Is it us, or are haunted houses getting scarier? Keeping pace with the desensitization spiral of Saw movies and the nightly news, Valleyfair's four-year-old Halloween Haunt features such attractions as the Mangler Asylum (a padded house of torture named for its late overseer, Dr. Mangler), an evil-clown circus (CarnEvil), and a human slaughterhouse/meatpacking plant (Mr. Cleaver's Bloodshed). What's next, a maze where Mom screams at you that she doesn't love you? Thankfully, there are "scare-free" daytime activities and attractions for children, or for anyone else who might be permanently scarred by all this, as well as comedy, music, magic, and favorite Valleyfair rides. Don't wear costumes, masks, or full-face makeup, however: Only children entering the Trick-or-Treat Trails on Saturdays may come in a Halloween disguise. For more information, visit
Fridays, 7 p.m.-midnight; Saturdays, noon-midnight; Sundays, 6 p.m.-midnight. Starts: Oct. 23. Continues through Oct. 31, 2009

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