Why we love all things scary

- Scaring people stupid is a boatload of fun – and FOX 29's Hank Flynn scared more than his share the other night at Six Flags Great Adventure’s Fright Fest.  The makeup and costume get-up they hooked me up with is astounding, and they do it a couple hundred times a day.  “It’s more or less just getting everybody out before procession,” says Lindsay Harrison, who’s very hands-on as the person in charge of makeup.  She sprays a base-white on my face.  “We want to get as many people out there as we can.”

Once the procession starts, the curtain’s up, and you’re on.  You’re in the park with visitors who came to ride rides and get spooked.  I parked myself over by the exit to “Batman, The Ride!” and scared a dozen people crosseyed as they exited.  It’s ridiculous fun.

But why?  Why do we wig out on Halloween?   Why do we love yanking each others’ chains?   “I tend to bottle up emotions,” says a ghoulish Dave Fordyce, who’s worked Fright Fest for years.  “So this is like a therapeutic way just to get out anger, stress release.  Just release it all and have fun with it.”

I caught the bug for sure.   Because once I got cooking in-costume and makeup and scaring people, it was hard to stop.  It’s that much fun.  “We put the mask off, we have to come back to what society expects of us all:  our own responisbilities,” says Dr. Charles Simone of the Simone Protective Cancer Institute.   “But when you have that mask on, you can do things, say things, act things that you ordinarily wouldn’t be able to do as per the confines of our society.”

And look… we know now that Halloween is big business -- Great Adventure wouldn't do it if it weren't. And there are haunted houses all over the place.  I'm kind of into it now, so I can help you find one if you want, tweet me @hankfox29 or the house @fox29philly!

 

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