The ripple effect of Bob Koritzke’s Bob’s untimely death in July continues to impact upcoming Halloween events in Los Angeles. Skull Kingdom, Old Town Haunt, and Seaside Haunted Theme Park were among several attractions that were owned or co-owned by Koritzke, also including Fearplex and the grand-daddy of them all, Spooky House. Koritzke’s death left the future of these haunts in limbo.
After posting my video of the 2008 debut of Skull Kingdom, I heard from proprietor Mike Zatz. The bad news: as suspected, Skull Kingdom will not return for Halloween 2009. The good news: Mike and a few others from Skull Kingdom will be helping out Old Town Haunt in Pasadena, “redesigning the audio experience as well as several areas of the haunt.”
Old Town Haunt is the only one of Koritzke’s Halloween attractions that will return in its familiar form this year. The remaining owners of Fearplex hope to resume in 2010. I had been told that the Spooky House name had been sold to the people who put on the annual Queen Mary TerrorFest, even though the Seaside Haunt moniker would have been more appropriate; in any case, the Seaside Haunt’s website has been replaced with an advertisement for “15 Nights of Terror…at the Haunted Queen Mary.”
Note the new name (“Haunted Queen Mary” instead of “Queen Mary TerrorFest”). Also of note: As of this moment, the Seaside Haunt URL is the only one pointing to any information about the Queen Mary Halloween event. The official Queen Mary website’s page for the haunt merely promises, “Shipwreck 2009 information coming soon,” and the Queen Mary Shipwreck website has been reduced to nothing but a splash page featuring a spooky image of the ship. Clearly, some changes are afoot.