Teens douse themselves in horror this Halloween

This story originally appeared in the second edition of The Lion’s Tale (Oct. 26, 2016).

October brings more than free candy and carving pumpkins. It holds one of the most anticipated Halloween events of the year: Halloween Horror Nights.

“When October rolls around, what gets me excited the most is the anticipation for HHN,” said junior Seth Pisano. “I know Universal never disappoints.”

“Living in Florida, we don’t get much of the ‘fall’ experience,” said senior Brianna Carney. “Most people look forward to pumpkin patches and hayrides…[for me] it’s Halloween Horror Nights.”

October should just be renamed to Halloween Horror Nights.”

— Senior Kadi Tao

Attendees from last year’s 25th Anniversary contest that this year triumphed in the overall experience.

“It definitely met my expectations that it would be scarier and more developed than previous years,” Carney said. “This year is definitely the best year.”

“This year felt like it held more horror, not only in the scare zones, but also the houses, as well,” Pisano said. “HHN 26 is way better than last year.”

The houses also seemed to top last year’s line-up.

“HHN 26 was way better than last year,” Pisano said. “My favorite house was American Horror Story. By the time I got out of the house, my vocal cords were weak from screaming so much.”

According to visitors, the event has kept improving each year, experimenting with tactics to make the experience an almost real one.

“It was definitely more fun and complex than I expected,” said senior Kadi Tao. “My favorite house was either Halloween 2, Exorcist or American Horror Story–or any of them, honestly. They were all so detailed; everything from sights and sounds to smells and feelings were spot-on.”

The Universal event has grown from Fright Nights to becoming an icon of horror.

“I think HHN really marks the beginning of the season,” Tao said. “October should just be renamed to Halloween Horror Nights.”