On Halloween night in North Hall from 7:00-10:00p.m., Haunted Hospital raised money and collected canned foods for charity, as well as terrified its participants through the haunted maze.
Since North Hall was formerly a hospital, Resident Director of North and Tamarac House Melanie Medina explained how Haunted Hospital incorporates the historic aspects of the building.
“We still do the classic scenes, like the Maternity Ward scene in what actually was the maternity ward when the building was the Walla Walla Valley General Hospital,” Medina said.
All of the money goes to a charity picked by the students involved. All of the food goes to Blue Mountain Action Council, a nonprofit food bank in Walla Walla.
Senior Alexander Hulse attested to the fundraiser’s success and commented on how it definitely has room for growth.
“Last year, as a tour guide, I got to see just how many people we unfortunately had to turn away at the door due to time constraints. All of the proceeds go to charity, so obviously it is not desirable to turn donors away. I would love to see the event maybe expand to two nights in order to allow for even greater fundraising and more guests.”
Over the years, Haunted Hospital has been an extremely successful fundraiser, but due to time and worker limitations, Haunted Hospital often has to turn away as many as 100 people. Because Haunted Hospital only happens on one night, and there are a limited amount of volunteers to act, be tour guides, and help setup; therefore, many eager participants and donors have to be turned away.
By expanding it to more than just a single night, even to perhaps more than one weekend, Haunted Hospital has the potential to not only scare hundreds of more people, but also collect more money to donate to charity or more food to donate to BMAC.
Hulse mentioned that despite the shortage of people involved, Haunted Hospital is an exciting event with even greater potential for improvement.
“It is quite incredible what we have been able to do already, and expanding it in these ways would make for something people would be talking about all year.”
Medina was in charge of making the Haunted Hospital incredible this year.
“Now, as the RD, I get to be the organizational force that makes sure the students have what they need to get that same joy and satisfaction for one night of the year. There’s a great cohort of residents who have lived in North for multiple years, or who keep coming back for this event every year, and are super into making the night the best it can be.”
One such Alum is class of 2015 Kaitlin Seiberlich who has been involved in Haunted Hospital for the time that it has been hosted at North Hall.
“When I lived here, I lived in North for a few years, so I did Haunted Hospital every year that North hosted it. The three years that I could, I was a part of it. I helped organize it last year and since sticking around, Melanie reached out to me and asked to help her organize it this year and I said that I’d be willing to.”
Haunted Hospital is a multi-leveled tour that takes its participants through various hospital rooms gone wrong. Incorporating not only the interior of North, but also the exterior, the tour goes through creepy fire escapes, haunted elevators, and eerie mazes.
Haunted Hospital is not only a place to be scared witless, but also an event that brings a community of alum, current Whitman students, and members of the Walla Walla community together for a night of terrifying fun.
“[Haunted Hospital] is where I discovered that there is a simple and very satisfying joy in scaring the pants off of your friends and neighbors,” Medina said.
Watch this video to get a taste of the Haunted Hospital experience.