The date is 10/31?
Why, it's Halloween!
Please... do come into my target!
This is the Monster Museum at the Enchanted Castle Studio in Natural Bridge, Virginia, only about 15 miles up Highway 81 from Buchanan, VA.
Here you will experience the work of Professor Mark Cline housed in an old Victorian Manor, displayed haunted house style, to bring you the very best of this type of fun family entertainment. Bizarre and unique, it's like Scooby Doo meets the Twilight Zone.
Professor Cline's work has been seen in Alice Cooper's stage shows, Six Flags Theme Parks, and on NBC's Today Show. His work continues to be popular in haunted attractions all over the United States.
If you dare enter through the forbidding-looking gate, you will have to walk about an eighth of a mile up hill through an overgrown forest trail. Along the way, there are sinister signs that something is not quite right here. A child's rocking chair that moves of its own volition as you approach it; a monster clutching a captive child; and on the porch, a small doghouse with a monster's tail hanging out of it. There are two ways to interpret that last image: either Fifi's been eaten by a monster, or the wackos that live in the house keep monsters for pets. Either way, you should definitely take the house tour. It's good for some screams, and a few laughs as well.
The path leads to "The Haunted Monster Museum", at the top of the hill. It is a spooky, formerly-abandoned Victorian manor built in the 1890s. Mark has added some fiberglass flourishes to the exterior, such as a giant skull and a huge python that slithers in and out of one of the gables, but this place would be creepy even without them, with its overgrown shrubbery, dark, peeling paint, and creaky floorboards.
People are just dying to get in.
A Bach organ fugue — straight out of
“Phantom of the Opera” — booms through the hilltop clearing from hidden speakers.
There's a phone booth here as well. A sign taped to it reads: "Dear Customer. Please push 13 to notify your guide." When you do, you're treated to a recording of a terrified voice telling you to get out before it's too late. Guess what. By then, it's already too late.
"This is not a Halloween-type haunted house," Professor Cline explains as he leaves, closing the door with an ominous thud and throwing of bolts. "It's more Disneyish." (He also describes it as "very comic-bookish" and "like Scooby Doo meets The Twilight Zone.") The Haunted Monster Museum is, in fact, similar to other, well-mounted walk-through haunted house attractions such as Alien Encounter in Niagara Falls and House of Frankenstein in Lake George -- with the usual banging and hissing, sirens and honking, flashing police lights and strobes, zombies that pop out of doors, and an Infinity Barrel to destabilize the balance-impaired. What makes this place unique (aside from Mark's gags, such as an Elvis-stein Monster in the kitchen), is its setting — a real house — musty, dark, and dank.
Professor Cline has positioned minicams throughout the Haunted Monster Museum so that visitors can buy a video of themselves being scared. Only $14.95.
The Haunted Monster Museum is not open at night, nor does Professor Cline ever expect it to be. "A haunted house,” he explains, "should be just as scary in the daytime." As he speaks, I get the eerie feeling that from somewhere up above us, we're being watched.....
For more information about the Monster Museum at the Enchanted Castle Studio in Natural Bridge, Virginia, pleast visit the following web sites: