I'm not going to belabor myself posting a lengthy opening night TR since I'm sure TPR will do an even better job, but I can speak from my own experience.
It was our first Orlando HHN and we had a great time! Did not splurge for a Fast Pass so we accepted that we'd be waiting a while for everything and not get much done. Met a cool couple during early entry and ended up having a blast together just goofing off during our waits. Yes, we were those people last night.
Ended up getting two rides in and 4 (1/2, more on that later) mazes, plus plenty of beer runs! Was definitely glad that Orlando is not a dry event, like Hollywood is. Maze lines topped out around an 60-80 minutes for everything but Stranger Things. Stranger Things was 2+ hours the whole night.
So the one bittersweet thing that happened (which maybe you've heard about if you look at their socials): We saved Stranger Things for last partially because we like saving the best for last and partially because it was a 2+ hour wait all night. Got in line for it 30 minutes to close, and they still were letting people get in line up until close. At around 1:30 (after we waited an hour, but others had waited much longer) we start to see them sending everyone home. There were droves of people all confused and frustrated being told that Stranger Things was closed. Basically, we heard the employees were under a certain contract but that per their contract they didn't have to stay past a certain time (which seems kinda weird and confusing, but whatever). So, since employees were leaving they could not keep Stranger Things open. The line to Guest Services was ridiculous. For the most part people were disgruntled and confused, but not belligerent. They ended up giving us signed business cards stating we could have a comp HHN ticket for any night as well as a Stranger Things fast pass.
I came all the way from Ohio to visit friends and go to this, so I'm definitely very thankful they gave us this comp. I'm lucky that we have time in the schedule to go again, so it will work out pretty well because we can hit the mazes we missed, including Stranger Things.
I'm still very confused why this happened. My experience with theme parks is either A. as long as you get in line before close, they let you do the ride/experience (shout-out to Disney's Flight of Passage crew!) or B. they anticipate the length of wait time and close it off correspondingly before closing, which is frustrating if you thought that A. was going to happen, but at least you can go do something else until park closing. I definitely don't think the park expected this to happen.
So now, we'll go again either tonight or Sunday and make sure to do Stranger Things early in the night. Those of you planning to go in the near future (esp if you don't get a fast pass): I'd recommend doing Stranger Things early or at least ask staff if they are going to close off the line early. I'm sure the park is going to make sure this is NOT going to happen again.
TL;DR : Unexpected things happen in this hobby, but drink plenty of beer and take a chill pill if they don't work in your favor.
“If toast always lands butter-side down, and cats always land on their feet, what happens if you strap toast on the back of a cat and drop it?”
^ wow, that's crazy about closing the house with people in line, let alone that many people for the most popular house. Definitely poor planning on that one... I'm sure their social media is blowing up, time to make some popcorn!
RAWKIN_coaster38 wrote:I'm still very confused why this happened. My experience with theme parks is either A. as long as you get in line before close, they let you do the ride/experience (shout-out to Disney's Flight of Passage crew!) or B. they anticipate the length of wait time and close it off correspondingly before closing, which is frustrating if you thought that A. was going to happen, but at least you can go do something else until park closing. I definitely don't think the park expected this to happen.
Yeah, I can most certainly say this was probably an "opening night anomaly" as I can tell you that I regularly go to HHN after 11pm and will always jump in a line for a house right at park closing, and I've never seen them turn away guests. Even if they have to send team members home, they'll put people through that maze even if there are only three scareactors left! lol
So I'm wondering if this was just something different, an unexpected issue, etc.
At least they gave you the comp and did the best they could to fix the situation. And thankfully you're understanding enough to know that "opening night" for anything can be filled with longer than normal waits and unexpected issues.
Hope that gets resolved though or they will have to start cutting the line off early.
I was in line for ST when it was shut down and I wanna shout out to the employees. I saw one lady getting verbally abused by a guest but she was still smiling. I couldn't imagine doing that especially at 130 am.
irideburton4 wrote:I was in line for ST when it was shut down and I wanna shout out to the employees. I saw one lady getting verbally abused by a guest but she was still smiling. I couldn't imagine doing that especially at 130 am.
Was it this batshit crazy lady who went off on us on Twitter this morning?
Halloween Horror Nights 28 - Opening Night Media Event!
TPR was at the opening night media event of Halloween Horror Nights 28 and with a record breaking 10 houses and 5 scare zones, this is the year to be here! The theme this year is really more of an "aesthetic" (as the kids today would say) of the 80s and it stretches through many of the houses, the scare zones and even into the shops and food stands! While I still miss having an "icon" as they have in years past, this is a fun and different way to approach the event.
I have been attending HHN since the very first one, 28 years ago and even though they added a 10th house, they didn't take away from the quality of any of the other houses and they all stand solidly on their own. Stranger Things is the house that will get top billing this year on most "lists" and it deserves every bit of praise. Incredibly detailed and true to the story, this is worth the wait.. whatever it is! The original property houses dreamed up by the creative minds at Universal Orlando are also top notch. Carnival Graveyard and Scary Tales might be some of the most detailed they have done in years. Everyone has their favorites for different reasons and multiple run throughs can get you very different experiences, which is why I recommend going multiple nights to make sure you see it all!
Halloween Horror Nights is really the premiere Halloween event in the country. It goes for a record breaking 36 nights from September 14th through November 3rd this year and features 10 NEW houses, 5 new scarezones, 1 show and 2 roaming hoards of chainsaw killers! There are also a great selection of rides open with minimal waits throughout the park. Before we start off with the pictures, just some friendly tips if you are planning on going to the event!
- The event officially begins at 6:30pm,but they almost always will open the gate at 6. If you have tickets for the day, do "stay and scream" and get a head start on the crowds running to the mazes. - If you have only one night and want to try and fit it all in, you will need to get an Express Pass or RIP guided tour. Both are *WELL* worth the money and I have done both many times throughout the years. - If you have multiple nights then you really should get the "Frequent Fear Pass" - this is a great deal and is basically an "annual pass" for the event. There are different levels of this that include various days and some even include express passes. - If you are buying a one day ticket, don't pay full gate price. There are MANY discounts out there that are available.
Take a look at the TPR highlight video of the Stranger Things house and also our photo trip report of our night!
Checked in and ready to go for the event! I love the themed lanyards.
I love being able to be some of the first ones escorted in and seeing the scaractors getting ready for their first scares!
Hiding and ready to go! Getting daylight pictures is one of the best reasons to get to the event early.
The first scare zone as you enter the park sets up some of the IP houses that you might visit during the night.
Spoiler... there is a clown in the Poltergeist house... a LOT OF CLOWNS!
I saw it hit about 120 minutes on opening night, so 65 right at opening for the Stay and Scream folks isn't bad!
But at the same time you can do Carnival Graveyard for only a 5 minute wait while everyone else runs to Stranger Things... decisions, decisions...
Universal Studios media events always have great food that is themed really well. First stop, the desert table!
Who is going to be the brave one to take the first slice of clown cake?!!?
Who is going to be the brave one to take the first slice of clown cake?!!?
I love the 80s theming even at the food stations!
Oooohhh! I bet something might happen here soon....
For a year without Jack as an icon, there are an awful lot of clowns...
On this stage we learned all the incredibly detailed stories behind the houses from the creators themselves!
Then, characters from each of the houses came out to their backdrop.
OH YEAH! You can imagine the applause in the room when eleven came out!
OMG! Stranger Things was AMAZING. So detailed and true to the series.
There are SO many demogorgons in the maze, you can't escape them!
Spoilers! You know what Eleven is doing here!
Poltergeist was next and while the first 1/2 is true to the movie, the second 1/2 was done almost like the 1/2 half of the Shining house, a creative interpretation with (in this case.. ) TONS OF CLOWNS!
The Revenge of Chucky scare zone has Chucky bringing all of your favorite children's toys to life!
Oh no! What happened to the Cabbage Patch Dolls!
Care Bear SCARE!
The Twisted Traditions scare zone was next where all of your favorite Halloween traditions get gruesome!
I see you! Don't take my candy!
There is no Bill and Ted show this year, but Academy of Villains brought the energy to their stage. It is a great show and worth seeing, but I do feel it is better served as a street show.
Blumhouse House is next... who gets this reference from Happy Death Day?
The Happy Death Day portion was awesome! Hopefully the Purge portion gets a little tweaked as the run continues.
The "zombie house" this year was Dead Exposure. A prequel to a zombie house of the same name from years ago.
Hey Mr. Zombie... don't eat my brains!
The "comedy house" this year was Slaughter Cinema. An homage to B movies that were never made.
I love the fake movie posters they made up for the transitions between each scene!
Demon Baby stole my heart... AND OUR SOUL!
Seeds of Extinction is in a brand new building WAY in the back of the tent house area. This is all about killer plants that take over the earth and it is incredibly detailed and while I didn't find it that scary, many are rating it as their scariest house!
It is filled with these guys and really cool puppets.. VERY hard to see where the scares are coming from.
Trick 'r Treat brings this popular Halloween movie to life, just like the scare zone last year!
NO SAM! Don't stab me with your lollypop!
Halloween Horror Nights sets itself apart from its competition by these amazing movie quality costumes, sets and lighting.
Time to finish another epic Halloween Horror Nights media event! Can't wait to come back many many times this year!
That lady complaining on Twitter is mind boggling. Me and my fiancé did 7 out of 10 houses with a 100min wait for stranger things (worth it) plus academy of villains. We also left 15mins early or we could of queued for Carnival but we have frequent fear so we decided to get it on Sunday. She easily should of done all the houses last night with express. Stranger things was the only house I saw with an Express line wait
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