What is normally a sunny, small town theater filled with musicals and the scents of baking pastry has been transformed — temporarily, thankfully — into a circus of horrors and a graveyard for clowns.

Come visit Clown Town — if you dare

 

The cities of Solvang and Buellton have collaborated to scare and delight young and old equally at its annual haunted house at the Pacific Conservatory of Performing Arts in Solvang. Clown Town will be open from 6 p.m. – 9:30 p.m., Oct. 30 and Oct. 31 at 420 Second Street.

Clown Town is the 15th annual haunted house sponsored by the Buellton and Solvang recreation departments and community volunteers.

 

Fred Lageman, director of the Solvang Parks and Recreation Department, who designs and builds the haunted house, said that the project is made possible with the help of community volunteers.

This is his 17th year creating a haunted house for the community, so prepare to be scared.

“We expect a turnout of 2,000 plus,” Lageman said. To pull off this feat, Lageman said he recruits 35 new volunteers to be the carnies and clowns and to help create Clown Town.

He expects more than 100 people will work on the haunted house.

 

Complementing Clown Town is a clown graveyard and towering, impaled stiffs still sporting their ruffles and big red noses, their jagged and rotting teeth frozen in a smile.

“There will also be a freak show, clown maze and a carney workshop with grizzly guys grinding their ride equipment,” Lageman said. “Everything you see here backstage will be part of the funhouse.”

He pointed to a pile of costumed, disheveled clown skulls, grinning through tangles of purple and orange hair.

Lageman said it costs about $2,000 to put it all together. Monsters and guides, ages 14 and older are still needed, Lageman said, and are screened because of their interaction with children. Phone (805) 688-PLAY (7529) for more information.

Reach Wendy Thompson at wendy@syvjournal.com