Hawes Haunted Acres offers their guests the opportunity to shoot the living dead in their “Zombie-Slayer: The Ultimate Paintball Experience.”
The fantasy interactive ride is one of their more popular attractions. Actors dress the part as zombies and lurk in the darkness of the orchards. The guests then load into a trailer with paintball guns attached to the railings. People purchase a load of paintball ammo and then reload when they run out after shooting their targets.
“We are bringing the theatrics into scaring people and we’re actually doing more theme-based haunts,” said Hawes Farms General Manager Carl Hawkins.
Hawes Haunts is all about active audience participation. They try to engage their guests the moment they enter the farm.
“When you bring them into the scenario it takes their mind off of everything else, which makes them susceptible to be scared,” said Hawkins.
Hawkins is all about pushing the limits with scaring people, which is what he tried to do with the zombie ride.
“It’s fun watching peoples’ reactions, it’s like hunting, they get to go out and get under someone’s skin and scaring someone is fun to do,” said Hawkins.
Guest Donavan Hayden approved. Born and raised in Redding, he said it is exactly what the Northstate needs.
“It’s awesome, you do Call of Duty: Black Ops all the time and then get to actually do it,” said Hayden. “It’s like the perfect horror, they have no mind there is no plan, there is no outcome and they are just hungry coming to eat like they are animals.”
Even though the actors are getting pelted with paintballs, they are enjoying themselves as well.
“Listen to them scream, ever since I was a little kid I always loved scaring people always been fun,” said zombie actor Ryan Auxier.
Hawkins said they tell their actors to go wild and scare people.
“Most of us have another side that we never show the public so we say here is a place for you to go ahead and show that side and be as crazy and corky as you want to be, cut loose and have a good time,” said Hawkins.
If you are interested in checking out this attraction or other Hawes Haunts events November 2-3 will be their last weekend of the season. They have activities for all ages to enjoy, and will be open this Halloween on Thursday. For more information, visit their website: http://historichawesfarms.com/hawes-haunts/