HauntedIllinois.com - About Us
As we anxiously head into the Halloween season of 2019, we at HauntedIllinois.com are ecstatic to be celebrating the 20 year anniversary of our website! We are incredibly proud of the progress it's made this far and we are excited to see how it changes and advances in the transition of how people are using and will use the internet and social media.
While our website went live in 1999, the events that led to the materialization of the site started years before that.
Growing up, Halloween was a big deal in my house. We decorated the house with spooky effects, and we watched classic monster movies like they were going out of style. Eventually, in the early 1990's, my family was given the opportunity to create and manage a haunted house for the local Chamber of Commerce in our little Illinois town. So, we started from scratch and we built a low budget haunted attraction upstairs from a clothing store on our Main Street.
While our haunt was low budget, it had some innovative effects for back then. One of my favorites was a spinning floor that moved when guests walked on it. We had to be creative with the resources that we had, and that is what initiated my appreciation for the craft of creating haunted houses; from building to set design to costuming to acting to scaring. So, I started traveling to other haunted houses to see their shows.
In the mid-1990's, there wasn't a current source of information for haunted houses throughout the State of Illinois. There were national directories, but they often contained out-of-date information and even listed events that had gone out of business.
That was one of the main inspirations behind creating the website. HauntedIllinois.com started out as a simple laundry list of attractions and really was intended to be used by me, "The Webmaster", to coordinate my haunt travels. In its early years, it became clear to me that other people were visiting and using the database for their haunt visits, as well. Soon, more information was added to the site, including haunted house reviews, trick-or-treating hours, prop DIYs and links to other Halloween-related sites.
I solely managed and upkept the website for a little over ten years, and it became to be overwhelming for one person to visit and review over 30 haunted attractions across the entirety of Illinois by themselves. A friend and fellow haunter convinced me to bring on other official reviewers (him being one of them) and the HauntedIllinois.com review team grew.
It was about that time that I met another local haunter. She managed a haunted attraction about ten miles away from the little town I had lived in my whole life, and that she had just moved into. She had the same appreciation for haunted attractions and the work that went into them, because she had also started a low budget charity haunt from scratch five years previously. After a couple of years, that haunter became my wife.
Jennifer makes significant contributions to the site as a consultant, haunt reviewer, and event coordinator. With her help, the site expanded even more to include a large archive of paranormal information, as well. The site's "Real Haunted Places" section features directories of ghost tour companies, paranormal groups and real haunted places throughout the state. In addition to that, the site hosts a large collection of ghost stories and paranormal reports provided to us from some of the most respected paranormal experts in Illinois.
This year, we are excited and anxious to see what haunters across the State of Illinois have been working on all year! We have 14 official reviewers this year and we have already chosen everyone's assigned visits to Illinois haunted attractions! We are grateful for everyone that has contributed to our site and its growth over the last 20 years, and we can't wait to see what the future holds for HauntedIllinois.com! With that being said, let's jump into what's happening in the Illinois haunted house scene this year!
Adam & Jennifer Drendel