On Saturday, October 1, on a rainy South Florida night, hundreds of creeps, ghouls, and freaks, (as well as a few average people) flocked to a former gym on Military Trail in Boca Raton, just south of Glades Road, to experience the thrill that is Enigma Haunt. This family run attraction strives to up the scares each and every year, and in 2016, they have most definitely succeeded.
Below, each haunt is rated based on its level of theming, and general scare factor. The ranking is based on a scale of 1-10.
Haunts (descriptions courtesy of EnigmaHaunt.com)
- PANDEMIC : From Touring the Everglades, last surviving podcast as of August 5, 2016:“The last update we received—as pilfered from an abandoned station by our bravest journalists on a food run—is that more is to be feared in the swamps than the zombies themselves. Before Broward PD turned ghost town, 911 dispatchers reported calls of neighbor-on-neighbor violence. Cannibalism. Humans eating other humans. It appears the deerstalkers, a band of outbreak survivors who refused evacuation—according to this headline—are hunting others who’ve also remained in their homes surrounding the Everglades and nearby parks. These hunters are…dear God…using the walking dead to help round up their prey. Their own neighbors.This article warns readers to lock up tight, to arm up tight and to remain vigilant. We at Touring the Everglades suggest you do the same, if you can’t find a way out. This will be our last podcast. It’s been an honor to share the apocalypse with you. Stay alert, stay away from the hunters and stay away from the dead. Good luck, Godspeed.”As researched and reported by Rachel Litt
Scare Factor: 9.5
This is the first house you are ushered into, and therefore sets the stage for the rest of the attraction. In that way, it doesn’t disappoint, as Jed the Butcher and his family of misfits create an heir of foreboding and impending doom that will either leave you running for your life, or hoping that you aren’t the next thing on their menu. Adding to our experience was the fact that Jed addressed us by name, which definitely amped up the scare-factor!
- Into Oblivion : Little is known about what media terms “Pandemic,” the zombie epidemic that swept through the southern territories, and continues to spread across the globe mere weeks after the last known broadcast in South Florida. Speculation persists that the blame rests on ZombieX – the antigen born in the controversial trials of the now infamous “Swine Fever Project.” But recent reports of “eerie, green glow” and “new breeds” being sighted in our neighboring states – particularly those in the south – lead us to believe this is not a mutated inoculation backfire, but possibly the horrific result of a biowarfare test launch.Currently, all residents are undergoing mandatory evacuation and being herded into “safe camps,” where they will be tested for infection and separated for protection. A curfew has been enacted for the listening area, but be aware Pandemic is approaching quickly and without prejudice.Those left without shelter are urged to continue North. The following areas, what we’ll now refer to as “Into Oblivion” are declared a No Go Zone. Avoid these by any means necessary – there is no protection. Those of you outside the listening area – those of you in the South – we wish you luck.As blogged by Rachel Litt
Scare Factor: 7.5
This zone takes up the second half of the lower level of the haunt. Although the theming is amazing, with ooze, odd post apocalyptic décor, and a feeling of uneasiness pervasive throughout, it simply did not have the same intensity as Jed and his family of miscreants created in the first half. Perhaps it was opening day, or perhaps Jed is just that good!
- Realms of Terror: “She watches the hole closely, feeling the vacuum of the boundary portal sucking at her cheek, making her dizzy. An intake of foul breath enters her nose and the faraway wave of a thousand screams make their way into her head.Amara has been here before.Decades prior, Amara was found roaming the dirt bank. Wearing nothing but a mask of white gauze, her nails were tarred, black talons. Her lips were the blood red of a still-beating heart. She tirelessly recounted tales of other worlds, demons, and undead abominations. Lost, tortured souls scratching their way into her nightmares, tearing apart the boundaries to become her reality. These delusions finally led to her being institutionalized.Decades of treatment proved to be ineffectual and one day Amara suddenly vanished.
Embracing her gift, she returned to the Realms and opened the portal. There she roams, bound to the hallways like sharp whispers hitched to the backs of nightmare shadows. Some say to help unsuspecting souls who wander through like trapped mice, others say she just returned home, to the honeycombed hell house of Amara’s Realms of Terror.”
Accounts as reported by Rachel Litt.
Scare Factor: 8
Amara might have been here before, but all we caught was a momentary glimpse of her before we were rushed upstairs by a crazed scientist who claimed to have reopened the portals to the other worlds, and let us know that our new alien overlords were benevolent. Of course, he was exaggerating their likeability.
This second floor attraction consists of almost too many scenes to list, but let me try. You face a room filled with our alien overlords, experimenting on their human captives; another room where you are transported to the North Pole to visit Santa Claus (Universal doesn’t have the only scary Christmas house this year); a satanic temple; a room filled with crazy clowns, with Otto Ringwald in charge; and more!
The integration of the newly reimagined sets, filled with their amazing technological advances and truly gifted make-up made for an experience that should be a must-do for haunt fans everywhere.
Celebrating its 5th year, Enigma Haunt, 1751 N. Military Trail, was just ranked #1 in Top Haunts in Florida and voted as #2 nationally in The Scare Factor’s 31 Must See Haunt List, the only other Florida haunt making that national list came in at #17. Enigma Haunt is also currently ranked in the top 10 haunted attractions by USA Today’s “10 Best” feature, voting ends at the end of the month.
$20 Realms of Terror
$30 Triple Terror (all 3 Haunts)
$45 RIP priority pass
$28.50 Online Ticket
Enigma Haunt is donating a portion of their online ticket sales to Don’t Be A Monster bullying prevention campaign.
Saturday: Oct. 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
Friday: Oct. 7, 14, 21, 28
Thursday: Oct. 20, 27
Sunday: Oct. 16. 23, 30
Monday: Oct. 31
Hours: 7 to 10:30 p.m. Thursday and Sunday nights,
7 p.m. to 12 a.m. Friday, Saturday and Halloween night.
Remember that Halloween is a time for fun and frivolity. It is a time to come out of your shell, and to acknowledge the mischievous spirit that resides within all of us. Be sure to keep following this column for news on other spooky events and more. If you know of another local event that needs additional undead light shone upon it, please tell us about it!
Tonight’s sojourn into the world of the undead is the first of many this Halloween season. On the twenty-first of October, we travelled to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom to experience Fright Fest, and plan on visiting the South Florida Fairgrounds to experience Fright Nights. If we survive, we’ll let you know all the gory details!