Since 2006, the students of the G-Star School of the Arts, located at 2030 South Congress Avenue Palm Springs, FL, have worked along with their faculty adviser to come up with what has become one of the "13 Scariest Haunted Attractions in America" according to the Travel Channel.
"Now, with our SEVENTH YEAR behind us, we have further honed our skills and will improve the event even more, making us the most unique haunted house in America! Additionally, we're again staging our primary attraction in the air-conditioned G-Star Sound Stage! Also new for 2013 (our eighth season) is the inclusion of even more peripheral additions including scarezones, roving "scareactors", live music and stage show, food and vendors," stated 'Master of Scaremonies' George Colavecchio. "We also would like to announce the re-introduction of our own dance squad - the G-Star Scream Team or, as we refer to them, the G-Star Cadavers!!! Watch for more on the squad - and the event - in the coming months! G-Star students are a breed apart and X-Scream Halloween 2013 is just one more way they'll continue to prove it!"
In 2013, a team of more than 125 students have combined their efforts, working on make-up, design, and construction of the attraction, as well as providing the scareactors who make the whole thing come together. This year, the event is comprised of three separate haunts that all come together under one storyline. This makes for a more unified experience, but can also lead to some issues.
Each section is rated based on its level of theming, and general scare factor. The ranking is based on a scale of 1-10.
Evolution, The decline of man: Those that survived the wars were still at the mercy of an accidental release of a viral weapon that left most men dead and virtually all women trapped on a path of uncontrolled mutation. Those men that survived began to form small bands of militia-like units, gradually coming to power in hidden pockets around the world. The women however, forever changed mentally and physically by the virus, formed groups of their own resisting the control of the militias and preying on men both as a food source and as a means to increase their population. The complete saga lies before you. Pay attention! The knowledge you gain here will help you survive the rest!
- Theming: 8
- Scare Factor: 8.5
(This is the first house you are ushered through. Complete with a guide, each group is told the story of the great war, and how everything has changed. Utilizing distractions, as well as a great storyline, this attraction sets the stage for the rest of the experience.)
Revolution, Rise of the Resistance: WOMAN - the survival of our species relies on them. Since the events of 2020, women, the mothers of our race are forever changed. Grotesque genetic mutations, severe psychosis and a basic survival instinct have altered them for all time. Now they live with only 2 goals: obliterate the militias and protect the new version of mankind. Driven, blood-thirsty and unrelenting, these creatures are the militias worst nightmare! Kill, capture and cannibalize is all they live for and many of the mutations have made them almost impossible to destroy.
How long can the militias hold out? Can you escape the devastation yourself? Enter and find out!
- Theming: 9
- Scare factor: 10
(If you've visited X-Scream in the past, you are familiar with the bus lot scarezone. This is put to great use this year, as a mutant quartantine zone. You are guided through by a member of the resistance, who immediately points out who will survive and who will probably face their demise. The scares in this zone are top notch, and have yet to be outdone!)
Dissolution. Mutant uprising: Enter the Headquarters of the Silas Rune Militia, constantly under siege by the resistance. Be careful not to get caught - by either party! One will simply enslave you while the other - well... best we don't speak of that!
- Theming: 7
- Scare factor: 7.5
(This house takes place in the school's main soundstage, and though the space allows for more creativity, it seemed to be lacking in terms of overall continuity. The lifeline that holds your group together adds a touch of danger to the haunt, and the stairs as well as low doors in some portions add to the fear factor. There is definite potential here, but it needs something to make it great!)
Tickets are $13.00 for adults and $5.00 for children 8 and under. A children's "NO SCARE" tour, recommended for the meek and children 7 and under, is offered from 7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. Discounts are available if you buy online in advance. The event runs on Friday and Saturday nights from now until November 2, with a special showing on Thursday, Oct. 31 (Halloween night.)
As in past years, X-Scream Halloween shows that a event put on by teenager's can elicit even more scares than some of the "professional" haunts out there. It is a must-see for Halloween fans in the Palm Beaches, and we are incredibly lucky to have them as a part of our community.
Remember that Halloween is a time for fun and frivolity. It is a time to come out of your shell, and to acknowledge the mischievous spirit that resides within all of us. Be sure to keep following this column for news on other spooky events and more. If you know of another local event that needs additional undead light shone upon it, please tell me about it!
Tonight's sojourn into the world of the undead is one of many this Halloween season. On the twenty-sixth of October, the local getaways examiner will delve into the heart of darkness and try to discover what evil tricks the thirteen have up their sleeves this year at Howl-O-Scream at Busch Gardens, Tampa. If I survive, I'll let you know all the gory details!
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