Halloween is still several months away, but the question as to whether or not Fear Fair will be open this year due to COVID-19 already has begun swirling around.
Fear Fair is a haunted attraction that opens around Halloween at 800 A Ave. East near Freeman Municipal Airport in Seymour.
Brett Hays, creative director of Fear Fair, said they plan to be open and it’s going to be an awesome Halloween season.
Preparations already are in the works to ensure visitors have a scary but safe time at “Indiana’s scariest haunted house.”
“We want you to know that the health and safety of our guests and our staff are the No. 1 consideration,” Hays said. “We are working with state and local officials and monitoring the situation both locally and across the country and making our plans accordingly.”
Hays said they are taking steps to make sure they provide a safe environment for the scares this year.
“We are disinfecting all surfaces in the haunt very thoroughly now and will be doing this throughout the season every single night,” Hays said. “We’ll be sanitizing all areas of the haunted house at least hourly during operation and even more thoroughly before opening the next night.”
Hays said they also will be checking the temperature of all staff to screen out anyone symptomatic.
“Also, we’re removing any fabric or any type of hanging materials that in the past you’ve had to push your way through because contact would be an issue, so we’re removing anything like that,” he said.
That includes Fear Fair’s claustrophobia squeeze tunnel.
Mason Lauster, makeup manager for Fear Fair, said they will be using only alcohol-based makeup and thoroughly sanitizing airbrushes and makeup brushes.
“All of our airbrush paints are alcohol-activated and diluted with alcohol. It’s a very sanitary system, and we’ve been doing this same thing for years,” Lauster said. “We’re not changing anything.”
Hays said they use very few masks at the haunted attraction.
“We use maybe five or six silicone masks that actors sometimes wear, so those will be sanitized and wiped out with disinfectant of at least 60% alcohol between every use,” he said.
Hays said they are going to try to keep the same actors in the same parts and thus wearing the same costumes every night, so they won’t be traded around from person to person.
The costumes will be cleaned routinely and sanitized, too.
“It’s going to be a great Halloween and a great haunted house season,” Hays said. “It’s going to be so much fun after everything we’ve all been through.”
It’s still unknown if visitors at Fear Fear will need to wear a mask to go through the haunt or if the actors will be wearing personal protective equipment.
“That’s a very good question, and it’s honestly just too soon to tell,” Hays said. “If health officials are still advising that in the fall, then we will certainly follow recommendations.”
In the hope of inspiring the community during the pandemic, Hays recently put on a laser light show with the downtown silos as the backdrop.
The lasers flashed reminders to stay home and ways to stay safe during the pandemic. The laser show also included messages of encouragement — stay positive, stay safe and stay strong.
“We’re all in this together and we’re going to come out of this on the other side and have a great Halloween,” Hays said.