Fire destroys Professor Cline’s Haunted Monster Museum and Dark Maze

Professor Cline's Haunted Monster Museum & Dark Maze

Professor Cline's Haunted Monster Museum & Dark Maze, September 2009

I’m so sad to have to report that a fire on April 16, 2012 destroyed Mark Cline’s creation, “Professor Cline’s Haunted Monster Museum & Dark Maze.”  There is no word yet on the cause, however, the haunted house was closed for the season, and the electricity had been shut off.  The fire is being investigated.  Unfortunately, this is not the first fire to Mark’s work.  There was a suspicious fire at his studio in Natural Bridge in 2001 which destroyed many of his personal items and memorabilia about his remarkable career as a fiberglass artist and inveterate prankster.

In fact, I first met at the gates of the Haunted Monster Museum in 2004.  We had corresponded via email over our common interests in roadside attractions, in particular the old Enchanted Forest amusement park to which we had both gone as children.  I signed up for his HauntFest, a convention of people running haunted house attractions.  I checked into the cottages next to the parking lot of the haunted house, and was admiring the fantastic gate, when I heard a pickup truck rumbling down the access road to the right of the gate.  The truck stopped very near where I was standing, and it unnerved me a little bit.  I watched as tall, lanky guy in a fedora jumped out and yelled, “Julie!” at me.  I knew it must be Mark Cline.  I said, I guess you know who I am already.  “Of course,” he replied.  “I’d recognize a fellow weirdo anywhere!”

What I liked about Professor Cline’s Haunted Monster Museum and Dark Maze was that for a haunted house, it was amazingly lighthearted and funny.  Mark always wants people to have a good time, which is why he offers a “chicken exit” for people who are uncomfortable, and also offers a scare-free version for children upon request.

Here are some photos of the haunted house that I have accumulated over several visits. I don’t have many of the interior, except for two that I took in 2004 during HauntFest, when a lights-on tour of the house was conducted for attendees.  But I also didn’t want to ruin the surprise for anyone who hoped to visit the haunted house some day.  But I’m afraid an arsonist may have ruined it for everybody.

The gate to the Haunted Monster Museum during the casket races.  April 2004

The gate to the Haunted Monster Museum during the casket races. April 2004

Detail of Professor Cline's Haunted Monster Museum & Dark Maze, September 2009

Detail of Professor Cline's Haunted Monster Museum & Dark Maze, September 2009

Dog house on the front porch of the haunted house.

Dog house on the front porch of the haunted house. Just another example of Mark's wacky sense of humor. April 2004

Detail over front door of the haunted house. June 2010

Detail over front door of the haunted house. June 2010

Interior detail. April 2004

Interior detail. April 2004

Chicken exit (from the inside)

Chicken exit (from the inside). This is the best I could do, since I was running through the haunted house with a tour group. April 2004

Chicken exit (from the outside)

Chicken exit (from the outside). Some people just love the big chicken. September 2005

 

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