Today we take a look at Fright Fest at Six Flags Great Adventure. By all indications they've really stepped up their game this year and Chris was there on their media night.
Thanks again to the staff of Great Adventure for including us in their event, see below for the amazing report.
Written by Chris Con
Park Journey recently had the opportunity to tour Six Flags Great Adventure’s new 2015 Fright Fest offerings and we were seriously impressed with how the Fright Fest team kicked nearly everything up a notch this year.
It felt to us that nearly ever aspect of the event was plussed this year, but for our group, the brand new haunt “Big Top Terror: Forgotten Carnival in 3D” was the star of this fright filled circus and this center ring headliner is so spectacular that if you’ve missed a Fright Fest in the past few years, you need to immediately stop reading this and drive to Great Adventure. It’s that good.
(Full Disclaimer: If you are reading this on Tuesday morning at 8:00am- Do not drive to Great Adventure right now unless you really enjoying camping and waiting. If so please post photos on facebook. Thanks in advance)
But then it gets dark……………….. And we get impressed……
The Awakening is Great Adventure’s pseudo parade and the true beginning of Fright Fest; where each group of ghouls moves from beyond the grave to their designated scare zone (it also might be a good way to get your children less scared of zombies because it’s still light out. or you could have them binge watch The Walking Dead.
We promise we won’t call CPS) We decided to watch this event from the “Demon District” which is essentially the (bleeding)heart of Fright Fest and where you should be once your grandfather clock strikes 6pm. Following the Awakening is “Dead Man’s Party” which is a choreographed dance and singing show themed to what else? Zombies and the undead and awesome (we are huge fans of theming to awesome).
But here is the kicker. It’s literally a “DISNEY” level show. Yes, you read that correctly, Six Flags can go “full on” Disney with theming, costumes, choreography, level of talent, pyrotechnics, and sales of “things that glow”… It is not to be missed.
So….. I know what you want.. I can read your mind…”But what about the Haunts?”
Great Adventure has always billed this event as “thrills by day” and “frights by night” so we’ll briefly recap the “free candy by day” (and not out of some scary white van) part. Last year, we shared in a lot more detail what it’s like to bring the “height and age challenged” to Fright Fest and I encourage you to click here to see awesomeness.
The day events include a great trick or treat trail that allows the mini people in your family to get free candy as well as meet with the Looney Tunes Crew and take photos. It’s perfect for the kids. The other events during the day that are Halloween related include a magic show (that we missed. and I love magic shows) , a juggling act, and line dancing with your favorite zombies by the (filled with actual human blood) fountain. So if your crew involves the lunch box aged set, there is a A LOT to do that they will absolutely love during the day..
So last year Great Adventure introduced a new trail.. I believe it was called crop circle (but I’m truly too lazy to google and verify my claim, so that’s what we are running with here)… It kind of sucked. It was just like a lightly alien themed trail with a whole lot of corn… I would give it two “Mehs” up. - but wait there’s more .
This year we have two brand new trails and “crop circle” (or whatever it was called) has left us for another planet.
Lets start with our second favorite haunt trail at Great Adventure EVAR. Blood Shed (see what they did there? )… So I had to google this, because the trail is completely different then what it’s supposed to be about. I’m told via the great folks at Six Flags Public Relations that theme is supposed to be a crazy plastic surgeon that does terrible things to his clients (What if Bill Cosby was a plastic surgeon?) that some how ends up creating “pig men” (it’s like a choose your own adventure story on meth I guess) …
But the way we experienced it was a corn filled maze like “crop circle” with much better theming and more scares. As I spend way too much time visiting haunted houses, I fall deeper in love with trails laid out like Blood Shed. Using the corn and a secondary path system for the “ghouls”, you are provided with “pop up” scares out of nowhere. Which to me is amazing (and way better than Kardashian pop up shops which to me is terrible).
Could not figure out the theme, but the trail is laid out so well that
Blood Shed gets 4 Scary Stars
So, HI AGAIN WORLD CLASS LEADING THEME PARKS.. Hey Universal. Whats up?
What if I told you that my local, regional park could knock it out of the park with a maze that was as good or better than anything you’ve ever done.
To me, this haunt was a game changer. From the starting layout (the person that tells you the rules and distributes glasses) to literally every scene. I know some people dislike “3d” glasses because they disrupt your equilibrium and they clearly aren't 3D and you can also see things in 3D because you are a person and you (most likely) have two eyes.. But this one is great.. Each scene and set up work perfectly together.
The use of “3d” UV paint is perfect. The scares ares are so strong, that we had 100 percent of the ladies (that have done stuff like this before) actually scared.. A LOT. To me, this is the best thing that Six Flags has done at any park for fright fest. I can’t say it enough.
Game changer. Five Stars- Unless clowns like stars, then 0 stars. Also. Clowns.
The Rest. (in peace)
The Manor- Arguably the most themed and one of the oldest mazes at Six Flags. Lots of money was spent to build this one and it works and we love the theming
The Asylum- Must have caught this one on an off night - (to be fair there was a group of 12 year old girls in front of us that were holding hands so the ghouls must have been spent)
Good concept but 2.5 stars
Wasteland- I want to like this trail.. The leading “mutant general” that engages the line is awesome. He’s been doing this for the past three years and I literally should fill out a comment card to “acknowledge an employee who embodies six flags fun”. the rest of the trail had me wishing the river raft ride was open. Getting that wet = actually scary to me .
Total Darkness- Totally Lame - This is the maze that needs to go . Pretty sure it was staffed by three people and if your major fear is walking into the person in front of you than this is your maze.
Scare Zones always rock at Great Adventure. From the Butcher scare zone in Wild West Town to the engaging of fright virgins at the fountain, We absolutely love those areas. Hat tip to Great Adventure for allowing ghouls to roam free.