Giving back to our community has always played a huge factor in our haunted house operations.
Our Haunted House operation works hard to give back to our community
Giving back to our community has always played a huge factor in our haunted house operations. From its inception, Bango Haunted Crib has always been about giving back. Currently, our local Schaller, Iowa Fire Department is building a much needed addition onto our community fire station. This comes with a large price tag to build the new addition with most of the money being donated by local community members.
Donating to our fire department
Many local volunteer fire department members serve on the board of Bango Haunted Crib and also work as volunteers during our season. As members of our fire department, we believe in giving back and supporting our small community. This is why we have been devoting ALL of our profits toward building the much needed addition for our fire station.
2018 was a huge season for us, with a drastic increase in the number of visitors to our haunted house, compared to recent previous years. After operational expenses, we were able to donate a whopping $7,000 to the Schaller Fire Department.
The 2019 season, although our visitor numbers were down slightly from 2018, was also a fantastic year. This will allow us to donate several thousand dollars once again. These numbers are still being figured as not all operational bills have been submitted from 2019.
Supporting our local food pantry
In addition to helping our local Schaller Fire Department, the Bango Haunted Crib board decided, part way through our season, to run a promotion to help stock the shelves of our local Blessing Box.
Blessing Box is the name given to our local Food Pantry, which is ran the St. Paul Lutheran Church. The promotion was a huge help and we currently have plans to continue running this promotion in the coming years. We hope you will make plans to attend our haunted house this year so we can all work together to give back to our local small community.
Be sure to follow us on our haunted house Facebook page to stay up-to-date on our latest activities! You can also find Bango Haunted Crib on several other social media platforms, including our latest addition, TikTok (@bangohauntedcrib).
The new team took over Bango Haunted Crib, previously known as The Schaller Haunted House
Bango Haunted Crib Renovations and upgrades
The new team took over Bango Haunted Crib, previously known as The Schaller Haunted House, knowing repairs would be a high priority. As you may already know, our Halloween attraction is located inside an old popcorn crib located in Schaller, Iowa. Our first year involved many big changes. Several rooms received complete overhauls and/or updated to increase the entertainment factors for visitors. The feedback from our visitors was amazing! Scared visitors left us many great reviews on our Facebook and Google accounts. This inspired us to continue to add new and improved haunted house features.
The Chainsaw Room
One of the most popular rooms in Bango Haunted Crib is the “Chainsaw Room”. 2018 saw some major changes of this room and visitors loved to hate it, once again. Once again, 2019 brought many more changes to the room. Will there be more changes for our 2020 Haunted House season? You will have to visit to find out.
The Electric chair room
Another popular room has always been the Electric Chair room. While there were no changes to this room in 2018, 2019 was entirely different. We moved the electric chair room to throw scare enthusiasts off and utilized the old room for a new idea. What happened to the old chainsaw room, you ask? Well, we turned it into what we now call the “Seance Room”, which is beyond creepy. A room designed to mess with your visual senses while creepy sound effects play in the background.
New Entertainment area
When the 2019 renovation season came around, we knew visitor comfort had to be a high priority. This is where the new check in and entertainment area came into play. This was a major transformation involving many hours of labor by the haunted house volunteer staff. Again, the reviews came back with everyone loving what the team had done! Allowing visitors to mingle with each other and even enjoy some occasional entertainment, has helped make their wait more enjoyable.
What’s new for 2020?
What repairs or modifications are in store for Bango Haunted Crib for our 2020 Haunted House season? There are some high priority structural repairs needing made to the haunted house. We are still in discussions on the best and most cost effective solutions for tackling the issues. There are also some new rooms that will be added. Of course, we cannot give you the details, as it would be a real spoiler. A little hint for one room, it has been mentioned on our Facebook page more than once. Check us out in October for some great scare fun and to see the new and exciting changes!
In the Fall of 2018, some staff members of the Bango Haunted Crib had a very interesting and unexplainable experience. It happened late one night
Is Bango Haunted Crib Haunted House really haunted?
In the Fall of 2018, some staff members of the Bango Haunted Crib had a very interesting and unexplainable experience. It happened late one night after a long day of hard work, in preparation for the upcoming season. Four members were discussing things still needing completed when they heard a door from upstairs open and close and loud disembodied footsteps that followed. Had this been a one time occurance, it wouldn’t have been so bad. However, there have been many years of reported unexplainable experiences throughout the haunted house by several people.
reaching out for help
This experience was so strong it inspired one skeptical staff member to contact a friend, who ran a paranormal investigation team. We wanted to make sure none of the activity was bad in nature for the safety of our many yearly visitors.
The paranormal investigation team named CCPI, lead by Seth Alne, was the first group asked to investigate. They arrived on a rainy Spring day in 2019 to begin questioning witnesses, take a tour, and perform their investigation. One of the staff members stayed to help the CCPI team for a couple of hours to answer questions and help the team find their way. It was an experience he would never forget!
The CCPI investigation begins
The first room the team investigated, has been known as the Electric Chair Room for many years. The night began with a video camera battery being drained and a lady screaming through an evp instrument. Odd things kept happening throughout the night, with much evidence captured and recorded on equipment. Loud footsteps, cell phone batteries being drained and acting weird, and a shadow figured witnessed by Seth himself. The entire CCPI team also had many personal experiences.
When asked his thoughts as to whether the crib was really haunted, Seth had this to say,
“After almost 20 years in the paranormal field, spending a night in Banjo Haunted Crib was one of the craziest experiences of my life. Unbelievable paranormal activity that has stuck with me every since. Top 5 most active location I’ve ever been”
You can watch a video of the CCPI haunted house findings below (while watching, listen and watch carefully as many things were not identified in the video):
Raven rose investigates the haunted house
The paranormal investigation team, Raven Rose Paranormal, later contacted staff members and asked permission to pay the crib a visit. Their team consisted of Roland and Cynthia Gerodias, Chris Nielson, and Taylor Boggs. Two members of their team are known intuitives. Those two members had their work cut out for them throughout the entire two day investigation. Also, joining them was Thomas Huntzicker of Brilliant Sanity Studios. Thomas has been working on a paranormal documentary project.
Activity began happening before the Raven Rose team even began their official investigation. As they were being given a tour, a member of the Bango Haunted Crib staff, and a Raven team member had experiences in the popular maze area, of which their was no explanation. Keep in mind, this happened while there was still daylight and all lights were on.
third floor access was no disappointment
The Raven Rose Paranormal team was the first to be given access to the normally closed off third floor. Over the years there have been many claims of activity in this area of the building. One such claim has been of a rocking chair that would rock all by iteself. As their investigation proceeded, they quickly began to realize there was indeed a higher level of activity in this area of the building.
Their findings? Many evp’s were caught along with several odd unexplainable happenings, including loud disembodied footsteps and many personal experiences. They have since been back for follow-up investigations, to which they have had no disappointment.
When asked, the Raven Rose Paranormal team shared these thoughts:
“The data gives a really strong case that there is a presence in Bango. From the little girl, Issa, in the chain saw room, the disembodied footsteps on the third floor, the voice of a woman in the maze area. To me it is compelling. I don’t think the spirits are malevolent in any way as I have experienced. But more like a curious part of the Bango family. We can’t wait to delve deeper and gain more back story if they wish to speak to us about it. If given the question is Bango haunted? I can honestly say there is a strong presence that haunt the place.”
“In my opinion, our investigations gave us some great data and my abilities allowed me to communicate with a couple spirits. I believe there is something definitely Paranormal there.”
“Bango Haunted Crib has a long history in the community, such deep ties to the area make it more liekly to be a beacon to local spirits. Our experiences and investigations as a team, and as individuals there have yielded a substantial amount of data that would support that the Bango Haunted Crib is indeed haunted.”
“Between the data gathered and the spirits that I saw with my own eyes there is no doubt, for me personally, that there are a few resident spirits at Bango’s Haunted Crib.”
Their video from their investigation can be seen below:
Throughout the 2019 haunted house season, many members had uneplainable experiences. Some members had the hair pulled on their masks, something pulling on their costumes, and one member even saw a person peak around the corner (nobody was there upon checking). Probably the most bizarre experience, from 2019, was when three members witnessed the head of a prop rotate back and forth while visitors were still in that room. This experience ended with one younger actor running all the way out of the building.
Bango Haunted Crib was known for many years as “The Schaller Haunted House”. There has always been a long standing tradition for many in a large radius of Schaller, Iowa to visit the haunted house
The Haunted House is a tradition
Bango Haunted Crib was known for many years as “The Schaller Haunted House”. There has always been a long standing tradition for many in a large radius of Schaller, Iowa to visit the haunted house during the month of October. Halloween Night has always been our biggest night.
We have seen many such venues come and go in the towns surrounding us. The dedicated efforts of many from the Schaller Community has kept our event very much alive. There have been years where devotion for the event has slumped, only to be revived once again by new enthusiasts.
Prior to 2018 were some of those years where finding volunteers was getting more and more difficult. With the loss of some key enthusiasts, there were concerns whether the haunted house would even continue. Some local community members stepped up and took over the operation with new ideas of making it bigger and better than ever before.
Many volunteers have been coming from all over to help with our efforts to rebuild and rebrand. These volunteers have come from Schaller, Galva, Alta, Aurelia, Storm Lake, Holstein, Early and even the small town of Havelock. It takes 25-35 volunteers to provide our visitors with the great fright show that we have always been known for.
Rebranding the name
In early 2019 we decided to change the name from what was once known as The Schaller Haunted House to what is now Bango Haunted Crib. This was to build a new brand surrounding the popcorn crib where we currently reside. Bango was one of the popcorn brands packaged at this location, which made it a perfect name. Schaller, Iowa was once known as the Popcorn Capital of the World. Our community continues to focus on this with our annual Schaller Popcorn Days Event.
In 2018 our volunteers started with an idea of renovating a couple of rooms inside the haunted house. We got a little carried away and ended up completely changing 11 rooms. Several other rooms within received minor changes and improvements. One of the most complex additions was the new and popular vortex tunnel. The vortex tunnel proved to be an interesting challenge for the crew throughout the 2018 season. 2018 was a very busy year, with some projects being completed just hours before opening for the season.
Renewed visions with the new ownership involve, attraction renovations, building maintenance, and scare enthusiast comfort. Wait times have always been a big concern as visitors await their turn to go through our popular haunted house attraction. This encouraged us to build a brand new outside entertainment area for added comfort in 2019. Many resources and hours of labor went into the great new addition, which included a brand new pay area and crib entrance.
We have much more planned for 2020, so stay tuned!
Each year Bango Haunted Crib has added to our reach by using various online resources, such as popular social media platforms. This year, the haunted house board decided we needed a website to increase our potential market reach.
We began our market expansion with our facebook page. You can find the most up-to-date information on Bango Haunted Crib activities on our facebook. We were amazed at the huge response we received and focused a great deal of resources to facebook with posts and advertising.
Snapchat was later added and provided a strong connection with the younger crowd and even many older people. This past year we even added our own filter which was popular with many visitors. We saved many of the snapchats and even added them into videos produced for our haunted house. You can view one of the videos below.
A huge addition to our growing network, was getting listed on Iowa Haunted Houses. Haunted house enthusiasts can find event locations all across Iowa, and we are on that list. This listing came late in our 2019 season and we plan to continue our listing. Visitors can now help us grow with their “Rate our Haunt” rating system, linked below.
One thing we take great pride in, is helping our local Schaller, Iowa community projects with our profits. For the past two years, our profits have gone to help build the new addition onto our Schaller Community Fire Station. We expect to continue donating our profits toward the fire station addition for the next few years. In 2019 we also ran promotions for our local Blessing Box, which is our local food pantry.
We are ran and staffed entirely from the volunteer efforts of many giving up long hours to help with renovations and building maintenance. Later, those volunteers become our scary monsters with 25-35 actors showing up every night. Obviously, the more actors we are staffed with, the better the experience for everyone. Many of us have worked the haunted house for many years. We have taken what we have learned and work hard to teach new actors the art of scaring. All this experience and dedication has helped us to be rated as the scariest haunted house by our visitors.