The Maroon

House of Shock celebrates two dozen Halloweens

Co-owner+Ross+Karpelman+oversees+The+House+of+Shock+stage+show+pyrotechnics.+%28Courtesy+of+The+House+of+Shock%29
Co-owner Ross Karpelman oversees The House of Shock stage show pyrotechnics. (Courtesy of The House of Shock)

Co-owner Ross Karpelman oversees The House of Shock stage show pyrotechnics. (Courtesy of The House of Shock)

Co-owner Ross Karpelman oversees The House of Shock stage show pyrotechnics. (Courtesy of The House of Shock)

Tyler Wann

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The House of Shock is back for its 24th season to make terror topical in this already scary election season.

Since 1993, Elmwood, Louisiana, has played host to one of the most notorious haunted houses in the country. Initiated by a group of friends in their backyard, including Phil Anselmo of heavy metal band Pantera, the House of Shock was started as a reaction against goofiness that began to defy the traditional, spooky haunted houses of the day.

“It was always about intensity and giving every last bit of energy that you had,” Ross Karpelman, co-founder, explained. Since then, it has become one of America’s top haunted houses, according to Haunted Attraction Magazine naming the venue “Number One Haunted House in the Country” in 2014. The house reinvents itself each year in order to perfect the scare.

Karpelman opened up about what people can expect this season. This year he spotlighted the popular 3-D attraction maze called “Laff in the Dark.” This attraction has doubled in size since last year and now features a pyrotechnics show plus 3-D painted psychedelic artwork from floor-to-ceiling, provided by San Diego graffiti artists.

“If all (customers) did was walk through with 3-D glasses and look at the artwork, that would be, alone, worth it. But we also throw the clowns in there,” said Karpelman. “If the recent sightings have gotten you on edge, this attraction is sure to provide.”

That’s not all the house has to offer this year. He said that the attraction will have a section based on the controversial presidential election. “It’s gotten so ridiculous, we had to weigh in on it,” Ross said.

The house is also introducing several new “freaks” this year, including the “Sasquatch Sisters” and the ominously named “Mother Milk,” who “provides sustenance” to all of the other freaks. Karpelman revealed that while some aspects of the characters and scenarios depicted were inspired by hit movies such as “The Omen” and “The Exorcist,” the house is mainly inspired by New Orleans folklore.

“There are enough legends in New Orleans to inspire a million haunted houses,” Karpelman said, noting particular examples such as a recreation of the Laveau mansion and a French Quarter-inspired piece.

Karpelman said that over the years, the crew has learned how to get a reaction out of anyone. He noted a particular incident in which former Saints lineman and Hall of Famer Willie Roaf sprinted away in reaction to the house’s horrors. He invites anyone up for the challenge to give the house a visit.

The House of Shock will be open from Oct. 28-31 at 319 Butterworth St., located under the Huey P. Long Bridge. General admission tickets may be purchased on site for $30, while VIP tickets may be purchased for $50 online and $55 on site.

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About the Writer
Tyler Wann, Editorial Editor

Wrapping up his four years at Loyola and  The Maroon, Tyler serves as the Editorial Editor. He hopes to portray the views of the editorial board, and...

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House of Shock celebrates two dozen Halloweens