Haunting doesn’t have to stop when Halloween is over. According to data from our 2021 Haunt Industry Report, more than 50% of haunted attractions open up for just 11-20 days out of the year. But recently, we’ve seen a trend among haunts looking for ways to extend the Halloween season further into November or to bring in more consistent revenue throughout the year.
Here are six alternative holidays you should consider opening your haunt this year.
1. Valentine’s Day
Sure, some people are into the flowers and chocolates thing. But for many of us, all that mushy love stuff makes us queasy. We’d much more enjoy blood-sucking vampires. A Valentine’s Day haunt doesn’t just have to be for singles: there are plenty of couples looking for something more unique and interesting to do on the holiday that doesn’t involve hard-to-get dinner reservations or an overpriced bouquet. If your haunt has a concessions area, this is also a great opportunity to create some bloody valentine themed treats.
2. Friday the 13th
This one is a no brainer. Some consider it the unluckiest day of the year, but haunters understand that Friday the 13th is about so much more than superstitions or summer camp slasher films. Next to Halloween it’s arguably the spookiest day of the year, and the perfect opportunity to open your haunt’s doors for a bonus day. Friday the 13th will fall in May in 2022, but the following year we’ll be blessed with two lucky number 13s, with the holiday falling both in January and October 2023.
What was the biggest challenge for haunt owners in 2021? Download a free copy of our Haunt Industry Report to find out!
3. Holiday Season
This one isn’t just a single day, it’s an entire month between Thanksgiving and the New Year. In recent years, we’ve even seen some haunts extending the Halloween season into November, and starting to incorporate more and more holiday elements until they are a full-on scary Christmas haunt midway through the month. The popularity of holiday horror films like Krampus combined with all the extra stress this time of year, makes conditions perfect for a scream-worthy outlet like a haunted attraction to bring in more revenue.
4. Spring Break
Combine two of our favorite things: beach vacations and zombie outbreaks and you’ve got Zombie Spring Break. Visiting a haunted attraction is a family-friendly activity that would be great during longer school breaks. Plus, with teens out of school for a week or so, you may be able to gain additional volunteers, temporary workers, and scareactors who wouldn’t be available when school is in session.
What percentage of haunts were closed in 2020? Get the answer and more when you download a free copy of our Haunt Industry Report!
5. Prom Season
A zombie prom isn’t just for high school teenagers. Dress your scareactors up in their goriest formalwear and send your guests screaming through the science lab, homeroom, and the principal’s office. If you’re got the space for it, why not host a dance and encourage guests to dress up, too?
Did your parents ever take you to meet the Easter bunny as a kid? Sweet carrots and clover, that is a terrifying creature. The sweaty pink suit; the plastered-on smile and gigantic eyes that never close; the huge gap between the helmet and costume that looked like a dangerous head injury. Ok, maybe we’re the only ones with unresolved Easter-related trauma, but the reality is that this sweet and fluffy holiday is ripe for a haunted makeover. Don’t forget to include a photo opt with the big bad bunny himself…for the children.
With a little creativity, you can find a way to keep the scares coming all year long. Is your haunt open any days during the non-Halloween season? Tell us about it in the comments!