Walter Knott’s concept for a ghost town became a reality in 1940. Because the chicken restaurant was so successful, Mr. Knott wanted to build a ghost town to entertain the guests who visited the restaurant as well as pay tribute to the early pioneers of the west. At the suggestion of artist Paul von Klieben, Walter Knott’s first step in building the Ghost Town began by purchasing a hotel in Prescott, Arizona which had been built in 1868. He then brought the hotel from Arizona to Buena Park, and added other buildings gradually to the park. Throughout the early years of Knott’s Berry Farm’s existence, the chicken restaurant and the Ghost Town defined the park.
From the Blacksmith to the Saloon, the Ghost Town is full of meaning and authenticity. Once the 1970’s rolled around, the focus shifted from the old west to the famous thrill rides. Nowadays, the Ghost Town can be viewed as a historical-type of museum which can remind visitors not only of the early pioneer days of the west, but of how Knott’s Berry Farm started. Throughout the history of Knott’s Berry Farm, practically every part of the park has been altered in some way except for the heart of the Ghost Town. The Ghost Town is rich in history, style, and ambiance…thus making it an absolutely perfect setting for the Halloween Haunt.
The Ghost Town is where the Haunt started in 1973. Almost three decades ago, a few Halloween decorations were spread out through the Ghost Town and a few employees wearing masks walked the streets. Today, the Ghost Town is basically the epicenter of Knott’s Scary Farm. As the Ghost Town defined Knott’s Berry Farm in its early years, it now defines the park during the Haunt. From School House Road to Calico Square, the Ghost Town moves from "alive and booming" to "dead and booming" come every October.
During the Haunt, the cursed grounds at Boot Hill begin to breathe as the ghosts of gunslingers, cowboys, miners and can-can girls take shape to haunt this innocent park. The bartender in the saloon appears to be a victim of a poker game gone bad over 150 years ago…but it’s only in October when he serves drinks again. The Calico Sheriff and Mayor are two government officials who will literally suck the blood right outta ya’. Zombie miners and bandits wreak havoc on all who cross their paths. Be very wary of any of the half human/half beast creatures that stalk the streets….they are out for their next meal…live meat. The only business that seems to do well in October is the Funeral Parlor. The Undertaker is out in the streets taking all of his "necessary measurements" to make sure you have a comfortable stay at the Haunt. There is nowhere to run to in the Ghost Town during the Haunt. The ghouls and goblins from all of the years past dedicate their deaths to one sole purpose…to terrify anyone and everyone who set foot in Calico. Watch your sides, and watch your backs. Not one living soul is safe in Calico.
We now invite you to view some wonderfully gruesome pictures of one of the main factors (if not THE main factor) in the Ghost Town……The Ghost Town Street Monsters. Just as with the rest of this site, this section will continue to grow. If you think that these monsters look scary in these pictures, you have no clue what you are in for when you see them in person.