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Hunting Down New York's Haunted Houses

Scream away your hard earned cash this Halloween season.

When you get down to it, New York is already rife with horrors: Rats the size of ponies, the MTA's proposed fare hikes, babyccinos. We face fear every day. What terrifying spectacle could the curators of any haunted house possibly offer that we didn't see this morning on the subway? 

Despite the scale of the task set before them, several local haunted houses claim to be up to the challenge. 

Blackout Haunted House

There comes a time in every person's life when they must ask themselves: Do I want to pay $30 to have a bag thrown over my head and be groped by a menacing stranger? I answered "yes" to this question in 2009, and to this day people still ask me why I would do such a thing. Was it terrifying? Yes. In a good way? Ehh. But I do recall getting a gratis shots of rail tequila before embarking on my quest, which definitely softened—if not wholesale improved—an experience that otherwise would surely have made me soil myself. 

Blackout materializes out of the fog at 115 West 27th St. 

Warehouse of Horrors: Gowanus '73

Did you attend "Sleep No More" and think to yourself: This is good, but could be greatly improved were it staged not against the sumptuous backdrop of Macbeth, but an underground rave filled with crooked cops and freewheeling pill-heads? Probably not, but the conceit is the same: Step out off of 4th Avenue as you know it and into Gowanus as it was in the '70s, with free reign to poke around the warehouse and interact with whomever or whatever you encounter therein. Bonus: You'll be armed with three cocktails, included in the $20 ticket price. 

The Warehouse of Horrors can be found at The Brookyln Lyceum, located at 227 4th Ave., unless it finds you first. 

Killers: A Nightmare Haunted House

This controversial performance features not just your standard, low-rent "Zombie" or "Ghoul," but infamous murderers who wrought very real horror upon their very real victims. The tour opens with a showcase featuring some of the killer's "personal artifacts," and moves patrons through vignettes of history's most grisly slayings, including those of John Wayne Gacy, Ted Bundy and Jeffery Dahmer. 

The most blood-curdling aspect of this particular attraction may be the ticket price, which, unless you're a student willing to show up an hour early for "student rush," are an unnerving $35. 

'Killers' is waiting for you at the Clemente Soto Velez Cultural and Educational Center, located at 107 Suffolk St. between Rivington and Delancey streets. 

Creepshow at the Freakshow

If the discarded condoms and used syringes that adorn the Coney Island Boardwalk aren't sufficiently disturbing, step inside the Creepshow at the Freakshow. There, you'll see a shooting gallery re-enactment of the Kennedy assassination (too soon?), zombies eating Richard Nixon's brain and sundry other election-themed atrocities. You can also vote for the "Creepiest Carny Ever," which seems both derogatory and fun at the same time. Which, after all, is what Halloween is all about. 

Creepshow at the Freakshow is RIGHT BEHIND YOU, assuming you are reading this while facing away from 1208 Surf Ave. between Stillwell Avenue and W. 12th Street.

Are you heading to any haunted houses this year? Let us know your favorites in the comments.

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