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PLEASE READ!!! What would you do?

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  • PLEASE READ!!! What would you do?


    I have been contacted by the President of the local Jaycee's about helping them with their haunt. They want to contract me to organize their haunt for them, from construction to advertising, everything...

    I own a haunt in the next town over and we are currently splitting the market revenue. I know how much it takes to do my own haunt and I dont want to take away from it by doing something else.

    But I also see alot of potential in a merger, or a flat rate contract for the job, or possibly a percentage deal.

    Has anybody ever been in this situation before???

    If you got any ideas or some do's and don't, i would like to here it all...

    Adam Durham
    870 273 5915

  • #2
    Do get a contract signed before any real talking starts, since they contacted you they must know what they want, that means they can draw up a contract for it.
    You will also want to know your scope of work.
    It would have advantages. Do not under value your time just because it is doing something you love.
    Allen H


    • #3

      Honestly, if you are worried about taking time away from your show with this prospect, you should really listen to yourself.

      Running a show is thankless, tiresome, and consuming. Running a great show damn near kills you. Would they consider a consultation position? You will share your experience and opinions with them for a fee, but they still do the heavy lifting. Consider it.

      Best of luck (and don't kill yourself working too hard!)

      -- I


      • #4
        We are meeting this sunday to discuss this, I just had to post this for you guys to help me before I went in their and made some bad decisions. Thanks everybody for the post...

        Honestly, This is a location that I have been interested in moving to for a few years now. But they do not want a roommate I already know that. They are located at the Fairgrounds... Its like the 50 year annual haunt, I guess naturally I am drawn to that. And of course i know since I opened 3 years ago in the next town over they have had a major attendence problem.

        I am faced with some back breaking work at my own haunt too, its a closed old school grounds. I need a parking lot, roof repair, and security/fire protection systems.
        And its not heated and needs alot of electrical work. But its still my own haunt and that came at a high cost as you guys know... We have higher attendence than the fairgrounds, but I am busting my as s to get half the poeple to my haunt.

        Would you form a merger and relocate?
        Would you form a merger and have 2 locations?



        • #5
          Adam, be careful of a merger. When I lived in St.louis one of the Jacee chapters there came to me complaining that my home haunt at the time was hurting their business. I felt bad and decided not to open my haunt that year.
          They asked me to consult for them and wanted to know if I had any props or things for sale. Since I wasnt planning on opening up again I sold them my entire collection.
          I helped them build their attraction that year and they had the best year ever.
          The next year I went back to see when they were going to start building again and they told me they were not going to open it again because it was to much trouble.
          I asked them if I could buy my props back and they said no. As far as I know they still have all the stuff in a trailer and that was back in 97.
          So just be careful on mergers. It could turn into a bad situation.
          Either way, good luck!
          Greg Allen


          • #6
            Thanks Greg,

            I know that this could be a bad idea, so thanks for the warning. If I help them they got to help me, you know thats business and thier the ones who metioned a calaboration to me. And I know this, they arent on hauntworld trying to make the best business descision for everybody. I want to do this right. This has all the potential to be a great merger and add what I need to make my haunt better as well as theirs.

            Are Fairgrounds even that good of a locations anyway???

            If you ask me there aint nothing scary about a new metal building. But dang it i could have heat, electricty everywhere, tons of parking, and security/fire protection all by relocating.



            • #7
              Well I just had lunch with the jaycees president and the jaycee member that is currently heading up their haunt. I gave them a good presentation on my ideas for the biggest haunt in the state, but...

              It seems that the only issue between merging their fund raising event and my for profit event, would be that the fairgrounds would want to charge rent, At 250.00 a day. That is a little high but half of the fair board are jaycees so maybe its flexible, ha or maybe it will go up on me you know. This would be a profit sharing event and of course the fairgrounds would want there share. They are getting free rent right now so I would have to pay the rent as well as a large donation to the chapter.

              I do not see a good connection between us after the meeting. I expected to meet some haunt guys, and that was not the case. They cant really be i guess becuase they dont get paid for it, in a way. but I Let them know that i saw potential in the event and if they wanted me to help it would cost them something and I needed to know in 30 days.

              Honestly I was nervous going in to it and about 10 mins later I was telling my self to shut up, it was just blowing smoke. I needed the whole chapter there and let them vote, idol style...

              I do not expect to do this deal, they have been doing haunts since 1982 and maybe they are to busy with their real jobs to think about doing haunts year after year.

              I did get some good news they are wanting to cut back their program to only 7 days... I dont understand that but thats them, i personally would not build a haunt and not have it open during the season. I run 31 days straight and I wish i could be open more.

              I still want to learn someways to contract myself as a haunt consultant to these jaycees... For future use in expanding my business.

              If anybody has helped a fund raising event in the past, let me know...

              What are some ways to get paid for helping them and not messing up the princeples of a fund raising event?



              • #8
                Go With Your "Gut"

                It sounds like you are meeting with some residue of what might be all that's left of a once good haunting organization. They want to put all the cost (rent) and responsibility on You and do it for no cost to them.
                Part of the old JC creed was to "delegate the tasks to others". Just join their club, pay your dues and then you can be their lacky for absolutely no financial consideration at all! Lucky You!
                "Oh, you just wasted a year working your azz off, making no money, ignoring everything you have been struggling to create for yourself? Oh, well?"
                I have always felt the "strengh" of any committee was it's abilty to shrug and say , "I didn't say or do That." "Skip to the lew my Darling!"
                Of course none of them you met with has any real power to say they will be entering into a contract to pay you because they would all have to hear it and vote on it.
                For all of the downsides to "Capitalism", it usually works when those doing the creative and physical work stand to directly benefit from those efforts.
                If you really want to work in a haunted house for nothing I am sure you could do that for almost everyone who has their name on Hauntworld.
                I can always use help.
                Yes, haunting can be tough but how tough is it doing the same work for nothing or a fraction of what you should be making and have made by yourself?
                You and your energy, knowledge, sound like the asset, they sound like a liability, maybe too tired to do it themselves?


                • #9



                  • #10
                    They want you to give them $ for having your haunt on the fairgrounds site which you would also have to pay. Not sure if I am missing something here but what are they bringing to the table? Seems you are paying them $, are paying $250 a day for renting the grounds and they are not giving anything back.......
           Or if you need makeup or supplies

                    "I am a frickin evil genius who deserves some frickin respect!"


                    • #11
                      Yeah, it sounds a little iffy. One of the disadvantages you'll also face is a serious lack of creative control. I serve as an independent contractor for a non-profit haunt that went belly up, so I came in, restarted it, and helped lift this event to their best seasons in 12 years.

                      That being said, once they got their feet back on the ground and some $$ in their pocket, suddenly they feel like they can do things the way it used to be done. And it can't. So if you don't really care about theming or style but just simply to scare...enjoy. But I imagine you do this for more than just the money, and us creative types do this because we love it AND enjoy the control of doing something in a way that makes sense to us.

                      Unless they have more to offer, I'd keep what you have. Doesn't sound like a good deal to me either.
                      SHADOWS HAUNTED ATTRACTION


                      • #12
                        I had a smiliar situation a couple of years back where a local organization wanted to being me in to help breath life back into what used to be a good haunt.

                        We met and everything was ok at first but then they wouldn't let me make any changes... They wanted to do everything the same way they had for 20 years but expected me to bring in more people to see it...

                        I spilt and never returned
                        Come see what lies BENEATH!