Scream Queen: Carly Morelli acts “psycho” for Field of Screams

By: Shanna Sweitzer

Around every corner is a terrifying sight.

At Field of Screams, that terrifying sight might just be a Hershey High School student. Junior Carly Morelli plays a “psycho” at Field of Screams’ Haunted Hayride.

An unpaid volunteer, Morelli the thrill of scaring others gets her back in character every October to scare the customers and help raise charitable funds.

In 2013 Morelli took a trip with her friends to Field of Screams. Even though she was scared out of her mind, she loved it. While she was exploring the place she saw a sign that said you could apply online for a job. Morelli was instantly interested.

“I like acting. I like scaring my family, so why not?” Morelli said.

A few days after applying she received a letter in the mail inviting her to attend a picnic and get assigned an attraction to work at. Her first assignment was as a clown at the “Frightmare Asylum.”

Morelli then attended “Scare School” where she was taught how to be scary. After a year at the asylum, she transitioned to the “Haunted Hayride” as a “psycho” and has been working there for the past two years. She will also be working there again this year.

Carly Morelli shows off her bloody get up as she plays a psycho in the “Haunted Hayride” at Field of Screams in late 2014. She gets ready to scare before taking her place.
Carly Morelli shows off her bloody get up as she plays a psycho in the “Haunted Hayride” at Field of Screams in late 2014. She gets ready to scare before taking her place.

“Being a psycho person’s fun,” Morelli said.

When Morelli first told her family of her plan to work at the field, they thought it was really cool. They were a little unsure as to why she would want to be a volunteer. All of Field of Screams’ employees are volunteers. They donate to almost 30 different charities.

“$200,000 of the annual profit is donated, and we’ve been open for 21 years,” Morelli said.

As for her coworkers, Morelli never thought she’d have friends like them. Morelli said her co workers as some of the nicest and funniest people she knows.

“They’re weird in a good way,” she said.

The age of employees at the field range from 16 to 40. Though you have to be at least 16 to apply for a job there, they sometimes make exceptions. Morelli started at the age of 13.

This fall season, Morelli has been working every weekend since September 11th and will continue until November 13th.

On a normal night, Morelli will go into work around 3:00 p.m. and head to wardrobe. There she gets her makeup done and latex applied. This latex is specially made to make it look like she has gashes and wounds all over herself. After that she goes to the 5:00 p.m. meeting with all of the other actors. They address any incidents, like someone being offended, that recently occurred. Then it’s off to work.

Once in character, Morelli stays fully focused in doing one thing: scaring people half to death. She said she finds it so amusing to frighten people. When someone is screaming at the top of their lungs with tears streaming down their face, Morelli said, “It’s really hard not to laugh.” Some people even react the complete opposite and get defensive.

One time, Morelli was punched by a man wearing his class ring. “There was a date imprinted on my face,” she said. Field of Screams actors must sign a waiver before getting the job in case of incidents like this.

There are many attractions at Field of Screams where an incident like this might happen. The field consists of the “Haunted Hayride,” “Den of Darkness,” “Frightmare Asylum,” and “Nocturnal Wasteland.” In each of these, participants are scared out of their mind by hillbillies with chainsaws (without the chain), the stench of dead bodies, blood drenched operation tables, and humans with faces of monsters.

New this fall Field of Screams is offering a one-night event called “Extreme Blackout,” on November 13th. Participants must sign a waiver before entering and being over 18 years of age is recommended. At this new attraction, all of the lights are turned off. “[We] can touch you and drag you around,” Morelli said.

As for limits, the actors at Field of Screams don’t have many. The field’s priority is to be the scariest it can be. “Are limits scary?” Morelli said. “They’re not.” The only limits the actors have are on touching and offending. Guests are not allowed to be touched below the shoulders and the actors are also not allowed to say anything that might offend someone, like a comment about religion. Other than that, Morelli said, “We don’t stop. When we scare, we keep scaring.”

USA Today has named Field of Screams the #1 Haunted Attraction in the United States. “I’m not surprised at all,” Morelli said, “It’s terrifying.” Morelli said that the field is one of the first haunted attractions in America. Even though they’re on the top, they still have competition. “Jason’s Woods” is Field of Screams’ #1 rival. But Morelli claims they aren’t even competition.

“They hate us because we’re scary and they’re not,” Morelli said, “We have a lot more to show off.”