Museum of Monsters in Tivoli Village Isn’t Just Another Haunted House

Horror icons become works of art inside this seasonal exhibition

For horror fans that aren’t fond of jump scares and buzzing chainsaws, Museum of Monsters offers scary movie lovers a 3,000 square-foot space featuring over two dozen life-size horror film icons plus some spooky surprises. The attraction opened on Thursday, October 7 and will be running until Halloween on Sunday, October 31 inside Tivoli Village. This is every horror obsessed social media influencer’s fantasy fulfilled. 

From classic chillers like “Frankenstein” to supernatural spookfests like the “The Exorcist,” the museum showcases a variety of menacing monsters from a variety of horror flicks. Here’s what makes this a different experience than a haunted house attraction.

Jump Scares Not Included

For lovers of all things horror who are too afraid to go through a haunted house attraction, Museum of Monsters gives them the opportunity to experience “a quasi haunted house” without any unexpected characters popping out of the shadows.

The special effects accentuate the creeptastic collection of Hollywood horror relics. They are not jarring. Instead, they add a sensory element that brings the scenery to life. Also there are nice touches found in the details of every room, like light projectors displaying spiders crawling on the ceiling and creepy portraits hanging on the walls. 

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Each room has a theme featuring horror movie creatures that fit that scene. It feels like walking onto a Hollywood movie set that’s on pause. With props in the likeness of “Halloween” slasher Michael Myers paired with his psychiatrist, Loomis, “Nightmare on Elm Street” menace Freddy Krueger, “Scream” horror sensation Ghostface and many more. 

This is a refreshing take on Halloween entertainment with an interactive component that is focused on appreciating these popular horror movie characters. 

The Art of Monsters

Imagine a museum dedicated to all the horror films most Halloween lovers watch in October. This is it. There’s no chance to capture a photo with a scare actor while creeping through a haunted house. That is part of what makes this such a fa-boo-loous experience. Given a 30 minute time slot, guests can take as many photos and videos as they desire with their favorite terrifying monster. I had plenty of time to walk through the entire exhibit without feeling rushed.

Dirk Hagen, co-owner of Museum of Monsters, explains that his vision for this project was for horror fans to have a place to visit that is about appreciating their favorite scary movie characters rather than feel like they are being chased by them.

“This is just kind of a celebration of all things horror, creatures of the night. It’s a social media attraction as opposed to a haunted house. I’ve been doing haunted houses for 30 years [and] this is just a different incarnation of that.”

Fun For Ghouls of All Ages

There are no age restrictions on the museum; however, they make it clear that for younger Halloween lovers it is left up to the parents discretion. The museum does feature some gory scenes and disturbing imagery reflecting the horror films they are depicting. 

“It’s still a ‘Museum of Monsters‘ so there are still horrific, scary figures. We left it to the discretion of the parents to understand this is not the ‘Museum of Kittens.’ And if you are afraid of clowns, you aren’t going to go near Pennywise,” says Hagen.

Photo Courtesy of Museum of Monsters

When I walked through the museum, I overheard two young kids talking near the Pennywise figure. One of them asked aloud cheerfully, “Where’s Georgie?” He wore a cheesy grin on his face while posing with the demented clown like they were old pals. Of course, every kid is different, which is why they leave the decision up to the parents. But if this kid’s chipper quest for Georgie means anything, it’s an indication that the level of terror inside isn’t likely to cause goosebumps.

Bryan Hollis, a lead representative that redeemed my ticket, shared why he enjoys this museum.

“It’s family friendly. It’s not here to scare you, but to give that appreciation and love for the monsters.”

After guests finish collecting epic photos and videos for their social media feeds, Bryan hands out goody bags that are included with each ticket. When I opened mine, I found a Museum of Monsters sticker, bookmark and 2022 card calendar along with bite size candies plus some Tivoli Village coupons. 

Tickets cost $20 per person and can be purchased online on their website. Each guest may pick a time slot and explore the museum for up to 30 minutes. Masks are required for entry and may only be removed briefly for photo ops.

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