2012 Haunted Houses

Featured Haunts: Circus of Freaks & Linn's Haunted House (websites hosted here).
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Here are the only haunted houses we have heard about, so far. The descriptions mostly come from the haunt operators (or their websites), but as we go through the attractions, we will try to revise them to reflect what they actually consist of. “The worst of humanity” doesn't give much information -- chainsaw killers? politicians? We will try to keep spoilers to a minimum.

Name
Ames Haunted Forest
Location
1513 S 4th St, Ames IA 50010
Directions
1 block south of Jack Trice Stadium.
Dates/Times
Oct 5-6 & 12-13 (7p-11p), 19-20 (7p-Mid), 21 (7p-10p), 26-27 (7p-Mid), 28-31 (7p-10p).
Calendar
Sat-6, Sun-7, Fri-12, Sat-13, Fri-19, Sat-20, Sun-21, Fri-26, Sat-27, Sun-28, Mon-29, Tue-30, Wed-31
Theme
Haunted walk.
Short Desc
Haunted walk.
Admission
$12
Discounts
$1 off discount coupon on website.
Category
Haunted Walk
Website
www.ameshauntedforest.com
Facebook
www.facebook.com/pages/Ames-Haunted-Forest/168825177811
Name
Asylum Haunted House, The
Location
1301 E 2nd Ave, Indianola IA 50125
Directions
HWY 65/69 to HWY 92 approximately 1/2 mile. Located on the south side of the road across from Indianola High School
Dates/Times
Oct 5-6, 12-13, 19-20, 26-27. 7:30pm-11pm.
Calendar
Fri-5, Sat-6, Fri-12, Sat-13, Fri-19, Sat-20, Fri-26, Sat-27
Short Desc
Your fear lives here
Long Desc
The asylum offers themed haunted rooms filled with costumed characters. Proceeds benefit the Indianola Community Youth Foundation and its efforts to raise money to building more gym space for the community.
Admission
$10
Category
Haunted House
Website
www.icyf23.com
Facebook
www.facebook.com/icyf23
Name
Castle of Blood
Location
4051 Dean Ave, Des Moines IA 50317
Directions
East of the Iowa State Fairgrounds at Sleepy Hollow Sports Park.
Dates/Times
Oct 5-6, 12-13, 18-21, and 25-29. Open at 7pm.
Calendar
Fri-5, Sat-6, Fri-12, Sat-13, Thu-18, Fri-19, Sat-20, Sun-21,�Thu-25, Fri-26, Sat-27, Sun-28, Mon-29
Theme
Vampires in a castle.
Short Desc
Vampire castle. One of five haunted houses.
Long Desc
The Renaissance faire torture chamber tour becomes dark and scary, and leads visitors in to the fest of the castle to face vampires. High tech attraction featuring live actors, and computer controlled lighting and multi-channel sound.
Duration
5 minutes
Admission
Available only as part of a $25 "do it all" or $19 "pick three" package.
Buy Tickets Online
www.ticketometer.com/Sleepy-Hollow-Haunted-Screampark
Discounts
$2 off coupons at area Git-n-Go stores. Group discounts.
Category
Haunted House, Food
Website
www.sleepyhollowscreampark.com
Facebook
www.facebook.com/sleepyhollowhauntedscreampark
Twitter
@shspdmscream
Name
Chaos
Location
4051 Dean Ave, Des Moines IA 50317
Directions
East of the Iowa State Fairgrounds at Sleepy Hollow Sports Park.
Dates/Times
Oct 5-6, 12-13, 18-21, and 25-29. Open at 7pm.
Calendar
Fri-5, Sat-6, Fri-12, Sat-13, Thu-18, Fri-19, Sat-20, Sun-21,�Thu-25, Fri-26, Sat-27, Sun-28, Mon-29
Theme
All things chaotic.
Short Desc
Movie theater horror. One of five haunted houses.
Long Desc
Heavy metal chaos. Freddy, Jason, Michael Meyers, Pinhead, Leatherface and more. As usual, slightly reconfigured from the previous year.
Duration
5 minutes
Admission
Available only as part of a $25 "do it all" or $19 "pick three" package.
Buy Tickets Online
www.ticketometer.com/Sleepy-Hollow-Haunted-Screampark
Discounts
$2 off coupons at area Git-n-Go stores. Group discounts.
Category
Haunted House, Food
Website
www.sleepyhollowscreampark.com
Facebook
www.facebook.com/sleepyhollowhauntedscreampark
Twitter
@shspdmscream
Name
Duty Calls: Zombie Warfare
Location
4051 Dean Ave, Des Moines IA 50317
Directions
East of the Iowa State Fairgrounds at Sleepy Hollow Sports Park.
Dates/Times
Oct 5-6, 12-13, 18-21, and 25-29. Open at 7pm.
Calendar
Fri-5, Sat-6, Fri-12, Sat-13, Thu-18, Fri-19, Sat-20, Sun-21,�Thu-25, Fri-26, Sat-27, Sun-28, Mon-29
Theme
Shoot zombies with laser tag guns.
Short Desc
Laser tag zombie shoot. One of five haunted houses.
Long Desc
High tech outdoor laser tag guns are used in this target shooting experience, completely redone and in a new location for 2012. After the recent zombie outbreak, the military took care of all the zombies but left behind some mines that were programmed to detonate in case their mission failed. Large groups (up to 24) are given four minutes to find and disarm all the hidden mines. A simple job, unless the military missed some zombies... The attraction starts by walking through a mini version of Zombie Burger (with video playing a zombie news break). Computer tracks progress and announces when mines are hit, as well as the final team score at the end of the game.
Admission
Available only as part of a $25 "do it all" or $19 "pick three" package.
Buy Tickets Online
www.ticketometer.com/Sleepy-Hollow-Haunted-Screampark
Discounts
$2 off coupons at area Git-n-Go stores. Group discounts.
Category
Haunted House, Food
Website
www.sleepyhollowscreampark.com
Facebook
www.facebook.com/sleepyhollowhauntedscreampark
Twitter
@shspdmscream
Name
Haunted Barn
Location
3215 SE 72nd St, Ankeny IA 50021
Directions
Take Corporate Woods Dr exit off of I-35, east.
Dates/Times
Oct 5-7, 12-14, 19-21, and 26-31. Opens at 8. Closes at 10pm on weeknights, and midnight on Friday and Saturday nights.
Calendar
Fri-5, Sat-6, Sun-7, Fri-12, Sat-13, Sun-14, Fri-19, Sat-20, Sun-21, Fri-26, Sat-27, Sun-28, Mon-29, Tue-30, Wed-31
Theme
Haunted barn.
Short Desc
Live rats and snakes?
Long Desc
Known for the use of live snakes. Concession stand with $1 snacks! Various scenes, including some gory ones, and a crawl. For 2012, the outdoor section expands even further. Tons of actors -- including a one-legged man who adds some extra realiism to a butcher scene.
Duration
10-15 minutes
Admission
$15
Discounts
$3 off coupon available on their website.
Category
Haunted House, Snacks
Website
www.ankenyhauntedbarn.com
Name
Haunted Forest at Pine Hollow Stables
Location
5055 NE 96th St, Altoona IA
Directions
At Pine Hollow Stables.
Dates/Times
Oct 11-Nov 4. Weekdays, 7pm-11pm. Fri & Sat, 7pm-1am.
Calendar
Fri-12, Sat-13, Sun-14, Thu-18, Fri-19, Sat-20, Sun-21, Thu-25, Fri-26, Sat-27, Sun-28, Mon-29, Tue-30, Wed-31
Admission
$12
Discounts
$10 with canned food donation for Food Bank of Iowa.
Category
Haunted Walk
Website
pinehollowaltoona.com
Facebook
www.facebook.com/pages/Pine-Hollow-Stables/182504818568?fref=ts
Name
Haunted Garage (home haunt)
Location
612 NE 13 ST, Grimes IA
Dates/Times
Oct 26 & 27, 7pm-10pm, and Oct 30 for Beggar's Night, 6pm-8pm.
Calendar
Fri-26, Sat-27, Tue-30
Theme
Haunted garage.
Long Desc
Please note that this is a home haunt/Halloween display in a residential neighborhood. They expect to be able to handle about 75-100 visitors each night, so plan accordingly. This is the second year for this home haunt, and they have tripled the size for 2012. It is totally free but they believe it will be scary.
Admission
Free
Category
Home Haunt
Name
Linn's Haunted House
Location
3805 6th Ave, Des Moines IA 50313
Directions
At Linn's Supermarket.
Dates/Times
Oct 5-7, 12-14, 19-21, 25-31. Mon-Thu & Sun, 7pm-10pm. Fri-Sat, 7pm-Midnight.
Calendar
Fri-5, Sat-6, Sun-7, Fri-12, Sat-13, Sun-14, Fri-19, Sat-20, Sun-21, Thu-25, Fri-26, Sat-27, Sun-28, Mon-29, Tue-30, Wed-31
Short Desc
Des Moines' oldest haunted house (28 years!).
Long Desc
The long, dark crawl at the start is scary enough to make many chicken out! This is a classic haunted house, focusing on darkness and startles rather than heavy metal music and gore. Tons of actors, and some surprises that could make your group end up exiting minutes after the group AFTER you...if you fall for the trap, that is.
Duration
10-20 minutes
Admission
$12
Discounts
Coupons available at local businesses.
Category
Haunted House
Facebook
www.facebook.com/pages/Linns-Haunted-House/151672821003
Name
Nightmare Estates
Location
4051 Dean Ave, Des Moines IA 50317
Directions
East of the Iowa State Fairgrounds at Sleepy Hollow Sports Park.
Dates/Times
Oct 5-6, 12-13, 18-21, and 25-29. Open at 7pm.
Calendar
Fri-5, Sat-6, Fri-12, Sat-13, Thu-18, Fri-19, Sat-20, Sun-21,�Thu-25, Fri-26, Sat-27, Sun-28, Mon-29
Theme
Rednecks in a trailer.
Short Desc
Fairy tales gone bad. One of five haunted houses.
Long Desc
The double-wide trailer gets remodeled and reconfigured as Stacy Wolfe (of Werewolfe Productions) returns to Sleepy Hollow and gives Nightmares some updates. Darkness, a crawl, and bizarre trailer trash encounters. Upgraded audio this year, too.
Duration
5 minutes
Admission
Available only as part of a $25 "do it all" or $19 "pick three" package.
Buy Tickets Online
www.ticketometer.com/Sleepy-Hollow-Haunted-Screampark
Discounts
$2 off coupons at area Git-n-Go stores. Group discounts.
Category
Haunted House, Food
Website
www.sleepyhollowscreampark.com
Facebook
www.facebook.com/sleepyhollowhauntedscreampark
Twitter
@shspdmscream
Name
SLAUGHTERHOUSE, The
Location
1300 Metro East Dr Suite 126, Pleasant Hill IA 50327
Directions
At Batter's Box.
Dates/Times
Oct 5-6, 12-13, 19-20, 26-27, and 31. 8pm-Midnight.
Calendar
Fri-5, Sat-6, Fri-12, Sat-13, Fri-19, Sat-20, Fri-26, Sat-27, Wed-31
Theme
Pig slaughterhouse.
Short Desc
Des Moines' most feared haunted house.
Long Desc
Climate controlled, indoor facility. Modern parking lot, restrooms and concessions. Trig is gonna make a squealer outta you! Unique experience starts with your group being wheeled off on a cart to slaughter. Metal walls, crawls, loud sounds and darkness.
Duration
15-20 minute ride/walk/crawl.
Admission
$12
Buy Tickets Online
tikly.co/-/689
Discounts
$2 off coupon on the website, and at Zombie Burger. Online ticket ($15) allows VIP front-of-line admission.
Category
Haunted House, Snacks
Website
www.theslaughterhousedm.com
Facebook
www.facebook.com/TheSlaughterhouseDM
Name
Trail of Terror Haunted Forest
Location
South of 2720 Gateway Dr, Carlisle IA 50047
Directions
1/2 mile East of 65/69 bypass on Highway 5, exit 72. Turn South at People's Bank and follow the signs.
Dates/Times
Oct 12-13, 19-20, and 26-27. Opens at 6:30, with first group starting at 7pm. Kids trail from 6:30-9pm.
Calendar
Fri-12, Sat-13, Fri-19, Sat-20, Fri-26, Sat-27
Theme
Haunted forest.
Long Desc
Proceeds benefit several local Boy Scout troops and crews.
Admission
$7, $5 (12 & Under in costume)
Category
Haunted Walk, Snacks
Website
scotchridgecenter.org/index.htm
Name
Twisted Tales: The Next Chapter
Location
4051 Dean Ave, Des Moines IA 50317
Directions
East of the Iowa State Fairgrounds at Sleepy Hollow Sports Park.
Dates/Times
Oct 5-6, 12-13, 18-21, and 25-29. Open at 7pm.
Calendar
Fri-5, Sat-6, Fri-12, Sat-13, Thu-18, Fri-19, Sat-20, Sun-21,�Thu-25, Fri-26, Sat-27, Sun-28, Mon-29
Theme
Fairy tales gone bad.
Short Desc
Fairy tales gone bad. One of five haunted houses.
Long Desc
Physically demanding (stairs, ramps, slide, crawls). All-new haunted house with several outdoor scenes. The theme from their fairy tale haunted walk (2010-2011) gets updated with a new computer controlled preshow, projection effects, and about twenty discrete channels of audio.
Duration
5 minutes
Admission
Available only as part of a $25 "do it all" or $19 "pick three" package.
Buy Tickets Online
www.ticketometer.com/Sleepy-Hollow-Haunted-Screampark
Discounts
$2 off coupons at area Git-n-Go stores. Group discounts.
Category
Haunted House, Food
Website
www.sleepyhollowscreampark.com
Twitter
@shspdmscream
Name
Ultimate Haunted House
Location
5401 East University Ave, Pleasant Hill IA 50327
Directions
At White Water University.
Dates/Times
Oct 12-14, 19-21, 26-31. Fri and Sat, 7pm-Midnight. All other days, 7pm-10pm.
Calendar
Fri-12, Sat-13, Sun-14, Fri-19, Sat-20, Sun-21, Fri-26, Sat-27, Sun-28, Mon-29, Tue-30, Wed-31
Long Desc
A seemingly endless journey through various scenes with many animated props and effects. There is a long spin tunnel, and tons of actors. Multiple chainsaw encounters!
Duration
8-10 minutes
Admission
$13
Discounts
$2 off coupons will be distributed around Des Moines and surrounding area.
Category
Haunted House
Name
Waukee Haunted House
Location
1255 Warrior Lane, Waukee IA 50263
Directions
In Centenial Park.
Dates/Times
Oct 26-27. 7pm-10pm.
Calendar
Fri-26, Sat-27
Long Desc
Waukee Park Board haunted house in the Centenial Park enclosed shelter house. Not suggested for young children.
Admission
$5
Category
Haunted House
Website
waukee.org
Name
Zombie Hollow (home haunt)
Location
3109 Pine Circle, Urbandale IA 50322
Dates/Times
Oct 26-27, Oct 30. 7pm-10pm. Oct 31 7pm-9pm.
Calendar
Fri-26, Sat-27, Tue-30, Wed-31
Short Desc
Pirates of the Caribbean fans HAVE TO SEE THIS!
Long Desc
AMAZING walk through display featuring lighting, sound, animated figures, and tributes to scenes from Disney's Pirates of the Carribean and Haunted Mansion rides! Raises money through freewill donations that will go to charity to benefit severely injured or dismembered veterans
Admission
Free will donation
Category
Home Haunt
Website
www.thezombiehollow.com/

Other Indexes

We believe in cross promotion, so here are other haunted house indexes we have found. DMHH is not responsible for the accuracy of information on these sites, but we will at least try to point out major omissions if we notice them.

  1. Spooky Des Moines by Lite 104.1 - Lite 104.1 becomes the first listing of haunts (other than this site) to show up in Google. As of this update, they are not listing White Water University, and they have the name of The SLAUGHTERHOUSE incorrect. (Last year, SLAUGHTERHOUSE was located elsewhere, and had done design work on Zombies at Batter's Box. This year, they merged and SLAUGHTERHOUSE is at Batter's Box, so the location information is correct.) This site also omitted White Water University in 2011.
  2. Des Moines Register Events Calendar - This link goes to the DM Register's "Holiday/Seasonal->Fall events->Halloween->Haunted houses" category. As of this update, they are only listing four haunted houses.
  3. KCCI Beggar's night list - Currently listing only two haunted houses.
  4. Metromix Haunted Houses in Des Moines - A rather complete listing of haunts, though several of their listings contain outdated/incorrect information from last year. So far, though, Metromix wins the best listing of haunted houses outside of this website.
  5. See also: 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017.