We're in the thick of the Halloween season, and whether or not you have a costume planned or a few big bowls of candy ready for distribution, now's the time to head to a few haunted houses around the Valley that are guaranteed to get your adrenaline pumping.
Phoenix is home to a dozen haunted houses, but since not all of them are great and ticket prices aren't cheap, we've compiled a few of our favorites. Check out our five favorite haunted houses below and a slideshow of the haunted attractions.5. 13th Floor
More than six months of work went into transforming an abandoned Albertson's market in North Phoenix into a huge haunted attraction that boasts two different attractions under one roof. The creators of some of the scariest haunted houses in the southwest conjured up this meticulously decorated domain of the macabre, which is one of the best-looking haunted houses we've ever seen.
The sinister scenarios contained within include a 2,000-square-foot "tilted room" (that disorients the senses and requires you to hold on for dear life), a ginormous "chainsaw forest," and a zombie-filled cityscape where patrons must dodge the undead.
Hours and pricing: Open 7 p.m. every night through October 31. Admission is $25-$35.
4. Fear Farm The sprawling setting -- three sections of dark trail through a cornfield and one old building on the outskirts of Glendale -- is certainly a big part of the attraction, and the scenery is artfully rendered, but what really separates Fear Farm from the pack is the performers. Unlike a lot of cheesy haunts looking to cut labor costs with motion censors and pneumatics, almost every scare at Fear Farm comes courtesy of a flesh and blood actor.
Those actors are good, too. We're not sure how Fear Farm attracts the talent it does (perhaps being almost the only game in town on the west side because the east is saturated with similar attractions?) but each and every pretend monster at Fear Farm seems to be obsessed with the idea of scaring the hell out of us.
Hours and pricing: FEAR FARM HAUNTS Thurs & Sun: 7:30 - 10:00 pm Fri & Sat: 7:30 - 12:00 am Halloween Eve (10/30): 7:30 - 10:00 pm Halloween Night (10/31): 7:30 - 12:00 am
FUN FARM CORN MAZE Thurs - Sun: 6:00 - 10:00 pm Halloween Eve (10/30): 6:00 - 10:00 pm Halloween Night (10/31): 6:00 - 10:00 pm
Tickets are $25-$40.
3. The Nest Jacob Kell is arguably one of the most infamous Arizonans ever. How so? In the 1940s, the demented teenaged farmhand slaughtered a grand total of 35 people, including members of his own family, while living in the tiny rural community of Wenden. And he did it in less than a week's time. The grizzly actions of Kell, who some have dubbed "The Arizona Ripper," helped inspire the ultra-eerie atmosphere and some of the terrifying antics at The Nest in Chandler. Located on the grounds of Rawhide, it include a trio of individual attractions that each offer different kinds of terror.
There's "The Nest" itself, which recreates Kell's child home his murderous misdeeds. A bucolic and blood-drenched 10,000-square-foot farm house is filled with high-tech special effects, kooky characters hoping to freak you out, and other things that go bump in the night. Read more ...
Hours and pricing: Thursdays, Sundays and Halloween: 7 to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday 7 p.m. to midnight. Tickets are $25 to $30.
Haunted house impresario Paul Boyd has been scaring the bejeezus outta people for a quarter of a century. Starting with a relatively diminutive Halloween display built in the three-car garage of his home around 25 years ago, he's caused countless local residents to scream with his horrific haunts. The screaming has gotten louder and more frequent over the decade as Boyd and his company Graveyard Entertainment have created larger and more frightening attractions across the Valley, including his latest joint Chambers of Fear.
Hours and pricing:
Fridays & Saturdays: 7 p.m. - Midnight All Other Days: 7 p.m. - 10 p.m. Halloween Night: 7 p.m. - 10 p.m.
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1. Monsterland There's no need to wait until Halloween to celebrate at Monsterland -- the haunted house, horror film museum, and monster-themed nightclub celebrates all-things-creepy year-round. The Mesa hangout for adrenaline and spook junkies offers steady thrills, a maze of themed rooms and environments, an observation deck/club will have an area where guests can dance to the tune of local DJs, and a museum of props from horror flicks and statues including Freddy Krueger from A Nightmare on Elm Street and Leatherface from The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.
Hours and pricing:
Oct 18 - Thursday - 6pm - 10pm Oct 19 - Friday - 6pm - Midnight Oct 20 - Saturday - 5pm - 6pm (Lights On) 6pm - Midnight (Lights Out) Oct 25 - Thursday - 6pm - 10pm Oct 26 - Friday - 6pm - Midnight Oct 27 - Saturday- 5pm - 6pm (Lights On) 6pm - Midnight (Lights Out) Oct 28 - Sunday - 6pm - 10pm Oct 29 - Monday - 6pm - 10pm Oct 30 - Tuesday - 6pm - 10pm Oct 31 - Wednesday - 6pm - 10pm