This weekend, Dawsonville’s haunted house alternative, “Hell’s Gates”, will officially open for its 2021 season at Lighthouse Baptist Church.
According to Hell’s Gates representative Matthew Blackstock, the attraction takes attendees through nine scenes of what the end times could be like, according to the Biblical book of Revelation.
“Hell’s Gates is a walk through tour; it is nine scenes that go through the end times,” Blackstock said. “It’s about an hour walk through, and there’s lots of pyrotechnics, special effects, fires, explosions, stuff like that.”
Blackstock said that participants follow two characters, Sarah and Hugo, along their journey through each of the different scenes.
“The husband and wife are going through this in different ways, so they go through nine scenes and you basically take the journey with them all the way through the judgement seat and into the final scene which is basically like a brief picture of Heaven,” Blackstock said.
Lighthouse Baptist Church began Hell’s Gates 11 years ago, and after having to cancel the 2020 season due to COVID-19 the attraction is now back for its tenth year with all-new videos and scenes.
“We switch it a good bit every year; this year every single video has been recreated and several different scenes have been changed and moved around,” Blackstock said. “So the story line is a little bit different than it has been in the past, just based on current events and we try to keep it up to date and everything, so there’s been a good bit of changes since 2019.”
Blackstock said that he and other Hell’s Gates organizers are very excited to begin this year’s season, and that he would encourage anyone who’s interested to come and check it out.
“Some of the reviews we get are ‘life-changing’, ‘eye-opening’ — we call it a haunted house alternative so while everybody’s kind of in the Halloween mood there’s kind of some alternatives to haunted houses,” Blackstock said. “It’s an event where you can go and hear truth but also have that fall spirit, get a little bit of a scare and it’s built off of Bible truth, so I think that people are gonna be able to enjoy something that is really a picture of the end times and it oddly correlates with current day as well.”
Blackstock said that not only are he and other event organizers excited, but Hell’s Gates attendees are already excited for it to open too.
“We have seen more pre-sold tickets than any year prior to my knowledge, so we’re looking for a huge year,” Blackstock said. “So we’re really excited about it.”
He added that the church is still making sure to remain cautious of COVID-19, implementing smaller group sizes and making sure to give attendees space to spread out a little more.
Hell’s Gates will run for three consecutive weekends, Friday through Sunday, beginning on Friday Oct. 22 and ending on Sunday Nov. 7. Tickets can be purchased online in advance to reserve a specific time slot, and Blackstock said that while walk-up tickets are available, those purchasing them in person on the night of the event may not end up in the time slot they want so could end up waiting for a little longer.
For more information about Hell’s Gates or to purchase tickets, go to https://www.hellsgates.com/.