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August 29th, 2005

Brigantine Castle

When I was a kid, I remember being at the shore and seeing commercials for Brigantine Castle, a set-up in the nearby shoretown of Brigantine where live actors waited throughout the castle dressed up in costumes and scared the crap out of anyone that walked through. I recall even the commercials scaring me and thinking, “Wow, I can’t wait until I’m old enough to go into Brigantine Castle and not be too scared!”

Alas, I never went. But a visit to the shore this weekend reminded me of this commercial, so I did a little checking on this new thing called The Internet to see what others remembered of the commercial and the place.

Haunted Attraction Magazine has a nice piece about the castle from a visitors perspective and also talks about some of the rules the actors had to follow. Tell me that this description of one of the rooms doesn’t sound creepy: “Several sideshow optical illusions were used in the castle including the ‘headless woman.’ In this room, the body of a live woman sat in a chair. Tubes protruded from her neck, which hid two mirrors, creating the illusion that she had no head. She would constantly reach at the ‘doctor’ tending her. The doctor would constantly push the head away, behaving as if this was nothing but an annoyance that this headless woman kept grabbing at her.”

Frightscape has some great old pictures, including some “after” shots of the area after the castle burned down in 1987.

Dark in the Park has even more “after” shots.

Looking at the pictures and articles makes me wish that the castle had lived on it. It looks like it was quite a treasure and would have been a heck of a lot of fun to visit, even if I still would be a little scared by the “rat room.”

Posted in Childhood Memories

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