It just might be the bargain of a lifetime. For five dollars, you can take a Trip to Hell.
The Trip to Hell is an annual Halloween event sponsored by 200 to 300 teenage volunteers affiliated with the Church of the North Coast in Lorain. Money raised from Trip-goers is used to fund the Church's youth program.
Not your average scary romp, the Trip to Hell depicts scenes of real-life hellish situations.
"We have a suicide scene, a drug deal scene, an abortion scene," Denise Childers, a volunteer who works on the Trip to Hell every year, said. "The teenagers we work with live this stuff every day. The whole point and purpose of this is to show people that there are other ways, it doesn't have to be like this."
If you decide to take a Trip to Hell, you will be led by a Grim Reaper through a "haunted" forest. "Of course, there's some stuff that's just meant to scare you, people in masks and stuff, but then it's like a mini play," Childers said. People on the Trip meet characters and follow them through hellish realities.
"We don't beat them up; it's not like they make these choices and then we show them getting beaten in hell," Childers said of the character depiction. "We just show the difficulties and hardships that these kinds of actions can cause."
At the end of the Trip a volunteer addresses participants, saying that people can make different choices. Then participants go one by one into a room, where they must choose a door out of which to exit. One door says Heaven, "if you know you're going to Heaven; there's a door that says Hell if you think you're going to hell and you really don't care and there's a door with a question mark on it, for people who aren't sure and maybe they want to pray or to talk to someone."
Childers also said that the Trip to Hell has had a great impact on people who go through it. "A lot of people's lives are changed," she said.
You can take a Trip to Hell tonight, from the time it gets dark until 1 a.m. Cost of admission is five dollars, and the Trip is located on Yaeger road just off Route 58.
Copyright © 1997, The Oberlin Review.
Volume 126, Number 7, October 31, 1997
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