Haunted Houses In Iowa

The night is cool and dry. The crisp autumn air hits you in the face. You can feel your heart beating faster and faster as the adrenaline rushes through your veins. You peer around the corner, carefully. It seems safe. You and your friends walk forward, leaves crunching beneath your feet. You hear a loud crunch behind you. You slowly turn around only to see 3 clowns laughing hysterically in your face. You all scream and start running, laughing at your own fear. This is the common experience most high schoolers have at haunted houses.

During October, hundreds of West High students attend haunted houses all throughout Iowa. Opinions start to fly about which haunted house is the scariest? Which had the most clowns? Which one is worth going to? After conducting a survey with 100 students, Scream Acres was found to be the most popular haunted house among West High students. Marijke Nielsen ‘19 has been going to Scream Acres for 2 years. ”Scream Acres is definitely the scariest by far. The scariest part is getting put into the situation and being trapped.” said Nielsen. Scream Acres is located in Atkins, Iowa and includes 4 attractions: The Slaughter House, Carnival Chaos, Cell Block Z and The Cornfield as well as a gift shop and cafe. The cost to attend is $20 for 2 houses and $30 for 4 houses. This year, Scream Acres came out with a new attraction: Cell Block Z. “The scariest part was probably Cell Block Z. It felt like an actual apocalypse.” said Cole Tuttle ‘20. “Besides that and the clowns, it wasn’t that scary. Not worth the price.”

Despite Scream Acres being popular for teenagers, it isn’t the most family friendly attraction to attend. ”I think it’s a really fun experience but definitely not for kids. They definitely wouldn’t understand that it isn’t real. But for teenagers, I would recommend it.” said Nielsen.

Although Scream Acres is one of the most popular attractions, not all students had an enjoyable experience. “The lines at Scream Acres ruin it for you. Same with the price.” said Chandler Haight ‘18. Haight attended both Scream Acres and Circle of Ash Haunted Attraction. CIrcle of Ash is located in Central City Iowa and has been around since the 90’s. The attraction is run by volunteers and is set up in the Linn County Fairgrounds. Price to do any of the houses is $20 and the houses can be done more than once. “Circle of Ash had a better environment. The actors actually interacted with you which doesn’t happen at Scream Acres.” said Haight. “I would 100% recommend it over Scream Acres.”

To compare a final haunted house to two of the most popular, we decided to attend the CAB Haunted House at the IMU in downtown Iowa City. Admission was free and the line was out the door. There were people of all ages, including families, college students and little kids. Before walking into the house, the level of scares could be adjusted depending on the age of the kids which helped make the event more family friendly. “It was scarier than I thought it would be. The setup was actually pretty cool” said Cole McKillip ‘17.

Even though opinions often vary between each haunted house, the experience of attending one is a great way to get into the Halloween spirit.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email