By RUTH BORDETT
Bloody corpses, piercing screams and a maniacal, yet well-mannered clown: these things and more were all present at this year’s Haunted House at the University of Mary Washington.
Although ghostly children and real estate agents are an unexpected combination for a haunted house theme, this formula was successful nonetheless. The basement of Madison Hall was transformed to fit this unique combination theme for this year’s installment of the residence hall’s annual Haunted House.
Students who attended this special Halloween event were greeted upon arrival by a demented yet friendly doll. The high-pitched screams echoed from the inside of Madison, prepping the waiting audience for what they were about to face themselves.
Groups of students were then led through the haunted house by a real estate agent who presented the setting as an open house occupied by ghosts of the former children and their violent mother who once resided there.
The rooms had their own personalities, each scarier than the last, all coming together to form a cohesive horror story. One of the more particularly terrifying rooms in the haunted house was the laundry room. Stark and dimly lit, a woman slammed her fists against a washing machine, yelling and shrieking as another creature looked on from behind the door. As the tour continues, attendees were greeted by a blood bath upon entering the final room. Dead bodies, mutilated by a butcher knife, were scattered on the cold stone floor.
Senior creative writing major and organizer of last year’s haunted house, Sean Stableford, commented that this year’s haunted house was a hit.
“It was good because it was short. and sweet and each room had its own personality,” Stableford said. He noted that this year’s version was not as scary as those in the past but, nonetheless, was better organized and put together.
Maxwell Traubert, a senior psychology major, agreed that this year’s haunted house was successful, noting that he thought that this theme did a good job of scaring students.
“It scared my friend enough that he had to hold my hand to get through all the rooms,” Traubert said.
With shrill screams ringing throughout the dark basement of Madison, UMW’s annual Haunted House once again proved itself to be outstanding. Raising the bar for next year’s hosts. Topping the creativity of this year’s theme will certainly be a challenge.