Friday, May 10, 2013

So Why Is Camp Nightmare So Gosh Darn Expensive?

Well, it isn't actually.  Relatively speaking. I realize it's a lot of money for many of you (and it would be for me as well), but for what you are getting and what it takes to put this event on, it is actually as low as we can make it and what we believe to be a very fair price.  So here's a mash-up of the question I keep hearing:

"The haunted house every fall is only $30 in advance, so why isn't Camp Nightmare?  I mean, we understand it being a little more because it is a longer event, but 5 times as much? really?" -

Well, yeah, it should be 7 or 8 times as much.  In fact, our ability to make money on this for this year is very low.  We are doing it to see if it is something we can roll out to more weekends in the future.  You see, at the haunted house, the ceiling for how many people we can let in is really only set by how late it is into the night.  At some point we have to go home and go to bed.  On a busy night we have thousands of people go through the door.  At Camp Nightmare there is a set number of people we can allow to participate.  We want the entertainment to be worth it.  This is not a typical "walk-through" per se.  Their can't be too many people or it will start to feel very "safe".  It has to remain intimate in order for you to get the thrills you are paying for.  There are many elements of Camp Nightmare.  Your campsite is where everyone who is participating will call home base.  This will feel relatively full and comfortable. What happens here will be the basics like eating, sleeping, fraternizing, etc. Then there is the trip through the woods.  You will have to hike the trails in the pitch dark, finding objects and accomplishing tasks only to be given a new set of instructions when you find your destination.  There are different destinations for everyone. This is a very elaborate "game", and as we have said in our promotional materials, there will be only one "survivor" who will take home the grand prize.  This can't be teeming with thousands of people.  You have to feel alone in the woods at times, you have to have no help finding your way around.  We need to keep the patrons to a minimum.

Keeping the crowd small doesn't lower production costs.  We still have to build it all out whether we are entertaining 1000 people or 100. The cost is the same. The number of actors are the same.  None of that changes, and there are considerable costs associated with that.  Not to mention this is going on for 17 Hours! We are feeding you dinner, breakfast and dessert.  We are providing your tent (we have to because everything needs to be set-up before you get there), and providing for your safety.  These things are not inexpensive.  To give you perspective, if you decided to go away one weekend night to a bed and breakfast on a day trip, between the B&B, the meals and whatever it is you are doing for the two of you, you are spending way over $300 (or $500 for 4) and in that example the most fun you are having is antiquing for 4 hours and walking up and down the strip of whatever small town you went to.  Here at least we are scaring the shit out of you for at least 12 of the 17 hours (we might let you sleep a little) and you are getting an adrenaline rush, leaving a changed person.

in the end, this is not a "Haunted House".  We are not asking you to go 2.5 hours upstate so that you can visit the haunted house we built in the Catskills. We are asking you to go to the middle of the nowhere to virgin woods, and make what mother nature gave us as your haunted house and make it come to life. If you want this event to be what you want it to be, it has a cost to it. And I don't mean a "supply and demand" kind of cost, but actual honest to goodness hard costs.  We want to provide the scariest 17 hours of your life, and this is how to do it.  Get a group of 4 of you together and it is only $125 a person.  You'll have a blast, and you will pee on each other when you go to sleep.  Okay, that part was gross.  Sorry. Go to Camp Nightmare.