Maryland Institute College of Art will have to save its ghosts and ghouls for next year.
The college’s annual haunted house, which has been a student-run production for more than five years and was scheduled to open tonight, has been canceled due to fire code violations, said Derek Parsons, a MICA spokesman.
The MICA Haunted House Club was planning on inviting guests to the college’s BBOX theater for an terrifying backwoods-themed Halloween house, where each room took on a popular urban legend. However, a fire marshal made an unexpected visit last night and spotted violations, Parsons said.
Baltimore Fire Department Chief Roman Clark wasn’t aware of the specific incident incident, but said such incidents are common with haunted houses.
“We go through this every year [during] Halloween,” Clark said.
The students, who designed and built the house during their recent five-day fall break, are devastated, Parsons said.
“They hadn’t seen this coming. They were kind of blindsided by it,” said Parsons.
Making the changes needed to fix the violations and open the haunted house would be too costly and would likely take all weekend, Parsons said. The students have also already spent their entire budget on decorations, costumes and makeup, he said.
“They were surely anticipating an opening today, so all the work that they were putting in will not see the light of day, unfortunately.”