BLACKSBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – In Cherokee County, the haunted attraction Booger Jim’s Hollow has fear-filled entertainment for all ages, allowing families to bring children, young and old, for a good scare.
“One night him and his wife got into it. It’s like something in his mind had snapped and he ended up beating his wife to death. In the process of that, his kid was crying and screaming ‘Daddy stop!'” Farnsworth explained. “He ended up shutting his kid up and murdering his child. When he realized what he’d done he couldn’t live with himself any more. So we went and hung himself off the bridge they call Booger Jim’s Bridge.”
Farnsworth started Booger Jim’s Hollow in 2006. It was originally just one trail, the Trail of Screams.
Over the last 14 years, Farnsworth grew the business into a haunted trail and two haunted houses with more than 40 employees.
He said while being scary is important, but safety is key.
“I tell my employees, ‘First thing we got customer safety, your safety and then we got people being scared,'” Farnsworth said. “I take safety very seriously here.”
Lisa Arrorwood plays The Nun at Booger Jim’s. She said she has worked at the attraction for several years.
“It’s a safe place where you can bring your family. There’s no drugs, no alcohol,” Arrorwood said.
She added that families tend to make Booger Jim’s a traditional outting.
Booger Jim’s manager Christopher Lawter plays The Doctor. He said that since the actors can touch you, safety applies to everyone, even the actors.
“We’re actually real people. We’re not actually monsters and stuff. So [customers] don’t have to like hit us and all that other stuff,” Lawter said.
Farnsworth said they have a zero tolerance policy for violence. Before attendees can be scared in any house, wavers must be signed. The actors watch for trouble makers.
If you don’t want the actors to touch you, there are ways to avoid it. And the actors do follow those rules.
On the other hand, those who come to the hollow need to practice safety themselves.
Kortney Moore plays Lucy the Tortured Child. She recalled how one visitor kept his eyes closed the entire time, and how that put him in danger when he started running into things.
“His girlfriend was like ‘Open your eyes! Open your eyes!’ and he was not opening his eyes,” Moore said. “He ran straight into it and then he came back out and he was just, you know, looking like that. We were making sure he was ok. ‘Are you good?’ And he still wouldn’t look.”
Over all, Arrowood, Farnsworth, Lawter and Moore said the houses and trail are all good fun.
Farnsworth said their only issue is one that cannot be fixed, but is funny to have.
“Kids are the hardest ones to scare. We’ve had grown people, men, run. I’ve had grown people pee themselves. But the kids are typically, a lot of the time, they’re tougher than the adults are,” Farnworth said.
Farnsworth said attendance for his attraction can be as many as 600 people.
The business to scare goes on, rain or shine, and he does offer discounts for VIP members.