After a year of being on hiatus due to the 'Rona, Everhaunt in its unassuming brick event center came back to life on the 2nd with a terrific bang. The ride is highlighted by cruising through the newly street scaped Village of Angola. Nothing forebodes the incredible horrors you are about to immerse yourself in.
In the most stunning development of them all, the Everhaunt team has designed the front of the structure inside to be a village street of storefronts and a Library. The lighting is also pretty well developed with spotlights on some highlights but not as much as some lobbies like the one at House of Horrors and Haunted Catacombs Gen 2. They also have side features like the General Store and Back Alley Games. Back Alley Games is a remarkable use of space in what used to be a small party room that has you playing a fiery, fluorescent version of Skee Ball; throw darts to pop balloons around a spinning body and my favorite: Ring Toss with animated Raccoons. On a future trip, I hope to see the entirety of the Queue line show: The Awakening Public Library in which an old man and ghost Librarian tell tales of local horror and hauntings. Sadly, I think the only thing missing from making this a perfect Lobby is a stage for which there is undoubtedly no room.
The Actors on this team are vibrant and original. I never once heard cliché lines and never had simple jump out screams. Even the folks in the drop panels and doors had something to say. You can tell they are trained and practice very well. I never talked to Owner Kevin about this but, I would imagine he scouted the best of the best House of Horrors and Haunted Catacombs actors. On occasion as with the Terror Technologies actors, the act was just begging to be an Icon Character. These guys are good. There isn't just the reality that the actors are good but, the vantage points and scare units are unique too. That is to say, the actors are integrated right into the props so, there's no way to expect where the next scare will come from.
Eye Candy/ Visuals
From the moment you step through the front door, there is something cool to look at. There are talking heads, the Asylum facade and an entire Streetscape. This is when I must take you into the houses. From what I've gleaned from my history in haunts, the scenes are just about as complete as you can get.
Rosewood County Asylum
This house is very close to the ideal image of a horror asylum with its light brown, tan and white color scheme. There are many small items of interest scattered around like
Easter Eggs. The actors are all masked or made up in terrific fashion. Some of the scenes have you walking through curtains and other hanging items which provides a depth that not many haunts nowadays still engage with. The torture rooms are dark, dingy and dirty and there are a good number of exam rooms to walk through. Each exam room is full of medical materials from floor to ceiling. Along the way toward the end, you come across experiments and really cool high tech looking props.
Delaware Creek Estate
Delaware Creek Estate is a great execution of the common haunted mansion theme. It's color scheme is a sometimes noticable tan, dark blue and gray. The facade is what I can figure the last remnant of one of my other Top 10 Haunts: Dark Raven Manor. From room to room, the aspect is prop chaos. Lots of stuff stacked on each other provides extra spooky shadows and opportunities for scareactors. On Opening Night, this house had a few animatronics and effects that failed to start but, the surroundings still looked hauntingly beautiful. They have a few “outdoor” portions which are done equally as well as the indoor ones being that there are a decent number of plants.
As Western New York haunted attractions go, Everhaunt is a must see. There are actually times when you can suspend your disbelief as if you are really in an Asylum or abandoned house.
Rosewood County Asylum
This house starts out with a very unique flair. From the queue line being a dark, dingy maintenance passage through the Dr. Satan pre show to the Hellevator down into the depths of the research facility, the show starts off powerfully. The scheme of this house is not just atrocious mental health care but also torture and experimentation. In a hallway at which I would imagine is the middle of the house floor plan, you weave back and forth into and out of exam rooms across from each other, from one end of the hallway to the other. A better executed version of what Frightworld did for years. In a very notable and loud section, there are an array of Distortions Animatronics relating to torture or being chained up and the cacophony is head-splitting. There is also a wonderful variation of the Scare Products Claustrophobia in which the white airbags actually zig zag left and then right accompanied by a strobe.
Delaware Creek Estate
Delaware Creek Estate is an example of how the haunted HOUSE should be, because it flows so well and encompasses most conceivable rooms and concepts of a large estate. The walls are painted with all the right flourishes to ensure adherence to a theme. There are just the right amount of “cobwebs” and other signs of uncleanliness. Some grand rooms like the Thunderstorm hallway and the Dining room definitely warrant
mentioning. See Personal Notes for reasoning behind shortening this section.
This haunt is a breath of fresh air for the Buffalo Market with a creativity that hadn't been present since 2015. Most of the magic is in the Lobby where the queue line show tells the stories of local horrors, a series of three games is representative of the underworld in the back alleys and the five minute escape room has you scrambling for keys in your desperate evasion of local horror story icon, Pigman. The introductory portion of Rosewood County Asylum and a good number of scares in Delaware Creek Estate are very imaginative and build lore. This haunt is still very new and the team can still do more like compose a cohesive story and establish Icon characters. A story that organically comes from the front-of-house aesthetic of a full country streetscape is low hanging fruit but, I know based on what's already been done in two years, these folks have more in them.