A recap of Bingemans Screampark 2018

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Photo by Lauren Symbolik-Berger

Thursday Sept. 27 marked the day some colleagues and I went to Bingemans Screampark.

For those who don’t know, Screampark is an annual event at Bingemans in Waterloo — essentially, picture a really long and extended haunted house with several different stages. 

Once we arrived, we were greeted by a headless woman dressed entirely in black. 

This started our experience off on the right foot by immediately getting us in the mood to be scared. 

This year’s Screampark theme was a medical treatment centre/asylum that has gone horribly wrong. 

You aren’t immediately given many narrative details, but instead they are slowly given out by the lines of the actors as you progress from stage to stage. 

One early-on experience that really put a damper on the mood was the initial waiting. 

Although we were in line for at least 45 minutes before actually starting the stages, I can safely say the wait was worth it.

This year’s Screampark was separated into nine stages with their own distinct aesthetic and scares. 

Some of these stages really knocked it out of the park.

Another thing to keep in mind is to avoid bringing valuables because they might get lost during a nice healthy jog away from the clowns.   

 In particular, the ocular observatory had many areas that really subverted your vision, and the preparation penitentiary was spooky overall. 

Some of the other sections, while scary were underdeveloped. The section that immediately comes to mind is the pitch path, where clowns with chainsaws wait to chase you. 

Sounds terrifying right? It just felt too short, even though we were running for our lives. 

Luckily for attendees, half way through the Screampark is a small eatery for you to take a seat, relax momentarily and grab a drink. 

One section that I am undecided on is the maze trial. 

This section featured a maze that was filled with the artificial fog, strobe lights and blinding bright lights. The maze is made out of chicken wire and wood and you have to navigate through it virtually blind. 

It was a fun time exploring how to get through the maze; however, the level to which our visibility was limited was concerning at times. Luckily, we could follow the voices of our friends ahead.

The actors here seriously deserve an award; they all did a fantastic job of scaring the daylights out of us. 

I think they have a sixth sense on which person in a group is the weak one who scares easily. In our case this was me, and they did not hesitate to make sure they knew I scared easily.

It should say something that based off of previous encounters it created a growing sense of terror every time we ran into someone. 

They also deserve an award for keeping a straight face every time I screamed like a small child. 

There is some required information you should know before you make your visit to Screampark if you so choose. 

Dress warm because you will be outside for the most part. Bring comfortable running shoes for all the walking in outdoor paths that you will do, and for the clowns. 

Also if you have any sort of mobility concerns this might be extremely difficult to get around, there is a lot of area to cover and much of it is dirt/forest path. 

Another thing to keep in mind is to avoid bringing valuables because they might get lost during a nice healthy jog away from the clowns.   

The real question overall is, is this experience worth my hard earned $30-$35? 

Well it depends; if you refuse to have anything to do with spooky things then this probably isn’t for you. 

However, if like me you are intrigued and willing to give Screampark a try I would go for it, you will have one hell of a time. 

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