Sometimes you just have to pack up your bags and run away to join the circus. But, seeing as I have a new-found fear of clowns thanks to my little incident in July, I decided to run away to join the crew at a haunted house instead.
The Grove boasts over 20 acres of fright-filled fun… and delivers on that hands down. Screams, shrieks, and yelps can be hear throughout the property’s three main haunted attractions: The Hollows haunted forest, Shadows Keep haunted hayride, and Bad Manor haunted house. In addition, the owners have added a few new twists and turns in the form of a ghoulish theatre troupe performing on the fire-lit midway, and the newest attraction opening this week; a zombie shooting gallery.
Visions of Land of the Dead type mischief danced in my head as I sat down with Tanamin Clark, one of the managers at The Grove, to get the scoop on what exactly would happen in their zombie shooting gallery.
For a few years the folks at The Grove have been toying with the shooting gallery idea after seeing something similar at another haunted house. “It looked like a lot of fun,” he commented. With that basic premise, they ran with it, trying out various ideas. One scenario had patrons racing to “kill” the zombies before they reached a bell in order to win, but in the end Tanamin and his crew realized the fun didn’t come in winning anything, but in simply shooting zombies.
I’ve got to agree with him there.
So how exactly are they bringing the zombie shooting gallery to life? Actors will be dressed in padded costumes, helmets, and masks designed to imitate the ravenous undead. The Grove will provide the paintball guns and patrons may purchase anywhere from 10 to 20 paintballs. The zombies are trained to attack patrons as they shoot away. We discussed for a long while how this sort of attraction tied in perfectly to the current zombie trend in popular video games. Who wouldn’t want to take the fantasy and make it reality for a little while? After all, that’s what we here at the Zombie Survival Crew are preparing for. It’s great target practice.
For now, they are starting with a small number of zombies and minimal equipment. However, the managers fully expect to expand on the shooting gallery, probably before the last weekend of the month, the busiest days out at The Grove.
Ticket prices and operating hours can be found at: http://www.thegrovehaunt.com
Come on out, test your skill in the zombie shooting gallery. And if you’re brave enough, come find me inside the haunted house. Unlike the zombies, I won’t bite… maybe.