Goshen Wildlife Park Launches “The Forsaken Lands” Haunted Attraction

Alex Fortuna, Tony Sitro and Brian Morrarty build The abandoned landsa haunted attraction that aims to scare its visitors, and plans to open in September with events leading up to Halloween.

Residents of Goshen Chase and Heidi Jesperson are the park’s new owners, working with founder Jim Mazzarelli to improve the grounds with more parking, new sheds for the property’s many animals, and more chances to learn from them. more about their cows, llamas and alpacas, goats, buffaloes and other furry residents. In a recent week, a number of visitors drove through the park and stopped to see the animals.

Behind the museum building and park picnic area, Fortuna and his team have created a haunted village called Morton Farm and Estate. The story Fortuna created is based around the idea that Morton Farm, once a thriving agricultural estate, is now a slaughterhouse for anyone unfortunate enough to land there. The Forsaken Lands is the abandoned farm and village where evil farmers now reside.

Once visitors enter a maze of small buildings and rooms, they encounter flashing lights and plumes of fog, along with heavy metal music and costumed figures leaping from dark corners and from behind walls.

“There are people playing characters that are stuck and they need help,” Fortuna explained. “The first room in Forsaken Lands is a mechanic shop, and there’s a guy at a desk in a jumpsuit. … The next area will have a van with a mechanic underneath.

Sitro considers dressing up as an evil clown wielding a chainsaw. “I will jump up and scare people as they line up to pass,” he said.

“I’m still working on my costume,” Morrarty said. “I’m also going to walk around the attraction and do different things.”

Other rooms in the haunted house are a kitchen, a little girl’s bedroom festooned with dolls hanging from the walls, a living room, a backyard with corpses and the sounds of pigs squealing; a slaughter barn and a side performance area that will feature a demented puppet show, clowns and other characters.

Bloody props, including grotesque and severed heads and body parts, are created by F/X Artist Tyler Green, who runs a studio at Whiting Mills in Winsted. This part of the haunted attraction will make it more spooky and realistic, Fortuna said.

Action Wildlife also has an in-between area with rides and games for kids, live music and food for sale. The park’s museum and gift shop will be open and there will be plenty of parking.

Tickets are available and can be reserved at www.forsakenlandshaunt.com or on Facebook. The attraction takes approximately 15-20 minutes and no one under the age of 13 will be admitted.

The Forsaken Lands will also be offering giveaways and group rates are available.

“It’s really scary, so little kids won’t be allowed,” Fortuna said. “We will have other things to do for them.”

“Something really unique”

Fortuna, a resident of New Milford, has worked at other haunted attractions in and around the state and wanted to create one of his own. “The advantage of seeing what other people are doing is that we have our own theme ideas, costumes and everything,” he said.

“As far as I know there is nothing like it in the state,” he said. “We wanted to do something really unique, and Action Wildlife was exactly what we were looking for. They had haunted wagon rides here for a while, and they had a spooky cornfield. But that was a while ago.”

He always liked the idea of ​​a haunted house. “When I was a kid, I made one in my attic and brought my friends over,” he said. “It became a passion for me and I wanted to do something bigger. It took four years of preparation.”

Forsaken Lands was built by hand and is about 80% complete, Fortuna said. He and his team of volunteers and friends found props of all kinds to fill the various rooms – old tires, a stove, pots and pans, face masks, a desk, a typewriter and cooking tools. truss and mechanics are just a few of the many objects that hang on the walls of the maze-like structure.

“I’m clearing out a family member’s house right now,” Morrarty said. “I said to Alex, ‘You have to come and see some of this stuff. It’s perfect.’ We collected things from everywhere.

Fortuna also had to come up with specific sound effects and music to go along with the themed rooms. “Each piece will have its own soundtrack,” he said.

He’s already making plans for an expanded event in 2023. “Oh, we have plans,” he said. “We chose Action Wildlife because we wanted a farm; it’s a perfect setting. Heidi and Chase were also there. They wanted to do this.

Fortuna, Sitro, and Morrarty all have full-time jobs, but they spend their free time at Goshen’s Park. “We got so much help from so many different people – friends, family… people are really excited about it,” Fortuna said.

The Jespersons are also looking forward to welcoming more visitors as they continue to upgrade and improve the wildlife park.

“We are rebuilding the animal shelters and upgrading the parking lot,” said Heidi Jesperson. “There are plans to build a gazebo for people to watch the animals, and we have events planned all year round.”

For more information on Action Wildlife, visit www.actionwildlifefoundation.com. For more information on Abandoned Lands, visit www.forsakenlandshaunt.com.

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