With temperatures reaching as high as 87 degrees in the Shenandoah Valley during the first week of October, you might have forgotten that it’s Fall. But, despite the glorious Indian summer, temperatures have finally cooled down enough to make jackets a necessity for early morning commuters, reminding us that it is indeed October.
October brings with it Halloween, the one time of year when children and adults alike dress in costumes, gorge themselves on candy, and engage in activities for the sole purpose of scaring someone or being scared themselves.
For those who want to be scared, look no further than Darkwood Manor in Luray, VA.
Located at 104 N. Hawksbill St., Darkwood Manor boasts, “This isn’t your father’s old spook house!” The house takes on a different theme every year, with past events being Killcrop: The Legend of the Iron Coffins, The Witherspoon Bros. Necromancer Show, and Relics. The theme this year is, “Mother Grimwood’s Dead Time Stories.”
Some of the crew that make up the ghosts, monsters, criminals, serial killers and other frightening characters at Darkwood Manor are professional make-up artists and prop makers who work for theater, film and television, making it more than your typical backyard haunted house that’s quickly thrown together and severely lacking in the fear factor.
Darkwood Manor is formulated so intricately that it even has a 68-page novella titled, “Familial Blood: The Darkwood Story ” that chronicles the colorful past of the family who created the bloodied and complex history of the manor house.
The manor has seventeen rooms of interactive horror created by people who seriously love haunted house experiences. Guests are given assignments and objects, and are sometimes prompted to choose which door to lead the group through.
However, the fear is also fun, because you know it’s not based on anything real. The manor also has a feeling of safety, and most scares are followed by a laugh.
Darkwood Manor is open every weekend in October from 7pm-11pm on Friday & Saturday nights, and 7pm-10pm on Sunday nights. It’s also open Halloween Night from 7pm-10pm. General admission is $12, with a discounted price of $10 if you choose to come on a Sunday night. You can purchase tickets online or at the venue.
Parents are advised to use their own discretion in allowing their children to experience the haunted house. Darkwood Manor’s website also advises against participating if you’re pregnant, have claustrophobia, or are prone to seizures, heart or respiratory problems. Guests can expect intense audio and lighting, extreme low visibility, strobe lights, fog, damp or wet conditions, and physically demanding environment. You will not be admitted if you appear intoxicated or wearing any form of temporary cast, medical brace or crutches.
No photography or videography is allowed.
From Winchester/Front Royal area:
Take 340 S. to Luray.
At the intersection of 340 and Main St., take a right onto Main.
Take the next right onto Hawksbill St.
Look for signs.
Even if the temperature spikes and another heat wave hits the Shenandoah Valley, Darkwood Manor is guaranteed to give you chills.
The family photo is owned by BBC School Radio. All others are owned by Darkwood Manor.