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Universal's Halloween Horror Nights 16 draws upon frights of the past

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Published: September 22, 2006 at 10:15 AM

Just got off the phone for a conference call with Universal Orlando's director of entertainment, TJ Mannarino, who shared some dish about Universal's upcoming Halloween Horror Nights 16.

Expect to find many familiar sights at this year's event. Halloween Horror Nights returns to its roots this year, literally and figuratively, as the event switches from Islands of Adventure back to its original Universal Studios Florida home. Plus, designers have drawn upon past events for inspiration for this year's mazes and shows.

"Being kinda able to back into the past was actually a lot of fun for the designers because it was, like, 'Okay, how can we take the things that people are familiar with and make them bigger and grander and different?'" Mannarino said.

Mannarino also said that Universal has and will continue to monitor guest surveys and websits feedback (including TPI) for ideas on what to do, or not to do, for future Halloween Horror Nights.

"This event has really grown on its fan and guest support," Mannarino said.

So... let's hear it. You can leave comments about HHN on our Halloween Horror Nights wiki page, or below.

Readers' Opinions

From Daniel Binder on September 22, 2006 at 1:16 PM
I'm going for the first time with three friends on Friday, October 20'th, and have tickets and express passes for all locked in. I'm really looking forward to it, and I figure with the express passes, I won't really need to be there when HHN opens. However, after reading one of the comments about it being PACKED at 10 PM on Friday, October 21st 2005, I'm wondering if I need to reconsider and ensure I am there at HHN within the first hour.
From Erik Yates on September 22, 2006 at 1:51 PM
I'm really excited about it, and make sure to tune in to IOACentral Radio next week for our first HHN spectacular. Lots of surprises, its half way recorded, and not done yet.....make sure to tune in.
From steve lee on September 22, 2006 at 5:34 PM
Daniel - While I understand that some of the atmosphere is lost while it's still light, I always leave HHN feeling like I just didn't quite get enough.

If this is your first time, you really should allocate as much time as possible. It's a helluva lot easier to decide at 1AM that you've had enough than it is to realize at 2AM that you haven't had enough.

(do I get the award for worst sentence structure of the week?)

From Daniel Binder on September 22, 2006 at 6:09 PM
Hmm... I was going in with the expectation that if armed with express passes, my group would easily be able to do every house and scarezone by the end of the evening... Is this an unrealistic expectation ?
From steve lee on September 23, 2006 at 9:35 AM
No, it's not unreasonable at all. But you don't want to be rushing around hitting each one. Take a little extra time and enjoy yourself checking out the details of stuff is all I'm saying.
From Greg Mills on September 24, 2006 at 4:34 PM
Ah, cuss it. And when I say it, I mean my lack of $$$. No money, no trip. No trip to Universal, means no amusement. This sucks. Anyone wanna spot me a few...hundred...? Heh. Heh. ;_;
From Matt Tastic on September 25, 2006 at 9:53 AM
We're going this Friday night and it's our first time. I thought it was the second weekend, but I guess I was wrong and Sept. 29 is the opening weekend(?)

I was planning on getting the express, but I've read in other threads here that opening night lines are not as bad. Any advice from you grizzled veterans?

We went to the Busch Gardens event last year (a Saturday night, but we had no choice) and I was miserable with the lines.

From steve lee on September 25, 2006 at 1:48 PM
Never been opening weekend, but I've also heard that they're the least crowded.

Best of luck! Let us know how it goes!

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