As if haunted houses weren't scary enough, Patrick Konopelski, the owner of Sinking Spring, PA's "Shocktoberfest", came up with a unique idea to make them even scarier - allow participants to walk through his haunted house in their birthday suits. That's right, Konopelski wanted to host a haunted house walk-through entitled "Naked and Scared Challenge" at "Scream Park." Just imagine, for a moment, bringing your Aunt Ida or Uncle Jack to that event!
If you wanted to attend this event, you had your choice of two ticket options: "prude" or "nude." Several media outlets were ready to be at the haunted house with bells on. According to a post on the Shocktoberfest Facebook page, national media programs like the Today Show and Jay Leno had covered the event, as well as such major networks as CBS, NBC, FOX, and AOL. However, plans for the haunted house have since changed. Sinking Spring's local officials were not as hip to the idea of a nude haunted house walk-through as Konopelski might have hoped, and they have since notified him that he is not permitted to follow through with his plan. The walk-through can still proceed as scheduled, but its participants must remain clothed at all times.
However, officials are willing to bend a little. Those in possession of a "prude" ticket will be permitted to walk through the haunted house wearing only their underwear, as was indicated on the ticket. Though, anyone who is in possession of a "nude" ticket and who doesn't want to be downgraded to a "prude" can return his or her ticket for a full refund.
Konopelski has since explained that he got the idea for his nude haunted house from the Discovery Channel's program "Naked and Afraid," in which naked strangers are made to survive for 21 days in environments of extreme weather in their nude (and therefore most vulnerable) state. He believed that rather than attempt to do something bigger to scare his guests, he could instead opt for much smaller.
In taking clothes out of the equation, even the slightest breeze could set your hair on end. This can certainly be more effective than a giant sculpture of a scary monster. (However, that could become messy if you startled into peeing.) Without the protection of even just your clothing, you are more likely to be scared by every little thing. This, in essence, could make Konopelski's haunted house scarier than any other Halloween-related event you have ever experienced. And, if you thought you were too old to be scared by haunted houses any longer, the "Naked and Scared Challenge" might have just proved you wrong.
However, the municipality claims that Konopelski did not include the nudity element in his original application for a public gathering permit. Because of this exclusion, according to officials of both Sinking Spring and Spring Township, the nudity element could not be approved due to the lack of available time in which officials could otherwise weigh an appropriate decision.
However, all is not lost. Konopelski has the option to resubmit the application next year prior to the event. His application will then be reconsidered by town officials, and his "Naked and Scared Challenge" could become a reality for the 2014 season. Surely, this could result in even more publicity for the location and the event, which may result in an increase in overall ticket sales for "Scream Park" next year.