A Night at Knott’s Scary Farm

Three students bring you the best thrills and frights in the theme park

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Knott’s Berry Farm’s Halloween Haunt Knott’s Scary Farm. Photo by Memo Soza.

With only a few days left to Halloween, my journalism team and I went to Knott’s Scary Farm to test out each maze and let our readers know which ones were worth waiting in line for. Before we get into what horrific scares await you, however, we have some tips on what to do
before you arrive.

First off, purchasing parking there was $30 per car, however, if you view their website, you can get a parking pass for $20. Weekdays are cheaper than weekends for the Scary Farm tickets, ranging from $42 during the weekdays and Sundays, while $48 on Fridays and going as high as $54 on Saturday nights. If you have extra money to spend, we highly recommend buying their Fright Lane, which allows you to wait in a shorter line. In fact, without the Fright Lane, we wouldn’t have been able to experience all the attractions that they had to offer in one night.

The wait times were long, with the longest wait time we had on any of the mazes roughly 30 minutes for the Paranormal Inc. and Dark Ride mazes. However, for people without the Fright Lane, the lines could easily have been as long as two hours for those same mazes. The only downfall is that the Fright Lane pass is more expensive than the actual ticket, but buying them through their combo will save you a few bucks.

Without the pass, the best course of action is to grab a map located at the park entrance and quickly rush to the maze you want to view the most before the lines start to fill up. Realistically, you’ll be only able to, at most, go through three to four mazes or rides a night without the Fright Lane.

With that out of the way, we decided to start off with the scaredy cat in our team, Diana Casillas, and her favorite maze, Paranormal Inc. Going in to Knott’s Scary Farm I didn’t think I was going to make it past the first maze. I don’t like being scared but I thought it was time that I face my fears. I was able to go into all of the mazes, but it ended up being one of my favorite mazes. Going in, I was scared of it being a haunted insane asylum. It starts off in a room where they let a group of people at a time, with a presenter showing us a video of a guy trying to make contact with the other side.

Although the intro they had for the maze was a bit cheesy, they had a live actress play an insane escaped banshee, zip lining across the room. The part I enjoyed the most from this maze was when the walls were moving in and out, making an illusion as if the walls were falling in on you. There were also flashing lights, although the flashing lights made it hard to see where we were going.

The thing I liked about the whole maze was that it didn’t have many jump scares but it was more of a psychological fear. I was able to face many of my fears that night, going through all of the mazes, but the person that surprised me the most was our friend Lauren Scheer. She seemed like she wouldn’t be frightened easily, but was screaming alongside me most of the night.

To start off, I would like to mention that I always thought I wouldn’t be easily scared, but I was wrong. Just by walking around, the workers did a fantastic job scaring everyone. The other  maze I liked the most was Special Ops: Infected, just because it was more interactive than the other
mazes. Before entering in the maze, the workers handed everyone a gun and made it seem we like were going into battle, but with zombies. There were a few times I got scared and screamed at not only the zombies, but the military men working the maze to get us through.

One of them told me jokingly, “I know I am ugly, but we still need to get through this battle.”

After the maze, before handing our guns over ,everyone was able to read their score on the gun. I didn’t realize that the gun would reveal my score, so I never checked how many zombies I had killed.

Going in, I thought I wouldn’t be fazed by much of what Knott’s Scary Farm had to offer, but I was happily surprised.

Another one of my favorite mazes would have to be Trick or Treat: Lights Out. At the beginning of the maze, you are handed a small flashlight and thrown into an extremely dark maze. As we walked around, I was more intrigued by the décor of the maze than the actual workers trying to scare us.

With only a little flash light to shine my way, I was that annoying person holding up the line as I would check out what each room had been decorated with. The flashlight was programmed so that you couldn’t turn it off, no matter how many times you clicked the button. About half-way through the maze, the flashlight became a UV light and you could shine it on the walls and see markings and drawings that you wouldn’t be able to see otherwise. Near the end of the maze, the flashlight would become a regular light again, but it would flicker to give the illusion that something big was going to jump at you at any moment. Definitely one of the more interesting mazes in my opinion.

If you still have time at the end for one more maze, a contender that didn’t make our list but definitely impressed us was the Dark Ride maze, which gives the illusion that you are in an abandoned carnival ride overtaken by killer clowns. Although this maze didn’t scare even Diana, we believe it was one of the more interesting of the nine mazes.

If just going to mazes isn’t what you want to do, quite a few thrill rides are open as well, with our favorites being Ghost Rider, Sidewinder, and Silver Bullet. Not to mention, there was also a live DJ, live show, and Elvira’s Last Show, too.