Halloween Horror Nights 2012 & Magic Mountain in October

Discussion in 'Southern California Theme Parks' started by brocklesnar69, Mar 9, 2012.

  1. brocklesnar69

    brocklesnar69 Proud to be a Villain

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    My buddy and I are planning a trip to LA for a week, and for one of those days, we want to go to Universal for Halloween Horror Nights, and the other, we want to go to Magic Mountain. Both of us want to be home before October 31st (can't miss Halloween at home!) but we were thinking of taking the trip maybe the third week of October.

    I've only ever done either Magic Mountain or Halloween Horror Nights once a piece, so I'm not too familiar with either of them, especially in October. It's been literally 11+ years. So I'm just wondering how long the Horror Nights event lasts for? Like, does it start on October 1st and go all the way through the 31st? Are there better or worse days to go during this time (Such as Tuesday vs Friday)? How packed does it get? What time does the park usually open in the morning in October? What time does it close at the end of the night? Is there a designation of when regular Universal closes and Horror Nights begins? Do you have to pay extra to be in the park during Horror Night hours? How are the crowds? And how much extra is the 1 Day Express Pass over a regular pass?

    As for Magic Mountain, we just want to go there to ride some extreme coasters. How is this place during October? How are the crowds? Any idea about what time the park opens and closes?


    Thanks! :3dglasses
     
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  3. violakat03

    violakat03 Earning My Ears

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    I've never been to the California parks, but across the board, Halloween is one of the busiest times at theme parks. My biggest suggestion is pick another week!! The third week in October is known in the haunt industry (I run a haunted trail with my fiancé) to be the busiest. Most people plan Halloween parties the weekend of, so they all go out haunting the weekend before. Our crowds the third weekend are usually double that of the weekends prior and after.

    Magic Mountain is NOT open through the week in October so you can't dodge the crowds that way. They are open 10:30-midnight Fridays and Saturdays and 10:30-11 Sundays. I'm not sure if they will be having Fright Nights on Sundays or not, but I'd HIGHLY recommending going there on Sunday even if they are! Sundays are always the least busy in October. Judging by their calendar, October 5th is the first day of their Halloween season.

    Saturday nights during haunts are a NIGHTMARE at any park. It's well known in the enthusiast world to just stay away from parks on Saturdays in July and October, because you will see ride waits at their longest. At Kings Island (my home park, in Cincinnati), you will see legitimate 2 to 3 hour waits for the most popular rides like Beast and Diamondback, and the walk-through haunt attractions will run 1 to 2 hour waits, especially on the weekend before Halloween. Fridays tend to be a bit better, but Sundays are always the calmest. If their haunted attractions are not open, they will be pretty much deserted. For example, Cedar Point's Halloweekends are open on Sundays and their crowds are reasonable (at least for the Point). We've been the past 3 years on the second Sunday and had a mostly walk-on day, with 30 minute waits for Millennium Force and Top Thrill Dragster. However, Kings Island's Haunt is not open on Sundays, and we always go the last Sunday in October (closing day) and usually don't wait more than five minutes for any rides, and often can just sit in the train and reride multiple times because no one is waiting.

    My suggestion is to go as early in the Haunt season as you can. If HHN is open in September, go then! The first weekend is usually pretty clear, but I'd still avoid Saturday if at all possible. You could probably pull off HHN on Friday, and SFMM on Saturday - September is not a busy month at parks.

    Also, consider checking out Knott's Scary Farm. It's a highly rated haunt in the amusement industry. We're looking forward to checking it out (they're open on Thursday nights!) and REALLY wish we had time to add HHN into our trip, but we have to get back home to run our own haunt by Friday!
     
  4. brocklesnar69

    brocklesnar69 Proud to be a Villain

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    Thank you for the input! That will certainly help my decision. Based on what you said, I'll try to go as early in October as possible. (Hell, I'd be up for late September if HHN was started then). I just called Universal to ask but the lady there told me she didn't have any of that info and wouldn't get it until at least September.

    But I'll probbaly go for the end of the first week - beginning of the second week of October and I'll probably try to do HHN on Fri, and then Magic Mountain on Sun. That sounds like it'll work good for us.

    I just hope the rest of LA (store/shops/food) is open on Saturdays, because the day between park days we wanted to venture into LA.
     
  5. brocklesnar69

    brocklesnar69 Proud to be a Villain

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    I talked to my buddy and we've come to an agreement over which days we will go.

    We plan on doing Universal Studios/Horror Nights on Friday and Magic Mountain on Sunday. The times for Universal on Friday in October are 10am-6pm, so does that mean that Halloween Horror Nights go from like 6pm-12am? They don't have the 2012 Horror Nights schedule up yet, but what was it for recent years past?


    When you buy a ticket to Universal Studios for the day, does that also cover Halloween Horror Nights? Or do you have to buy a special/additional ticket for that?
     
  6. brocklesnar69

    brocklesnar69 Proud to be a Villain

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    Well, I got the hotel booked and a lot of other neat stuff in place. I'm still wondering though, if anyone knows..... when you buy a ticket to Universal Studios (like a single day pass) does that cover being in the park for HHN? Or is that extra?
     
  7. limace

    limace DIS Veteran

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    I believe it's separate admission, and I also believe you can buy a separate (and highly recommended) front of the line pass at universal for hhn.
     
  8. brocklesnar69

    brocklesnar69 Proud to be a Villain

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    Any idea what the Halloween Horror Nights ticket goes for? Then, any idea what that ticket + Front ofthe Line Pass goes for?
     
  9. rljtwong

    rljtwong Earning My Ears

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    Last year you could get discount tickets for less than $40, you have to monitor the local papers starting in September
     
  10. brocklesnar69

    brocklesnar69 Proud to be a Villain

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    I was thinking about getting the Front of the Line pass, but then I realised it's just once per attraction, unless I want to pay even more for the VIP pass. So I think I'll just skip that altogether.


    I just purchased the Golden Flash Pass for Magic Mountain. I'll be going on a Sunday during mid-October so hopefully I'll actually get some use out of it and things wont be dead anyway.


    Some good news is starting to come out about this years HHN. Sounds like it's going to be a lot of fun. I can't wait to get there!
     
  11. heatherwillmom

    heatherwillmom DIS Veteran

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    We're thinking about going to HHN again this year. We are limited on days due to school schedules. It would have to be oct 12,13,or 14. Which of these nights would likely be less crowded? We bought express passes last year and probably would again
     
  12. brocklesnar69

    brocklesnar69 Proud to be a Villain

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    Well, the person that was going to go with me flaked out, so it looks I'll be going to LA by myself. I've never done a solo trip before so I'm unsure of what to expect. I'm kinda nervous actually. Universal will be a breeze to do solo, but what about HHN? I mean, it'll be easy to manuever being alone through the busy crowd, but I can't imagine going through all the haunted houses by myself as being much fun. Maybe if I could tag along with a group as they go through, that would be cool. But if I have to go through by myself, I'm going to be a tad.... spooked.

    As for Magic Mountain, since I'm going solo, I wonder if I'll still need to buy a Flash Pass? I assume if I'm there all day, with a Flash Pass, I'll be able to ride everything 15 times over and it'll become boring by the end of the day. I hope not. I'm just bummed I have to go alone to LA but I think I'll end up having a good time.

    I just need to figure out something to do on my off day. Like something in LA. I don't really need/want to drive all the way down to Disneyland, though going to the World of Disney store and Downtown Disney would be kinda cool. Otherwise, as far as being in LA goes, I can't really think of much else.


    Anyone have any advice for going solo to Universal/HHN/Magin Mountain/LA?
     
  13. Briarrose1306

    Briarrose1306 Mouseketeer

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    I'd love to hear your experience when you get back. I've never done Fright Fest, let alone at Magic Mountain and am going on the 19th so any insight would be greatly appreciated!
     

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