By Kara

The drive to and from Mead Manor kind of sets the mood for the evening. You head into some pretty desolate, dark streets. Just when you start wondering, did we pass it? - you'll see a young person standing on the side of the road with a flashlight waving you in. When you arrive, you'll see that Mead Manor is comprised of several house trailers that have been attached for your extended viewing pleasure. If your night was anything like ours, you'll be greeted by another young person who will direct you to your parking spot and then come around and chat you up. By the time you make it to the house, you may have talked to 5 different people. Hopefully you'll get to chat with the owner's son. He's a talker - a smart little guy - and will put you on his waiting list for a lizard that he will turn into a dragon for you when he's older. We went on opening weekend ? and there was a group of three who walked in ahead of us. Other than that, I think we were the only one's there. Admission is $11, but it showed $10 on the Mead Manor website, so they let us in for that price. They have since corrected their site and it now shows the correct $11 price.

You enter the house with a person yelling, "Fresh meat!" - and that's where I draw the line as far as giving you details inside of the house. I'm not going to tell you what's in there. You have to find that out for yourself. Me telling you details is like movie previews. Do you really NEED to see the movie after seeing a 5 minute trailer that gives everything of any interest away?

Mead Manor is a really good "First Haunt" for kids. Now, I'm not saying take your 5 year old or anything. But if you have a 9 year old that's feeling adventurous and brave, I think it would be okay. Now, I'm not saying that Mead Manor isn't scary. There were some very scary moments. And the actors did a fantastic job. They were definitely the best part of the haunt. They put their heart, souls, and vocal chords into it. Just ask my left ear. There were a few lighting issues. A few corners were much too bright and kind of took away from the creepiness not to mention illuminated the walmart-esque props that could've had potential had it been darker in there. This house was fun. The people were fun. It was almost...endearing. You know... in a creepy, macabre sort of way.

Listen folks, this is what it comes down to - The ghouls at Mead Manor are trying to give us what we want. This is their first year trying to do a professional haunt. I'm sure their budget is limited. But they're doing it for the public and for the love of Halloween and the spook house experience. At $11, they're one of the cheapest around. Support them this year and you just might have a bigger, better, SCARIER Mead Manor next year and that's good news for everyone.

P.S. By the way, I changed my mind. Take your 5 year old. That's how old I was when I went to my first spook house and I think I'm a better woman for it. (refer to chickenman in Kara's "art" section)

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