Ohio Valley Haunts
Reviewed 11/3/07
Haunted Jail
611 E. Market St.
Columbia City, IN
Regular Admission $9
V.I.P. $13
click logo at left to visit their website
THE HAUNTED JAIL:  An evil clown, dragging a genuine, bloodstained axe stalks the queue line area outside The Haunted Jail.  The sounding of a jailbreak siren signals the beginning of festivities.  Alarming sounds lure you inside the doors, where ghouls follow you up a spooky old staircase, into spider web covered rooms, and through darkened corridors.  Loud pounding on the walls gives way to multiple confrontations with wickedly laughing monsters armed with knives.  More intense pounding leads to rooms decorated with the bloody handprints of former prisoners, and visitors that preceded you.  Blood-curdling screams, deafening horns, and more assaulting sounds accompany a visit to a demented laboratory, and encounters with a vicious nurse, and a fiend loudly banging his large, metal meat cleaver as he chops up body parts.  Descending a flight of stairs delivers you to the authentic cellblock area that hides discontented inmates, hangings, electrocutions, and other startling surprises.  Down more steps, and across uneven floors and ramps takes you through some sort of medical facility, adorned with corpses on gurneys, and highlighted by victims rising up from their beds, and confrontations with more devilish spooks coming from all directions imaginable - even from the pipes and rafters up above!  On into the depths of the old jailhouse, the adventure entails a journey through a frightening cemetery, past an animated gravedigger, and through the creepy, stone walled, sandy floored catacombs.  Surviving brings you back up an old wooden staircase and back into another holding area of the old dilapidated prison, attacks from ghoulish, undead creatures, and more unexpected happenings arising from the darkened incarceration chambers.  Floors vibrate, and a giant, winged mechanical dragon springs to life and unleashes an attack, en route to a realistic, fog-filled, surprise containing morgue that gives way to a graveyard maze containing a spooky old, grim reaper driven carriage pulled by a skeletal horse, and a Leatherface chainsaw chase-out of The Haunted Jail.

LENGTH – 9, 18 minutes in duration.
ACTORS – 9, Not much in the way of dialogue, and mostly masks, but quite aggressive in nature, suddenly appearing out of secluded areas, and grabbing and clawing at you throughout.
SCARINESS – 9, Quite an intense atmosphere.  A variety of assaulting sounds and noises accompany the entire experience.  Extreme darkness amplifies your fears.
DESIGN – 8½, The authenticity of the structure is outstanding, and many floors and levels of the old building are explored.  The only real flaw arises from backtracking through some of the same doorways that are divided by ropes, which results in passing other groups headed in the opposite direction.  Erecting some sort of dividers would overcome this distraction.  Also, spacing of groups could stand some adjusting, as we caught up with those in front of us, while others who followed us in caught up with us as well. 
PROPS – 8, Good scary décor, and a few animatronics decorate the facility.  Some are a little difficult to see, and might benefit from some strategically placed lighting.  Vibrating floor and dragon are most memorable.
VALUE – 9, A highly intense scare costing only $9 ($13 for V.I.P.).  The value is made even better when visiting on “discount nights” where prices are reduced even more for those who might otherwise be unable to attend.
RATING:  8½, A scary environment, frightening actors, and the legitimacy of the structure itself makes for a great night of seasonal entertainment.  From the tormented clown terrorizing the queue line, all the way to the Leatherface chase-out, The Haunted Jail certainly gives visitors their money’s worth, and then some, while earning a high endorsement from Ohio Valley Haunts.  Go by and pay them a visit.