The Blog of The World's Largest Haunted House
1. The word “witch” originates with the Old English term wicce, meaning “wise woman,” and indeed, wiccan were considered highly respected elders at one time. According to popular belief, witches held one of their two main meetings, or sabbats, on Halloween night. We call that a Halloween party!
2. According to one superstition, if someone were to wear their clothes inside out and walk backwards on Halloween night, he or she will encounter a witch at midnight — or at least get picked up by the local law enforcement for drunk and disorderly conduct.
3. A large percentage of witches are vegetarians. Except, of course, the one that tried to put Hansel and Gretel into a stew pot…
4. Contrary to popular belief, witches do not believe in the devil. Devil dogs, maybe, but not the devil.
5. During the notorious witch trials in Salem Massachusetts in 1962, 24 perished after being accused of witchcraft. Of that 24, 19 were hanged, one was pressed to death between two rocks (I know, weird!) and four died in prison of various causes while awaiting trial. None were actually burned at the stake.
6. Modern witchcraft, or Wicca, is a nature-based faith that is recognized as an official religion in the U.S. Based on pre-Christian traditions, the religion holds that Mother Earth and Nature are sacred. So really, you have nothing to fear from witches unless you toss that cigarette butt from your car…
7. The concept of witches flying on broomsticks has its origins in Middle Age lore. Those who practiced witchcraft made use of various plants to formulate brews, salves and ointments. Upon discovering that some of these plants, such as belladonna, jimsonweed, mandrake and hyoscine, produced hallucinogenic effects, some mischievous practitioners used them for illicit purposes. Since these effects were enhanced when the substance was absorbed through the armpits or mucus membranes (and we’re not talking about your nose here), these rapscallions applied these strange brews with the end of a broomstick. The afflicted person did fly, in the ancient version of a psychedelic acid trip. If you don’t believe us, read the Science Blog.
8. Between 1480 and 1750 AC, an estimated 40,000 to 60,000 “witches” were executed in Europe and North America. In order to identify a witch, self-appointed witch-hunters would search for a “witch’s mark” on the body of the accused. Thought to be a mark of the devil, these marks could have been birth marks, warts, blemishes or even a third nipple. Suspected witches were detained, restrained and “inspected.” And we thought today’s politicians were depraved…
9. So where do we get the stereotypical image of the haggard witch with a wart on her nose and pointy black hat, stirring her cauldron? This image actually stems from a pagan goddess known as “the crone,” who was honored during Samhain. Also known as the “Earth mother, or simply “the old one,” the crone symbolized wisdom, transformation and the changing of the seasons. Once a kind, wise old sage, the crone has since been transformed through popular lore into a menacing, cackling wicked witch. Ain’t it always the way?
10. Where did the witch’s cauldron come from? Well, the pagan Celts believed that after death, all souls returned to the crone’s cauldron, a symbol for the Earth mother’s womb, to await reincarnation. As the crone stirred the cauldron, new souls would enter and old souls would leave to be reborn. Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble!
Want to find out the real meaning of Halloween? Come to the Cutting Edge Haunted House, open every Friday and Saturday night from 8 to 10 pm!
Have you ever played a Halloween prank on someone that didn’t turn out quite as you hoped — and maybe in retrospect, you realized it was a pretty dumb thing to do? Here at Cutting Edge Haunted House, we know all about Halloween pranks. And in honor of Halloween, we’ve scoured the web for the ten dumbest Halloween pranks gone wrong, just to give you a few giggles at other people’s expense. (Hey, what are pranks for?). Here they are, in no particular order:
10. At the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a Phi Kappa Sigma fraternity member dressed up as the grim reaper and rigged up a contraption to emit smoke and shoot out Halloween party invitations into a crowded classroom. Instead the machine blew up, giving the student severe lacerations and prompting the bomb squad to be called in. Several campus buildings had to be evacuated.
9. In Florida, a woman sued her neighbor for defamation, harassment and emotional distress after he set up Halloween decs that included a sign for an insane asylum that pointed to her yard and a plastic tombstone with an epitaph making fun of her single status. It read, “At 48 she had no mate, no date. It’s no debate, she looks 88.” Now that’s just rude.
8. A 15-year-old Pennsylvania youth decided to egg the local electric company substation one Halloween. The combination of egg splatter and rain caused an explosion that knocked out power to 8,000 people. The boy had to be treated at the local ER for ringing ears.
7. A man and his wife in Galatia, Illinois decided to prank their two children, ages 6 and 8, by staging a fake murder in front of them. (How could anyone not think this was funny?) The man donned a Mike Myers mask and pretended to strangle his wife. The two children ran screaming from the house and straight over to the neighbors, where they proceeded to call 911 and tell the police that their mother had been strangled by Mike Myers. Deputies were dispatched to the scene and mom and dad were horribly embarrassed, but no charges were filed.
6. A teacher at Taunton High School in Massachusetts asked a 15-year-old student to answer a knock on the classroom door. In the hallway was another teacher wearing a goalie mask and brandishing a running chainsaw, in a ill-conceived attempt at a Halloween prank. In a frantic attempt to flee, the startled youth tripped and fractured a kneecap. The family is suing for $100,000.
5. In England, a man by the name of Peter Wallace was returning from a soccer match on a train full of fans dressed up in various costumes. One fellow was dressed up as a sheep, and Wallace thought it amusing to keep flicking his lighter near the cotton balls covering the man’s white track suit. Inevitably, the costume burst into flames, and the situation worsened when well-meaning friends tried to put out the fire with their cocktails. Fortunately, Wallace was the heir to a large estate, which he will be using to cover the victim’s medical bills and other damages.
4. A police officer in Maryland decided to turn the tables on one of the actors in a haunted attraction he was attending by pulling out his service weapon and brandishing it at the man. The actor promptly dropped his chainsaw and ran out of the room. The police officer was charged with assault and reckless endangerment. Who’s laughing now?
3. In Kamloops, British Columbia, an 18-year-old man walked into a dollar store on a Sunday afternoon just before Halloween wearing a skeleton mask, and demanded that the clerk turn over all the money in the register. When the clerk, in a panic, attempted to comply, the man told her “just joking” and left. Half an hour later the Royal Canadian Mounted Police caught up to the man, still wearing the mask, and arrested him for armed robbery. After searching the suspect, the RCMP discovered he also had on him a few items from the store that he had not paid for. They marched him back to the dollar store and forced him to apologize to the clerk, then gave him a stern talking to and released him. They kept the mask, however. No wonder they call Canadians “decaffeinated Americans.”
2. A Colorado man pointed a toy gun at a Grand Junction police officer on Halloween of 2013, and when the officer drew his weapon, the man told him it was “just a Halloween prank.” The officer wasn’t laughing, and booked the man for attempted robbery and felony menacing. This one falls under just too stupid to live.
1. For three years running, talk show host Jimmy Kimmel has challenged parents watching the show to play a dastardly Halloween prank on their children by telling them that they ate all of their kids’ Halloween candy, and then video their responses. Parents all over the country have responded eagerly, putting their children through tears, tantrums and fits of uncontrollable rage for a fleeting moment of celebrity. Funny? Child psychologists apparently don’t think so. “Pranking your own children is not harmless fun, but is cruel and potentially damaging,” according to Professor Mark Barnett, Graduate Program Coordinator at Kansas State University’s Department of Psychological Sciences. “A parent who would violate this trust for a big laugh or 15 minutes of fame is, in my opinion, acting irresponsibly and not looking out for the best interests of the child.”
You gotta admit though, the videos are hysterical.
1. Did you know that the first Jack O’Lanterns were not made from pumpkins at all, but turnips? Pumpkins are actually indigenous to the Western hemisphere, and were completely unknown before the days of Columbus in Europe and especially Ireland, birthplace of Halloween and Jack O’Lanterns. Turnip pie, anyone?
2. According to Irish legend, Jack O’Lanterns are named after a stingy, mean old drunkard named Jack who liked to play tricks on everyone. One night he even tricked the devil into promising not to take his soul when he died. Unfortunately, when he finally passed on he was refused entrance to Heaven, and when the devil, as promised, also refused him entrance to Hell, he was forced to wander the earth without a resting place. To light his way, he placed an ember given to him by the devil inside a hollowed out turnip, which became the first Jack O’Lantern.
3. When French explorer Jacques Cartier reconnoitered the St. Lawrence region of North America in 1954, he discovered what he termed “gros melons” (translation, big ta-tas). The Greek word pepon, which means large melon, somehow became the English pompion, which later evolved into the name we all know and love, the pumpkin.
4. The heaviest pumpkin on record weighed in at a whopping 1,810 pounds, 8 ounces, and was presented by Chris Stevens at the Stillwater Harvest Fest in Stillwater in October of 2010 in Stillwater, Minnesota. That’s a lot of pies!
5. Speaking of pies, the largest pumpkin pie ever baked weighed an astounding 3,699 pounds, far surpassing the previous record of 2,020 pounds. Measuring 20 feet in diameter, the pie was concocted in New Bremen Ohio at the 2010 New Bremen Pumpkinfest, and contained 1,212 pounds of canned pumpkin, 233 dozen eggs, 109 gallons of evaporated milk, 525 pounds of sugar, 7 pounds of salt and 14-1/2 pounds of cinnamon. Yumm.
6. Stephen Clarke holds the record for the world’s fastest pumpkin carving time: 16.47 seconds, smashing his previous record of 24.03 seconds. According to Guinness, the rules state that the pumpkin must weigh less than 24 pounds and be carved in a traditional way, which requires at least eyes, nose, ears and a mouth. Wonder what he could do with a Thanksgiving turkey…
7. The City of Keene, New Hampshire holds the record for the most Jack O’Lanterns lit at once, 30,581 on October 19, 2013. And it wasn’t even Halloween!
8. “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” first aired in 1966 and was the third Peanuts special and the second holiday-themed one, after “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” Produced and animated by Bill Melendez, it pre-empted “My Three Sons” on CBS on October 27, 1966. It continued to air annually on CBS through 2000, when ABC picked up the rights. Check your local listings for this year’s air date!
9. Morton, Illinois is the self-proclaimed pumpkin capital of the world, and home to Libby Corporation’s pumpkin industry. The State of Illinois harvests nearly 12,300 acres of pumpkins annually, more than any other state in the U.S. Oy!
10. Although pumpkins originated in South America, today they’re grown all over the world, even in Alaska. There is one place on earth you won’t find any pumpkins, though; Antarctica.
You’ll find plenty of pumpkins at Cutting Edge Haunted House this Halloween — we love our Jack O’Lanterns! It’s the Haunting Season, and we’re open again Saturday night, September 13 (ooh–eeh–ooh) from 8 to 10 pm! Be there!
The first day of fall is nearly upon us, and Halloween is just around the corner! How much do you know about your favorite holiday? Here are ten fun facts about Halloween:
1. Did you know that Ireland is believed to be the birthplace of Halloween? The holiday originated there over 2,000 years ago!
2. Short for “Hallows’ Eve,” Halloween is the evening before All Hallows’ Day, also known as Hallowmas or All Saints’ Day on November 1st.
3. The colors orange and black are most often associated with Halloween. A symbol of strength and endurance, orange also denotes the autumn harvest, along with gold and brown. Black is a symbol of darkness and death, and serves to remind us that in many countries, Halloween is a festival that marks the boundaries between life and death.
4. Halloween has many names, including All Hallows’ Eve, Lamswool, Witches Night, Snap-Apple Night, Summers End and Samhaim.
5. An intense, persistent fear of Halloween is known in the scientific community as Samhnainophobia.
6. Scarecrows symbolize the ancient agricultural roots of Halloween. Many Halloween games such as bobbing for apples also relate back to the harvest.
7. World-renowned magician Harry Houdini died on Halloween night from peritonitis, following a ruptured appendix. Authorities concluded that the ruptured appendix was caused by three blows to the stomach delivered by a misguided fan.
8. Both Salem, Massachusetts, and Anoka, Minnesota claim to be the Halloween capitals of the world.
9. The largest Halloween parade in the U.S., the Village Halloween parade draws over 2 million spectators annually and features some 50,000 participants.
10. Halloween is the fourth highest grossing commercial holiday after Christmas, Thanksgiving and Easter. According to the National Retail Federation, 158 million consumers will participate in Halloween activities, spending an average of $75.03 on décor, costumes and candy. Total estimated spending is expected to reach $6.9 billion in the United States.
What are YOU planning to do for Halloween this year? Visit the Cutting Edge Facebook page and let us know!
Fort Worth, Texas
It’s here! It’s here!
The 2014 Haunting Season officially kicked off last Saturday, when Cutting Edge Haunted House opened for a Sneak Peek presentation, drawing hordes of rabid fans from all across the country.
The festivities kicked off with the Zombie Marching Band playing a lively funeral dirge, while Cutting Edge’s Monster Hearse trolled the parking lot looking for fresh corpses. A vengeful band of evil clowns raced through the crowd brandishing chain saws, while slow-moving zombies lurked near the porta-potties, searching for a snack.
And throughout the night, the voodoo-cursed Zombie Drumline beat a relentless post-apocalyptic tattoo with drumsticks carved from human bone, as they strode through the crowd in a mesmerizing, death-like trance.
Emergency rescue personnel stood by with resuscitation equipment at the ready, but fortunately, no one was actually scared to death, although some were scared straight, scared silly, scared stiff and even scared out of their minds, requiring admission to nearby Mesa Springs Hospital for mental health evaluations.
Over two dozen attendees are still unaccounted for. Hey, it was a long, hungry summer…
All in all, a good time was had by everyone who made it out alive, and for those that didn’t, (burp), thanks. We needed that.
If you missed all the fun last week, it’s not too late to get tickets for the encore performance this Saturday, September 6 from 8 to 10 p.m.! Because, after all, fans are like Chinese food — a week after you eat some, you get hungry for more…
Forth Worth, Texas
Dubbed “the Dog Days of Summer,” this playful cloud formation made headlines across the country in recent weeks, and seemed to signal the dwindling days of barbecues and beach parties, and the approach of brilliant fall leaves, pumpkin patches and towering corn mazes.
Now a much more sinister apparition has skywatchers agog as a popular Fort Worth haunted house prepares to open Saturday night for a long awaited “Sneak Peek.”
As if to herald the beginning of the 2014 haunting season, the roiling clouds over Fort Worth paused for just a moment, long enough for one lucky photographer to capture this uncanny formation.
Anyone on the fence about whether to brave the crowds — and the clouds — and be first in line at Cutting Edge Haunted House on Saturday night must surely be swayed by this cunning visual illusion.
According to Fort Worth Psychoanalyst Kenu Seemy, if you think you see Cutting Edge in this purely innocent cloud formation, then it’s likely that your subconscious is telling you:
“Take me to Cutting Edge Saturday night. I want to be scared out of my mind. Go online and buy a ticket NOW, or I’ll bite you!”
So if you see what I see, don’t wait — get your tickets now for Saturday night’s Grand Opening Sneak Peek and get ready for an all-out extravaganza of terror!
Oh, and you might want to go get something to eat now. I think your subconscious is hungry.
According to AAA, gas prices dropped a penny a gallon across the great State of Texas this week, after falling 3 cents last week, and are down overall by 14 cents a gallon versus this time last year — so what are you waiting for? Gas up the truck, load up the kids and head on out to Cutting Edge Haunted House in Fort Worth this Saturday for the Grand Opening Sneak Peek!
That’s right, the doors open at 8 p.m. this Saturday night, August 30, heralding the start of the Haunting Season here in Fort Worth, and oh what a season it will be!
Be afraid; be very, very afraid. The best in the business have been lying awake nights for months on end, dreaming up new and terrifying ways to separate you from eight of your nine lives. Be prepared to face every fear and phobia you can imagine, and some you’ve never even thought of, till now — that you’ll wish you could forget!
Cutting Edge Haunted House is not for the faint of heart; not for those with pacemakers, oxygen tanks or small children. It takes a strong set of lungs to scream like a little girl, and sturdy knees that won’t buckle like soft aluminum beer cans when the darkness comes alive and breathes softly down your neck…
There’s no “wimp lane” here, no small or medium size helpings of horror; it’s all or nothing, supersize scare factor, and once you enter, there’s no turning back.
Do you think you have what it takes?
We’ll see about that.
Saturday, August 30, 2014. 8 o’clock.
See you there.
Since the release of the renowned thriller, “Night of the Living Dead,” the zombie apocalypse concept, in which a global zombie infestation decimates the entire civilized world, has been a theme of many books, articles and movies.
In a zombie apocalypse, a widespread outbreak of zombie-ism threatens to destroy all human life. Victims of zombies often themselves become zombies, causing the outbreak to spread exponentially. Governments, military and law enforcement organizations are helpless to defend against the overwhelming plague, and the entire human society collapses, leaving only isolated pockets of non-zombie survivors, forced to scavenge for food and supplies in a hostile wilderness.
Good story, but could it really happen?
While the internet is rife with examples in which scientists and laymen expound about the various viruses, parasites and drug-induced genetic mutations that could turn an entire population into mindless, rabid zombies, we at Cutting Edge Haunted House have another theory on how it will all go down.
It will all start quite innocently, with the introduction of a new form of breakfast cereal, made from genetically modified corn. Designed to make the corn more resistant to small weevils known as billbugs, this corn will inadvertently activate a little known genetic receptor in the billbugs’ tiny brains, causing them to become incredibly voracious. Ravenously seeking to devour everything in sight and oblivious to their own peril, the bugs will be inadvertently ground up into the corn, to be consumed by unwitting humans in the form of the new breakfast cereal.
In the human gut, the genetically modified billbug remnants will cause such considerable digestive distress that zombie-like customers, glassy-eyed and moaning in agony, will be lined up in droves outside every corner drug store, desperately seeking a dwindling supply of anti-diarrheal medicine.
A radical yet high-tech terrorist group will then seize upon the opportunity to incapacitate the world’s population, by ambushing emergency vehicles rushing supplies of antidiarrheal medicines to hospitals and drug stores everywhere. These diabolical fiends will then switch the anti-diarrheal medicine with a new designer psychedelic drug called simply, Z.
Hopped up on Z, hordes of drug crazed, projectile vomiting, digestively-challenged zombie-like humans will be observed wandering the earth with a really bad case of the munchies, causing news stations everywhere to herald the arrival of the long dreaded zombie apocalypse.
Hey, it could happen.
Don’t forget — Cutting Edge Opens August 30th at 8 pm! BE THERE, or we’ll send our zombies after you!
Just 25 days till Cutting Edge Haunted House in Fort Worth, Texas opens the doors for the 2014 Haunting Season. What are YOU looking forward to?
Clowning around with my BFFs!
In honor of International Clown Week, August 1-7, Cutting Edge salutes clowns everywhere, the good, the bad and the ugly!
Come and meet our clowns in person, at the Sneak Peak on August 30! They’ve been sharpening their chainsaws for months now!
Have you ever thought about working in a haunted house? Considered what it would be like to go to work every night and scare the pants off of people? If you love the smell of fear, the sound of terrified shrieks and the gratification of slipping in and out of the enveloping darkness, if you think Halloween should be every night of the year, then we have the job for you!
Cutting Edge Haunted House in Fort Worth, Texas is looking for a few good mummies — and ghouls, and zombies and maniacs, to round out their cast and crew for the season. Whether you delight in the spotlight or you’d rather lurk behind the scenes, creating wicked hair designs that would make Paul Mitchell positively shudder, and painting faces in a way Max Factor never conceived of, you can now be a part of this world famous house of horrors during the 2014 haunting season!
We’re looking for parking attendants, concessions and sales, security personnel, cashiers, stage managers, makeup artists, hair stylists, costumers, tech support and of course, actors and actresses with a talent for terror. Simply fill out an application online and get ready for the experience of a lifetime! You must be 16 years or older to apply, and applicants under 18 must have parental/guardian consent.
What do cast members think about working at Cutting Edge? Ray Don, or Big Ray as he’s known, has this to say: “When the show is running, it’s probably the best time of my year. It is so much fun. We have a blast!”
According to Head Makeup Artist and Set Designer Frances Woodruff, “This is like playtime every day, and this is what we do for a living.”
Makeup Artist Delena Williams calls it a “loving, dysfunctional family,” while Danger Dave says, “It’s like hanging out with my friends every day. How many people can say they get to go to work and hang out with their friends?”
“Chain Saw” Brent James enjoys being part of the “front line entertainment,” scaring patrons when they arrive in the parking lot, and when they’re waiting to use the restrooms. “What amazes me is, I’m out there with the parking lot lights on and everything, and people still manage to not see me,” he says. “They actually know I’m there, and they forget I’m there and get scared anyway.” It’s all part of his mission, to “give them a good time. That’s what it’s all about.”
Don’t wait — fill out the application today, because the Sneak Peak/Opening Night is just 37 days away!!!