By Stasia Connor
Universal Orlando Resort and Universal Studios Hollywood announced July 24 that Halloween Horror Nights would not be held this year, deciding instead to focus on daytime activities and COVID-19 safety procedures.
As an alternative option for customers who were still looking for Halloween activities this fall, Universal Orlando Resort created two haunted houses in Universal Studios, “The Bride of Franken- stein Lives” and “Revenge of the Tooth Fairy,” as well as trick-or-treating for children at Islands of Adventure.
Halloween Horror Nights staff member, Dziugas Gedvilla, reminisced on the nights he spent working as a house attendant.
“Halloween Horror Nights was a great work environment with awesome people,” Gedvilla recalled.
“I remember everyone was always so high energy and ready to go. It made it fun.”
Although all Halloween Horror Nights events were terminated, Busch Gardens decided not to cancel its 21st annual Halloween event, Howl-O-Scream. Taking into consideration all safety and health precautions, Busch Gardens featured limited-capacity admission, required reservations, staged open-air scare zones and marked physical distancing.
With COVID-19 and the intentions of preventing any more cases to develop, Central Florida had its first contactless, drive-thru Halloween theatrical event called The Haunted Road. Organizers set up a schedule on its website, thehuntedroad.com, that allowed participants to select from three events; Main Night Event, Daytime Family Friendly Event, or Unrestricted.
When driving from scene to scene, you were required to safely park your vehicle so performers can approach your vehicle. You tuned into a radio station to hear the music and stereo sound that is synced to the live action.
Granted that Halloween and a majority of its festivities are not the same, there are ways we can work around the coronavirus to be able to enjoy fall traditions while keeping ourselves and those around us safe.