Get ready to scream at Statesville Haunted Prison


Thirty minutes away, located next to an innocent pumpkin patch lies one of Illinois’ most popular haunted houses: Statesville Haunted Prison.

Although it is a common misconception, Statesville isn’t and has never been a real prison. It’s a fictitious haunted house that takes the format and plot of a prison. However, it sure feels real going through the 45 minute scream-fest.

As a Statesville veteran (four years and counting), I wasn’t new to the ordeal that is the haunted prison. It’s open Thursday through Sunday, and every day is a different experience. In previous years, I’ve always visited Statesville on a Saturday, which isn’t necessarily the best idea if you’re expecting a quick and calm walkthrough. Expect at least an hour wait to even get your ticket, then two additional hours to get into the actual haunted house.

Though it’s $45 instead of the normal $30 if you wish to skip past the lines, the entire experience is definitely worth it. You spend the entire evening on edge, while multiple scary characters surround you and scare you, ranging from disturbed clowns to insane asylum escapees. Sometimes they even follow you all the way back to the front of the line.

This year was a no different. Although I decided to go on a Friday night, meaning the wait was two hours shorter, the experience was the same, if not better.

I don’t want to spoil it for those who plan on going, but I will say Statesville works like every other haunted house you’ve ever been to…except a lot better.

Walking single-file through the narrow hallways in each room of the haunted prison and the additional “City of the Dead” house afterwards filled with zombies and ghouls, you can’t help but appreciate the authenticity of the makeup and effects while you’re screaming your head off.

Not only were the effects life-like, so were the actors. The highlights of the night include getting cornered by a creepy clown who wouldn’t stop whispering in my ear and the real life boa constrictor on top of some guy’s shoulder.

Statesville certainly deserves its title as the “Best Haunted House in Chicagoland.” Everyone in the school should take advantage of this awesomely scary attraction, and the only advice I have: be prepared to scream.