Our favorite spooky seasonal activity: Field of Screams Maryland


courtesy of Field of Screams

Grace Gaydosh and Julie Walker pose with a Field of Screams actor.

by Grace Gaydosh and Julie Walker

It’s pitch black outside. You’re running through the woods, not knowing what’s around the corner, and then everything around you goes silent. You hear a quiet groan coming from ahead as you squeeze your friend’s hand. You reluctantly keep walking. This is how we felt as we walked through the Trail of Terror at Field of Screams Maryland in Olney.

Field of Screams Maryland is rated the number one multi-haunt and Best Haunted House and Scream Park in Maryland, DC, Virginia, and Delaware by Steelhead Productions. Tickets start at $25 varying in price depending on how many different trails the visitor chooses. Attractions include the Trail of Terror, the Haunted Trail, the Slaughter Factory, and the Hades Hayride.

Although it is recommended for 13 year olds and above, many children under that age attend. 

“My friends and I went on the Trail of Terror and it was so scary. We screamed the whole time. If I was 13 I still would have gone, but for someone who gets scared easily, it may not be the best idea to go,” said Class of 2020 member, Hannah Ratchford.

The website is a bloody, gory visual experience. When we first arrived, we didn’t see a spooky atmosphere. All we could see were campfires, photo booths, and food stands, but entering the waiting line at the edge of the woods, quickly changed our perspective.

Even though we bought tickets online, we had to wait in a 45-minute line for the passes. We arrived at 6:30 p.m. when the gates were supposed to open. Unfortunately, they didn’t really open until 6:45 p.m. We suggest arriving around 6:00 p.m. to get through the line as quickly as possible. We left at 8:00 p.m. and the line was much longer.

The wait to enter the Trail of Terror was only about 5 minutes. There was a man made up as a zombie who took our tickets and informed us about the rules and guidelines.

The trail itself consisted of clowns, men with chainsaws, insane asylum patients, distorted mazes, disorienting hallways, zombies, and many small haunted houses.  In some of the mazes, there are strobe lights which can be very disorienting, and there are also pitch-black halls.

We won’t give any spoilers, but let’s just say that you might be spooked. Although the actors can be frightening, they cannot purposely touch or grab the visitors. They are also trained to help if the customers are having an anxiety attack or become overwhelmed.

We were not overwhelmed– scary but not too scared. We skipped the Slaughter Factory because it was indoors, which increased the scare factor.

To accurately sum up our experience, here are our ratings:

Makeup – 6/10

Honestly, some actors looked better than others. Mainly the actors stationed in the houses looked more realistic and the actors stationed on the trail focused more on interaction with the guests.   

Acting – 8/10

In our opinion, the best actors we saw were stationed in the insane asylum portion of the trail.  They were very into the plot and stayed in character the whole time. The worst actor was in the trailer park portion. This particular actor started to become more funny rather than scary, and that’s not the point of Field of Screams.

Cost – 10/10

We believe the cost of the ticket was well worth it due to the experience we had. Our tickets were only $25 and along with them, we received a Fast Pass to skip the lines. 

Wait time –  7/10

 The wait time wasn’t the best. We waited roughly 45 minutes at the ticket booth and the gates didn’t even open on time. However, the 5 minute wait for the actual trail wasn’t bad at all.

Overall experience – 9/10

We had a great time! The environment was very safe and fun. There were lots of security guards and police officers which made us feel better about going through the trail and the loud pop music lightened the atmosphere to a fun setting. The trail itself was better than expected, most of the actors were good and the makeup was impressive.