By: Mary Kate Dorr – Asst. A&E Editor
In case anyone hasn’t been able to tell by the amount of pumpkin patch Instagrams or sudden drop in temperature, Halloween season is upon us. That’s right, it’s time to start pretending you like candy corn and stressing over a costume that is the right balance of clever and attractive, and last but not least, pick out the best horror films to celebrate this special time of year.
For some, a horror film isn’t quite terrifying enough. Just ask those psychotic enough, in my humble opinion, to enter McKamey Manor. There are haunted houses, and then there is this freakishly unique terror experience located in San Diego, California. McKamey Manor is a living horror movie, and guess who is starring? You.
This is unlike any haunted house you have heard of before. McKamey Manor’s official website dubs it the only “true” interactive haunted house experience. Want to know why? Because the actors involved can touch you. And choke you. And lock you in coffins with other masked actors covered in blood while they scream at you.
Somehow, this is considered legal. All participants must sign a waiver claiming that they will adhere to the rules of the manor and are in proper medical condition to experience the trauma lying ahead. You also must be 21 years old to enter and the entire experience is filmed so others can watch as you become scarred for the remainder of your life.
Did I mention that the waiting list to enter the manor is 17,000 people? The experience accepts two people per day, four per weekend, throughout all weeks of the year and you must apply. Once accepted and ready to go, participants must meet in a public space and are taken to the manor to avoid the public finding out its location. Those lucky enough to be chosen are told to block out a four to seven hour time period to undergo this experience.
As a disclaimer, I must inform you that I’m no brave soul when it comes to anything haunted. I refused to go trick-or-treating when I was three because my parents dressed me as a clown and I cried every time I saw my reflection. Five minutes into my 13th birthday party, I was led out of a haunted house by my friend’s mom.
I’ve become slightly braver since then, yet thought other University of Dayton students who might have a higher terror tolerance than me would be better able to comment on the manor.
I went to roommates, friends, neighbors and random Flyers to pick their brains about the experience. My most obvious question of course was, “Would you go?”
“That can’t be legal.”
I have yet to find a single person who would agree to enter McKamey Manor after watching the promotional video for the experience. One of my closest friends, a horror movie junkie who permanently ruined my sleeping habits after forcing me to watch “Sinister” in high school, refused to even consider it hypothetically after he watched the website’s video of the experience.
If at all interested in learning about McKamey Manor, I urge you to check out the website in which you can watch the online clips of participants becoming permanently physchologically damaged. There is also a photo gallery with fun photos of baby dolls without eyes, neat bathtubs with victims submerged in blood, and not-scary-at-all masked actors with chain saws.
If this sounds appealing and you’re interested in not sleeping for the rest of your life, visit mckameymanor.com for more videos, FAQs and information regarding applying.