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  • Writer's pictureChandler Clouser

Bates Motel & Haunted Attractions - 2021 Review

Haunted Attraction Reviewed: Bates Motel & Haunted Attractions

Location of Attraction: Glen Mills PA

Date of Review: 10/3/2021

Total Number of Attractions Available: 3

Overall Haunted Attraction Rating: 8.5/10

Entertainment & Food Rating: 8/10

Atmosphere Rating: 8/10

Overall Costume & Makeup Rating: 9/10

Overall Cast & Crew Rating: 8.5/10

Overall Set Design & Special Effects Rating: 9.5/10

Overall Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 7/10

Overall Feedback: Bates Motel & Haunted Attractions is back for their 31st year of FEAR! Located on a massive farm just outside of West Chester Pennsylvania is one of Pennsylvania’s largest and longest running Haunted Attractions. Featuring three full sized attractions, guests should expect to spend the better part of an hour, or longer, when visiting Bates Motel & Haunted Attractions! Although these folks may not be the scariest Haunted Attraction in our eyes, they sure know how to entertain and provide an aesthetically pleasing experience!

Back for 2021 is the timed ticketing system, which was implemented last season to help better control and stagger the crowds. Be sure to snag your tickets online ahead of your visit, as they cannot guarantee entry if purchasing onsite. As usual, Bates Motel is offering three haunted attractions - Psycho Path, Revenge of the Scarecrows Haunted Trail, and the infamous Bates Motel! General admission ticket prices range from $40-$50, depending on the evening you visit. VIP upgrade is available for an additional $35 on any given evening, these passes will grant you front of the line access to each attraction. Our squad took advantage of a Groupon deal which granted us nearly ½ off VIP tickets. As far as we’re aware, the Groupon for Bates Motel is still active so feel free to save yourself a few bucks!

We arrived at Bates Motel shortly before 6:30pm on a warm Sunday evening. The parking lot was quickly filling up with fellow haunt goers eagerly awaiting a frightfully fun experience! Once your group has arrived you’ll be funneled towards the security and ticket redemption checkpoint. If you’ve purchased tickets online you’ll be able to redeem them directly from your phone. Otherwise, swing by the ticket booth to snag your tickets (it’s strongly recommended to purchase tickets in advance online)! The attractions at Bates Motel will be experienced in a linear fashion - you’ll begin your journey with Pyscho Path, then venture to Revenge of the Scarecrows Haunted Trail, and lastly wrap things up with the infamous Bates Motel. Due to the linear nature of the attractions, you’ll most likely encounter a long initial wait leading up to the Pyscho Path attraction. But thereafter the wait between attractions should be minimal.

Psycho Path - Due to covid-19 safety precautions, last season the Bates Motel team converted their traditional, thrilling, and eye candy galore of a Haunted Hayride experience into a walking trail. Back for 2021 is the walking trail version of this prior Hayride experience! Guests no longer have the comfort of the hay wagon to protect them, leaving no place to hide from the terror that lurks in the dark woods. The opening scene continually delivers and sets the tone for the rest of the adventure. The combination of thrilling audio and several pyrotechnic fire blasts definitely qualifies as a great way to start our Psycho Path experience. By far the best usage of pyrotechnics we’ve ever seen at a Haunted Attraction can be found on the Pyscho Path at Bates Motel - boy do the Bates Motel team love themselves some fire! From the first scene to the last scene you are fully immersed into a whole different world. You quickly forget you’re in the woods as they do an excellent job immersing you into what feels like an elaborate Hollywood movie set. The scale of each scene is huge, the sets and animatronics are elaborate, and you can tell that the Bates Motel team poured their hearts into creating this experience. For example, guests venture through a passageway with large bubbling volcanoes and dinosaurs hovering easily 40 feet or more above you. So by “large scale sets” we truly mean MASSIVE! Another unique touch was noted during the Mineshaft scene; the set is built on a hill so patrons truly feel as if you are descending into a dark and decrepit Mineshaft! You’ll encounter a slew of other world-class scenes such as the Insane Asylum, Slaughterhouse, Cemetery, Gas Station, and many more! We were pleased to see the Headless Horseman still lurking in the final scene of Psycho Path, always a stellar way to end the adventure. The characters encountered throughout Psycho Path we’re energized, providing frightening engagements and numerous startles. Special kudos to the crazed patients roaming about the Insane Asylum, these folks came at us from all directions and left a nightmarish impression on our squad! Although our squad much prefers to experience this attraction by the comfort of a hay wagon, Psycho Path still provides a 25 minute, exhilarating, and visually stunning experience!

Revenge of the Scarecrows Haunted Trail - The facade and opening scene to this attraction truly set the tone for an unnerving journey. As you walk down the darkened tunnel your heart begins to race as you can’t help but worry about what's ahead. At just the right moment, BAM, a perfectly placed actor, delivers the first of many scares to come. In between scenes you’ll travel through the dark and eerie cornfield. As suspense builds a perfectly placed scarecrow delivers a spine-tingling fright. You’ll encounter all sorts of ghouls and creatures along your journey. Massive tombstones and decrepit mausoleums coupled with low-lying fog made for a creepy cemetery. The zombies roaming this graveyard were blood-thirsty and relentless in their attack, be warned, they’ll come at you from literally all directions! The cobweb furnished shack and beehive infested shed certainly makes your skin crawl for the rest of the evening. If you’re afraid of snakes, the slithery snake house will have you squirming in disgust! Numerous snake animatronics, along with snake-like audio, and human-sized snake creatures definitely make for a nerve-wracking scene! The clown funhouse never fails to provide an exhilarating experience, as the clowns encountered were amped up and delivered a great mix of laughs and startles. Beware Pennywise, who sneakily lurks in the dark sewer tunnels, awaiting to deliver a fright! Keep an eye out for the man-eating alligator as you venture through the swamp and past the “Bate” Shop. If you’re lucky you might just make it through the slaughter barn with all your limbs intact, otherwise you’ll become the next hunk of meat for sale in this gory meat shop! Revenge of the Scarecrows Haunted Trail is loaded with intense special effects which fully immerse the guests into each and every scene. Be prepared for 10 frightfully fun minutes on this Haunted Trail adventure!

Bates Motel - For 2021 the Bates Motel team has been advertising several new scenes within the Bates Motel attraction. It’s been a few years since we recall any major changes occurring within the Bates Motel, so our squad was very eager to check out the updates! Right off the bat the opening scene was completely revamped into a hotel lobby featuring a check in desk and two elevators! After a brief moment, a bellhop came barreling out of the one elevator to deliver the first of many spine-tingling startles! As we ventured further through the Bates Motel we encountered impressive set designs, scene after scene! Copious amounts of intense special effects were utilized to engage the guests and immerse you deeply into each scene. We couldn’t help but drool over some of the incredible set designs we encountered - the library, wine cellar, and greenhouse, just to name a few. They utilized a combination of live actors and animatronics to deliver a thrilling experience. The actors were engaged and continued to terrorize the guests until they fled in terror. There were several jaw dropping animatronics throughout this attraction, especially in the newly expanded greenhouse! New audio and visual effects were utilized in the outdoor portion of the Bates Motel attraction to simulate thunder and lightning, creating an unsettling atmosphere! Kudos to the actor in the ghillie suit who is always cleverly hidden and never fails to provide a spine-chilling startle! We thoroughly enjoyed the new scenes which included a gory dentist office, creepy funeral parlor, raunchy mortuary, and death-reeking coffin room! As you approach the final scene you are intensely greeted by a ghoul who delivers one last fright and has the guests running out of the Bates Motel doors. All sorts of surprises lurk throughout the Bates Motel hallways, creating a 10 minute spooky fun adventure.

As you exit the Bates Motel attraction you’ll spew right into the midway area. We were pleased to see the midway area back to normal for the 2021 season! After experiencing the attractions patrons can participate in 5 minute mobile escape rooms or try their hand at Axe Throwing. Several food vendors are onsite, cooking up all sorts of scrumptious offerings - our personal favorites are the freshly made donuts! Be sure to visit the well stocked merchandise shop to snag yourself a Bates Motel souvenir. If you’re still feeling brave after experiencing the attractions, take a whirl in the exhilarating coffin ride, which will simulate what it’s like to be buried alive!

Across the board at Bates Motel you’ll encounter copious amounts of visually stunning sets, life-like and horrifying characters, intense and immersive special effects, and most importantly a spooky fun experience! The biggest downfall of our experience was the notable shortage of scare actors, but this has been a recurring theme across haunts this fall. The majority of the spooks we did encounter throughout our experience were energized and incredibly interactive with our squad. There were definitely a few memorable spooks within each attraction that left a nightmarish impression on our squad. Ever since adjusting their show to accommodate to covid-19 safety protocols the Bates Motel experience just hasn’t quite been the intense and thrilling experience we’ve endured seasons before. But Bates Motel & Haunted Attractions still possesses a spooky fun atmosphere and an overall enjoyable experience. We’re sure they’ll continue to navigate the challenges of operating a haunted attraction and find ways to continually enhance the experiences. Whether you’re a first time visitor, or an avid haunt goer who annually visits the Bates Motel & Haunted Attractions, you’ll definitely enjoy the frightfully fun adventure to be had at Bates Motel!

Individual Attraction Ratings:

Attraction Name: Psycho Path

Overall Attraction Rating: 8.5/10

Cast & Crew Rating: 9/10

Set Design & Special Effects Rating: 10/10

Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 7/10

Attraction Name: Revenge of the Scarecrows Haunted Trail

Overall Attraction Rating: 8/10

Cast & Crew Rating: 8/10

Set Design & Special Effects Rating: 9/10

Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 7/10

Attraction Name: Bates Motel

Overall Attraction Rating: 8/10

Cast & Crew Rating: 8/10

Set Design & Special Effects Rating: 9/10

Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 7/10

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