Indianapolis Zoo: 2004 Zoo Boo Haunted Train Ride

Indianapolis Zoo: 2004 Zoo Boo Haunted Train Ride

Project Details


2004 Haunted Train Ride

Date Completed

October 2004




An intentionally scary haunted train ride that includes a monster kidnapping the train full of passengers

For the 2004 Zoo Boo haunted train, I decided to experiment with how scary the ride could be while still being appropriate for a family audience. Inspired by the Disney attraction, The Great Movie Ride, I came up with a concept whereby the train would “unexpectedly” have to come to a stop due to an obstruction on the tracks. In reality, this was planned and the scene unfolded by having monsters ambush the train and drag the driver away while one of the monsters takes control of the ride. The show continued by passing through a couple more scary scenes before coming to a stop again where the driver miraculously “rescues” the passengers by defeating the monster.

In order to accomplish this, one of the “monsters” in the kidnapping scene was a trained ride operator dressed in a monster costume. When the driver was dragged offstage, a golf cart would be waiting to whisk them a couple scenes ahead where they would then rescue the passengers. This involved a costume change while riding on the golf cart to the rescue scene. The golf cart would park out of view and wait for the rescue to unfold. Once the train left the rescue scene, the defeated monster would run to the golf cart and be whisked back to the kidnapping scene just in time for the next train load full of unsuspecting passengers to arrive. This process would then repeat all night.

This is the layout of the ride path. The kidnapping would occur at Scene 2. The driver would board the golf cart at point A and be driven to point B to rescue the passengers. The defeated monster would then board the golf cart at point B and be driven back to point A to reset for the next ride.

Check It Out: Click here to listen to the source audio for the ride accompanied by corresponding production notes.


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