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  • Writer's pictureChandler Clouser

Lehigh Valley Scream Park - 2018 Review

Haunted Attraction Reviewed: Lehigh Valley Scream Park

Location of Attraction: Orefield Pennsylvania

Date of Review: Saturday November 3rd 2018

Total Number of Attractions Available: FOUR

Overall Haunted Attraction Rating: 8/10

Entertainment and Food Rating: 8/10

Atmosphere Rating: 9/10

Overall Costume and Make Up Rating: 8/10

Overall Cast and Crew Rating: 8/10

Overall Props, Animatronics and Set Design Rating: 8/10

Overall Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 7/10

Overall Feedback: On a brisk Saturday evening we ventured a few hours north to visit another “new to us” haunted attraction. On their final night of the 2018 haunt season we paid a visit to Lehigh Valley Scream Park (LVSP). Tucked in a dark and quiet piece of property in Orefield PA, LVSP has a perfect space to operate a haunted attraction. As we exited our vehicles a brisk and breezy chill overcame us. We headed right for the ticket booth where we had the pleasure of speaking with Buddy, owner of the haunt. We spoke for quite a chunk of time with Buddy before beginning our experience. We learned that this was just year three for LVSP and their first year operating a haunted hayride. It was clear to us how passionate Buddy is for the haunt industry. After speaking with Buddy we grabbed our tickets and headed into the midway area. At LVSP the midway area features a small gift shop, two food stands, fire pit, photo booth, music, large scale kid slides and more; a perfect set-up to entertain guests during their time outside of the attractions. LVSP offers four attractions: Hollow of Horror Hayride, Dead End Corn Maze, Hillbilly Hell and Slaughter Barn. LVSP also offers Ground Breakers Zombie Thrill Ride; the ultimate zombie paintball experience. We did not partake in this experience but here is LVSP explanation of the experience: “The Zombie Apocalypse has hit the Lehigh Valley! You will board one of our special forces zombie destroyer vehicles equipped with semi automatic assault rifles (AKA paintball guns) that you will operate to shoot and destroy all infected zombies. Our military truck will take you on an interactive thrill ride in the dark with special effect lighting through areas filled with live zombies. Your mission is to shoot and destroy! This ride is fun for the entire family!” We have heard nothing but good feedback regarding the Zombie Thrill Ride. Buddy mentioned that they actually plan to make some additions/upgrades to the attraction over the upcoming offseason to further enhance the overall experience of the attraction.

To kick off our evening we elected to start with Hollow of Horror Hayride. Unlike most hay wagons, guests sit on a wooden platform facing outwards with your legs dangling over the edge. We’ve ridden on a few hayrides set up this way and they always seem to be much more immersive than your typical hayride. Once aboard the wagon we set off for our experience. The first scene got things off on a thrilling note. As we approached a large facade and began to drive through the underpass thunder sounds and bright white lights flashed. Then the Halloween/Michael Myers theme song began playing and sure enough, wielding a large kitchen knife Michael Myers himself appeared. He instantly began following the hay wagon and as we pulled away from the scene he stopped and stared on as we departed. We absolutely loved the fact that he stood and watched us pull away until our wagon was completely out of sight. The next few scenes featured a zombie graveyard with the grim reaper, hillbillies, Centralia, toxic wasteland and more. Set design was all well done, featuring unique props/animatronics, some pyrotechnics and an overall one-of-a-kind set-up. One minor downfall was several of the scenes had heavy scene work on just one side of the wagon. This left the otherside of the hay wagon needing to constantly turn around to take everything in. Despite not having a ton of scenes on the hayride, the experience was still a solid 15 minutes. We have no doubt that over the next several years LVSP will continue to expand and build up the hayride experience. The scare actors were all VERY passionate and energized, delivering many scares to the guests. The did exscreamly well at interacting with the guests and certainly weren’t afraid to get up close and personal. By far the best scare actors encountered were the hillbillies at the swamp scene. At one point on our hayride experience we approached a small shack labeled as the maintenance building. We won’t give any spoilers but this scene was well done, truly an awesome ending to the Hollow of Horror Hayride!

Immediately after completing the Hayride guests will enter the Dead End Corn Maze. Buddy informed us that they actually had to build a trench around the corn maze the morning of when we visited to redirect flood water from the cornfield. So yes, this Dead End Corn Maze had a rather swampy and unnerving footing. Dead End Corn Maze didn’t have much set design to speak about. A simplistic set-up featuring a corn field with maze like paths and actors scattered about to taunt you during your experience. Depending on the pathways you take, guests may make it out in one shot or you might encounter several dead ends and get twisted around. Towards the end of the attraction a classic scare tactic was utilized to enhance the thrill factor. A scare actor was splitting up groups causing guests to venture the rest of the way with new friends. We did feel that this attraction was significantly lacking scare actors and was much too short of an experience. By adding in a few scenes, more scare actors and lengthening the experience, Dead End Corn Maze could easily become a spooktacular attraction. Once exiting the corn maze guests will once again board the hay wagon which will take you back to the midway area.

Prior to experiencing the final two attractions, Hillbilly Hell and Slaughter Barn, our squad took some time to warm up by the fire and devour some delicious snacks. Once we were thawed out again we headed for the final two attractions. Guests will wait in one line and experience both Hillbilly Hell and Slaughter Barn back to back. We didn’t know this before our experience but Hillbilly Hell and Slaughter Barn are basically two attractions which make one solid 10 minute walk through. Within just seconds of stepping inside Hillbilly Hell and Slaughter Barn we could quickly tell this is where LVSP bread and butter is! This walk through was cluttered with scares and fun. We were pleasantly surprised by the set design; handmade props, unique animatronics, use of smells and even a floor constructed to feel unstable and weak. The scare actors were again very passionate and delivered frightening performances. A perfect balance of actor pop scares and skits were utilized. By far one of our favorite pitch black sections ever encountered took place inside Hillbilly Hell/Slaughter Barn. Darkness, tight spaces, thrilling music and pop scares sure made for a spooktacular pitch black section. The swamp scene was very well done; featuring a claustrophobia wall at our legs forcing us to slow down as a large animatronic and a scare actor taunted us. A chunk of Hillbilly Hell/Slaughter Barn took place outside and LVSP did a frighteningly good job at keeping the energy/thrill going. The outdoor area was highlighted by a section with checkered panels making maze like paths. As we ventured through this maze like section a chainsaw wielding actor fired up his chainsaw and came running after us. This surely sent a few of our members running. Long story short Hillbilly Hell and Slaughter Barn were an action packed experience featuring a nights worth of thrills alone.

At the conclusion of our experience we again had the pleasure of speaking with Buddy. Buddy shared with us some of his plans for the years to come and they surely sound spooktacular! Buddy also mentioned his passion for having quality actors who are passionate and high energy. Across the board at LVSP we felt the scare actors were all extremely passionate, delivering frighteningly good skits. Set design was detailed and clearly well thought out. Scenes were crafted and detailed from floor to ceiling throughout all the attractions with handmade props and incredible animatronics. Costuming and makeup was realistic and correlated perfectly with the scene. Even on the final evening of the haunt season the atmosphere still possessed that opening night buzz and energy! It’s safe to say that we had nothing short of a spooktastic experience at LVSP. We were simply amazed by the level of experience this haunt provides for only being in their third season of haunting. Our squad will certainly be back in years to come. We look forward to watching LVSP grow and flourish into what could become on of the better multi-attraction haunts in Pennsylvania. If you’ve never visited Lehigh Valley Scream Park then you best make sure they are on your calendar for the 2019 haunt season! This place delivers a spooktastic experience that you do not want to miss.

Individual Attraction Review:

Attraction Name: Hollow of Horror Hayride

Overall Attraction Rating: 8/10

Cast and Crew Rating: 8/10

Props, Animatronics and Set Design Rating: 8/10

Attraction Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 7/10

Attraction Name: Dead End Corn Maze

Overall Attraction Rating: 6.5/10

Cast and Crew Rating: 7/10

Props, Animatronics and Set Design Rating: 6/10

Attraction Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 6/10

Attraction Name: Hillbilly Hell

Overall Attraction Rating: 8.5/10

Cast and Crew Rating: 8/10

Props, Animatronics and Set Design Rating: 9/10

Attraction Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 8/10

Attraction Name: Slaughter Barn

Overall Attraction Rating: 8.5/10

Cast and Crew Rating: 8/10

Props, Animatronics and Set Design Rating: 9/10

Attraction Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 8/10

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