Spread across remote sections of Pasco and Hillsborough counties, homegrown terror parks Scream-A-Geddon and Sir Henry’s Haunted Trail take advantage of their backwoods settings to add another layer of terror for Halloween season.
They don’t have the deep pockets of theme parks, but horror fans give top marks to the indie haunts for their creativity and willingness to go further than their corporate counterparts.
At Scream-A-Geddon, spread across 60 acres in Dade City in a remote section of Pasco County, the terror park will have five haunted houses, a zombie paintball fight and monsters who can kidnap you, with permission.
Visitors who head there will find a dimly lit, confusing road to the entrance. For its ninth season, there’s a new haunt: Breach. Visitors there will attempt to escape OmniLabs Corporation — what once was a research laboratory and now, after rewiring organisms and experiencing cross-species contamination, is crawling with gruesome, mutated species “waiting for their next victim.”
Breach is an interactive haunt, meaning guests 18 and older can opt in to become part of the story. In addition to this new haunt, return favorites include the mystical creatures of Bloodwater Bayou, head-banging clowns in Rage 3D and patients haunting Ravenhill Asylum. There is also a Zombie Paintball Assault and Bonzo’s Beer Garden in the Monster Midway, filled with craft beer and wine, food and games.
“Our park magnifies the intensity and reality of our haunts,” said Mark Bremer, creative director at Scream-A-Geddon, “offering guests an experience they won’t find at any other Halloween attractions in the region.”
Over in Plant City, a rural area of Hillsborough County best known for its strawberry fields, Sir Henry’s Haunted Trail offers a series of haunted trails for an adrenaline rush and a high scare factor. It is in its 10th year in business on Frontage Road, and there are some new additions.
On top of its three haunted trail themes, two escape rooms and laser tag, Sir Henry’s has a brand-new Haunted Hayride called Legends of Halloween that has special effects, sets and theatricals. The trails are highly themed and some even pump in smells.
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They may look scary, but Sir Henry’s has a softy side. The haunted trail supports charities such as Give Kids the World Village and Folds of Honor with its proceeds.
A pro tip is to wear closed-toe shoes and long pants since the mosquitoes are not your friends. Watch your step as you wind your way through trails that can be dimly lit.
Each haunt has roaming themed characters and at the end you are dumped back out into the town square of Sir Henry’s, which features a mix of characters from all three attractions, food, drinks and shopping.
If you go to Scream-A-Geddon or Sir Henry’s
Scream-A-Geddon: Admission is $27.95-$52.95, depending on the date; $15 for parking. Tickets grant access to all attractions and mazes except the Zombie Paintball Assault, which starts at $12.95. 27839 Saint Joe Road. 7 p.m.-1 a.m. select nights Friday through Oct. 31. Save $5 ordering tickets online at screamageddon.com.
Sir Henry’s Haunted Trail: Tickets start at $27; $42 for haunted trails plus the haunted hayride. Parking is free. 2837 S Frontage Road, Plant City. 7:30-11 p.m. weekends from Sept. 29-Nov. 4. Tickets must be purchased in advance at sirhenryshauntedtrail.com.