Category Archives: On Tour

Haunted Ohio!

There are many activities to participate in during the month of October with all of the Halloween festivities, but one of my absolute favorites would have to be checking out the latest and greatest haunted attraction. There are a few that I visit on a regular basis, and then  occasionally visit a new one if there has been enough buzz about it. I have 2 that I’ve favored for a few years with 1 new discovery and would like to share them today.

FOT2

This weekend marks the ever so special Halloween Weekend! For me (and I’m sure it’s like this for the actors as well), Halloween weekend is like the Superbowl or Wrestlemania weekend for haunted houses. I’ve been to many before and during and it seems like during Halloween weekend, the scare factor is ramped up to the max! The Zombies have an extra hunger for Braaaaaiiiins, the Vampires are a little more bloody, the Werewolves are howling a little louder at the moon, and the Maniacs crank up the insanity. Sometimes, it’s just good fun to have somebody scare the pants off of you! 😀

FOT1

1. The Factory of Terror (www.factoryofterror.net)

The fact that this haunt has the world record in The Guinness Book Of World Records for Longest Haunted House is reason enough to give it a look. I’ve got to be honest that this is the main reason why I was so interested in checking it out as well. Usually with something that is advertised to be MASSIVE or HUGE is alot of walking with nothing going on and/or poor quality in production. This was not the case with the FOT. There are TONS of actors throughout this haunt as well as many props including 3D Black lighting effects and a mirror maze! If you happen to need a breather during the haunt, there is a stopping point about half of the way through to rest, go to the bathroom, and purchase merchandise/refreshments. The staff were so ghoulishly kind enough to walk us through so I could snap a few pictures (the few photos you see are from the FOT). I made sure to be careful to not take TOO detailed pictures so that I don’t give any of the scares/props away so we’re good on that. In closing on this one, I have got to see it one more time and this is going to be my Saturday night fright place for Halloween weekend! I hope to see you here and be sure to say ‘hi’ if you see me there or tell them DiscoveringOhio.com sent you!

 

2. Dead Acres/The Haunted Hoochie (www.deadacres.com)

The name kind of lets you know what to expect from the start. This is a dirty, raunchy, graphic time with the crew from Pataskala, but is fun to the max. Word has it, they work hard to make you sick! I didn’t post any photos from this one because they are a little more on the risqué side that are alot more revealing… not something you would expect t see on a family site, eh? In all honesty though, this is my absolute favorite haunt, though. The costumes and the effects are top notch! The actors are VERY interactive with the “victims” which tends to make things a little more fun for everybody. This is one that we make sure to visit every year and I’m sure they’ll be on their baddest behavior this weekend.

 

3. The Ohio State Reformatory Haunted Prison Experience (www.hauntedx.com)

There is enough history in the prison alone that could make this a creepy experience, but add in the actors and the scenery that the Haunted X crew has placed in and you have an  experience that nightmares are made of. You actually get to walk into the cell areas that happens to be eerily cool and dark. For me, just knowing you’re walking amongst ghosts is enough to make your skin crawl. If you’re looking for more of a real experience, then definitely check this one out!

 

In closing, all 3 of these haunts are worth the price of admission (ticket prices are in the $20 area). If you do decide to go, make sure that you’re a good sport and react to the actors. I simply cannot stand watching people who are cooler than words who simply will not do anything like they are to prove that they are the Brock Lesnar tough guy who isn’t afraid of the simulated horror of a haunted house. You’re there for entertainment purposes, so let the actors entertain you. Thanks for reading and I’d love to read about your experiences as well as suggestions for my 2012 Halloween Fun Run! Until next time…

Save Room 4 Love,

Brad (The Chatterbox)

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Animals at the Zoo…

 
Welcome back for another edition of The Chatterbox blog! I just recently had a “Daddy and Baby Day” at the Columbus Zoo (Wifey had to work, but I was putting our Season Passes to good use). It was a warm, sunny day!
We spent about maybe 5 hours there and actually saw quite a bit. I opted not to go with a stroller and carried Zoe on my shoulders when she didn’t want to walk in the heat (which turned out to be 90% of the time). Reason for that is if you have a stroller or wagon, it tends to restrict areas you can snake yourself into for viewing. I think for the experience, it was worth it! Having said that, I could hardly lift my arm to pay for fast food in the drive thru on the way home. A 40+ pound baby can get to be a little much on your shoulders for around 4 hours!
 
A lot of the animals put on some decent shows for us when we stopped by. Our first stop was the Polar Bear exhibit! We actually got to see them under water catching fish. The action got a little TOO live for a little girl watching at the glass. He snarfed up a fish head on with where she was looking at the glass, so I’m sure it looked like it was coming straight for her. Needless to say, she wasn’t too happy after that. Zoe on the other hand, thought it was the coolest thing. She recapped with me for a good trek while going to the next location. “Daddy! Did you see him dive and go arrgh at the fishie! He hungy bear!”
Next up, we found the Monkeys! It seemed like the bigger the crowd, the more inclined they were to amp up the silliness level. From what it looked like, they started to have a high-flying game of butt grab tag. Very amusing to watch! After that, they proceeded to sit and imitate the bystanders. We saw some makeshift hand binoculars, yawn and stretches, and then what I like to describe it as… The Family Portrait! They kind of just lined up as a group and posed for a few. Very smart, but silly animals!
 
After the monkeys, we found the Tigers. Usually they are sleeping in a more covered, shaded area. This time they were shaded, but more out in the open. Lazy cats! All day, every day!
 From there it was off to other parts of the park. We saw Swans, Ducks, Flamingos, Elephants, Cheetahs, Pumas, Bobcats, Lions, Eagles, and more Bears. To close out the day, Zoe wanted to see the Gorillas and Penguins. The Congo exhibit led us to more Monkeys and the Gorillas. I was even able to snag a couple of shots of one holding a baby… spotted by Zoe!
 
Last but certainly not least was the Penguins. They were currently going through a molting stage and some didn’t look too fun, but others were out and about catching some sunshine. We even had a guide there pointing out one of the baby’s and how much they’ve grown from it’s birth date of Feb 14th, 2011 (the day before Zoe’s birthday) to now. She also explained how they were marked as male, female, or in mating pairs.
 
All in all, it was a great day! We got to cover alot of ground in the short time were were there, but I’m sure there will be tons more for us to see throughout the remainder of the season. Time for the breakdown…
 
Chatterbox Trip Tip:
 
We’ve found with alot of parks that if you are able to swing the extra cash for a season pass, then there isn’t alot of pressure on you to see everything in one day. You can come and go as you please and if you miss the Aquarium or some of the shows, it will be no big deal. You’ll be able to come and experience it another day. We’ve also had some issues in the past with selfish adults who will continuously block your view and your kid’s view just staring at an animal, so again it’s nice to be able to come back on another day. Also, you receive 10% off merchandise with a season pass as well. Win/win! I believe the family pass was around $89 (if you order online) and if you go 2 or 3 times, it is basically paid for. For more information, check out Columbuszoo.org
 
All in all, our season passes to The Columbus Zoo has got to be our best investment so far this year. Zoe expresses a sincere interest in animals and I think it’s a good thing to encourage. For more photos from our trip, click here to view my Flickr feed! Until next time…

Save Room 4 Love,

Brad (The Chatterbox)