After sexual harassment allegations, Niles Scream Park responds
NILES, Mich. -- It's a local legend that draws many in from across the region each year. Niles Scream park has, for several years, been listed as one of the top scream parks across the country.
A Facebook review alleged sexual harassment in the brand new exhibit, Hooded.
It has spread all over social media.
The allegation pointed out sexual themes that could make patrons uncomfortable.
It's a scare like no other.
Hooded is the only self-proclaimed "Rated R" attraction in the typically PG-13 park.
"Hooded is a sensory overload on three sense. So you will be touched, etc, in this attraction," says park manager
A reminder, emblazoned in red, all over the entrance.
Multiple signs warn this adventure is for adults only, and provide various examples of reasons why some people, shouldn't go inside.
"There's a warning sign. The one right next to the door says 'adults only." explains Karlowicz. "If you have some kind of prior experience in your life that's traumatic, here's a heads up. Don't go in there. We're telling you, this is an intense attraction."
After the well-publicized allegation, and a less publicized complaint, park staff wanted to ensure people know, there are safety and precautionary measures in place.
"It's not some secret place where you are one on one with an actor, in a place where no one can see what's going on," describes Karlowicz. "The whole place is open and everyone can see what's going on."
The open-air facility is filled with paid actors, both male and female.
"Your stereotype thought process is that this is all men working inside. That's not correct," adds Karlowicz.
He says each night, 40-45% of the workers inside Hooded, are women.
They all are ale to see each other during the attraction, and all have an extensive background checks.
"These people are in the dark and have the ability to touch people. I thought it was my due diligence [to have the checks]," explains Karlowicz.
The attraction restricts the age to patrons over 18.
However, those who are over 16, can go inside, with a signed waiver by a parent or guardian.
Staff manages those patrons a little different.
Visitors to Hooded who look young, are marked with a brightly colored clothes pin, so that the actors know that there is a minor.
"That's another way for our actors to identify this as a younger person," Karlowicz says. "The person that complained, said, I'm a small person, how do they know how old I am? Well, we don't."
Staff tells ABC57 News that approximately 500 people have gone through Hooded, and that they have received an overwhelmingly positive response.