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  • Writer's pictureChandler Clouser

Laurel's House of Horror - 2018 "Halfway to Halloween" Event

Haunted Attraction Reviewed: Laurel’s House of Horror - 2018 “Halfway to Halloween” Event


Location of Attraction: Laurel Maryland

Date of Review: Saturday May 12th, 2018

Total Number of Attractions Available: One plus FOUR escape rooms

Overall Haunted Attraction Rating: 8/10

Entertainment & Food Rating: 7/10

Atmosphere Rating: 8/10

Overall Costume & Makeup Rating: 8.5/10

Overall Cast & Crew Rating: 8.5/10

Overall Props, Animatronics & Set Design Rating: 9/10

Overall Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 7.5/10

Overall Feedback: It’s events such as Laurels “Halfway to Halloween” event that keeps our squad mentally sane during the long wait between haunt seasons. We have reviewed this haunt each of the last two haunt seasons as well as their “Halfway to Halloween” event last season. Some people would say we should give haunts a season or two off to allow them time to change things up… and we usually do… but at Laurel’s House of Horror they are constantly working to improve their set designs that there is no need to give them a season or two to rebuild. Each and every time we pay Laurel’s a visit we are always eager to see what changes/additions they have made. Sure enough, they never fail to amaze us. On Saturday May 12th we paid Laurel’s another visit to check out their 2018 “Halfway to Halloween” event. Our squad had the opportunity to participate in two different escape rooms as well as the always amazing main walk through attraction. We arrived around 7pm and Laurel’s had a steady flow of customers arriving at the haunt. Located at the far end of a shopping center and housed inside an old abandoned movie theater, Laurel’s has quite the unique set-up for their haunt. One of our favorite parts about Laurel’s is how they incorporated elements from the movie theater into the haunt itself. The queue line inside the haunt wraps around the old concession counter. Movie posters from old and more modern movies hang on the walls. They’ve made the walls decrepit which gives off quite a eerie vibe. Our favorite piece is the movie theater scene inside the walk through. They’ve turned their smallest theater into one large scene. We won’t give away too many details but you’ll certainly be amazed when you enter this specific scene! We started our night off by completing two escape rooms: The Rising Dead and Escape the Movies. Our group of eleven members split up into two smaller groups to complete the escape rooms. We have participated in escape rooms at Laurel’s in years past and they never fail to provide a fun, thrilling and overall pleasurable experience. These two escape rooms provided the same great experience that we have come to love and expect. Participants are given 45 minutes to try their luck at escaping. We are ashamed to say that one of our groups was unable to escape in time while our other group managed to escape with 10 minutes to spare. Both rooms featured well designed scenes and very well thought out clues and puzzles. Both groups did need some assistance from the game master/actor to ensure we kept on track but for the most part we were able to solve the puzzles on our own. We don’t want to give too much away so just know that you’ll surely enjoy any escape room that Laurel’s has to offer! After completion of the escape rooms we got in line to enter the main walk through attraction. Laurel’s does a perfect job of allowing a large space between groups so no need to worry about catching up to the group ahead of you. As we made our journey through the attraction we can’t help but drool over the handmade scenes. Laurel’s is the complete opposite of a prop shop haunt… nothing but handmade scenes and props certainly makes this place unique! Another nice piece to Laurel’s is their creativity in their set designs. Of course they have the typical clown scene, the typical doll room, the typical butcher scene, etc. but they also incorporate many one of a kind scenes which certainly sets them apart from their competition. The costume and make-up possessed by the actors is very life like and only helps enhance the scenes and overall experience. We did notice Laurel’s lacked actors at this specific event but after talking to Charlie and Rich (owners of the haunt) they stated they only staffed about half the actors that they typically do during haunt season. Majority of the scenes possessed an actor so it wasn’t that their was dead space… there was just certainly spots where an actor could’ve enhanced the scare/thrill factor which ultimately would’ve enhanced the overall experience. At the end of the day Laurel’s may not have possessed a large quantity of actors but the ones they did have staffed were of a high quality (we as a group would certainly rather see quality over quantity in regards to actors)! You won’t hear your usual “get out” or “what are you doing here” lines from the actors at this haunt, so no need to worry about that. Charlie and Rich along with other management team members at Laurel’s (Travis, Anthony and Jackie) clearly spend a lot of time training their actors on how to put forth the best experience possible. This time around not much changed in regards to the set designs but a few small tweaks definitely kept us on our toes. Collectively as a group we thought Laurel’s once again raised the bar and provided another solid experience! At the conclusion of the walk through we had the pleasure to speak with Charlie, Rich and Travis about our experience. These folks are always very receptive to their customers thoughts and ideas. From the sounds of it they will have some frighteningly awesome changes for this upcoming haunt season! If you haven’t yet experienced Laurel’s House of Horror then grab your keys and get yourself to their haunt! Trust us… you won’t be disappointed! When you pay them a visit let them know Fright Review Squad sent you their way! Happy Haunting!

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