Farewell, Waukee Haunted House

According to Waukee Parks & Recreation, the Waukee Haunted House has been cancelled indefinitely. I received confirmation this morning that “it is not an event we will be offering in the future.”

This was a fun low-cost community event. The year I visited, it was themed as a haunted toy box. Groups were led through the entire house by a creepy host. It was very unique in that regard.

This, along with Ankeny Haunted Barn, makes two fewer haunted houses for the area. However, you shouldn’t have to worry about places to spend your Halloween money this season. With the addition of Scare DSM last year, and Adventureland’s Phantom Fall Fest this year, we get back to the same number of attractions we had before Covid. And, if you count Adventureland’s three separate haunted houses, we’ve actually increased.

2021 Weekend 1 recap

Last weekend was opening weekend for some of the area haunted houses. These included:

Next weekend, Ames Haunted Forest will join them, then the weekend after that, the Trail of Terror. On the weekend closest to Halloween, the haunted house for your vehicle Tunnel of Terror begins.

Normally I hear all kinds of reports from folks who ventured out, but this year has been mostly silent. After some prompting on the Facebook page, we did get some reports from folks who visited Linn’s (seemed like less actors than normal) and Tormented Souls (no lines). I’d look up some of the other comments, but Facebook is currently offline so I can’t get to that page. Thank goodness websites are still a thing 😉

Haunted Barnless

Haunted Barn’s new expanded outdoor section for 2021.

In the meantime, the Ankeny Haunted Barn continues to be a no-go in spite of a petition (requested by the governor’s office for some reason?) and now a GoFundMe to help raise support for relocating the barn for next year.


The long-running Waukee Haunted House is also a no go for this season, with the decision to skip this year made back in August.


While Covid-19 concerns do seem less this year, it is clear that there is still a significant portion of the population that is being cautious. Some haunts have had struggles finding enough actors, but that should come as no surprise since most places seem to have “Now Hiring” signs on display.

Other forms of entertainment, such as movie theaters, are seeing crowds return, but still not to the level they were before the shutdowns last year. This can no longer be blamed on the lack of content to watch since multiple Marvel movies and other “blockbusters” have come out.

Let’s hope for enough safe support for the haunts this year that we won’t lose any of them.

Your thoughts?

Be sure to leave a review for any haunt you visit this season. This is a new feature of DMHauntedHouses, and one that has only been tried a few times so I’m not 100% it fully works.

Give it a shot.

Then check back for more updates as the season progresses…

Waukee posts Beggar’s Night guidelines.

The City of Waukee recently announced it was cancelling this year’s haunted house, but noted that Beggar’s Night was still a go. Today they updated their website with CDC guidance about how this year’s trick-or-treating will go. Check it out here:


The Iowa Department of Public Health has a tip sheet with recomendations:


“Stay safe!” (What an odd thing to say when a clown with a chainsaw is going to be chasing you…)