There's a high dose of haunting going on in Hauppauge. The 55-room, 30,000-square foot Chamber of Horrors NY is open for its seventh season through Halloween night.
“We have three different haunts with three different themes,” says general manager Robert Frankenberg. “We redo everything from scratch every year. The entire thing gets cleared.”
The 55-minute experience is broken into multiple parts:
START AT THE DRIVE-IN
Forty to fifty people at a time get ushered into a drive-in styled theater to watch a three-minute back story film on the origin of each haunt. A skull encased in a dome serves as the host and the films are interspersed with funny horror infomercials, such as a bit for the Jeffrey Dahmer Cookware Set.
“You are watching a movie, then you’re in the movie,” says Frankenberg. “We set up the visual just enough to give you a taste of what you’re about to experience. You learn how the villains and monsters came to be and then it’s your turn to encounter them as you enter.”
WITNESS “SILENT EVIL”
When a down-on-his-luck magician encounters an ancient cursed talking doll, he sells his soul for fame and power. But, the doll comes to life and begins to go on a murder rampage.
“Evil puppets taunt you while walking by and there’s even a live jack-in-the-box that chases you,” says Frankenberg. “It’s very interactive.”
Try and make it through an immersive room packed with all different styles of freaky dolls, some of which are … ALIVE!
“The deeper you go in, the grungier it gets,” says Frankenberg. “You end up in the magician’s lair where things don’t go so well.”
Satanic witch hunt anyone? After a witch gets hung, she rises from the dead to wreak havoc. The scene features a 20-by-30-foot graveyard complete with moss, tombstones and a full-scale mausoleum.
“There’s no lights in this haunt. We give groups a lantern to go through with,” says haunt co-owner Matt Guiliano. “The lights pop on for 12 seconds to set the scene then it comes to life.”
CATCH “COLD BLOOD”
Picture an Alaskan cabin village in winter where the sun doesn’t shine for 30 days and Russian vampires are on the loose in the snow. Make your way to a nearby mansion for sanctuary where a vampire hunter will provide protection … maybe.
“These vampires are not your classic regal types,” says Frankenberg. “They are savage zombie-infused creatures with black eyes and pale skin that are highly aggressive. Every customer gets a different experience with a vampire because it’s never scripted.”
CHAMBER OF HORRORS NY
WHEN|WHERE 7:30-11 p.m. Oct. 4, 11, 18 and 25; 7-11 p.m. Oct. 5, 12, 19 and 26; 7-10 p.m. Oct. 6, 13, 20 and 27; 8-10 p.m. Oct. 30; 8-11 p.m. — Oct. 31 (Halloween) at Matt Guiliano’s Play Like a Pro, 1745 Express Drive North in Hauppauge
INFO 855-227-6384 chamberofhorrorsny.com
ADMISSION $35 ($45 fast pass)
MORE HALLOWEEN ATTRACTIONS
October 31 may just be a day, but Long Island celebrates the haunting season alll month long. Among the early starters:
RISE OF THE JACK O'LANTERNS
WHEN|WHERE Oct. 6-28 at Old Westbury Gardens, 71 Old Westbury Rd., Old Westbury
INFO 516-252-3392, therise.org
ADMISSION $26 ($22 ages 3-17)
More than 5,000 hand-carved and illuminated jack-o'-lanterns light up an outdoor walk-through trail. Suitable for all ages, the event runs rain or shine and visitors must reserve their time in advance.
BAYVILLE SCREAM PARK
WHEN|WHERE Through Nov. 3 at 8 Bayville Ave., Bayville
INFO 516-624-4678, bayvillescreampark.com
ADMISSION From $23.75 per attraction (discounted multi-attraction tickets and season-long passes available)
The theme park revamps its attractions with a Halloween theme, essentially creating six haunted houses with varying degrees of intensity. Theme nights offer not-so-scary times for smaller children, plus theme nights in which groups have to navigate the haunted houses by the light of a single glow stick.