HAuNTcon, the leading event for starting and growing haunted attractions, is a trade-only event that brings industry professionals together each year. Owned by Urban Expositions, the event provides a platform for sourcing, learning, and networking. The next event will be held in New Orleans, January 25-27, 2019. For more information, visit hauntcon.com
Our experience at HAuNTcon 2018 in New Orleans, LA
We could smell the cajun cuisine as we entered the heart of New Orleans. A bustling city full of ghost stories and a rich history dating back to 1718. Some parts of the landscape appear to be stuck in time due to the preservation of many of the buildings. Just like we had remembered...
We have been to New Orleans several times, the last time being 2014, but never to a Haunted Attraction convention. This trip was going to be a little different for me. I had to think about travel logistics to the convention center, schedules, first-time vendor stuff, entertaining my wife (who opts out of many things Haunt related), meeting up with friends, staying safe in the French Quarter, the various food options, and maintaining enough energy for the 12 hour road trip back to Missouri on Sunday.
Our expectations were exceeded in every way. It was easy to get to the convention with the Haunt Shuttle and the friendly Uber drivers. Once I found the check-in area and our vendor booth, the show floor was easy to navigate. The HAuNTcon management team were very organized and made sure we had everything we needed. The host hotel, Staybridge Suites, was located next to the Harrah's Casino (which my wife appreciated) and there were plenty of quality eateries close by and free breakfast. And it seemed the French Quarter was much cleaner than last time we visited.
We also appreciated the over-the-top Costume Ball that had excellent finger foods, amazing entertainment & costumes, and FREE drinks until 11:00pm! This was the first year that the party was included with your general admission ticket. And those light-up ladies dancing on the stage!! WOW.
Granted, the HAuNTcon 2018 product and vendor area is only a fraction of the size of the Halloween & Party Expo area, HAuNTcon really shines when it comes to their educational workshops and demonstrations that focus on practical advice you can implement in any haunt. And it's all included in the ticket. All-you-can-learn haunt education.
Overall we had a great experience at HAuNTcon 2018 and plan on going back next January 25-27, 2019. This was the first year that the event was produced by Urban Expositions and they plan on expanding the event next year. Now that they have their first year under their belt, they can listen to the feedback of the attendees and continue to make HAuNTcon a yearly stop on every Haunter's list.
Here are the Haunters that we chatted with:
- Nightmare Harvest
- The Pumpkin Geek
- Haunt Shirts
- Scared of Your Shadow
- Top Dog Halloween Madness
- Woodley Special Effects
- Haunted Attraction Network/Leadership Symposium
- Gantom Lighting
- Big Scary Show
- Magic Wheelchair