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Night Terrors at Wiard's Orchards

 

5565 Merritt Road

 

Ypsilanti 48197

 

http://www.hauntedhousemichigan.com/

 

Phone: N/A

 

Email: annmarie@wiards.com

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Hours

Sept 29th, then Fri, Sat, & Sundays in October. Also open Oct. 30 & Oct 31

Tickets

Consult website www.hauntedhousemichigan.com/hhouselist

 

Night Terrors at Wiard's Orchards is Michigans Premire Haunted Thrill Park. We put terror in your face with 6 chilling Attractions The Ultimate Haunted Barn, The Minded Shaft, The Asylum, Spattertown - Live Action Paintball, Hayrides of the Lost, Alien Caged Clowns and Scareoke.


 

If the University Of Michigan is Washtenaw Countyís shining star, then Wiardís Orchardsí Night Terrors is the dark cloud of doom off in the distance. Just over the line from Ann Arbor in neighboring Ypsilanti, Night Terrors Thrills & Chills Park at Wiardís Farm is a Michigan legend brought to horrific reality. They have 6 attractions (The Ultimate Haunted Barn, the Asylum, the Mindshaft, the Labyrinth, Hayride of The Lost and Alien Caged Clowns). The original Ultimate Haunted Barn opened in 1984 making Wiardís the oldest known Haunted Barn attraction in the USA. Every fall thousands of customers flock to Wiardís Night Terrors to get their fill of fall fright! Wiardís Orchards has been a family-owned business since 1837. Their focus was always on agriculture, but in 1984 they dipped their toes into the haunted event game. Their working staff immediately loved scaring just as much as the customers loved being scared, and so tradition was born. Flash forward to the present (it will be 30 years this coming season!) and Night Terrors is home to 6 haunted events sprawled across almost 100 acres with over 115 actors. While others have come and gone over the past three decades, Wiardís survived and thrived, and after our visit to their impressive facility, we quickly learned why. Upon entering from the parking lot, you canít help but notice ďThe Ticket CoopĒ as it has a 10-ft tall, mutant-sized rooster perched atop of it. While waiting in line, guests are entertained by sideshow performers and fireworks display. Lots of haunts and scream parks offer queue line entertainment, but the quality varies. This was top notch! At the ticket window, we were given the option of ala carte, Package Pass or VIP Package Pass. The Alien Caged Clowns and Labyrinth only came with the Package Pass and for a few bucks more, you can upgrade to the VIP (which came with a free pass to their daytime Country Fair too!). The VIP upgrade included a Disney-like Fast Pass (straight to the front of the line) and the Country Fair pass was a $13 added value! With our glow-in-the-dark VIP necklaces in place, we set off down the torch-lit path to Night Terrors. Upon exiting the path, we were met with a column of flames rocketing from a train atop the Mindshaft roof. Presentation and detail are absolutely on-point at this haunted event. We made our way back to the Hayride of The Lost to start our evening. The Hayride of The Lost entrance is an old 1800ís looking structure with shop signs and wooden porches. As you approach, you hear a creepy legend pumping out of hidden speakers telling the tale of the hayride and setting the haunting stage for whatís to come. (Turns out the person reading is a BBC voice talent.) The frontage is really impressive, and we were pleased to see they carried the theme inside the building where the same voice over was giving a set of safety instructions and warnings to guests waiting in line. As instructed, we took the VIP path and quickly got on the very next hayride wagon. I especially liked the efficiency by which the haunt ran. Itís quite obvious they are tried and true with 30 years experience in the haunt industry. The hayride wagon was good sized, and we had a nice mix of families and college aged kids riding with us. Guests on the hayride were chuckling about the long ride out to the woods entrance. It was definitely upping the anxiety of fear as everyone approached the haunted hayride trail. Once you reach the trees, Hollywood quality lighting effects draw dramatic attention to the majesty of the tall trees and haunted forest giving everyone a sense of just how small we are in comparison to the dense forest. The first scene is a Wild West style structure and the greeter that burst from the doors was hilarious and entertaining. His warning was well done, and he additionally adlibbed in response to a teenage heckler. Hiring quality haunt actors is important to Night Terrors. As we progressed into the hayride, every set design was large and varied. For example, we passed a full-sized boat with a waterlogged fisherman, a flesh-eating bootlegger, a western town with an angry posse, a full sized antique train with ghouls, a Civil War encampment, a large cemetery and an oversized firehouse filled with murderous firemen. Special effects ranged from fireballs to monsters flying overhead. The scenes in each section were detailed and very well done, but because this trail is also part of their Country Fair Hayride, itís less gruesome and gory than its sister attractions. What it lacked in gore, it certainly made up for in solid scares and showmanship, and could be ranked THE MOST fun and entertaining haunted hayride of all time. Everyone on our hayride was either screaming, laughing or crying at one point or another. Everyone had a blast!

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