Louisville’s Newest Haunted Attraction Aims to Put Visitors Through Dante’s 7 Circles of Hell!
Welcome back, my friends from Louisville and other regions beyond, it’s The Phantom of the Ville reporting in with a preview of Louisville’s latest labyrinth of terror, The 7th Street Haunt, located at 2900 South 7th Street Rd in the same building complex that houses the Expo Five. I believe this is the only major haunted attraction opening its doors for the first time in the Kentuckiana area this year, but just because it’s new doesn’t mean it lacks experience in the horror biz!
I stopped in on opening weekend to chat with with the mad scientist behind this new creation, Travis Boling, and his dead-icated crew. Boling told me that The 7th Street Haunt was built and is mostly run by the same crew responsible for the sadly lamented, Psychomania: Theater of Terror, which burned down in Clarksville, IN during the off season after four years of success in the haunt business.
“I had to do something for the crew of Psychomania,” says Boling. “So many of the actors there loved scaring people and working in the haunted house so much, and they were really heartbroken by the loss of that attraction. I know because I was one of them.” Boling got his start in the haunted attraction business as an actor about 8 or 9 years ago working for Phil Granger of Fright Night Productions and the Nightmare Network, whom Boling considers his mentor in the haunt biz. “The 7th Street Haunt is a combination of the best actors and the best surviving props from Psychomania, as well as a lot of blood, sweat and tears put to work to create something new.”
Boling has been a hardcore Halloween fan all his life. “My favorite memory of Halloween was when I was five years old, my parents helped me dye my hair black and I got dressed up as a vampire with plastic fangs and all. We went way out to the country to my Great Aunt’s house, who lived in the middle of nowhere, and my mother rang the doorbell and we hid. I came running out and nearly scared her to death.” Boling’s love of all things scary continues to this day and he sites “Child’s Play” as his favorite horror film.
Before being thrust through the INFECTED ZONE doors, which were saved from Psychomania, we had our pictures taken in the electric chair and took a quick look around the concession stand and Halloween gift shop where we ran into an old friend. The 7th Street Haunt has the same lovely and mysterious Psychic and Palm Reader that told fortunes at Psychomania! Although I must admit that I forgot to get this haunting lady’s name, I can tell you that her palm reading at Psychomania was shockingly accurate.
It was time to stop delaying the inevitable and face the horrors that lie beyond those intimidating doors. I took a deep breath and passed the point of no return. Of all the haunted houses I’ve visited so far this year, this one reminds me the most of the classic haunted houses of my youth. For me, this haunt recalls the locally created haunted variety mazes of WAKY, the Louisville Jaycees and The Haunted Hotel. The 7th Street Haunt presents a cornucopia of Halloween themed rooms that run the gamut from clowns and dark carnivals to an incredibly detailed crypt set to a dusty old mansion to a haunted mine shaft to a snake worshiping church and everything in between.
I could tell a lot of creativity and hard work had been put into the set design. The crypt scene, designed by Travis Boling’s mom, is everything a Phantom could ask for. I don’t want to spoil everything, but I was incredibly impressed with the Crematorium set which features a flaming cremation machine blasting the hide off of a poor soul whose skeleton is still trying to escape his burning doom! For a second I thought real flames were licking his scorched bones! I was even more impressed when I found out the whole contraption was handmade from scratch and not purchased from a haunt industry catalog.
The 7th Street Haunt also has around 30 actors working inside who are really, really intense and will absolutely get right in your face. These are the best of the best from Psychomania, so if you miss that Clarksville haunt and its crazy cast, you’ll find them all here doing what they do best.
The 7th Street Haunt is open every weekend in October from Friday through Sunday. It will be open on Friday and Saturday nights from 8PM until 2AM. On Sunday nights it will be open from 8PM until 10:30PM. Come out and experience Louisville’s brand new haunt and celebrate the memory of Psychomania with the wide variety of classic Spookhouse thrills on 7th Street!