Haunt Review: Haunted Hornet

Let me preface this by saying I love getting scared.  I love the rush of adrenaline I get after screaming my head off.  My sisters, not so much.  So when the opportunity came along to do The Haunted Hornet ScareCo event, I jumped at the chance to have some fun, and make fun of my sisters in the process. 

The Haunted Hornet is located on the marina in Alameda.  At night, that area looks completely spooky.  It’s isolated from the city and surrounded by these enormous navy ships, bigger than I had ever seen.  We parked and walked toward the entrance, which was a flight of stairs that led to a bridge you would walk across to get inside the boat.  They had the story of the haunted ship playing on the side of the ship, giving even waiting in line an ominous vibe.  I have to say the location of this event is so perfect.  You can tell the ship is drenched in history and gives the fabricated history a foot in reality, which makes the whole situation feel all that more real.  Not to mention, we got scared a couple of times by some actors strategically placed outside of the ship.  I could tell my sisters were already on edge, so I was more than ready for the fun to begin. 

This haunt is a walk through.  We were led by a very creepy host holding an ax down a dark flight of stairs into the ship’s basement.  It was dead quiet, which my sister later commented she would have liked there to be background music.  I appreciated the silence because it was something different and the fact that I could hear myself breathing really put me on edge.  We were scared by a bloody doctor, a room full of patients strapped to beds and screaming, and lots of people hiding int he shadows who popped out at just the right moment.  Needless to say, my sister’s were gripping onto me for dear life.  I chuckled a bit to myself when my sister started screaming that a man was following her, whispering in her ear to keep her eyes open.  I thought that was a nice touch!  We were led through a maze around the basement of the ship, screaming at every turn.  What made being in the basement super creepy was the fact that you had to stop at every doorway to step over.  That meant having to slow down and inevitably get spooked by someone hiding in the shadows.  We get to a flight of stairs and my younger sister yells, “FINALLY!” and quickly goes up the stairs.  “Oh my gosh, I didn’t think I would make it through that!” she yells as I begin to notice we are walking towards a tunnel with a very scary looking dude standing int he doorway.  “I don’t think it’s over,” I say as I watch the terror wash over both of their faces as they both realize we are about to walk into another maze, darker and louder than the first.  

There are lights flashing, fog, tons of screaming and people popping out from out of no where.  I have to admit, I couldn’t keep my cool either and I just started yelling and screaming as we are making our way through cow ribs hanging from the ceiling and what looked like a room full of body bags.  We made it to a room that reeks of diesel and I heard chainsaws revving and I could feel the hot air on the back of my neck.  My sister screams, “HE’S CHASING ME WITH A CHAINSAW! MOVE!!” I had never seen my older sister with such a terrified look on her face.  It was great!

Overall, I feel like this haunt was really original.  They didn’t depend on surprise scares or on scaring people by banging on the walls.  They caught me off guard several times because I would be expecting someone to scare me when I would see a dark corner, and then someone would pop out of nowhere.  They didn’t always go with the obvious scare, which was nice for me since I have been to so many haunts in the past.  The dead silence in the ship basement really gave me the creeps although both my sisters said some music would have added to the tension.  The costumes were very well made, and the way they had set up the lighting both in the basement and in the maze as the end added an extra layer of fear.  It’s easy to feel on edge when you can’t see that far ahead in front of you.  However, I will say that in the basement section, there definitely could have been more props.  Maybe the point was to rely on the ship itself because it was already creepy on its own.  This haunt was unique in its location and the way you are guided through both parts.  When you come up from the basement, it was a total GOTCHA! moment.  You think its over but there’s a whole other section to walk through.  It makes the second section even scarier.  I can’t say enough about how incredible the location is.  Even driving up we already had the heebie jeebies.  It really is the perfect location for a haunt.  I would definitely go again.

Amy Dean