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Halloween Horror Nights Trip & Last Minute Disney Visit

#1 User is offline   velvetdrug 

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Posted 26 October 2004 - 09:25 AM

So on October 23rd - Saturday afternoon, we left Miami and headed up to Orlando for Halloween Horror Nights. We arrived at our hotel, which was on 1-4 near the convention center around 5 PM. We took a quick shower and left to Universal. It was about 5:45.

Mind you our hotel was only 10 minutes away. But with all the traffic, we did not arrive until close to 6:45.

There were mobs of people heading over to IOA for the event. I expected a huge wait at the entrance, but amazingly it moved fairly quickly. They did have metal detectors installed at the entrance.

We decided to head to the Mummy first. We figured it will have a huge line later at night and we didn’t want to wait a long time for it. So after getting our first round of drinks, we head over from the entrance of IOA over to the New York area of Universal Studios.

At the entrance of IOA, the themeing was nice. There was lots of fog and a couple of monsters scaring people as they made their way through. At the center stage there were these alien creatures telling the guest to keep moving. They were slightly cheesy.

As we made are way through Dr. Seuss land over to Universal, I was surprised at the lack of theming. There wasn't even fog. Last year when HHN was at IOA there was fog everywhere.

In-between the parks, there was this area called the Fright Yard. It looked liked an industrial yard gone wild. It was pretty neat. There were lots of explosions & loud noises. And the usual characters w/ chainsaws.

We past Castle Vampyr on the way to the Mummy. I had heard that this was the best Haunted House. So I was looking forward to it.

We arrived at the Mummy to see it only had a 30 minute wait. This was great news. After ridding the Mummy, we went to the bar in front of it for our next drink of the evening.

Universal was selling these glowing cups for 8.50 and refills were only 6. So it was a pretty good deal. And the glowing cups (either blue or green) were pretty cool.

As we walked out of the bar we were shocked to see the wait time of the Mummy had jumped to 75 minutes. Then right before our eyes, just as we were still processing the shock of the jump in just such a short time, it went up to 90 minutes!

We made our way to Castle Vampyr and quickly learned it had a 150 minute wait! We decided it wasn't worth it and went to see how long the wait was for Hellgate. Hellgate is another haunted house that was before you walked through the Fright Yard. Well the wait was 120 minutes for Hellgate. We figured we might as well wait. The line seemed never ending.

Universal tries to make the most of the people waiting in line by taking advantage and selling food and drinks. They should install bathrooms too!

We finally entered Hellgate. It was nicely themed to a prison. It wasn't very scary though. Other than the theme, it was pretty lame.

As you can imagine, after that experience, we opted out of going to any more of the haunted houses. We also were in desperate need of a bathroom break. Over to the right of Hellgate was the cast member lounge. We walked over to the lounge to use the restroom. We past about 10 security guards on the way and went inside the lounge. Funny thing is that no one said anything. Even inside as the cast members ate their lunch, they were busy watching the baseball game rather than wondering who where these strangers backstage.

So on our way back to the park area from the lounge, we get stop. It was kinda funny. The security guard was wondering how we got back there. They were nice about it and showed us the way back to the park. I still find it funny that we were back there for nearly 20 minutes and nothing was said to us until we were leaving to go back to the park.

On the way back to IOA we walked through the Field of Screams. I was looking forward to this since they made it out to be a scary cornfield walk through. Well the pathway was wider than a highway in Atlanta. and the corn "field" was more like corn bushes. Either way it was well themed and the scarecrows looked pretty cool.

At IOA we rode Dr.Seuss (no wait). Our friends who were staying at a Universal hotel, used their room key as an express pass for the Hulk. Meanwhile we rode Spiderman (twice) - the single rider line of course.

We ended our night by taking a quick ride on Dudley Do-Rights. Yes it was cold! But it had no wait. and then we saw the Bill and Ted show.

The Bill and Ted show was really funny. They made fun of everyone from Michael Jackson to Harry Potter, to the Wicked Witch and even George Bush and John Kerry.

We then made our way back to the hotel. The traffic wasn't too bad going home. We were back in the room right before 3 AM.

Overall, we had a good time. However, there were too many people at the event. I will never go to HHN again w/o buying an express pass. Universal sells an express pass (their Fast Pass) to the haunted houses and all the rides for an additional $35. It is completely worth it if you want to do it all. We couldn’t buy one because it was sold out for weeks before the event.

So before going to sleep, we all decided to go to Disney on Sunday before we had to drive home. We wanted to hit MGM, Epcot and the MK.


To be continued....
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#2 User is offline   QuickGold 

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Posted 26 October 2004 - 12:22 PM

You never mentioned who "we" is?

And I took the liberty of splitting your TR's up so you can get the points :)
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#3 User is offline   velvetdrug 

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Posted 26 October 2004 - 02:37 PM

Oh, "we" is just me and a group of friends.
It was a total of 6 of us.

It was me, my best friend Orestes and his brother Alex, Steve, Vanessa, & Mike.
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#4 User is offline   QuickGold 

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Posted 26 October 2004 - 03:16 PM

Are these people disney fans like you?
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#5 User is offline   velvetdrug 

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Posted 26 October 2004 - 05:08 PM

only my best friend orestes
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#6 User is offline   lilchippewa 

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Posted 27 October 2004 - 11:49 PM

Nice HHN trip report! Thanks for posting.
-Josh
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#7 User is offline   QuickGold 

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Posted 28 October 2004 - 11:38 AM

A belated congrats on 500 posts Josh :P
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