Halfway to Halloween at https://www.facebook.com/NecropolisHaunts/
7130 Western Select Dr.
Indianapolis, IN 46219
Date of Visit: 5/13/22
Halloween is such a special time of the year, isn't it? There is something about that final day of October that can't be touched by any other in the entire Fall season; a magic found only in the glow of jack o'lanterns on porches, the excited whispers of children as they walk along the streets, and the hint of darkness lingering on the cool night air. And you can't forget all of the fun things that come with the holiday, too: collecting candy, carving pumpkins, dressing up, having parties. It makes one wonder - why do we limit this celebration to just one day out of the whole year?
Thankfully, a lot of folks in the haunt industry seem to feel the same way, and "Halfway to Halloween" events- held between April and May- are growing in popularity. Among those happy to take part is Necropolis Underground, a multi-attraction haunt complex literally lurking beneath the city of Indianapolis. Having already held successful Valentine and Easter shows this year, the denizens of this city of the dead decided to host their own special Halfway to Halloween celebration as well. As each haunt puts their own spin on this event, Necropolis decided to go with the "traditional Halloween" approach... and what's Halloween without the trick or treating? Every single ticket holder, regardless of age, could get a trick or treat bag to catch a few goodies in between catching some scares. Such a cute and unique idea!
For these special events, ticket prices are pretty much the same as they are during haunt season, with options ranging from General Admission ($35) to a super speedy Front of the Line pass ($70+). A little tip if you're doing GA: get there early, especially if you're going to buy tickets on site! I had my ticket and got in line a little after the haunt opened at 7:00, and still waited around an hour and a half. Parking is free; I arrived early enough that they didn't yet have anyone out there directing cars, but there will usually be an employee around to help customers find a spot.
By the way, there's another awesome perk for guests who arrive early. Necropolis performs a show for the line at least a couple of times a night where they unleash several of their monsters on the waiting crowd, and one of those is right when they open. I was "lucky" enough to enter the queue right in the middle of it, and man... that room was a warzone! Between the low visibility and constant threat of stalking characters, just joining the line was an adventure in itself. And let me tell you, they did NOT make it easy. I was attacked- and at one point, surrounded- by at least four actors along the way!
The Underground holds four different attractions, all of which were open: Nightmare House, Cemetery of the Damned, Dead & Breakfast, and The Bunker. Their themes are fairly straightforward, but if you'd like to know more about them, you can visit the haunt's website or read our detailed review from the 2021 season (www.thehauntedhoneymooners.com). While the houses were certainly spooky enough to stand on their own, a lack of added Halloween decor was a small miss for this event. They had the pumpkins all around the lobby, and on tables in the midway later, but I didn't see much else while I was going through. I did enjoy the trick or treating part - there was a Necropolis Underground sticker and temporary tattoo already in each bag, and guests could receive treats from both the roaming characters and those who were admitting groups into the haunts. My little bag had quite a lot in it by the time I was done!
For an off season event, I felt the haunt had a decent number of actors. Empty spots were definitely there, but you have to take this sort of thing with a grain of salt when it comes to these events. Sometimes they can get loads of people to work them, and sometimes they come up a bit shy. The characters encountered ranged from some I'd seen at Necropolis before, like the queue slider Nom Nom and the sinister Dr. Cutter, to those with a fresh Halloween look for the event. Everyone I came across seemed to be having fun and did a stellar job with interacting and scaring - they knew this might be their last chance until haunt season, and they were gonna get those screams! To mention some stand outs, the opening chainsaw in Nightmare House was nicely unexpected, and the two male actors working that haunt's graveyard scene displayed great interaction and teamwork. Dead & Breakfast delivered a few good startles, most notably from the actor in the room where you have to duck down to get out. I was also, for a second time, completely mobbed in Cemetery of the Damned. (Hey, guys? I get the hint. I'm not going to talk crap in my reviews anymore. Please stop siccing everyone on me when I come through.) That cast in particular also deserves credit for their synergy; they harassed me, sure, but they didn't forget to swing back and nail the group behind me too.
A special shout out is due for the cast in The Bunker - they were really killing it in there. I loved interacting with Ted Talk, the eccentric, funny, and kinda creepy receptionist checking groups into the hospital (and he got me good right after I went in!). A couple of the patients had some crazy energy going on, too, especially the first one I met right after the waiting room. But there is one character I absolutely can't leave out of this review, and that is Dr. Cutter, the house's ultra-creepy resident doctor. He's gone blind, but his senses of hearing and smell have become greatly enhanced as a result, enabling him to continue seeking out new "patients". I don't exaggerate when I say this guy is scary as hell; that other reviewers fear him should tell you something. Unfortunately for me, I ended up running into him probably halfway through the house... what followed was a relentless and frightening pursuit through the remainder of the haunt, ending with him trying to chase me down with a taser (!) in the final exit hallway. Completely panicked at that point, I ran to the safety of the Dead City Festival and just sank to the floor in a sweaty little heap. It was one of the scariest encounters I've ever had in a haunt, and also made for one hell of a send off!
Speaking of the Dead City Festival, I always have to show some love for this awesome new midway, which awaits you upon completing all four of the Underground's houses. Had a great time and wanna take home a souvenir? This is where you'll find their merch counter, selling apparel, drinks, and other goodies. The Festival also offers many fun activities for an upcharge, including axe throwing, tarot reading, VR games, and more. They have added a second escape room as well; I had the chance to play through it with a group when I visited in April, and it's every bit as amazing as their first! If you love escape rooms, you totally need to give theirs a shot.
Sadly, I must close this review out with a small bummer: like I hinted earlier, Halfway to Halloween may have been the final bow for Necropolis Underground until haunt season. (If they should read this - do correct me if I'm wrong!) I was told they were having two more events when I visited for Easter; however, given some big updates that might happen this year, I'd understand if they needed more time for building - and I think their customers will find the wait very much worthwhile! If you're interested in checking out a fun and immersive attraction that will also offer you a whole lot of haunt for your buck, consider coming to Indy and venturing underground to visit Necropolis over the Fall season.