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Fort Leonard Wood haunted house actors actively try to scare soldiers
FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. (Oct. 31, 2009) — Not all Halloween activities are intended for young children. When the sun goes down tonight at Fort Leonard Wood, members of the Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers (BOSS) program will begin a haunted house that’s not for the faint of heart, and not intended for those under 12 years old.

Sgt. Shane Larson, the BOSS president, cautioned parents that the people putting on the BOSS haunted house are “actively trying to scare soldiers.” While parents aren’t prohibited from bringing young children, he cautions parents to consider what they’ll see first.

“It takes a lot of planning and some good cast members, and it doesn’t hurt to have some money invested in the haunted house,” Larson said. “We have a few scenes that really stand out, but I don’t want to ruin any of the surprises.”

While the haunted house is definitely directed toward young adults and teenagers, it’s scary rather than “adult,” Larson said.

“We try to keep the energy high,” Larson said. “It’s a fine line to keep it a family-oriented haunted house, because we do get some traffic from the families, while trying to scare soldiers. We don’t want them to actually cross over the line to the point where they’re going to hit somebody or have a flashback.”

Larson said the haunted house should be fine for teenagers and some parents have brought even younger children through.

“It all depends on the family dynamic, how jaded the kids are, or how excited they are about haunted houses,” Larson said. “We’ve had adults go in there and get scared, but some people walk through it just fine. It just depends on you and how easily you get scared.”

The BOSS haunted house does have graphic scenes of violence and blood, he said.

“In other haunted houses you might see a scene with body parts and stuff like that,” Larson said. “You will see some of that, but you won’t see too many decapitations… the parts might be there, but they won’t be actively taken apart in front of you.”

Unlike most other area Halloween attractions, the BOSS haunted house opened last week. Larson said weather has been a problem and he hopes attendance on the actual Halloween night will be better. The haunted house will be open 6 p.m. to midnight, depending on weather and crowds.

The haunted house, located in the old furniture store in Building B493 near the new location of the Fort Leonard Wood Thrift Shop, is a major activity for Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers this year.

“It is a very interesting challenge,” Larson said.

The regular admission price is $5.

“We are also taking canned foods, and if you bring in two non-expired canned foods you get a dollar off and all of those donations will go over the holidays to families in need,” Larson said.

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