How to Have a Successful Horror Nights

By Olivia Hamblin, Staff Writer

For my birthday this year, I begrudgingly went to Halloween Horror Nights (HHN) at Universal Studios. While, I love scary movies and Halloween, I was deeply opposed to going. However, by the end of the night, I’d had an amazing time.

First of all, don’t go by yourself. Horror fan or not, Halloween Horror Nights is definitely an event requiring friends to partake in the inevitable screaming. I went with four other people: my sister, Caroline, Ashley Conte, Matias Pazos, and Kylie Grist.


When the clock hits 7pm, guests are greeted by monsters with chainsaws. (Photo by Universal Studios Hollywood and caption by Erin Neil.)

Buy your HHN tickets early and when your reserved date comes around, you can arrive as early as 5:15 pm.

The lines for all the classic rides are short. My group went on Jurassic Park and The Mummy at least 3 times each before 7:00, which is when the real Horror Nights begins.

The Terror Tram, the first Horror Nights activity we participated in, picks around fifty people up in a bus and takes them down to a clown infested horror walk. The central focus of this maze is Hollywood Harry, a dangerous, psychologically damaged clown, who greets you at the entrance, along with his entourage of chainsaw demons.

Following the thrilling terror tram, we decided it’d be best to take a break and get something to eat. All the restaurants in the park are considered “safe spots” which means you won’t be chowing down with the gory monsters.

After having a hearty snack, we decided to embark on another horrifying maze.

There are various mazes at Halloween Horror Nights, each focusing on a specific T.V. show or movie. The most popular mazes have wait times up to two hours. Upon seeing the lengthy wait at the American Horror Story maze, a new addition to the HHN line up, we decided to go to the Krampus maze instead which had a much shorter wait of about forty minutes.

As we entered a small white Victorian style house of the maze, we were greeted with both flickering lights and creepy Christmas carols. While the maze was full of unexpected jump scares and loud noises, it was not really worth the wait.

Because of all the scares, many people have mixed feelings about Halloween Horror Nights. “It was terrifying. I’m never going back,” says Notre Dame senior Kylie Grist.

Others however love the thrills of HHN. “Horror nights is all mind over matter,” senior Matias Pazos affirms. “I thought it was super fun, and wasn’t scared… I 10/10 would go again.”

Time flies by once you enter the park and there is no feasible way to hit all the mazes.My advice to successfully navigate Horror Nights is to go the mazes you think you’d most enjoy, even if the line is long. Whether you enjoy the scares or find them traumatizing, it’s hard to deny how well Halloween Horror Nights does its job.


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