Wells Township Haunted House
This Halloween haunted attraction is located in Brilliant, Ohio, just west of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Although in operation prior to 2002, things really took off when Captain Sean Norman of the Wells Township Police Department took over direction duties of that year. Norman's plan was to transform the annual haunt into a community service project that partnered the local youth with law enforcement officials to provide the best possible Halloween haunted attraction for the local community.
Originally staged at an unused building in the community, Norman's dreams were almost derailed in 2004 when the structure was slated for demolition, due to a series of required repairs that would prove costly. Norman turned to the local youth and fellow police officers once again who had worked the previous season in order to devise a plan. The end result was over 70 young members of the community, between the ages of 10-18, which volunteered to assist with the repairs, in exchange for the building to once again be used as the Wells Township Haunted House in the Halloween season. Needless to say, the town officials were impressed and quickly canceled plans for the demolition.
The building remained in use until 2008 when the group relocated to the current structure that dates back to 1883, which expanded the operation to 6,300 square feet and allowed for dramatic expansion. Annually, the Wells Township Haunted House now attracts over one hundred volunteers, composed of the local youth, parents, and officers from three nearby departments. In 2008 alone, the group clocked over 11,480 volunteer hours to bring the haunt to life.
Recently the Wells Township Haunted House had the distinct of honor of being added to the pre-convention bus tour of the Midwest Haunters Convention, which brought in further outside awareness. Through 2008, the haunt boasted an annual average attendance of around 2,000 guests per season with the earnings being reinvested for the next season, but that number is slated to grow substantially in the coming seasons. In addition to the exposure from the convention, the haunt has added several more actors that had previously worked at another nearby haunt, as well as ratcheted up their marketing campaign beyond the surrounding community.
Guests who visit the haunted attraction are in for a variety of different surprises. In keeping with the collaboration with the local youth, Norman allowed volunteers to pick and design their own rooms for each season and most rely on crowd participation. This opens the door for unpredictability for returning guests each season and prevents the haunt from ever becoming stale. While animatronics, special effects, and sound effects are deployed within, the haunt relies heavily on the live actors to provide the good majority of the scares. As an interesting bonus, the haunt also features a slide from the second floor back to the first.
The walk through the Wells Township Haunted House can last anywhere between 30-40 minutes on a given night. During special events, concessions are available for waiting guests. The interaction begins the moment the lines form, as the haunt's denizens have been known to prowl the crowd outside.
For more information, including dates and hours of operation and ticket prices, please visit the site below.