Utah haunted house ranks as one of the best in America

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Fear Factory consists of six different buildings from a former cement factory. Utah’s Fear Factory haunted house in Salt Lake City was named one of 2022’s best haunted attractions in the U.S. according to the Haunted Attractions Association. (Photo courtesy of Fear Factory’s website)

Utah’s Fear Factory haunted house in Salt Lake City was named one of 2022’s best haunted attractions in the U.S. according to the Haunted Attractions Association.

For 10 months out of the year, the abandoned factory at the entrance to Salt Lake City lies dormant, but from Sept. 9 to Nov. 5, Fear Factory opens its doors to welcome Utah’s haunted-house lovers.

According to the Fear Factory’s website, the six-story building has a haunted history.

In the late 1800s, Portland Cement Works cement factory was in operation and the heavy machinery presented several dangers to factory workers; many employees died in manufacturing accidents before the factory was finally shut down in 1970.

Abby Nielson, an avid Fear Factory fan, said, “the experience becomes even spookier and fun knowing that there are actual ghosts residing there.”

The factory officially reopened as a haunted house in 2011.

“We’re obviously so thrilled about being named a top haunt this year,” Fear Factory general manager Spencer Terry said. “It means even more to be recognized by a national organization.”

The Haunted Attraction Association is the only official organization in the haunt industry, and “serves as the voice in the haunted attraction industry,” according to their website.

In order to be considered for the Top Haunts list, attractions must be over 10 years old and meet a list of safety criteria. Fear Factory was also named a top haunted attraction in 2021.

The attraction takes guests through six different buildings of special effects, virtual reality experiences and decor.

“It really is one of the best haunted houses in Utah because of the attention and detail that go into every aspect of it,” Fear Factory fan Colin Baker said. “From the moment I go through the gates to the time I leave, I’m fully immersed in the experience.”

Every fall, over 100 nightly actors work to make the Fear Factory experience as immersive as possible. According to Baker, the actors make the experience much more special.

Over 100 actors are employed each year at Fear Factory. Utah’s Fear Factory haunted house in Salt Lake City was named one of 2022’s best haunted attractions in the U.S. according to the Haunted Attractions Association. (Photo courtesy of Fear Factory’s website)

“One of the things that sets us apart from anyone else in the world is our size,” Terry said. “Being six buildings and two underground passages is truly unique. This allows us to have 3-4 story sets, which allows us to grow and be more immersive.”

Though Fear Factory is built upon a scary story, it is a great place to have family nights and corporate events, according to Terry.

“We have tons of families that come for family night later in the week,” Terry said. “A lot of folks will come for the weekend, we have corporations that bring their staff through and colleges that host student events.”

Terry explained that the staff at Fear Factory try to be as culturally sensitive as possible. He doesn’t believe a ton of gore is needed to scare audiences successfully, so he focuses mostly on the psychological and theatrical thrills.

Fear Factory is open now until Nov. 5.

This graphic lists the top seven haunted attractions in America on the Haunted Attraction Association’s list. Utah’s Fear Factory haunted house in Salt Lake City was named one of 2022’s best haunted attractions in the U.S. according to the Haunted Attractions Association. (Made in Canva by Grace Christensen)
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