Last night, I was lucky enough to head down to Mead Open Farm for The Howl Scream Park‘s opening night. I’m a huge fan of stuff like this and scare attractions – on farms, no doubt – are becoming ever so popular lately. Paired with the fact that Mead Open Farm is practically on my doorstep, I was super excited to attend.
I actually went along last year too and had so much fun, so I knew this year was going to be really scary. The only thing I was worried about was whether or not the tension would still be there – was I going to anticipate all the same scares that got me last year?
Upon arrival, my friend and I grabbed a drink for dutch courage and headed outside in the search for the Monster Parade that was due to start. Unfortunately we couldn’t see this happening despite wandering around a little when exploring which is a shame, but throughout the night we did stumble across the many characters of The Howl (a hillbilly family; my personal favourite was the old lady who wore a tiara, leading me to believe she was the queen…although that didn’t quite fit the storyline!) so I don’t think we missed too much.
As well as the Monster Parade, we also caught the bonfire and a few displays of fire art (I’m sure there is a proper name to this but you get my drift) and also the live band that performed inside this year. They were pretty good and played not only some Halloweeny songs but also songs you could actually dance to. I really wish I wasn’t driving so I could have stayed to party a bit!
This year’s offering of the scare mazes were The Shed, Squealers Yard and Toppers Twister, as well as two new haunts: The Attic and Red. I absolutely loved the two new haunts; Red was really just one of the previous years themes reimagined but it was a lot better (not that last year’s was bad!). The attention to detail was great here. Toppers Twister was really fun again, and The Attic was also amazing. Squealers Yard was still the scariest for me by far. I won’t reveal why: but I will say that it’s big scary selling point last year meant I thought I knew what to expect this time around. Although just as scary (if not, more!), the changes made to this year were spot on.
I think as well, because I thought I knew what to expect, it kind of added to the tension because I knew it was the most scary maze for me. So I spent most of my time in the line for this one freaking myself out, which of course made the maze that bit more fun for me.
Overall, it was a really great night filled with lots of jumps and scary fun. There was more on offer this year in terms of food (and it was a little more affordable), and I liked that there was the option of an actual indoor eating area. Although I did like the performances in the barn last year so maybe next year it would be nice to see both!
My only qualm was the long wait to get into each attraction. This is to be expected of course but even when we got down there at opening time, we still spent a long time waiting for each. Luckily, characters roamed the grounds and provided some entertainment for the time spent in line and I do understand that this can’t really be cut down as you need to go round in smaller groups to get the full effect.
I would definitely say it’s worth getting the fast pass. However, I do wonder if offering a fast pass is part of the problem: at times huge groups of people would walk to the front of the line with their passes adding probably almost half an hour waiting time with each large group, therefore making the wait worse. Still, if you don’t have all evening (or you’re not a fan of driving home super late alone in the dark and scared after a night of scares like I was!) definitely buy a scare pass.
Entry into The Howl starts at £18.00 and I think this is more than worth it. The only thing you actually have to pay for inside is food (if you wish), and considering you get a whopping five scare mazes with so many fun opportunities to get scared, it’s definitely worth it. Plus, the attention to detail is just amazing and it’s really exciting just looking at what each maze has to offer. No stone is left unturned – every single detail is thought of and taken into account.
If you’re looking for something to do this Halloween, I’d without a doubt suggest a visit to The Howl!
Will you be going to The Howl Scream Park this October? Let me know!