Frozen in fear: Arctic temperatures force closure and cancellation of Halloween attractions

Local News

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – An extreme October cold snap is having a chilling effect on Halloween events and attractions in northern Utah.

Downtown Salt Lake City’s Fear Factory is designed to give you shivers and chills but with overnight temperatures in the teens, even they decided to close Tuesday and Wednesday nights, taking a scary financial hit during Halloween week according to co-owner Rob Dunfield.

“The decision came down to the well-being of our actors and our staff as well as the customers,” Dunfield told ABC4 News Wednesday. “People come and wait in long lines to get in and see the Fear Factory and it can be bitter cold standing out waiting.”

Dunfield added that the venue, the site of the old Portland Cement Factory has no heat or insulation. 

Further north in Farmington, Frightmares at Lagoon is a ghost town. The park put out a statement Tuesday reading “Due to the forecast of snow and freezing temperatures, and in the interest of safety and the difficulty of keeping equipment running, Lagoon will be CLOSED Tuesday, October 29th for the remainder of the 2019 season. We apologize for the inconvenience and wish we could control the weather!”

The arctic blast also iced out Riverton’s outdoor Halloween Bash and Scare Rodeo Tuesday night, the city posting that the event had been “canceled due to cold weather.”

According to spokeswoman Kamille Combs, Cornbelly’s Corn Maze in Lehi closed early Tuesday because of the cold, sending visitors home at 6:30 pm. Cornbelly’s is scheduled to be closed on Halloween but plans to be open 4 to 10 pm Wednesday and 10 am to 9 pm Friday and Saturday for their Pumpkin Smash.

Back at the Fear Factory, they plan to reopen Halloween night at 7 o’clock and also be open Friday and Saturday for Blackout Nights but tonight the facility will totally dark and eerily quiet for the night before All Hallow’s Eve.

“We love the goosebumps and we love the thrill,” Dunfield said. “But we don’t want to send people home with frostbite.”


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