Home > Interior > Doors and Transitions

The detail in Bill Tracy’s work is only magnified with his artwork and brilliant detail on the transitioning doors throughout the Haunted House. As of 2007, there are 14 sets of doors throughout the ride separating the different themes and rooms of the ride. Seven of these sets of doors are complete with Tracy’s artwork, while the rest are simply painted black and are meant to act as a blind barrier as opposed to a focal point.

Tracy’s doors in the second room (crooked timbers) are painted with extraordinary detail to match the 2-dimentional artwork smothering the walls, which are the timbers themselves. The doors are meant to continue the forced perspective effect and make you feel as if you will soon tumble in the depths of Tracy’s imagination. The rider will soon find out, however, that by crashing through the double-doors, your vessel will start its trek into the spinning tunnel illusion. The same detail can be seen HERE at Whacky Shack's original crooked timber hallway in Wildwood, NJ.

One of the most favorited set of double-doors is that of the crooked mine shaft, or, falling beam hill. This door resembles a continuing shaft, but also a hellish face with innocent victims running for their lives. The actual beams are not painted on, but rather are molding cut to fit and nailed onto the door. If you were to touch the door, you would feel the raised wood. Was this attention to detail necessary? Of course not! But, Tracy did not half-ass any work, at any time.

The shrinking hallway, or, Bat Hill, includes a set of doors a little less noticeable, but nevertheless crucial in completing the effect. Looking forward, it would seem as if your car is shrinking, along with the rest of your surroundings. But, a crash through the doors takes you around the next bend where you will start your major incline through the mine shaft.

The Lobby Doors show perhaps the most detail of all. These doors, original to Tracy styling, are painted to match the fencing with whites, grays, and blacks in order to create a rotting effect. The hinges and door knockers of these doors are actually cut out of wood, so they are raised. Recently, a part of the exit door had to be replaced because of rotting, and it currently sits painted only in black. Perhaps in time, the park artist will make her way to this attraction to slap on a fresh layer of rot.

One of the funniest and most nostalgic parts of the Haunted House is the bubble gum re-entry doors on the balcony. This tradition began after the addition was built in 1988, and it has “stuck” for nearly 20 years. Hundreds of pieces of gum—every flavor, every size—will bombard your senses when your car turns back into the ride after creeping across the balcony. On hot summer days, the entire upstairs smells of gum flavors. Although the crew scraps the doors and repaints them every few years, customers never fail to reestablish this shrine.

It is argued that the transitions throughout the ride could be executed in a more organized fashion, but to my knowledge, the major transitions are: The Vampiress and Reaching Monster greet you as you exit onto the balcony upstairs, which acts as a great transition; the slow incline up the mine shaft is a good transition into the former Ghost Ship; The Train tunnel is a good transition into the final decent of the ride.

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