This past weekend, we were invited to check out DARK HARVEST, a corn maze haunt located smack dab in the middle of a pumpkin patch and carnival out in Chino. I’ll be honest, when I pulled up, I wasn’t expecting much, but DARK HARVEST really blew us out of the water.
Being from New Jersey, corn mazes were what I grew up with during the spooky season. While traditionally they are just a maze amongst the cornrows, DARK HARVEST takes it a few steps further…but we’ll get to that in a second. Upon arrival, we were greeted by the team behind the maze; not just the owners but some of the monsters that we would find later hiding in the corn.
While the maze wasn’t ready to open yet, the monsters did a great job of interacting with the crowd and keeping us entertained. One monster in particular, straight out of an insane asylum, was particularly great. While I didn’t catch their name, we had an on-going bit where they would sneak up and try to scare me, and more often than not, fail. It became a game, where they were determined to finally get me…and truth be told, when I encountered them during the maze, they REALLY got me. It’s little moments like this that truly make these places stand out.
While also struck me is that, once inside the maze, the rest of the world melted away. Sure, there may have been a busy carnival atmosphere just a few feet away, but the corn is an excellent sound barrier, and it really isolates you from everything. There is something to be said about being in the middle of a corn maze, in the dark, with the wind slowly rustling through the stalks. Is that someone hiding in there…or just a gentle breeze? It’s this kind of atmosphere that you can’t replicate anywhere else, and it really works to DARK HARVEST’s advantage.
Anyway, unlike most traditional corn mazes, I’m sure you can already tell that DARK HARVEST has some scare actors hiding among the stalks. Not only there, but we were also pleasantly surprised to come across multiple buildings in the maze, each one housing a unique vignette. From cannibalistic humans, to stalking scarecrows, and even an alien crash site, DARK HARVEST kept surprising us with more and more stuff!
Seriously, all of the actors were top notch and really brought their A-game while inside the maze. I mean, it’s creepy enough to be in the maze, but to have these scarecrows and monsters come at you in the darkened pathways…it takes it to a whole new level.
DARK HARVEST is great, because it gives you the nice, nostalgic feeling of a traditional corn maze mixed with the scares we know and love from other haunts. I HIGHLY recommend you take the trip out to Chino to check this out, because you will not be disappointed.
To find out more information, and to buy tickets, visit them online at: https://www.darkharvesthaunt.com/
However, our night didn’t end with DARK HARVEST! While there, we got a hot tip from our friend Albert over at WestCoaster, about ANOTHER haunt in the area, this one located just up the road, 5 minutes away, in Chino Hills. Located in a non-descript strip mall, FEAR IN 3D: THE EXPERIMENT is a fantastic and fun maze that combines unique visuals with great scares.
Set in an asylum, this maze also takes it to the next level with its exceptional design. As if the name didn’t give it away, this maze hands you glasses before you go in, allowing the colors and decorations to literally “pop” off the walls. While theme park haunts have done this in the past, FEAR IN 3D definitely ups the ante. The scenic design is off the charts, allowing for some truly disorienting moments where you’re not sure where to go, allowing the monsters to descend.
Seriously, this was a great hidden gem, and we are so glad we took the trip over to check it out. This is the perfect double feature when teamed up with DARK HARVEST, so we suggest you take a night to do both!
For more information on them, visit them online at: https://www.fearin3d.com/