slaughter” without” Laughter.” Get it? It’s a play on words. Get it? Do you get it?


After one of the hayrides, some people asked if I would take a picture with them. This is not unusual because of the way I’m dressed so it’s part of the package deal when doing a haunt. The next thing I know they hand me a baby about a year old and then start fumbling with a more than one camera phone trying to get it working in the dark. This was the child’s first hayride and they wanted to capture. So for about 3 minutes, this child stared wide eyed at me with occasional glances to dad trying to decided if this was a good or bad thing. He did not cry once though. I expect that this was as surreal of an event for him as it was for me.

My only dark little secret about this even was that I was happy to hold him for so long because he was so warm and I had been outside for hours in the cold



We have tonight until Halloween. If I have any more interesting stories from the hayride,  I’ll post them here.

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