"Rocktober" ends with typical Halloween frights as the 2012 holiday season begins. But, with a little Fall bite drifting into the air, along with people’s thoughts beginning to drift to promising Thanksgiving’s dinners, why not begin November with a more visceral thrill? Go hit the 13th Gate!!
The annual fright house fest has been a major attraction for the B.R. area for some time and this year, like always, it doesn't disappoint. From the makeup room, where the actors get "zombiefied," to the actual walkthroughs of the Gate and Necropolis, fans from locals to those long distance, get the crap freaked outta them nightly for the Halloween season.
For the past 3 years, event director Dwayne Sanburn and his crew welcomed we jaded MSTv party seekers into the bowels of the Gate. We sat in on make-up sessions, spoke to ghouls, vampires, and zombies, and we did our investigative walkthrough to prove our guts! (Really, we did a lot of brave stuff, guys…) But honestly, we weren’t privy to any deep, dark secrets of the Gate. What we did learn was what makes this event one of the biggest draws in Louisiana; that everyone there really loves their job and it shows by the screams of the visitors constantly heard within!
Now we would never cheat you by giving you the complete run-through of the Gate. That, you have to see for yourself, (or ask your friends because we have integrity!) but, we can tell you 4 highlight points that did freak us out a bit and one or two that were pretty hot to encounter! Curious? We bet you are, so let’s do this!
1) Yearly fans to event virgins know you begin the journey into the Gate on the “Hell-a-vator.” This is just your everyday 13-floor elevator drop into “Dwayne’s Inferno.” Now, it’s a really good effect, but, before you board it, you’re welcomed on by two of the hottest zombies we’ve ever seen. Now, we don’t think George Romero had them in mind when he started this zombie genre, but trust us, we don’t think he’d complain either. Ladies and moms, watch your boyfriends, husbands and pre-teen boys because you might mind them getting chomped on. The guys probably wouldn’t care, though.
2) One of the strangest new additions to the event is what we call the “walking through the big butthole” sections. There’s really no other way to explain it, but you’re walking through two big rubber barriers with a slit down the middle to pass through. (I defy you to look at this part and not think, “Oh, a big butthole.”) Now, the rubber parts are probably filled with air because passing through isn’t difficult, but it is annoying because you can’t tell its length and unless you’re holding someone’s hand, so, you will be alone in the trek. All in all, it’s a very weird and claustrophobic effect you‘ll go through 3 different times. The last one is really freaky because zombies will be grabbing down at you and throwing things. But, you won’t be able to see them… Spooky!!
3) Eventually, you’ll enter a forest while walking through the Gate. We’re fairly sure you’ll see the usual stuff you’d see while camping. You know, your basic werewolves, spirits, lots of fog and one incredibly hot gypsy trying to vamp you to your death! This buxom, young Rose McGowen look-a-like will try her best to lure you off the path; where you’ll probably be eaten to become a fresh skull for next year’s event! Male, female, kid or senior citizen, you’re all fair game to her “charmed” skills! So, take some advice and resist her! Hold a stranger’s hand, travel with a bodyguard, and distract her by pushing the person behind you towards her then run! Take our advice and avoid becoming puppy chow for her pets. (Oh, and “Rose” if you’re reading this, call me. Please!!)
4) Lastly, this new section of the event will really freak and gross you out. Don’t like bugs? Well, how do you feel about spider spit on your face and hair? Flat out, this section is just creepy!! You enter a cave filled with spiders on the wall, hanging from webs and some on the floor. And just when your arachnophobia is kicking into overdrive, you see the exit and hear a hissing sound getting louder. Then with the exit within arm’s reach and the hissing sound right above, you begin to feel something wet on your hair or clothes. Three words: don’t look up.
Now, you’ve been thoroughly warned. (But I hear spider spit does wonders for laugh lines!)
As we walked out of the Gate, sighing for relief, we again realized why this “haunted house” keeps block long lines from its start time to its final day; it’s just plain out and out fun! With Halloween being the last blast before the somewhat calming effects of the holiday seasons, places like the 13th Gate and Necropolis keep the kids in all of us alive and screaming.
But even when Halloween is over, you’ll still have you chance to experience the “Gate” for yourself. The event runs until November 10, so check out midnightproduction.com or call (225) 389-1313 for more info. If you miss out, you have only yourself to blame. But for us at MSTv, we can’t wait to see what Dwayne Sanburn, Blaine Quam and the “creeps” of the 13th Gate have in store for us in 2013!