I’m a thrill-seeker at heart. Some of my best days have been when I took a leap of faith, lived life on the edge, got the crap scared out of me and came out on the other side with a better appreciation for life. Things like:
- Whitewater rafting in world-class rapids!
- Plunging head-first towards Terra firma in a vintage, open-cockpit biplane on the tail end of a hammerhead maneuver!
- Riding roller coasters and thrill rides (Acrophobia comes to mind)…always with hands raised from the first descent until they put the brakes on!
- Riding shotgun in a NASCAR race car at AMS while screaming around the track at 150 mph!
- Getting talked into practicing Yoga and then diggin’ it!
There is one other type of thrill that is right up my alley, amongst many others. It’s getting the wits scared out of me by visiting a haunted house during the Halloween season. It’s all in good fun and I like to watch others’ reactions, too.
Keeping the latter in mind, it’s time yet again for an update to the Top Scariest Haunted Houses in the U.S. These are actually haunted attractions. See the links at the bottom of this post for a list of actual haunted houses. There are a select few websites out there that have compiled lists of Top Scariest Haunted Houses in the U.S.. You can also select by zip code or select your state and get matching results on some of them.
There is no way to tell what the ratings are for 2011 until after the Halloween season. The next best thing is to list the results from 2010. Most, or all, of those haunted houses will be open for business again very soon and you can usually count on some of the same props, scares and themes being similar, slightly enhanced or altogether new.
I referenced two of the most popular and respected Halloween websites in particular, Hauntworld and Haunted House Ratings. The difference between the two is important to note. Hauntworld rates haunted houses in an apple-to-apples manner by attending the venues themselves and rating them. Haunted House Ratings compiles votes by victims that go to their website and make their mark.
It’s all subjective so find a haunted house near you and go for it! Be sure to take those that are near and dear to you. They may be the ones to rescue you from the fright that awaits.
Hauntworld’s Top Scariest Haunted Houses from 2010:
#1 Netherworld – Atlanta, GA – They have done some re-vamping for 2011 and you may choose to tour one or both haunts, The Nightmares and/or Raw Meat.
#2 The Bates Motel – Glen Mills, PA Pennhurst Asylum – Spring City, PA – Pennhurst was once a real mental institution but closed in 1986. It was closed due to patient abuse.
#3 The Darkness Haunted House – St. Louis, MO – Just freakin’ scary!
#4 13th Gate Haunted House – Baton Rouge, LA – Top notch effects and actors.
#5 Headless Horseman – Ulster Park, NY
#6 The Beast – Kansas City, MO
#7 Spooky Woods – High Point, NC
#8 Erebus Haunted House – Pontiac, MI
#9 House of Torment – Austin, TX
#10 Cutting Edge Haunted House – Fort Worth/Dallas, TX – A 100-yr. old meat packing plant. Recognized by Guinness World Records as the “World’s Largest Walk-Through Haunted House”.
#11 The 13th Floor Haunted House – Denver, CO
#12 The Dent Schoolhouse – Cincinnati, OH
#13 Nightmare On The Bayou – Houston, TX
Don’t see one near you? Obviously, there are far more haunted houses to visit than what I can list here. Haunted House Ratings has a web page with haunted houses listed by state. Simply click on your state and view them. Keep in mind that a haunted attraction would need to contact them in order to list them so keep your eye out for local attractions near you.
More Scary and Informative Stuff
Brewster Yard Haunt – Kevin has one of the scariest “homemade” haunted houses in the country. Good work, Kevin! He has a great DIY link for the props he builds, too.
Top illustration via Dave’s free gifs and links