Sunday, October 16, 2011

2011: Bingemans Screampark Review

Today, we are reviewing the acclaimed "scariest, most haunted Halloween attraction in all of Canada" - the Bingemans Screampark, located in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada, about 1 hour from Toronto.

The haunted park consists of 6 attractions: Quarantine, Grindhouse, Soul Asylum, Clown Cage (all 4 of which are Haunted Houses for you to walk through) Zombie Hunt (a paintball game where you get to shoot zombies), and finally - The Last Ride (we're not exactly sure what this is because we refuse to do it because we're all extremely claustrophobic). The Triple House Pass (which gains you access to Quarantine, Grindhouse, Soul Asylum, plus bonus admission to Clown Cage) is $26 per person, which is a deal considering purchasing a pass to just 1 house is $12. The only way you can access Clown Cage is with the Triple House Pass, and the $26 is a very good deal as the 4 attractions are very pleasing. Zombie Hunt is an additional $15 and The Last Ride is an additional $5. Therefore, you would be able to do all 6 attractions for a total of $46 per person.

Soul Asylum: The first house we went into was Soul Asylum. The line was fairly short, maybe about 10 minutes. (However Bingemans offers a $5 VIP pass that lets you skip the lines and go right in). According to Screampark's website, this attraction follows the story of a devil being unleashed and is now trying to collect as many souls as possible. The attraction begins outside, where you must walk down a narrow, outdoor corridor, where a wooden fence stands on one side, and a black curtain stands on the other. As you continue, you become paranoid that something will behind one of the corners, however nothing appears. While you walk, you hear a dark voice talking to you, and someone bangs several times on the curtain. Eventually, a man will begin literally chasing you through a series of confusing corridors, and he then tells you to go up a set of stairs to visit "the boogeyman". He chases you up the steps and you go inside, where there are a series of actors and creepy ornaments that will jump out and startle you. Eventually, you will walk through a dark hallway where many strobe lights are flashing, and even though you're probably walking quite slowly, it gives the illusion that you are almost floating through the hallway. You continue to go through the darkness, until you reach the exit door. This was likely the best house that we went through, and we give it a rating of 9/10.

Grindhouse: The second attraction we went through had a line of about 35 minutes. This attraction again starts outside, and you run into 1 person outside, who orders you to go into a small-looking shed, which you must climb a few steps to get to. (Be aware that although the shed looks very small from the outside, once you get in it actually feels rather large). As you walk through, you hear a chainsaw and a man laughing outside of the shed, and you eventually end up walking onto a red and white striped floor. Be aware as you step onto the floor that the floor will move rapidly, so be sure to grab onto the rail and walk slowly and carefully. You are eventually led out of the shed, where a man chases you with a chainsaw to the exit. We give this house a rating of 8/10.

Quarantine: When we came back for our second night, we started off with Quarantine. This attraction runs through the building where the Bingemans Water Park change rooms are located, and the majority of the house is inside. Equipped with 2 corridors of strobe lights, a creepy Grudge-looking girl who crawls on the floor and follows you, and some strange props and actors, this house was creepy - but it didn't meet our expectations after we had gone through the other 2 houses. The house is full of zombies and some creepy medical props, and follows the story of a virus breaking out. Your "mission" is to get through the house without being turned into a zombie, or worse - being trapped in the quarantined area forever. Be sure to go in Quarantine - because, we promise you, it's scary -  but we're just not sure if it's the best house there. We give this house a rating of 7/10

Clown Cage: The final house that we went into wasn't impressive. Throughout the entire house, there's only 2 things to keep you creeped out: grungy clown music and the adrenaline of trying to get through a confusing maze while an annoying strobe light flashes in your face the entire way through and makes you feel nauseous. The entire maze consists of you pushing walls to find out whether it's a wall or a door, and a terrible strobe light that could easily cause you a seizure if you are prone to them. There's no actors, no props - no nothing. Just a maze. A disappointing, confusing maze. But just to feel safe, we would recommend bringing a cell phone with you through the maze. You probably won't need it, but just in case you get stuck and no one can here you screaming for help. Bingemans' doesn't even give a description of this house on their website, likely because they think that if people know what the house is like - no one will want to go in it. We can easily tell why this maze was free and why there was absolutely no line for this particular house. Unless you like mazes, this isn't a good house to go in. We give this house a rating of 2/10.

Zombie Hunt: We are still debating over whether or not we will be participating in this attraction. This attraction is an additional $15 per person.

The Last Ride: We will not be participating in this attraction because we are all extremely claustrophobic. This attraction is an additional $5 per person.

PREPARE FOR GOING TO BINGEMANS SCREAMPARK: Dress warm and bring a rainjacket or wear a coat/sweater that absorbs water easily because you will be waiting outside in line and if it's raining, you will get wet and since it's October, you will get cold. You can bring an umbrella so you can wait, but it'd be kind of annoying trying to carry an umbrella through the attractions, even if the umbrella is closed. Don't bring valuable items that you can't risk loosing, because it will be dark in the attractions, and Bingemans is not responsible for lost or stolen items. Don't go if you are easily frightened or if you have a history of seizures or a heart condition. There are absolutely no refunds once you've purchased your tickets. Bingemans does not reccommend children under the age of 12 to go in, but there is no age limit or minimum as long as you are in good health and aren't scared easily. Only 5 people are allowed into an attraction at the same time, so if you have a group that has 6 or more people you will need to split your group up so that 5 or less people are going in at the same time, or some people(s) will have to go with another group. Be prepared to wait in line for long periods of time (up to an hour). If you don't wish to wait in lines, go on a weeknight instead of a Friday or Saturday. Screampark is open October 18-23, and October 25-31. The park's hours will be different depending if you go on a weeknight or a weekend night - the park will open at 7:00 and will close at either 10:00 or 12:00 (midnight). There are Emergency and "Chicken Exits" throughout the attractions incase there is an emergency in your group or in the attraction, or if someone is too scared to finish. Admission is $12 for one house, or $26 for the Triple House Pass, which gives you admission to 4 houses (so you're actually saving money and getting a great deal by buying the Triple House Pass). Admission to The Last Ride and Zombie Hunt are sold seperate. The Last Ride admission is free with purchase of a Bingemans Screampark t-shirt. Tickets are sold online and at the park. Bingemans does not take responsibility for the prolonged effects that Screampark may invoke. Please visit the Bingemans Screampark website for more info:

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