Once Universal Studios officially canceled Halloween Horror Nights in July, I began to look for other haunts that would possibly happen this year. Fortunately, the 13th Floor in Jacksonville was able to keep their doors open this haunt season. So, I did my research by using the 13th floor’s website https://www.13thfloorjacksonville.com/ and after seeing all the positive reviews, I decided to give this haunt a try.
Needless to say, the most important thing these days are the safety procedures that businesses use for their day-to-day operations. In this regard, the 13th Floor Jacksonville is top notch and sets the bar for any business trying to operate during these trying times.
The first and the most important measure is that everyone must wear a mask. This measure is even required for the scare actors inside and outside of the haunted house.
Second, the only way to get tickets for the event is by buying them online at https://www.13thfloorjacksonville.com/hours_pre.html . This allows the 13th Floor staff to run the event at an limited capacity, by having the group members to buy a ticket that is set up to view the house at a certain time slot. In fact, you are not even allowed to get in line until thirty minutes for your allotted time.
The final measure is that the staff uses the allotted time slots to pulse the house. This means your group will get to walk the haunted houses by yourselves and guarantee that social distancing is upheld.
The theme of this year’s event is called, “Deadly Reflections,” and revolves around the story of Blood Mary. As the story on 13th floor’s website goes, Mary was a early 20th century nomad with a vain and greedy heart. Her whole point in life was searching far and wide for the legendary Mirror of Viitor. This mirror was said to grant the power of knowledge, wealth and riches to those who peer into it. Once Mary finally finds the mirror, she takes one gaze. There she finds out that the mirror only rewards those with kind spirits and instead gets trapped inside. Now trapped inside, Bloody Mary’s rage was too intense to contain and to this day, her unrested spirit manifests itself throughout the mirrors with a deadly reflection ready to consume your soul.
Overall, I thought the 13th Floor Jacksonville was a great time. I really loved the pulsing of the house and the fact that me group had the whole venue to ourselves. This was an incredibly huge house that took over twelve minutes to walk through. So, you definitely get your moneys worth. I also like that the house had a few creaky floors, slanted rooms and multiple mirrors that make the house can to navigate and make you feel uneasy. Another nice touch is that the actors here actually interact with you and help tell the story. For example, early on you meet a doctor outside the main house and he helps you enter Bloody Mary’s realm.
The only bad thing about the house was due to social distancing there was only about three scare actors in the house, so most of the scares come from puppets and air triggers. Also, the overall theming of the house was pretty generic and I do not really think this the house changes much year to year. So, the props are more likely reused each year. For example, there was a scene with Pennywise the clown and what does that have to do with Blood Mary? In fact, this haunted house about Bloody Marry only had a total of five mirrors, so overall the house does not present a cohesive theme.
If I had to give the event a grade I would give it a B+. Overall, the event is enjoyable and I am trying to not deduct points, because the event had to more then likely slim down the numbers for scare actors to maintain social distancing guidelines. I will definitely checkout the event in the future, because I really want to know what the experience is like with a full staff of scare actors.
- Ten dollar ticket upcharge to be ahead of the line. This option is called FAST Pass
- Twenty dollar ticket upcharge to skip the line completely. This option is called Skip the Line
- When you enter the haunted house the staff will take your parties picture besides a prop. The price to purchase the picture is fifteen dollars.
- Axe Throwing Class for five dollars you get five axes to throw at targets
- Bar 13 Bar is an outdoor bar where our 21+ patrons can enjoy spooky libations before or after experiencing the haunted house. All concessions are provided by Foremost Liquors and Wines
- Mini Escape Games are a fully interactive and immersive experience unlike anything you have ever done before! Race the clock: Your group enters a room and has only five minutes to use clues and riddles hidden throughout the room that provide the tools necessary to meet the objective. As the clock ticks down and the pressure mounts…can you stay calm, can you escape? Price is five dollars per game and must be purchased online.
If you would like to hear audio from my visit to the 13th Floor Jacksonville, then please listen to my podcast at https://pod.fo/e/9cb2d