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Slaughterhouse Haunted Attraction preparing to scare customers opening night

The haunted house in downtown Des Moines is preparing to scare customers, for the second time during the pandemic. Plus, some new features and more characters.

DES MOINES, Iowa — Oct. 1 means the month of all things spooky, creepy and haunted is upon us.

It also means it's the opening night for The Slaughterhouse Haunted Attraction at 500 Locust St in Des Moines.

The doors for the haunted house will open at 7 p.m. More than 24 rooms will be crawling with actors to bring the show to life.

"This is what we live for," said Ian Miller, the venue's owner and operator. "This time of the year."

This is Miller's second time hosting the haunted attraction during a pandemic. Last year, masks were included with the purchase of tickets.

This year they will be sold separately, but still available for purchase. 

He also said sales for last year's show were down considerably, but the ticket sales so far for 2021 are already looking up. 

"This year we're already experiencing a great surge in online ticket sales," Miller said. 

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"We've got about a dozen new featured characters," Miller said.  "We have worked really hard to improve the costumes and the actual act itself. We also have some big new animatronic features that haven't been seen in this area before." 

Though the haunted house is for kids too, Dr. Nicole Gilg Gachiani, a doctor at Broadlawns Medical Center, would prefer people stay outside for their Halloween activities. 

"We are so excited to be able to tell kids that it is safe to get back outside and go trick-or-treating," Gilg Gachiani said. "We continue to encourage staying outside and avoiding those large gatherings indoors where we know that transmissions tend to be riskier."

If you are interested in going to the haunted house, tickets can be found here.

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