Don’t be afraid―or actually, do. The spirit of Halloween is very much alive at these five nearby haunted houses.
For three decades, the family-run Rich Farms has been transforming their charming country abode into the ghoulish estate of Fright Farm (Smithfield, PA, 25 minutes). Gather before sunset at the Fest-Evil Midway for haunting entertainment, crackling bonfires, and classic horror flicks. Board a moonlit Hayride of No Return to face the things that go bump in the night. Dare to venture through four other attractions including Frightmare Mansion and Slaughter Grounds. Open Thursdays through Sundays in October as well as the week leading up to October 31.
Screams aren’t unusual at theme parks, but the ones heard at the Haunted Hills Estate Scream Park (Uniontown, PA, 40m) are of an entirely different variety. Chilling creatures crawl through the Imperium Escape House, and bodies that are very much undead lurk The Deadwoods Challenge Trail. Get your scream on weekends until November 2. Return November 8 and 9 for a full contact, immersive horror event―if you still have the guts for it.
The Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum (Weston, 1h) will scare you out of your mind. Once home to patients of the Weston State Hospital, this historic institution now houses a nightmarish Halloween hospital where terror is contagious. The Asylum After Dark’s haunted house and flashlight tours continue every Thursday through Sunday until November 2. For a more authentic―and perhaps even more bloodcurdling―experience, check out the Asylum’s paranormal tours and overnight ghost hunts.
At the Hundred Acres Manor (Bethel Park, PA, 1hr30m), trek through over a mile of terrifying sights spanning centuries. Stop to smell the posies in a plague-stricken London, travel deep into the voodoo of a Louisiana Bayou, and survive an otherworldly breach of monsters aboard a spaceship. Afterward, get buried alive in a burial stimulator and then toast to your life with a beer at the Scream Bar. Regular admission Wednesdays through Sundays and the entire week of Halloween until November 3.
The West Virginia Penitentiary (Moundsville, 1hr45m) has a hair-raising history of prisoner executions. This spooky season, get locked in your own fears with the Dungeon of Horrors. Or take an eerie tour along The North Walk toward the former penitentiary’s maximum security area, where the most dangerous inmates resided behind bars. Both events take place weekends until November 2.
There’s still time this October to treat yourself with a trip full of tricks.
Photographed by Aldona Bird