Haunted Attraction Reviewed: Demon House Haunted Attraction LLC
Location of Attraction: Monongahela PA
Date of Review: 9/12/2020
Total Number of Attractions Available: 1
Overall Haunted Attraction Rating: 8/10
Entertainment & Food Rating: 8/10
Atmosphere Rating: 8.5/10
Overall Costume & Makeup Rating: 8/10
Overall Cast & Crew Rating: 8.5/10
Overall Set Design & Special Effects Rating: 8/10
Overall Scare/Thrill Factor Rating: 7.5/10
Overall Feedback: On our 2nd evening of our 2020 review season we found ourselves in Western Pennsylvania to revisit Demon House. We visited Demon House Haunted Attraction for the first time last season and were pleasantly surprised with our experience. The squad enjoyed the experience so much that we knew we had to sneak them into our 2020 review schedule. Fortunately enough Demon House is historically open *very* early in September. The evening we attended, Saturday September 12th, was already Demon House’s 5th evening of operation for the 2020 season. With partly cloudy skies and temps in the high 50’s, we certainly couldn’t have picked a better evening to attend.
The location of Demon House is an interesting one; one with a lot of history, around 150 years worth. The haunt itself takes place inside the “McCue Family Estate” which is actually known to have recorded paranormal activity. We encourage you to read up on the location's history and encourage you to watch the Travel Channels “Portals to Hell” episode on Demon House prior to visiting. The property definitely has an eerie vibe, which is perfect for the home of a haunted attraction!
It was shortly after 10pm as we pulled into the parking lot, which is actually not at the attraction itself. Guests take a brief shuttle ride from a nearby parking lot, and by brief we mean literally a 30 second shuttle ride. Prior to loading on the shuttle a Demon House parking attendant uses a digital forehead scanner to take everyone’s temperature. This was just one of many new protocols the Demon House team is enforcing to encourage a safe experience! Once aboard the shuttle you’ll be transported to the physical location of the attraction. You’ll unload and then are free to walk up to the haunt. The brief walk up the driveway immediately sets the mood for the guests. Eerie sounds echo from nearby speakers as you take in the simplistic but elegant scenery. Off in the near distance guests can begin to take in the elegance that is Demon House! It’s rather difficult to explain in words how aesthetically pleasing and downright eerie Demon House is. Even after visiting in 2019, our entire squad still just gazed at the McCue Family Estate/Demon House in pure awe.
As we reached the top of the driveway a Demon House staff member greeted the groups and once again took another digital forehead temperature reading. Guests should plan to have a face covering to wear throughout the entertainment area and the attraction itself. Social distancing was strongly enforced and practiced throughout both the attraction and the entertainment area. After passing temperature inspection, guests are then funneled through the ticket booth. Ticket prices at Demon House run $20 for general admission and $30 for fast pass. Those who visit on Sunday’s can receive general admission tickets at a discounted rate of $15. Even before all the new social distancing protocols, Demon House always took pride in ensuring guests aren’t pushed through the attraction in a conga line fashion. They admit groups of no more than 6 at a time. As you purchase tickets you are given a group number. This number is essentially your place in line. Numbers are called out on a loudspeaker every few minutes, ensuring there is at least a 2-3 minute gap between groups. This method to admit guests into the attraction is actually very effective, as it allows the guests to roam about the midway area while they wait versus having them stand in line.
Our squad of seven for the evening was split into two groups. For it only being night five of the season there was already a decent sized crowd on hand. With our general admission tickets we had a solid 45 minute wait. We took this time to scope out the entertainment area before our group numbers were called. Several photo stations, light refreshments, outdoor movie theater, multiple merchandise shops, and several fire pits highlight the entertainment area. So definitely lots to do while you wait. Our squad enjoyed relaxing in the movie theater and snagged some souvenirs during our wait. The Demon House gift shop featured custom t-shirts that were heat pressed right onsite. They had several dozen designs you could choose from to allow for a full customization of your shirt. We thought that was a neat touch!
After waiting our turn our group numbers were called around 11:30pm. To begin your experience at Demon House guests are invited into a fortune teller booth. Guests then take a seat as the gypsy will review the rules of the attraction with the use of tarot cards - this was an extremely effective and fun way to review the rules, especially all the new covid-19 related protocols! After a few minutes the genie’s crystal ball gave us the all clear to proceed forward into Demon House. We rounded the corner and walked up the sidewalk on the front side of the house, as we approached the doorstep one of our favorite scare actors of the evening welcomed us to Demon House and planted the backstory seed for the attraction. Her charisma and wittiness was a hit amongst our group. After a few brief moments the front door opened and we were welcomed inside.
What guests should know is that Demon House was truly an actual home converted into a haunt. So our squad was very curious to see how they’d snake us through the haunt. Inside Demon House itself we encountered a wide variety of sets, all featuring hand-made props. Demon House is certainly not a prop shop so don’t expect tons of animatronics. Our squad thoroughly enjoyed the creativity that the sets possessed. Some of our favorite scenes were easily the asylum, slaughter kitchen, and clown sections; all of which featured scare actors who were relentless and continually taunted our group providing a frightastic experience. Because of the snake-like paths guests may cross paths with other guests once or twice, but this wasn’t an issue for our squad. In some areas, the snake like paths confused our members, making us feel like we got twisted around somehow. We recall at least one or two scenes with false doors and hidden pathways.
Easily one of Demon House’s strengths was certainly their scare actors. Their entire cast is extremely passionate and dedicated to their roles. The scare actors utilize a variety of scare tactics to keep the guests on their toes. The only downfall was an obvious shortage of actors in a few different areas of the attraction which left several areas of significant dead space. As you exit Demon House you’ll enter a pallet maze with chainsaw wielding scare actors. The outdoor section of the haunt was extremely lacking in scare actors which really put a damper on that part of the experience. A few more spooks in the outdoor sections would certainly help to beef up the attraction and enhance the overall experience. Overall, despite the dead space, the Demon House scare actors did their best to provide a spooky fun time for our group. To finish things out, Demon House takes things up a notch, a notch in voltage that is. Guests will snag a seat in the electric chair and if you’re lucky you’ll make it out without being fried!
All in all Demon House provided a simple but well executed haunt experience lasting around 20-25 minutes. For $20, you’ll definitely get your money's worth with a visit to Demon House! We undoubtedly consider Demon House an old school style haunt as it features unique scenes with primarily handmade props and relies heavily on its scare actors to provide the guests with a spooky fun time! Demon House is by no means a “cookie cutter” haunted attraction, as they truly offer a one of a kind experience! Demon House provides a fun, thrilling, and most importantly safe experience that all haunt goers should experience this fall. If you’re traveling a bit to visit Demon House we encourage considering a visit to a 2nd attraction in the same evening, as there are several other spooktastic haunted attractions nearby. If you’re able to pay Demon House a visit this fall make sure to let them know that Fright Review Squad sent you their way! Happy Hauntings!