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A scary way to amuse yourself

Silverwood Theme Park turns into Scarywood this October, which means some attractions will be modified to be extra scary, everything from the steam locomotive to the Thunder Canyon ride.  (Courtesy photo)
Silverwood Theme Park turns into Scarywood this October, which means some attractions will be modified to be extra scary, everything from the steam locomotive to the Thunder Canyon ride. (Courtesy photo)

Silverwood Theme Park extends season with Scarywood Haunted Nights

Think the Timber Terror, Aftershock and the other roller coasters at Silverwood Theme Park are scary? You haven’t seen scary yet, not the kind that the big North Idaho amusement park plans to dole out this fall.

Come nightfall on October weekends, Silverwood becomes Scarywood Haunted Nights, with the park turned into one big thrill seeker’s paradise, with haunted attractions mixed with the wild rides.

“On a scale of one to five, with five being the scariest, this will definitely be a five,” said Nancy DiGiammarco, director of marketing and sales at Silverwood. “It will be terrifying.”

The park shifts to Scarywood the first weekend in October—Friday, Oct. 1, to be precise—and will be open Thursday through Saturday evenings through the month. The week before Halloween, the park opens on Wednesday night and each night through Saturday. On weekday nights, the park will be open from 6-10 p.m. On Friday and Saturday nights, it stays open till midnight.

Silverwood introduced Scarywood last October, with day and night hours and a handful of horror-themed attractions. The park is cutting the day hours—called Scary Days—this year, improving some of its attractions and adding new features.

Most notably, Silverwood is converting its old museum building near the ice palace into a haunted attraction. The park brought in consultants to help make the elaborate new attraction a creepy addition to its October offerings. The Blood Bayou will open with the rest of the Scarywood attractions on Oct. 1.

As happened last year, the park will drain its Thunder Canyon white-water rapids ride and turn it into Terror Canyon Trail. Thrill seekers will be able to walk through the meandering basin—about a 15-minute walk, according to DiGiammarco —and subject themselves to horrors around every turn.

The big steam engine that goes through Silverwood and normally gives visitors an entertaining view of the park and its surroundings will be converted into the Zombiewood Express, a fortified zombie-hunting machine that will take passengers on an action-packed battle in the woods.

Finally, a number of scare zones will be set up in unannounced locations throughout the park.

“You never know when someone is going to pop out and give you a scare,” she said.

Several of Silverwood’s adult rides will remain open, and a roller-coaster ride at night in rural North Idaho can be scary in its own right.

The horror content of the park’s scare attractions will be the equivalent of a PG-13 movie rating and isn’t intended for small children or grade-schoolers. The demographic attracted to the park last year primarily was ages 13 to 36. However, plenty of older adults enjoyed the attractions as well.

In September, before the Scarywood attraction comes to life, the amusement-ride portion of Silverwood and the attractions will remain open on Saturdays and Sundays. Boulder Beach closes for the season after Labor Day weekend.

On Labor Day weekend, however, the park hosts the 10th annual Coaster Classic Car Show. Held on the back grassy area paralleling the airstrip, the car show routinely draws up to 400 classic cars, with a heavy representation by the Inland Empire Late Great Chevy Club.

The second weekend of the month, Sept. 11 and 12, is Grandparents’ Weekend. That weekend, a grandma or grandpa receives free admission with the paid admission of a grandchild.

Also, weekends from Sept. 11 through the end of the month, is a customer appreciation weekend and food drive. Each person who brings two cans of food receives half-priced admission. Silverwood has held similar food drives the past two years and has donated six-plus tons of food to local food banks yearly.

“The park is great draw in the fall,” DiGiammarco said. “It’s a great family value.”

Silverwood Theme Park is located along U.S. 95, about 15 miles north of Coeur d’Alene. Regular admission is $41.99 for adults and youth, $21.99 for children 3 to 7 years old and for seniors 65 years old and older. Discount admission tickets and more information on the park are available at


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