Plant City, FL

This super scary Valentine's Day haunt is perfect for a hot date

Evie M.
Photo by Ryan Gagnon on UnsplashPhoto byPhoto by Ryan Gagnon on UnsplashonUnsplash

With Christmas and now New Years out of the way, in traditional American fashion, all the stores have cleared of the red and green decorations and now the eyes of the country are set on l'amour. Valentine's Day is next month, and fast approaching, too (if you're a big planner), and the question du jour is: what exactly is there to do on Valentine's Day in Orlando that I haven't already done? What's unique?

My new friend who works at Publix suggested Player One, a retro themed gaming bar, if you're not terrified of heights or uncharges, you can go to the free-to-walk-around Icon Park and pay around $40 to ride the famous wheel, could go to a a Valentine's Day haunt.

Cool idea right?

For those of you who don't know exactly what a "haunt" is (and yes, some people don't), let's break it down. For Floridians, you might be familiar with "Halloween Horror Nights", an event where actors dress in costumes and scare the crud out of people.

More formally, a haunt can be described as a form of live entertainment that is a "simulation" of scary experiences. These events begin in September and run until just after Halloween, depending on the event.

Fun fact! One of the first recorded haunts dates back to 1915 and was in Liphook, England. The haunt was described as "closely resembling a carnival fun house", and was powered by steam. What's even more fun is that the haunt still exists and is kept in the Hollycombe Steam Collection.

But let's get back to the more modern and local haunts, i.e.: Sir Henry's Haunted Trail. Located at 2837 S Frontage Rd, Plant City, FL 33566, around an hour outside of Orlando. Sir Henry's Haunted Trail is a relatively new haunt, being established in 2014, but this doesn't stop it from being one of the most beloved haunted attractions in Central Florida. But what makes Sir Henry's Haunted Trail, which admittedly does not have the budget and prestige that Halloween Horror Nights does.

Still, there is a reason why many flock to the event year-round. In fact, it is because visitors come year-round that they are so popular. The fun at Sir Henry's Haunted Trail doesn't stop after Halloween. This amazing haunt features multiple events, such as a Christmas Haunt and, you guessed it, a Valentine's Day haunt.

The fandom behind Sir Henry's is so fervent that there are even several novels with back stories on the characters visitors can experience as walk-around characters and in the mazes. To make sure that is a well-rounded experience, Sir Henry's also offers "horror trails, escape games, and laser tag", and make a point to note several big names like WWE have come to film there.

Plus, they have free parking, which is probably the biggest score. Or perhaps it's the fact that they donate to many causes during the year, I'm not sure, but it all sounds amazing to me.

My only question is: Who's going with me?

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"Reader beware, you're in for a scare!--R.L. Stine"

Orlando, FL

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