Just heard this morning (10/13) that haunted attractions in MN are reporting a 50% drop in attendance, due to the weather. (cold, windy, rainy, flurries) Last Saturday the high was 35o all day long. Average Oct. temps are 50 - 60o during the day, 50's over night.
Your question intrigued me so I did a Google search and found this article from the Fairfield (CT) Minuteman which quotes the National Federation of Retailers as follows:
"Halloween related activities, such as haunted houses and festivals are likely to take a hit in attendance, according to the NFR report. Young adults (ages 18-24) historically among the biggest spenders for Halloween, plan to scale back significantly in 2009. According to the survey, the average 18-24 year-old will spend $68.56 on the holiday, compared to $86.59 last year."
I wonder if professional haunters will honestly report that their attendance rates are below expectations, historical patterns, and generally just down. I hope they're doing well as I've only just gotten into home haunting (love Home Haunt News, btw), but this economy is tough and with admission fees relatively high for the time involved (the consumer's time in the haunt) it shouldn't be surprising they're down.
And FWIW, I'm listening to your interview from earlier this year on Hauntcast. Great stuff, and yes! Halloween Forum is what sucked me in to this whole haunting thing. Thanks!
Well, our Simi Pro haunt here in Virginia, we do as a fund raising event for our volunteer fire department, is doing better than expected for this year actually. As far as I am able to tell, our attendance, ticket sells, and other sells have increased to the point we have actually had a news paper critic walk through as a group with friends, and from what she said to her friends after they exited, we were getting great reviews from people who had been through the event. I hope that others are doing as well out there, people love to be scared that is for sure..