aboard the former dredging vessel known as the William S. Mitchell turned
haunted steamboat begins with an immediate CGI surprise before exploring
the engine room, cargo hold, pump well, galley,
quarters, boiler room, infirmary, etc. aboard the ship, and climaxing with
an energized chainsaw chase-out. The tour encompasses 3 distinct
encounters with an irate Impaler, visits trademark character
Girl clad in a wedding dress, and finds you face-to-face with various
diabolical crew members, misdirecting clowns, and even The Captain
himself! Eerie lighting, sinister sounds, foul smells, and fog as
thick as pea soup accompany the journey across vibrating floors, and through
claustrophobic passages, and a disorienting, clown-infested maze and spinning
vortex along the way.
Characters are interactive in nature, often converse with
meaningful dialogue, are elaborately attired consistent with the theme,
and many dominate their scenes. Stand-outs include The Captain,
who establishes himself as the main villain by detaining guests and nearly
dumping them in with his aforementioned Impaler from above, and
who strengthens the scariness of the attraction when he's witnessed claiming
a victim! Spark-cage girl also earns mentioning by going
absolutely berserk, and even touching her tongue to the erupting fence!
Many others could be singled out for their performances, like those offering
aerial assaults, clowns encouraging progression in the wrong direction
that results in looping back through the vortex a second or even a third
time, the jealous girl in the sleeping quarters who's concerned
that a female group member might be interested in HER Captain, and
everybody the creeps by singing, "Go to Sleep my Baby" to her skeletonized
"mommy" that's lying in a coffin!
Fog is blinding at times, but especially appreciated in
the fence maze where it comes blasting in from above, and in the Vampires'
lair, where hair-raising organ music also contributes to an already
ominous environment. Authentic décor enhances the experience
that's complimented by limitless props including short-circuiting fuse
boxes; chained lockers that vibrate of their own accord; a smoking food
buffet in the galley; a freezer stocked with body bags, one of which serves
up a course-blocking obstacle hanging directly in the path; and cadavers
strung up in the concluding maintenance area that's further strengthened
its contribution to the climax by exchanging its toy chainsaw for a real,
USS Nightmare is annually ranked among the best
haunts in the country, and takes pride in opening on time, while operating
with a full cast even on weekdays when other attractions often do not,
but still charge the same price for admission. Popular "unrated,
extreme shows" have been expanded to 4 nights for 2015. Cost of admission
has gone up $2 this year, and $4 over the span of the last 3 seasons.
Wednesday's are the best value nights, when tickets are discounted to $17.
Season's passes are available for just $40, and re-entry is offered for
only $5, both of which represent unprecedented bargains! Additional
high-impact scares could vault this former Best of Kentucky award
Haunt of the Year