There is a Secret Haunt in Middletown Offering One Last Great Halloween Scare!

Are you ready for one last great Halloween adventure tonight? For the price of a canned good for Dare to Care, you can experience the highest tech, biggest budget haunted house in town that NOBODY knows about!

I thought I was finished for the season. I’d survived every haunted woods, escaped every haunted house and toured every glorious Halloween event this town has to offer. I had handed out all the candy to the little ghosts and goblins on my street, turned off my Halloween blow molds and blew out the flame on my jack-o-lantern. It was about 9:45 PM and I was just about ready to settle in for a couple of classic horror movies with a Blue Moon Pumpkin Ale and  a bowl of hot buttered popcorn.

Just as I was about to turn off my computer for the evening, I got a cryptic Facebook message from the Pumpkin King.

13070 Middletown Industrial Blvd in Middletown. Take a can of food.


It’s a haunt; the highest tech one in town outside of Industrial Nightmare. I want you to write it up.

Are you serious? What’s it called?

No name. It’s a charity. It’s set up in a warehouse in Middletown. Bring a canned good.


I grabbed my leather jacket, my camera, a can of green beans and a can of tuna and headed out to the car only to find it covered in a layer of slushy ice. As I waited for the windows to defrost, I looked at the clock on the dashboard, noting that it was 10 o’clock as I pulled out of the driveway and headed for Middletown.

I got off the Gene Snyder in Middletown and turned down North English Station Road as directed, and then turned right onto Middletown Industrial Blvd. There’s nothing but warehouses and storage facilities in the area and everything was closed and dark. There were no signs. No lights. No indication anywhere that a haunted attraction existed in the area.

Looking for the street address, the numbers got closer and closer, but I still found no evidence of this “haunt with no name.” Suddenly, I spotted a small hand written sign at the bottom of a gated driveway that said “Haunted House” with an arrow pointing towards a completely dark parking lot behind a dark, empty warehouse.

At this point I begin to get really, really uncomfortable.

It’s Halloween. Is this some kind of prank? Am I on some kind of Snipe hunt? Have my Louisville Halloween partners in crime cooked up some elaborate tomfoolery or– even worse– did they send me on this assignment based on some kind of Internet rumor about a secret haunt in the middle of nowhere with no name?

I’d recently seen the trailer for a movie called “The Houses October Built,” and the scenario I was currently entering felt a lot like what I’d seen in that trailer, and I’m pretty sure that movie wasn’t headed for a happy ending.

It suddenly occurred to me that I had told no one where I was going, and in my haste that I had forgotten to bring my cell phone with me.

When I reached the back of the parking lot, I could see a human sized pumpkin man pointing towards a nondescript door in the back of the warehouse. At this point, any sane person would have left tire marks for 50 yards as they sped away from the scene.

But it was Halloween, and I’m the Phantom of the Ville, so I parked the car and prepared for whatever fate had in store for me. What I saw inside that warehouse blew my mind.

Inside I met owners/operators Todd Stephens and Dr. Jim Phifer, along with their special effects guru, Mike Bisch of Kentucky Special FX ( and actor’s director, Bobby Parker. These four local Spookmasters have been conspiring for several years to enter the professional haunt business in Louisville, and what I was about to experience was sort of a test run for what they hope to present next Halloween in a bigger, more visible venue.

“I’ve been collecting these props and animatronics for about the last 15 years,” Dr. Phifer tells me. “They started to take over my house at some point.”

Dr. Phifer is an extreme Halloween enthusiast that isn’t kidding around. Inside that warehouse, you’ll find over $500,000 in some of the best haunted sets, props and animated terrors in the country and that isn’t even all of his collection. They couldn’t fit all of it into the limited space they acquired this season as a temporary showcase for it.

“I guess we could call it the Haunted Warehouse this year,” says Todd Stephens when I asked if they had thought of a name for their little house of horrors.

The four horsemen of this secret haunt in Middletown want YOU to come out and see what sights they have to show you TONIGHT, November 1st from 7 PM through 11 PM. It’s FREE! Just bring a canned good for the Dare to Care Food Program. They desperately need peanut butter, cans of soups, macaroni & cheese, rice or anything that could make the centerpiece of a meal.

For your canned good donation you will be treated to one of the most elaborate and special effects loaded haunted houses you’ll ever experience. You’ll pass through an entire Western town full of ghouls, discover a full size pirate ship with a skeletal crew, see a circus freak show full of creepy clowns and uncover a Mummy’s Tomb! You’ll find all the classic Universal Monsters inside, including Dracula, Frankenstein, the Mummy and the Wolf Man!

If all the medical and laboratory equipment on display looks realistic, that’s because it’s real. Dr. Phifer has also been collecting antique and unusual medical equipment for 30 years, and you can see his amazing collection amid the displays.

My camera can’t really do justice to all the special effects and high tech scares inside, but I tried to give you some idea of what you’ll encounter inside that dark, foggy warehouse in Middletown. You’ll see effects like those you may have seen at Walt Disney’s Haunted Mansion, in David Copperfield magic shows and movies like “Blade.”

It’s a cornucopia of animated monsters, detailed sets and unexpected shocks in a maze jam packed with non-stop, jaw-dropping visuals. The way it’s set up this year, and in accordance with the fire marshal who graciously allowed them to open so quickly and secretively, you’ll be taken through in groups of no more than five with a tour guide to lead you through the twisting hallways.

Don’t miss the opportunity to have one last good scare this year, TONIGHT between 7PM and 11PM at 13070 Middletown Industrial Blvd in Middletown. It’s absolutely FREE! Just bring a canned good for the Dare to Care Food Program and help our community while experiencing one of the best haunted houses in town that NOBODY knows about!

The secret is out, and it’s no trick! I’ll see you in Middletown tonight!

The Phantom of The Ville

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