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Sunday, October 11, 2015
By +Scott Leffler

For seven days starting Oct. 23, Lockport's Historic Palace Theatre is being turned into the "Palace of Terror: Theatre of Screams," a world class haunted house promising patrons a scary good time.

The Palace served as a haunted house for several years before a five-year reprieve, which ended in 2014. The 2014 revival, however, was done on the quick, while this year's experience has been in the planning stages for months under the direction of Palace regulars Jon May and Jim Niwinski.

In all, there are nearly 50 people working to turn Lockport's downtown attraction from a professional theater into a professional haunt -- complete with 14 rooms of fright

May said he and Niwinski have worked on a number of professional haunts in Western New York over the past few years, including Frightworld, Dark Raven Manor, and District of the Dead, as both managers and actors.

May said the Palace transformation "is not a neighborhood garage haunt where a couple of sheets and some masks will suffice. ... the Palace is a grand old building with a long, rich and real history of its own."

The Palace has had its own hauntings reported over the years. "I have experienced a few weird, unexplained things myself and so have most people who work there," May said.

"With so many props, sets and costumes already in the building, we feel we have a great head start," May said. "It covers the entire building, upstairs, downstairs and backstage, including some areas that the public may never have seen before -- and after this year, may never want to set foot in again."

The "Palace of Terror: Theatre of Screams" runs from 7-10 p.m. Oct. 23, 24 and 26-30. Tickets are $10, however, $2-off coupons are available at Mills Jewelers, Niagara Produce and Sub Delicious. Additionally $2-off coupons are available for Town of Lockport residents in the town newsletter and on the town's website.

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