Article and Photos by: Scott Feinblatt
Five! Five Haunted Houses! Ah, Ha Ha Ha Ha!
Corona's Crossroads Riverview Park makes a Great Location for a Haunted Theme Park
In the remote city of Corona, across a bridge
and down a few increasingly rustic roads, there
is a village. Some say that it is haunted.
Actually, it is the advertising which says that.
The Crossroads Haunted Village is the
charming site for five haunts, a magic show and
a medieval style fairground.
The attractions are bound together by their
proximity within an expansive and relatively
undeveloped plot of land. The atmosphere of
the haunted attractions is a perfect
complement for the environment – fog and dust
clouds form naturally along the stretch of dirt
road that separates three of the haunts from
the Crossroads Riverview Park, a permanent
Renaissance Village where the haunted village's vendors and the remaining attractions are located. Yet, each of
the haunts is an independent enterprise, ensuring that each has its own character and presents its own brand of
The furthest haunt from the rustic
village atop the hill was Chambers of
the Mausoleum. This was a guided
tour through some very impressive
sets – including some nice demonic
characters. Among the scene designs
were a mausoleum (of course),
“underground” caverns and a boggy
courtyard. Of all the haunts, this one
got top marks for atmosphere. It also
had the longest line, so I suggest
either purchasing the VIP fast pass or
lining up at this one early on.
Across the dirt road was Bog of the
Abyss. Bog was entirely outdoors and
consisted of a nature walk through
the darkness. The path was
illuminated by a series of lanterns placed far enough
away from one another so that guests could make out
the path in short increments. This was a very creepy
effect and provided plenty of darkness to conceal
ghouls and occasional prop pieces that guests would
stumble upon. Given the amount of darkness, this
one takes the prize for containing the most subjective
scares of the village.
Back across the dirt road, and atop a hill, resided
Coffin Creek Manor. This one won for the most
traditional haunted house feel. It included black light
designs, chainsaw wielding maniacs, a great variety
of sets and an impressive duration. My walk through
it was enhanced by the squeals of a terrified girl
who clung to her chuckling boyfriend. Additionally
several performers, whom I had mistaken as
dummies, were able to elicit a few whimpers from me
as they caught me off guard.
Next was a bit of a haul up the remaining length of
the dirt road. However, the walk was a charming
intermission as the dirt path was very atmospheric
and the night echoed with the sounds of screams
from haunts in all directions. Once guests enter
Riverview, its veneers provide the perfect location
for the remaining attractions of the haunted village.
Initially, guests will pass the carnival food vendors
and various souvenir tents. Then, on the left,
they will come upon the next haunt.
Labyrinth of Lost Relics is a very clever haunt
which highlights aspects of fantasy and wins
over the others for the most imaginative design.
Animatronic creatures in fantastical settings
provide the initial narration for the guided tour.
Beyond that, guests walk through a series of
sets whose designs and creatures seem like
the probable offspring of the darker half of Jim
Henson's imagination. The tour ends in an
Across the way from the Labyrinth is the
Pandemonium Magic Show. The setting for the
show is fittingly anachronistic, with a ticket
seller providing the quintessential “Step right
up, folks!” speech and the show taking place
within a Victorian stage setting. The show,
itself, includes some grand illusions
performed in a manner befitting the venue.
The famous Metamorphosis is one of the
highlights, and the show is accompanied by
musicians whose equally acoustic and
electronic atmospheric music provides a
perfect complement to the performance of
magician Dexion Star.
Finally, at the end of the village road, the
Shady Hollow Hayride awaited me. Given the
impressive production of the Los Angeles
Haunted Hayride, there was a bit of a precedent beyond which
Shady Hollow would have to go to distinguish itself. Alas, I was
not disappointed. Though the sets were not as elaborate as
those of the hayride's Hollywood counterpart, the imagination of
this attraction's design more than compensated. I don't want to
give anything away because the vignettes are delicious as
first-hand discoveries, but the theatrics definitely tackle unique
The anthology of haunts that comprise Crossroads Haunted
Village may not provide the scariest haunted attractions that I
attended this season, but as far as character, this place has the
most variety and ingenuity. The location, alone, makes the
journey worthwhile, and becoming immersed in the environment
grants guests almost as much fun as each respective attraction.
|To see additional photos of Crossroads Haunted
Village, visit the Horror Works Facebook page.