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15 Copeland St., Petaluma
Slaughter Haunts offers two haunted attractions: Ghost Tunnels, where you take a walk through a dark maze and Slaughter Haunts, the main haunt where you walk through a series of gore filled rooms.
Our first stop was the Ghost Tunnels. Our tour was set up perfectly by the guide who let us in the haunt. At first it seemed like he was just conversing with us, but it became apparently that he was setting up the story (like we suggest that Hopper House of Horror take the time to do). Unbeknownst to us, a twine mill that was built in the early 1850s employed kids, mostly orphans, to work at the mill because their small hands could fit into the machines to do repairs. But sometimes the machines would start up unexpectedly and the kids would lose an arm, leg, or head. And as our guide told us, “what do you do with a mangled kid?” The kids would bleed out and would be wheeled to the train yard, the site of the haunt, and buried in shallow graves. The train yard workers had to eventually dig them up wearing gas masks. And that’s where our guide leaves us.
The Ghost Tunnels have paths to nowhere and dead ends that make you wonder how you get out of the place. Some in our party felt that there wasn’t enough content in the Ghost Tunnels, but I think it just depends on what scares you. Some people are afraid of clowns, others of spiders. I’m afraid of what I can’t see, so I really enjoyed Ghost Tunnels. I thought that the darkness made it difficult, if not impossible, to see where I was going and made me fearful of what was coming and what I couldn’t see. The anticipation is scarier to me than the actual scare (as long as a scare does eventually happen and you’re not just left hanging there). I think the Ghost Tunnels delivered good scares – both anticipatory and actual, although it was a short trip (about 4 minutes).
After exiting the Ghost Tunnels we headed back to where we had started and entered the Slaughter House. There are some good scenes in the haunt, including a super creepy little girl with a doll and a tiny singsong voice imploring us over the screams of others to play with her and her dolly. She was a pretty little girl so I’m not sure why I thought she was so creepy, especially since normally kids don’t scare me. Maybe it was the fact that she looked so young and sweet but was acting like being in this haunted house with gore and people screaming was just another day for her!
A favorite scene of mine started with a woman suspended over a bathtub screaming like a banshee and ended with what I hope was water being sprayed on me. The requisite clown was also enjoyable–especially when he continued to follow us and beep his horn. The intense butcher was also wonderful, kicking his bucket and warning that, “I’ll rip you apart and have you for dinner!”
All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed this haunt, but I’ll say the same thing again that I said about all the haunts in the North Bay this year, $15 is a little steep for 8 minutes of fun.
It was a little hard for us to determine where to park. If you go, drive your car to the street behind the haunt and you’ll see the lights of the entrance and where to park.
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