Strawberry fest’s haunted house to be scary but safe, official says

Like most things in 2020, the Pasadena Strawberry Festival’s haunted house this year will feature some changes.

“It’s going to be a little different from last year because of COVID,” Murline Staley, the Strawberry Festival’s executive director, said of the fest’s third annual spookfest, A Berry Haunted House, which will be at the festival’s central building, 7902 W. Fairmont Parkway.

“We’re definitely taking a COVID action plan and being safe,” she said. “We’re guaranteed to scare the bejeevers out of you, but we’re also going to have fun. We’re going to have the same square footage, but instead of 13 rooms, this year, we’re going to open it up to seven rooms.”

That’s not counting the entrance area where creatures with eight legs could be greeting you. The spooks at A Berry Haunted House haven’t paid their insect extermination bill in recent months; so be forewarned — arachnids will likely be bountiful.

The event will change in one other way. Last year, the event ran Oct. 25-31. This year, the event will be only on Fridays and Saturdays starting Oct. 16 and ending Halloween.

“Tickets for the haunted house, which will be from 7-11 p.m each night it is scheduled, will be offered for sale by calling the festival at 281-991-9500 or by dropping by the festival offices on Fairmont Parkway once the event opens.

Admission is $5.

“We encourage people to call ahead, therefore the tickets will be ready for them and there won’t be long lines,” Staley said.

One thing visitors won’t have to be scared about is the amount of COVID-related safety measures, she said.

The haunted house will be sanitized each night before opening, hand-sanitizing stations will be located throughout the building and all the curtains that usually separate the scenes will be peeled back to prevent unnecessary touching.

“We’re going to have less actors so each room will have two to three actors. Our volunteers will go through a temperature check and our guests will go through a temperature check,” Staley said.

As for the customers who are ready to brave the spirits, they will be asked to enter only with those in their party and if they prefer, they can be texted while waiting in the car for their turn in line. Face masks and social distancing will be required.

But this is one location where no one should mind wearing a face covering. After all, who wants to be seen screaming in terror when Pennywise the clown shows up at some unexpected moment?

Source Article