Halloween Horror Nights officially canceled at Universal Studios
Oh, the horror!
Universal Studios in Orlando has officially said “Boo!” on 2020 as they make the difficult decision to cancel their biggest annual event: October’s popular Halloween Horror Nights. This year would have been the 30th anniversary for the late-night fright fest, wherein ghoulishly costumed guests and Universal staffers go on parade.
The park began reopening mid-May following a full shutdown during the early days of the coronavirus outbreak, and the event had been scheduled to kick-off on Sept. 10, through Nov. 1. However, the idea that HHN — the shorthand used by veteran attendees — would go down during a pandemic was fraught from the start, according to insiders. (Meanwhile, Universal Studio’s in Burbank, California has remained closed all along.)
Duff Mason, co-host of HHN365 podcast, told Orlando Sentinel, “I think the majority of fans expected it to happen, especially hearing all the rumors recently about what the houses will be and the Tribute [merchandise] store moving forward. But I feel like there are a lot of people who are still pessimistic about the possibility under the current climate that it makes a lot of sense to cancel.”
While park officials blame the insurmountable logistics of COVID-19-era safety precautions for crowded events, diehard fans of the scare-fest are nonetheless devastated.
Writer Clint Gamache, who runs the website Thrill Geek, told the Sentinel that he and his cohorts had only missed a few nights of the six-weeks-long event last year — despite having to wake-up early to get his kids ready for school.
“That’s our happy time. We’re all hardcore,” Gamache said. “We love the Halloween season. That’s when we come out of our cocoon. We shine.”
The plan to launch HHN had been well-underway, including a hiring spree for “scare actors.”
Bill Davis, Universal Orlando Resort president told seasonal employees, “For so many of us, HHN is a point of pride,” Davis wrote. “I have every confidence that our teams will adapt and direct their energies towards making HHN 2021 the ultimate homecoming of terror.”
As the park remains open to daytime visitors, they are warned about the “inherent risk” of getting by other guests.
“Note that any public location where people are present provides an inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 and we cannot guarantee that you will not be exposed during your visit,” reads a disclaimer on Universal Orlando’s website.
Source : Hannah Sparks Link