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The Hornet

Serving the Fullerton Community Since 1922

The Hornet

Working hard to get their thrills

A lot of you have read reviews about Knott’s Scary Farm from every day people and news media groups, but have you ever heard about it from the monster’s view?

You see these men and women who spend hours each night trying to entertain you, and I’m sure a lot of you wonder why it is that they chose to do that as a job. I can tell you it is not for the money. $8 an hour is not worth the blood, sweat, and tears that are put into this event.

It’s done for the love of Halloween, the money is just a bonus. Being a monster myself I can say that the people you would call co workers to us is family. We also do not call each other by our “normal” names we each have our own “haunt” name that is given to us by the veteran monsters based on how we act or what we do or sometimes even what we look like.

The audition process to become a monster is not a walk in the park. it is not something you can walk into and do, for example you are asked to act out a random scenario then you are asked to preform your character and you base your character off of where you want to do your scaring at Knott’s.

Well the auditioning was intimidating, but not impossible and I had fun with it,” said Phillip Blaine, Numa around the theme park. “It’s improv and I love improv. There is no such a thing as a stupid suggestion; you just roll with the punches.”

Mazes however do not necessarily need to provide a character as they will assign you to a specific maze and position by using a body casting system. That means if you look like someone who could play a child you will be put in a role that calls for a child-like character.

“I personally went into auditions with the mentality of giving it my all, but being happy wherever I go,” said Aaron Frame, who plays Fidget at Knott’s ghost town. “I talked with vets, got opinions and advice, and compiled it.

After the hours of auditions, the selected individuals will go through costuming to see what they will be wearing and what alterations need to be made for their specific body type and role.

The ladies [in costuming] were very nice and my wait wasn’t long,” said Troy Plummer, a first-time monster this season. “They had everything laid out and were so nice with making sure everything fit. I was just like ‘dude I got an actual costume!’

Each day before starting work, each monster has a routine that involves make-up time, checking out your costume, getting dressed and heading to your street zone or your maze to wait for the guests to start pouring in.

But not every guest is someone you would want to cross paths with at your office.

Umm, well, as for the guests I think we all have the
same opinion,” said
Leanna Baehr, Knott’s employee. “There are some that enjoy the scare and
make working there worth it, but for the most part you get the ones that
think you are there strictly to be their punching bag.”

Guests seem to forget that no matter how drunk or upset they are it is never ok to grab or yell at a monster, behind that mask or make-up is a person with feelings. They don’t want to hear that their hard work, time, means nothing to you. No one wants to come into work to find customers ridicule what they do and cause annoying problems.

‘Scare my friend.’ ‘Take a picture with me please!’ ‘I’m not scared of you.’ ‘I see you,
look everyone, we see you!’ ‘Can you show us where the mazes are.’ I love
guests, no matter how ironic their questions
or statements are,” said
Aaron Frame, another of this year’s monsters. “They are the life of the park, plain and simple.
Without fans we would not have this event ever year. Making one guest’s
night with a solid scare makes up for any belligerent questions I get
from guests.”

Every monster has their own reason why they love doing what they do.

“There is something magical about being able to turn a 6 foot 4 inch marine into a blithering mass of terror. Being a monster is a life changing experience,” said Mark Burgland, known around Knott’s as Death

When you decide to face your fears and visit Knott’s keep in mind that everything you see and experience came at the cost of a monster’s hard work and that they are doing the best they can to not only entertain you but frighten you. After all that’s the main reason they do what they do.

I love scaring people,” said Randi Loyd of the Slaughterhouse maze. “It makes me laugh and brings me joy to scare the crap out of someone. That’s what they pay for. Bringing them the most terrifying experience is what makes it worth it.

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