REVIEW: 2019 KNOTT’S SCARY FARM debuts fun, funny, and scary new experiences
Now in its 47th year, Knott’s Scary Farm has returned once again to Buena Park with not just new mazes but also a special edition of Brian Henson’s Puppet Up! improv show. These new additions, along with the return of fan-favorite experiences and a host of new eats, sweets, and treats to fuel your night of screaming add up to one awesome way to spend the scare season.
We were invited to check out the opening night festivities last week and are happy to present a look at 2019 Knott’s Scary Farm!
A true standout for the evening. Created by Brian Henson and directed/hosted by Patrick Bristow, the improv show brings a humorous touch to the whole event. You’re either into improv or you’re not but if you ARE then the addition of puppets and amazingly talented puppeteers make this a memorable half hour that is almost worth the admission by itself. A true delight and not to be missed!
Origins: The Curse of Calico
This PHENOMENAL replacement to the Red Barn delivers on a lot of levels. It all starts off at the trial of Sarah Marshall and quickly delves into a decaying ghost town cursed at the hands of the Green Witch. The maze is a fantastic love letter to fans of Knott’s Berry Farm but more then that, it’s great at bringing really creepy visuals to life and a complete and satisfying narrative. As you move throughout the claustrophobic scenes, witnessing the horrors of Green Witch’s curse, you eventually come upon a clearing in a cave only to encounter her terrifying visage.
The full-size Catawampus haunting around the maze is a fun fan-bait touch.
This is another really phenomenal theme brought to life in a new maze this year. As the story goes, the old WAX WORKS had a prior life as a prominent wax museum with impressive figures and vignettes that has since been left to years of abandonment and has become a dripping, waxy, and completely awesome hellscape. Proprietor Dr. Augustus Scratch unleashes new horrors in this truly creeptastic maze that is just as fun as it is scary. Lots of clever sights and creatures to behold.
Special Ops: Infected
The final return of a truly iconic and memorable maze experience. We found this maze to have the longest lines of the night as fans gathered for a final run-though of a city completely overrun by zombies. Special Ops needs your help and you’re equipped with weapons to take down the infected. Heading down into the subway this year was an especially wonderful treat with infected creepies taking over a train as you try to escape.
At the end of the maze, you can see how you measured up with a score presented on your gun.
This maze delivers some great scares starting off in the insanely eerie forest before moving onto ghostly samurai and disturbing geishas. It has some awesome visuals and creative scares. It would otherwise be an easy one to skip if it wasn’t in its final year so it’s definitely worth a glance if you have the time.
Another example of just a simple theme gone super, super well. Reality television show Paranormal Inc is filming a new episode inside of the Hayden Hill Sanitarium and we’re in the audience for the taping before everything goes horribly wrong. As we move through the hospital, we encounter past patients and dart around the dilapidated haunted interiors.
We were completely enamored by this maze which debuted last year and found once again this year that it was still a fantastic voyage into murky unknown of a deep cave miner’s nightmares. A fun new elevator at the beginning of the maze meant to transport us to safety ends up unleashing a whole new hell with underwater creatures run amok.
The Castle of Chaos ride has reopened its doors once more but the charming carnival ride that it was in a former life is unfortunately no longer! Instead, we find a really fun adventure walking through an abandoned attraction where the vehicles still sit on the track as bodies of workers, guests, and others are strewn amongst the attraction and its army of still-working animatronics. As we wind our way through a surveillance room showing some of the horrors within, we end up at the end inside of the gift shop with fun new surprises.
The fun romp into space seems to have a decidedly much scarier tone this year after an unknown parasite taking over and seeking new hosts has run amok. If you’re short on time we’d probably suggest this one as first on the list for saving time to encounter other scares. While fun with undeniable moments of utter terror, something about the whole thing just doesn’t quite come together into a truly satisfying experience.
While not entirely a scary maze, there’s still a fun and unique quality to this fairy-tale-reminiscent maze of a pumpkin haunt that has victimized an entire village. You almost feel like Hansel and Gretel might have ventured through here on their way to their own doom.
Scare Zones return again with frightful surprises including The Hollow with harvest-inspired creeps, Forsaken Lake with swampy inhabitants, CarnEvil with clowns and carnie creeps, and, of course, the Ghost Town Streets with treacherous old western scares come to life.
More to Explore
This is such a fun takeover of the attraction’s classic log ride. An insane assortment of monsters, aliens, and other creatures roam the night and takeover the unassuming town of Calico.
The fan-favorite show roasts pop culture events from 2019 and this year takes on a twist with the Green Witch, Sarah Marshall, and the new ORIGINS maze in ghost town.
Awaken the Dead
An interactive dance party helps you burn off some of the jitters from escaping the scare zones and mazes.
CONJURERS – Magic and Mirth in the Birdcage Theatre
Although we didn’t get the chance to experience it, the Bird Cage Theatre once again was home of comedy and magic with award-winning magicians and CW’s Masters of Illusion regulars. Witness magician Chipper Lowell and Dana Daniels front and center as they perform on select nights.
Adorable Snoopy Cookies and cupcakes are obviously available but there’s a few new treats this year to delight, fright, and bite.
Jet-black Smoked Bat Wings are a fun menu offering with a buffalo sauce flavor available at the Boardwalk BBQ.
Infected Pizza has olives, mushrooms, and pesto over mozarella.
No, that’s not a salad. It’s Frankenstein’s Intestines (green funnel cake with fudge) served near the Log Ride or you can opt for a more conventional Peaches and Scream funnel cake from Sutter’s.
Other treats to spice up your night include the Devil Dog with beer-battered jalapenos and a fried jalapeno OR you can opt for the Spicy Chicken Sandwich with guacamole.
Spooky’s Sloppy Burger has red mac n’ cheese served at Grizzly Creek Lodge.
Cockroach Bites with red hot sugar and cayenne hot fudge dipping sauce should be a surefire treat and you can wash it down with Bloody Eyeball Boba mango tea with strawberry popping boba and a lychee eyeball.
Tricks and treats of all sorts are available around the park.
More in Store
New LEGENDS series pins commemorating departing mazes.
Into the Fog
The Bizarre Bazaare / Nautlius store features INTO THE FOG, an art show curated for Knott’s Scary Farm with nearly 40 pieces of original art!
Photo-Ops and Decor
This isn’t even actually decor but the carousel without any lighting is inherently creepy.
Know Before You Go
- Single night tickets – Buy tickets at KnottsScaryFarm.com and save up to $41 off the regular main gate price of $84. Knott’s Season Passholders receive a discount on single night tickets. Applicable taxes and fees apply to online orders.
- Fright & Fast Lane – Ride and scream all night long with unlimited priority access to all mazes plus priority boarding on all Fast Lane rides. Fright & Fast Lane starts at $90 and varies by night. Separate Scary Farm park admission required, and not included.
- The Knott’s Scary Farm Pass returns for the 2019 season and offers unlimited visits to all 26 event nights. Current 2019 Knott’s Berry Farm Season Passholders can purchase the pass at the limited time price of $90 and non-passholders can purchase the Scary Farm Pass for just $100. Prices are valid through Sept. 15 or while supplies last. Plus applicable taxes and fees.
- Combo Tickets offering admission plus Fright & Fast Lane are an especially great value starting as low as $125 plus applicable taxes and fees. This combo is only available online. Save up to $49 with this admission plus Fright & Fast Lane Combo and Knott’s Season Passholders save up to an additional $5.
- Knott’s Scary Farm Boo-Fet – Offered at Mrs. Knott’s Chicken Dinner Restaurant and Spurs Chophouse, munch with monsters before Knott’s Scary Farm opens each night. Meals include a 2019 souvenir bottle, which gives unlimited complimentary refills on the event night and $1.00 refills for the rest of the 2019 season. After dinner, enjoy early entry into select areas of Knott’s Scary Farm a few minutes before it opens to other mortals. Boo-fet early entry will be to Paranormal Inc., Dark Entities, The Depths and the brand-new maze Wax Works as well as allow for exclusive photo opportunities with the monsters. The Knott’s Scary Farm Boo-fet dinner is $34.99 + applicable taxes and fees when purchased online. Separate theme park admission required, and not included.
Knott’s Scary Farm general parking is $22 per vehicle and can be purchased online or at the parking booth upon arrival. Applicable taxes and fees apply to online orders. All Season Long Parking is valid for Knott’s Scary Farm nights.
See it for yourself
Knott’s Scary Farm returns for 26 frightful nights from September 19 – November 2, 2019. Event dates follow:
- September 19, 20, 21, 26, 27, 28, 29,
- October 3, 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 13, 17, 18, 19, 20, 24, 25, 26, 27, 31,
- November 1, and 2.
Knott’s Scary Farm is open 7:00pm – 1:00am on select Thursdays and Sundays, and 7:00pm – 2:00am Fridays and Saturdays. Due to the explicit and frightening nature of the event, it is not recommended for children under 13.