Count the Soap Factory’s Haunted Basement among the scariest haunted tours in the Twin Cities, so scary that visitors must be 18 and sign a waiver before entering.
The setting is creepy enough – the basement of the former National Purity Soap Company building - an historic wood and brick warehouse near the Minneapolis Riverfront. The basement has even been investigated for ghost activity by the Twin Cities Paranormal Society. The Soap Factory hosts exhibitions at this contemporary gallery site year-round devoted to emerging visual art. The Haunted Basement is one of its most popular “artist-designed performance projects.”
Since opening three years ago, the Haunted Basement has been a huge draw among young adults and college students who are intrigued by the warnings and the 18-plus age restriction.
I toured it last year and my group clung to a rope as we meandered through a dark, dank subterranean maze of grasping creatures and lurid props. Adding to the mayhem, my tour involved an actual unplanned power outage. We were left to stumble our way out of the pitch black along with the creatures that attempted to torture us.
The creators say this year's Haunted Basement is even more “disturbing.” According to the Soap Factory, there is a “new underworld, with environments by guest artists, and revolting and assaulting odors manufactured specially for the Haunted Basement by a local scent company.” The tour also features a soundtrack “supplied by the Soap Factory’s very own spirits,” captured by EVP recordings taken during the Paranormal Society’s investigation.
Bring friends to cling to, as the Haunted Basement is designed to be experienced in groups of 4. Tickets and reservations are available online.
What: The Haunted Basement 2009
Where: 518 2nd St. SE, Minneapolis
Hours: 6 pm - 12 am nightly, Oct 16 - Nov 1, 2009
Cost: Monday - Thursday, $15;
Friday - Sunday, $20
Must be 18+, and sign waiver.