Mines of Terror a fright to behold

October 17, 2013

Joseph Pratt

PDT Contributor

The Minford haunted attraction, Mines of Terror, is open for business and if the props don’t scare you, the site itself is promised to do so.

Matthew Martin, owner of the white gravel mines, opened Mines of Terror last year for the first time under the assumption that the haunt would be a fundraiser for the I Believe Foundation, but due to popularity, positive turnout and owner’s enjoyment, Martin has decided to bring on the scare every year.

Martin is a member of the I Believe Foundation, which provides a therapeutic environment for children with disabilities to participate in sports and group activities. When the group was brainstorming ideas to raise funds last year, the haunted attraction came up and Martin decided it was worth trying. Last year’s profit went completely to the I Believe Foundation, but in favor of continuity of Terror in the Mines, he is splitting the profit so that some of the money earned will go back into next year’s haunt, which he hopes to keep growing on and building up with some pretty large and unique ideas.

Last year’s success was mostly due to hearsay and public marketing, but Martin has hit the ground running this season, attending parades, festivals, advertising and spreading the word through social media. The increase of reach has him hoping to bring in even more people.

“We saw that people really enjoyed last year and we had a really good time scaring people,” Martin said. “We decided to go all in and make it as big as we can. We’ve strived to do that and will continue to do so in the future.”

Martin said that the setting itself is unbelievable and creepy in its own right. The setting received some of the biggest comments last season as people toured the mines. Martin even said that he doesn’t like to work alone in the mine when he is working on the haunt. There are too many bumps in the dark for comfort.

“My brother and I have been working in the back of the mine and you know, you see shadows and stuff like that,” Martin said. ” I think it is a central for paranormal activity. You just get that feeling and I don’t really want to be back there by myself. You know? You hear things and it just gets to you that you’re underground. It scares you.”

One of the new features Martin hopes to bring to the event next year is a zombie paintball safari. Plans for a constructed trailer with mounted paintball guns are underway. The hay wagon ride will resemble something out of a zombie apocalyptic movie, where the guests will be able to shoot zombies as they drive through the trail and the mines. This will be an additional attraction to the already current Mines of Terror, which will also be getting work.

“We will continue to stock up on animatronics, tinker with controllers, trigger plates and that type of stuff,” Martin said. “We do have some animatronics this season, but our haunt is mostly made of characters that I call ‘Scare-cters.’”

The path of the haunt is completely inside the mines and they are looking at length, but they are guessing that this year’s tour will be a 20-30 minute walk. They had a trail portion last year, but they’ve cut that from this season.

The white gravel mines were active in the early 1900s and mining stopped when they hit water. The mine has been surveyed by an inspector and has been deemed safe for public access.

Mines of Terror open at dusk and run until 11:30 p.m. General admission is $8 and they are participating in the Haunted Ohio discount of $2 for those who have a wristband. The Haunted Ohio wristband discounts tickets at both Mines of Terror and Terror in the Trees on Jacobs Cemetery Road in Lucasville. Mines of Terror is at 4216 White Gravel McDaniel Road in Minford.

“We are advertising it as one of the most unique and terrifying haunts in the Tri-state area, because we’re in a mineshaft. Our particular mines have about six to seven acres of shafts. There are certain shafts in which you can drive pick-up trucks through. With the haunt being underground, I don’t think there are too many like that.”