In the woods outside Washington D.C., there are ghouls on the loose and ghosts on the prowl. Shrieks of terror— and delight—fill the night air. It’s a massive Halloween attraction called Field of Screams composed of four trails lined with haunted houses.
CGTN’s Jim Spellman reports.
Step inside and the walls begin shaking, spooky sounds drift through the halls and at any moment an actor wearing an elaborate costume and creepy make-up may jump out and give you a fright.
“It’s really become a phenomenon. And it’s only getting bigger and bigger and bigger,” says Michael Lado, Artistic Director at Field Of Screams Maryland.
It’s spooky, but it’s also a lot of fun, a part of the booming business of Halloween. According to the National Retail Federation, Halloween is a $9 billion a year industry in the U.S., with people spending money on costumes and candy, pumpkins and parties. One in five Americans will visit a haunted house like this.
“Halloween has become its own little economy. They come for the excitement of the four attractions, getting to see something different, getting to be part of their own little horror movie,” said Lado.
READ THE NRF REPORT ON THE BUSINESS OF HALLOWEEN: https://nrf.com/resources/consumer-research-and-data/holiday-spending/halloween-headquarters
The attractions are spine-tingling, but there are as many laughs as screams. Tweens, teens and adults snap selfies and giggle after paying $20 or more for the chance to be scared.
“You see someone coming off the trails running for their lives. I take pride in that. The actors have done that to them. The actors have utilized the spaces you created, the props and left an impression or set the mood and tone. It’s really exciting,” says Lado.