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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Dear readers,
I am working with some people to plan a large Halloween bash in an actual castle. This will be the fifth year we are organising this. Last year we had over 470 visitors, and their number appear to be growing every year.

Each year we try to improve ourselves and so far, each year we succeed. Now I wanted to ask you guys if you have any original Halloween Tricks & scare to pull off upon such a large crowd of visitors. I will describe what we did before and what rooms we have available, and I would like to hear any cool ideas you have. We have a story for the kids to follow but I won't disclose that just yet, I will just say that it is about a curse that hit the castle on Halloween night, long ago.

Budget is failry tight but we have had some nice scares so far, to list a few:
-A fire breathing dragon in the courtyard. (The year before it was on the castle gate. Kids were afraid to LEAVE the castle when they saw the giant thing that was guarding it.)
-A flying ghost across the courtyard, which continously traveled along a zip line.
-an operating room with a midieval plague doctor performing a surgery
-a dark dungeon filled with hidden haunters
-A skeletal horse (actually, a horse with a skeleton printed cloak and mask.)

These are the spaces we have available:
-The castle gate (with 2 small rooms above it, not easily accessible to large crowds)
-The courtyard (Large open space)
-A chapel
-Castle hall
-Small tower: One room with a dungeon in the floor beneath it (you can see into it through bars on one side of the room)
-1 small basement
-1 large basement
-Winding stairs (We always hope nobody falls in the dark!)

There's a moat surrounding the castle, visitors cross 2 bridges to get to the main keep. There's also an oak tree just near the castle parking grounds. This tree is twisted and blackened due to an WW II bomb that was dropped near it, the tree survived but looks totally creepy at night!


So, any thoughts?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes, it sure is! The 'problem' is that the rooms are quite small and the courtyard is large and open. There are a lot of people about all at once, and sending them into the castle in groups proved futile last year since people had to wait too long. So we are looking for scares that are sudden, work on groups or in tight spaces. Anyone have any thoughts on that?
 

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You have to bring the "Show" to them, insert them into it, have "Shills" in the group (people who are actually working for you) Have them acting normal, socialble and when something scary happens they could lose it, becoming frightening scary themselves (Acting) of they could because the monster-people acting evil, meanacing and they are sprinkled throughout the group! They have surrounded us, they are everywhere!!!
A larhe area becomes shrunken when suddenly the scary people have infiltrated . I might have some more thoughts for you but right now my haunt is open and I just heard car doors outside.
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
One of us was disguised as a scarecrow with a pumpkin head propped up in a corner. When kids came to close she grabbed them and held on. That provided some squeels! Although one of the kids got overzealous and punched her :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you Gym, that sounds like a very good plan. We might try mingling in some of us into crowds for some extra shock effects. We are looking for more ways to get the people to participate and surprise them.
Right now you've got me thinking how we can have someone sneaking up on people when we have large crowds together. Thanks for the tip, I'm curious as to what other thoughts you have.
 

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Indoors:

A rat feast can work in a small room that visitors have to walk by.

Ravensblight has a lot of great printable papercraft props, with these two being especially appropriate for your theme.

Monster in a box. Need I say more?

A simple hallway can become a haunted art gallery if you fill it with portraits that have glowing eyes.

This site also has a lot of great ideas, as does this recent thread about items for a haunted museum.

Outdoors:

Are you allowed to dig holes on the property? You could dig a grave in a fenced in graveyard and have an assistant burst out of the ground every so often.

Have a dummy hidden in a dark area and set up some sort of trigger to activate a strobe light and sound effects. Just be sure to make it so there's a random delay so the crowd can never figure out when and how it will activate.

A floating lantern would look amazing under a tree that people can't actually walk under.
 
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