Behind the Scenes – Scarywood

October 1, 2019.Jackie Charlebois.2 Likes.17 Comments

This Scarywood blog post won’t have my kids help in creating only because I want to keep them under this momma bears paws for just a little longer. Although, my oldest daughter, Lilly, did help me during my behind the scenes look at the makeup and exhibits at Scarywood. (Scarywood opens on October 3rd, 2019)

Do you remember the first horror movie you saw?? My first horror film was Carrie by Stephen King. I remember actually sitting with my mom, eating spaghetti O’s watching it on TV. The pig blood totally freaked me out, but what had me clinging to the ceiling was the moment her arm pushed through her grave and grabbed her friend. Those jump at you moments will always get my heart jumping to my eyeballs. But I have to admit – it can be fun having that element of surprise. And I think we ALL love seeing someone’s reaction to a scare moment. But I have always had a curiosity on HOW they actually created some of the most iconic moments in the horror genre. 

DID YOU KNOW: In the classic movie Psycho, by Alfred Hitchcock, for the shower scene, since the movie was shot in black & white, they used chocolate syrup as the blood draining in the tub.

A little fun fact about me. I am a movie lover. Nightmare On Elm Street, IT, The Shining, Dracula, The Exorcist. I am a fan of old classic horror movies. At least back in my younger days. I was actually raised on Stephen King and everything creepy he made back in the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s. In fact, I owe it all to him for the complete fear I have of clowns and old sewer drains. Back in my younger years, I had a dream and goal to become a special effects makeup artist.  I dreamed of being a makeup artist for Universal Studios during their Halloween season. I had a talent for making a person look creepy, gory, burned, dead, and monster-ish, whenever I had the opportunity, I would break out my tackle box filled with makeup, latex, special effects stuff, and fake blood. In fact, I learned how to create my first fake bullet hole when I was 10. Again, I think I would have to thank my mom for that little added twisted creative mind for the movie arts. Sadly, when I moved to Idaho, my movie magic and makeup days ended. 

DID YOU KNOW: In 2019 Scarywood has been operating for 10 years! I can’t wait to see what they have in store for the next decade! 

When I got the chance to do a behind the scenes for Scarywood, all that excitement came rushing back. There truly is magic in the making and being able to see how a “haunter” gets transformed from normal to creepy was very exciting. Scarywood doesn’t hold back either on their creativity and magic. 

When we arrived at Silverwood (as it’s undergoing a complete transformation into Scarywood), we were escorted to the Monster Warehouse where it was FILLED with costumes, masks, makeup stations, props and more. I think I drooled a little as we walked in! We were introduced to FX Manager Chris Russell – He is the mastermind behind most of the concepts that have made Scarywood the success it is today! He somehow convinced my daughter Lilly to transform into a creepy clown. Of course with my fear of clowns, he thought that would be a perfect choice! Much easier BEING a clown than seeing a clown – although, my daughter did look unstable and creepy!

DID YOU KNOW: The fear of clowns is called COULROPHOBIA

While I can’t give away all of Scarywood’s secrets – I can tell you this. They use the absolute best makeup in the industry. In fact, it’s the same makeup found in blockbuster movies such as “Hellboy” “Guardians of the Galaxy” and the hit tv show “The Walking Dead”.  On any given night the Scarywood team has roughly 200 haunters that must be in full costume and makeup before showtime. It is imperative to have the best makeup on hand that is full coverage, easily applicable and can withstand the lovely yet sometimes unpredictable North Idaho weather. I was surprised at how fast Chris created our clown look within minutes. He simply sprayed where he wanted the most coverage and then sprayed sponges or tools for any additional details. Not only was this quick-drying but also smelled like sour apples! Plus, this makeup doesn’t wash off in the water! In fact, it does the opposite – it hardens! 

*SNEAK PEEK:  A mask from the brand new attraction Dr. Deleriums 3D Rockhouse* 

After our makeup, we headed over to the costume department with Nicole to find the perfect costume to fit our creepy makeup. It was fun seeing us transform into this character. Lilly seemed more like a depressed clown where you felt you didn’t know if she was going to cry or go crazy on you. I looked like I was a clown that could do anything at any moment. It was fun to be in character and I could have “played” all day being creepy and silly. There is something freeing being a character.

The costume department at Silverwood has a costume for every haunter in Scarywood – zombies, clowns, mummies, and every other creature that gives us heart palpitations. 

Lilly says: “I went with my mom to help document and see some behind the scenes of Scarywood, thinking I would help take photos and write notes, but after meeting Chris, he wasted no time in getting us in the makeup chair and becoming a creepy character. When he asked my mom what her fear was, he knew he had to create me into a creepy clown. Although I kept telling my mom that she “owed me one”, I really had a great time being in makeup and being silly and creepy with her. This has gotten me really excited to visit Scarywood this year with my friends.”


You can visit Scarywood starting October 3rd! Here are a few things to know before your visit to Scarywood.

  • Scarywood is not recommended for any children under 13 years old. 
  • Costumes, masks or face painting are NOT permitted in Scarywood to ensure the protection of actors and guests.
  • Scarywood is a separate event and season passes cannot be used for entrance. You can save $10 on Scarywood admission on the opening weekend only, October 3rd, 4th & 5th, 2019, with your 2019 season pass. Just show your pass when buying your ticket at any ticket booth.
  • All haunted attractions will be the same regardless of the day you come.
  • Some of the rides are open for Scarywood. Visit their rides page for a list of rides that are operating. (Aftershock will not be open during Scarywood)
  • You will not be allowed to leave the park and be readmitted at any time during your visit to Scarywood.
  • Select food vendors will be open during Scarywood.



Don’t forget to check #scarecam to see if your picture made it on ScareCam

After our little Scarywood tour and adventure, it was time for me to put back on my “mom hat”. Which means picking up kids from school, making dinner, and soccer practice. Lilly and I were warned to NOT get the makeup wet so it will then harden and become waterproof. There is a certain way to remove the product. Lady friends – if you have ever used Lipsense – it is kind of like that. Incredible staying power and there is no – just wipe it off. I didn’t have time to run home and try to remove my clown face, so I embraced my character and happily drove to the school to do pick up. Keep in mind that I am also the carpool mom, so I am picking up other kids. I knew this was going to get interesting. What I did not expect was the concerned looks from the homeowners in the neighborhood.  As much as I tried to smile and wave – it still looked creepy. Besides making one little kiddo cling his mom’s leg, most of the little kiddos just stared and called me scary. – Almost seemed like a typical day! 

About the Author:

Hello! My name is Jackie. I am married to a handsome handyman, and I’m the proud momma of 5 kids. About 12 years ago, I started my photography business, Jax Creations Photography. Last year, I started a family website called Wanderful Memories. I use this site to share ways other families can document moments in life through travel and lifestyle. A fun fact about me is that I love to cook/bake for others, and I throw a great dance party in the kitchen (when no one is around to watch my awesome dance moves, of course)! There are many parts of Silverwood that I enjoy, but if I had to narrow it down, it would be riding the Tilt-a-Whirl with my boys. I love to hear them belly laugh! My family enjoys visit Silverwood multiple times during the summer with season passes — it is the perfect way to split up the summer days by visiting the water park or getting their adrenaline going on a roller coaster.

Scarywood Giveaway

Categories: Tips

Comments (17)

  • Katelin Quezada . October 1, 2019 . Reply

    My favorite part of scarywood is going on tremors roller coaster backwards! Would love to go this year!

  • Amy R . October 1, 2019 . Reply

    Thanks for the info!

  • Abby E. . October 3, 2019 . Reply

    So interesting! Great to see this behind the scenes perspective!

  • Teresa . October 3, 2019 . Reply

    Cool article!

  • Katelin Quezada . October 3, 2019 . Reply

    I would love to go to scarywood

  • Tiara . October 3, 2019 . Reply

    Good info!

  • Leah Grant . October 3, 2019 . Reply

    Very cool!

  • Natasha . October 3, 2019 . Reply

    It would be so cool to go behind the scenes like this!

  • Holly Durham . October 3, 2019 . Reply

    Nice blog! Great background info on the park and you too.

  • deadtill10 . October 3, 2019 . Reply

    looks like fun

  • groovybug . October 3, 2019 . Reply

    Cool details! and nice giveaway!

  • Nathanl . October 3, 2019 . Reply

    Great info.. it was awsome to see what it takes to make something this great come alive. Great job!!

  • Zoe Reed . October 4, 2019 . Reply

    Love going to Scarywood! So excited for the new attraction

  • Michelle . October 5, 2019 . Reply

    Wanna get scared!!!???

  • Hans . October 5, 2019 . Reply

    Thank you! This is awesome

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