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EMAILS & STORIES
This section of our site is devoted to emails about the Haunted Mansion or our site. If you
have any intriguing stories about the mansion, please email
them to us so we can include them here.
a thrill it is to find this site. growing up over in Eatontown,
(1959-1987) the LB boardwalk was my life...and once the mansion
opened I went often.
Always a huge monster and makeup fan,
I eventually made friends with Mansion Actor Doug Clayton.
Long story short, I ended up as his
partner in the costume shop in Red Bank from 83-86. We
had many many mansion folks in and out of there, especially Elaine
VanDevelde. Sure would like to find her again.
Anyway, I now run a haunted House
myself. Castle Blood just finished its 16th season out here
south of Pittsburgh and I build haunts around the world. All
you need do is look at the makeup of my actors all these many years
later, to see where my styles come from. You'll
see them on our TV show as well. Midnight Monster Hop
Right here in my office at Castle
Blood, there is a Haunted Mansion pennant, as well as a coloring
book. No matter where I am,
and no matter where I haunt, I am a Jersey shore haunt kid
Ricky Dick aka Gravely MacCabre
came across your site after Googling "Haunted Mansion" .
This past Halloween I was doing Day of the Dead / skull makeup for
guests and serving staff at a big fancy affair at the local Hyatt
Regency, and when folks asked me how I learned to do makeup, my mind
started skipping down memory lane, thinking of my youth at the Long
I'm an alumni from 1979-1980, hired
by Liz. I remember making $3.10 an hour, sometimes working double
shifts! I was terrified to open in the mornings and to walk through
the deserted tableaus... shudder! Being 5'3", I was the perfect
size for the "Headless" chair, that's often where I would
end up. Not a bad place to catch a nap, actually, although the
coffin was better! One night there was a terrible storm, and we
could feel the whole pier shaking. My "doctor" (I think it
was Lauren Parnes) said she was going to go to the dressing room and
see if the rumours that we were closing early were true... she
promised she'd be right back, but it seemed like HOURS. By the time
she did return with Dave Bass (the Headless Woman could not unlock
the contraption herself to be released) the whole building seemed to
be rocking from the force of the storm, and the whole time I was
alone I'd had macabre fantasies about drowning while still locked in
I was a "healthy girl" and
often I would hear patrons say, "Hey! Her legs weren't that big
LAST time we came through!" I would flip the bird in
self-defense, only to hear a patron shout, "How can she hear me
if she ain't got no EARS?" And of course a quick
"doctor" would say, "She hears what you say through
vibrations transferred through the blood tubes" or
"through the tips of her sensitive fingers". and of course
then we'd get lots of comments about my inability to perform certain
One night I told Liz my parents would
be coming through, and she let me run around as an "extra"
so I could follow them. It was a busy night and I had to really look
for them but once I caught sight, I let some cast members know my
mom's name, and they passed it around.
Donna White, a diminutive woman, took
it upon herself to follow close on my mother's heels hissing her
name. "EMMMily! EMMMMMily!" My mother became more and more
terrified and I had reports that she almost lashed out at a couple
of actors. This was verified by the time she got to the back door,
when someone told me "You'd better get over there, I'm afraid
your mom's gonna slug Dave!"
I got there to find her terrified and
crying, with Mr. Bass keeping his distance and my dad trying to calm
her down. I walked up to her and said, "MOM! It's me, Glinda!"
and she promptly popped me one right on the jaw! I still see stars
when I think of it. And I don't think she's ever really forgiven me.
Viewing the photos on the website was
an amazing experience - people that were so great to me as a shy kid
working there. Elaine Van de Velde and Kat.! Seeing their faces was
just great. And did anyone know that former employee Matt Kasten is
now an Emmy-winning hair & makeup artist for Mad-TV???
Anyway thanks for the wonderful
memories. I can still smell the makeup, salt spray and pizza
Long Island, NY
few months ago I decided to return to Long Branch for the first time
in at least 25 years to see if it would stir up any childhood
memories. My grandparents owned a house a few blocks from the
boardwalk on Pavilion Avenue so most of my early childhood summers
were spent in Long Branch. I have fond memories of the boardwalk,
the arcades, Big Al's lemonade, the waterslide and of course the
Haunted Mansion. We were sure to visit the Haunted Mansion at least
once each summer and I can distinctly remember the ghoul in front
waving us in, the creepy music (thanks for having it on your
website), the headless woman, Lizzy Borden's room, the huge swinging
pendulum ax and the tunnel of rattails. My grandparents sold their
house in 1979 and we only returned a few times in the early 80's. I
do remember when the live actors no longer terrified us and I
vaguely remember hearing about the fire that destroyed it all.
Although my visit didn't bring back the memories that I was hoping
for, I did find your site and the great photos of the boardwalk and
The Haunted Mansion. Thank you for keeping memories of a great place
during a great time alive. I have attached a picture of a family
"heirloom" that hung in our family's bathroom for many
mansion was the best. My family and I are from Long Island and
I remember my parents, my brother and I going to the Haunted
Mansion. The best thing I
think was that they used live people to scare their guests instead
of cheap mannequins. It made it more interactive.
After the fire I had hoped they would
have built it up again.
I also remember water rides right
outside of the mansion.
worked at Mansion for three seasons, I believe it was 79, 80 and 81.
My name is Michael Principato but some knew me as Prince. That was
the best job I ever had!!! I remember people like Lil, Backdoor
Dave, Donna, Jimmy Hrynowski, Kelly Anne Dick, Jackie, Deborah
Mathews and her sister or sister in-law. The hours were long but a
lot of fun. I remember a lot of the people being fun to work with
and sincere about helping you with any problem you had.
I have since moved to Ohio...ok that
sucks but I have been trying to recreate what was done in Long
Branch. They do not know how to do a Haunted House out here. If
anyone wants to try let me know. Since the haunted Mansion days I
have traveled with my magic show around the country and the
Caribbean and am know still performing and teaching High School. I
would like to know what Dave Bass is doing at the Middle School. I
would like to hear from all that worked at the Haunted Mansion back
then. Here is my email: email@example.com
BOY those were some partying days!!!
come on this site about every 3-4 months to see if you guys post any
new pics, stories etc. It always puts a smile on my face. The Long
Branch Haunted Mansion was the one of the big 3 that is the one that
is most near and dear to me. Going there as a child was always
great. I can remember seeing the Mansion from what seemed like miles
away. I know it wasn't that big in actuality but to me as a child,
it was the biggest building in the world. I miss the boardwalk so
much! I want so badly to bring my son there and show him my past. I
get angry whenever I pass that stupid mall that is there now. The
Mansion/Boardwalk should be back.
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