In 1912, Dr. Jeremiah Wiard founded the Wiard's Asylum as an alternative to the cold, stark institutions run by the state. All was well in the beginning: The patients behaved, the staff was friendly and the grounds were well kept. But, as time went by, the mood changed, and asylum became a dangerous place for both patients and staff. Concerned family members removed their loved ones until only the criminally insane were left. Security decreased as the staff began to quit. During this period Dr. Wiard also began to go through personal changes. His grip on reality slipped. For several days he didn’t come to work, and his assistant went to check on him at home. When he arrived, he found the front door open and blood on the porch. As he entered the home, he found Dr. Wiard's family laying on the living room floor, each of them dissected with their skin pinned back. Dr. Wiard was standing in the corner, glassy-eyed and mumbling to himself.
Jeremiah Wiard was made a ward of his own asylum, which eventually fell into ruin. One fateful night a storm knocked out the power and the building went black. Neighbors heard screams coming from the asylum but there was no light to see what was happening. At daybreak, the police arrived to find the building empty with no signs of any crime. No one was inside and no one was ever found there again.
Since that date, the old asylum has been abandoned. But recently, strange lights and cries have been coming from the building, and neighbors have reported pet mutilations, destruction to property and unknown footprints on their lawns.
You're thinking of going in there? Are you crazy?
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As the story goes, fifty years or so ago, thieves were looting the orchard barn when a hungry bear wandered in, looking for a midnight snack. Little did he know he'd found more than just the fresh apples to satisfy his appetite. The bear blocked the only way out of the barn and the thieves were trapped among the crates of apples. They tried to scare him off, but the bear tore them limb from limb until there was no way to tell shredded flesh from the shredded apples the bear went for next.
Once his stomach was full, and his lips were wet with blood and juice, the bear lumbered off into the night. By the time the orchard workers found the bodies, the stench was putrid. They decided that since there was no means of identifying the thieves, and they didn’t want to draw attention to the tragedy, they buried the remains in the floor and sealed the barn until time erased the memory of this gruesome event.
Years later, the barn was opened again, its’ dark history long forgotten. Workers didn't think anything of the odd noises and flickering lights to begin with but then the whispers and screams came.
The thieves never escaped their fate... will you?
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On a summer day over a century ago, Mr. Ravensblud came looking for work, claiming he could eliminate the orchard’s problematic crows. “All that I ask in return is somewhere to build a workshop,” he told Mr. Wiard. “My scarecrows will cure your problems, youʼll see.”
Mr. Ravensblud began placing his scarecrows around the property. They did the trick, reducing the scarecrow population to almost nothing. But, one afternoon while walking the property, the groundskeeper noticed one of the scarecrows bore a strong resemblance to a local woman who had recently gone missing. He figured it was just a coincidence, but that night decided to peek through the workshop window.
Inside he saw a young man in shackles. Ravensblud was wearing a black cloak and a blood-soaked scarecrow mask and muttering in an unknown language, waving a staff at his hostage. The young manʼs skin rippled and took on the appearance of burlap while his face went lifeless. Just at that moment, a branch below the groundskeeper’s foot snapped. Ravensblud quickly vanished from sight and re-appeared next to him.
“It would seem that your curiosity got the best of you,” he hissed. “If only you had just been satisfied that Iʼd kept my end of the bargain…”
In the morning the groundskeeper was nowhere to be found, but a fresh new scarecrow was perched high in the field towering above the rest. The workshop remained shuttered and dark until just recently, when orchard workers report seeing strange lights and hearing incantations muttered on the wind.
Has Ravensblud returned to grow his collection of souls? Are you foolish enough to find out?
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In the gold rush years, Mr Wiard's cousin thought California was a long haul and paid Mr Wiard for land rights to search for precious metals on orchard property. He was a stingy man who did everything as cheaply as possible, even when it came to safety. One night, a bad storm ripped through the area, causing flash flooding. The water roared through the mineshaft, knocking out all the poorly-built supports. There was no time to warn anyone, and all that floated up were a few of the miners’ caps.
After the waters finally receded, the stench was overpowering. Water-logged corpses littered the mineshaft, but the prospector was determined to get his precious metals out. He ventured in with a small crew but never found his fortunes. Halfway down the ceiling caved and crushed half the crew while trapping the rest. They were far enough down that nobody heard their cries until it was too late.
So, what about you? Going to try and find the lost fortunes?
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A century ago, a circus came through town. The sideshow had the usual attractions, including a bearded lady, conjoined twins and a strong man, plus a tent advertising "Alien Clowns." Mr. Wiard was intrigued. Illuminated by lamplight, he saw creatures that looked not quite human. On closer inspection, their mangled features were crudely painted with clown makeup.
Mr. Wiard found the circus owner, who told him that the alien clowns were discovered in a South American cave and that the sideshow was having trouble keeping them fed. "Cattle, goats, cats... if it bleeds they'll eat it, but it’s hard to find food for them on the road. If you were interested I could be easily persuaded to hand them over to you. I wouldn’t mind getting them off my hands.”
Mr. Wiard accepted the offer, figuring they would be an interesting oddity to bring travelers to the orchard, while also reducing the local rodent population. Soon locals and travelers alike came to marvel at the terrifying beasts.
On a dare, one of the orchard employees jumped into their enclosure. The largest of the “aliens” sniffed him head to toe before sinking a claw straight through his chest. After the pack descended, all that was left was bloody fabric and bone. Mr. Wiard permanently closed the exhibit. But he believed the creatures were too rare to destroy, and they have lived, in secret, on the property ever since. Some brave thrill-seekers have snuck in — and never come out.
Are you curious about this hidden exhibit too?
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It was a dry day in July, 1922 when the well for the farmhands living on the orchard grounds came up empty. Panicked, the farmhands found a new source of water, working for days breaking up the rock to reach it. They moved their camp to surround this new oasis.
Unbeknownst to them, the water was saturated with mercury and parasites. Their hair, teeth and nails started to fall out, and they began twitching and losing feeling in their limbs. They stopped showing up for work. When Mr. Wiard came around to check on the camp, most of the farmhands had gone insane. Those who hadn't died from the poisoning were scratching their skin bloody and playing among the corpses.
Walls were quickly assembled to quarantine the survivors, who were becoming more aggressive by the minute. Mr. Wiard enlisted the help of a local gunsmith to devise a weapon to administer breakable capsules filled with non-lethal sedatives, but the survivors began to multiply. Since then it has been a matter of constant vigilance in the event that they returnhon. Any able-bodied person is appreciated in keeping watch.
Ready to join our number? Hone your skills with our fully-automated shooting gallery.
*Due to pro-zombie lobbyists new government regulations no longer allow us to shoot actual zombies
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