Monster Bash's History
As of 2021, the Monster Bash Haunted Houses have donated $107,711 to the Music, Theater and Art programs at Fillmore Central Schools in Minnesota, which serve the communities of Fountain, Harmony and Preston in Fillmore County.
The Monster Bash Haunted Houses began with an idea back in 2012: Have students - with assistance from their families and other community members - plan, build and then run a Haunted House to "earn" money to offset the costs of the Fillmore Central Band & Choir trips. From those beginnings, the Haunted Houses have resulted in growth from very nearly Day 1. From the early days of quick builds in the Harmony Community Center and no real "theme", to: creating different themes every year; becoming a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and having our own "Monster Bash Building"; having the City of Harmony have a "Haunted Harmony" weekend; setting new attendance records each year and having our Haunts named the best in Minnesota, the Monster Bash Haunted Houses continue to have students "earn" dollars for the trips and for music, theater and arts programs at Fillmore Central Schools. It's been an amazing experience!
See below for a reverse chronological summary of the Haunted Houses that have been "Different Every Year" since 2012!
2021 - "Specter Gulch"
The theme this year was an old west mining town which had found something in the mine which caused all the residents to perish. Entering the town near the stables the blacksmith and his daughter greet visitors and begin their trip through the town. A doctor might be found as well as some surly bar maids along the way. Visitors' fear ramps up until they reach the entrance to the mine, which offers the only exit from the town.
We introduced some new elements to our haunt which we had never tried before this season and many visitors indicated they worked! Since moving to our current site we had only ever run 9 nights. This year we took the calendar opportunity to increase our run to 3 full weekends (12 nights).
74 students were a part of the Haunt this year!
2020 - "The year without a Haunt"
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the circumstances created in 2020, the Haunted house was not held. The theme (Specter Gulch) will be used in 2021 instead.
The Monster Bash Board, after a lot of consideration, made the decision with the health and safety of our volunteer students, families and guests in mind. We held a raffle, sold special edition apparel and sold Huey's Pizzas to cover some of our ongoing expenses.
We looked forward to haunting everyone again in 2021 to continue our support of music, theater and the arts!
2019 - "Night Terrors"
Night Terrors was a trip into a "dream study" that goes horribly wrong and leaves you trapped in nightmare after nightmare!. From a plane going down (and no parachutes! Jump!), to sewer snakes, clowns that aren't interested in making you laugh, a nuclear meltdown and even a monster under a poor child's bed (and you left him there!), you even thought that the ordeal was over....but it wasn't! Will you ever wake up?
We set new attendance records this season! And for the third year in a row, our Haunt was awarded as the top Haunted Attraction in Minnesota by the MinnesotaHauntedHouses.com website.
59 students were a part of the Haunt this year!
2018 - "Road Trip"
You've left your friends' home and - after getting lost - crash your car on a desolate country road with the sounds of creepy crawlies all around. You seek help from a nearby shack only to run into a very sketchy family who want you for dinner. Literally. Will you survive?
With constant twists and turns - and those nasty family members everywhere - this was a Haunt that had our guests expressing how much they enjoyed the fright and the fun!
This season once again received the "Best Haunted Attraction in Minnesota" award from MinnesotaHauntedHouses.com! Our second consecutive year receiving this award! Our fantastic student, family and community volunteers once again doing another amazing job!
51 students were a part of the Haunt this year!
2017 - "Sinister Stronghold"
A foreboding castle with a King that has gone crazy mad and taken everyone in his stronghold with him! The "Sinister Strongold" was our first Haunt in our very own building and as an official 501(c)(3) non-profit organization! The new building provided us with a big increase in available floor space for our Haunts, and we definitely used it for the largest Haunt we had built to date!
Once again, our student volunteers created scary but fun aspects as this Haunt's "Death's Garden" and the Jester that "greeted" the castle's "guests" were just two examples of the memorable areas and actors this year.
On top of that, those great efforts were rewarded as this season's Haunt received the "Best Haunted Attraction in Minnesota" award from MinnesotaHauntedHouses.com!
63 students were a part of the Haunt this year!
2016 - "Hotel of Horrors"
One of the unique features with this season was you started and ended in the same room (the "Hotel Lobby"). This made for some tricky logistics but what fun it was to figure out!
Guests adventured through a haunted hotel out on a dark desert highway, looking for - what they thought - was room 7734. But they were reading the room number upside down! This certainly wasn't much of a Heaven Valley! This Haunt was the largest build size-wise - and the last one done - at the Harmony Community Center. This Haunt also set new attendance records for us and was ultimately awarded as a top 3 Haunted Attraction in Minnesota by MinnesotaHauntedHouses.com
53 students were a part of the Haunt this year!
2015 - "Haunted High"
The name speaks for itself! You were late for class, and had to make your way to the office of the worst Principal ever through the creepiest High School ever! With students and parents once again providing the build (as they do every year!), not to mention the great decorations and the acting, the haunt this year was even bigger than previous years, in both the "footprint" of the Haunt and the number of people that came through for the fun. This was the first year where our Theatre department really started to get involved. From here out more and more very talented students from our Theatre have been part of the annual Haunts.
62 students were a part of the Haunt this year!
2014 - "CarnEVIL of Fear"
This was our first truly "themed" Haunted House. We saw an increase in attendance as the word spread that Monster Bash Haunted Houses were different every year! Students, families and some great local volunteers made CarnEVIL of Fear another success, and more great themes and Haunted Houses would follow, with more and more people enjoying the fright and fun!
59 students were a part of the Haunt this year!
2013 - "The Sequel"
The success of the first year fueled the effort to do it again - but to do things differently! Even though we hadn't yet embraced the "theme" idea, we didn't want the same rooms and scares that were done the first year, so a completely different Haunted House experience was built - once again - in three short days. We discovered, though, that there were many who thought this haunt would be the same as it was a year ago and as a result, we didn't have as high of attendance as we did from the first year. We made sure to promote that our Haunted Houses were always different for the years that followed! As our reputation grew, so did the number of people that have enjoyed our Haunts!
44 students were a part of the Haunt this year!
2012 - "The Monster Bash Haunted House"
Our first year, we didn't theme out the haunted house. We just put together a series of scares which our volunteer students, families and locals had fun building. A lot of people enjoyed the experience of having some fun and getting more than a few scares out of the efforts of all those volunteers, especially because we initially had the Haunted House available every day of the week!
For this and the first 5 years, we held the haunt at the Harmony Community Center in the Gym. We had to work fast, and built the haunt over 3 days with all the volunteers. We then tore down after the last guest left on Halloween so the Community Center could have the use of their gym again! After tear-down during those first years, all our props, walls and costumes had to be transported to remote storage areas for the off-season, thanks to helpful local organizations and churches.
86 students were a part of the Haunt this year!