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Meet Your Makers
Some people call us crazy, some dreamers, we call ourselves Hauntrepreneurs. It is pretty much all one in the same. After a combined 25 years of experience in luxury resorts, Hans and Arica were ready to spread their entrepreneurial wings. So they packed up their life and moved to the Asheville area from Florida. Arica used her Recreation Management degree from Appalachian State University to organize the event, and Hans utilized his vast creativity and ingenuity to build props and design the trail. Bringing their talents together made them a formidable force. With a lot of hard work and drive they brought the dream of the Haunted Trail to life for WNC families to enjoy!
Lauren Rivas, Creative Director, has been with Asheville Plays since 2017. She came into the Haunted Trail for an emergency actor call on the muddiest night of the season, and what is now The Mad Doctor scene(a crowd favorite!) was born. Her true passion in life is entertainment and the magic of storytelling. She has a degree in fine arts with an emphasis in theater, but continues to be a self taught student of as many art forms as possible. When she is not pursuing her film acting career or performing as our pirate captain clue mistress for Pirate Escapes, she is creating custom costumes for our shows and events. She is most comfortable in the spotlight, but is also just as happy to help behind the scenes. While she brings an array of talents to the table, she is most known for her quick wit and ‘punderful’ sense of humor. Please reach out to Lauren if you have any interest in joining our Haunt family!
The Haunted Trail was created by event master and former special events director for Chicago, Lolain Dobbs. She developed the Haunted Trail over a period of seventeen years starting in 1986. The last year she was there, the show ran for eight days and attracted 40,000 visitors. After Lolain retired from her Chicago position, she formed KLA Productions with her daughter Allison, and continued to keep the Trail alive. Lolain met Arica in Tampa, FL at Innisbrook Golf Resort. Lolain and Arica teamed up to bring the Trail to Florida. There Lolain and Allison bestowed all of their haunting knowledge on Arica while they produced the Trail at the resort for three years. Knowing that Asheville would be the perfect community to start the trail and a family, Arica and Hans packed up many trailers worth of equipment and moved to Asheville to continue Lolain’s legacy.
The Next Generation
Just as Lolain was able to work with her daughter at KLA Productions, we hope to carry on that tradition with our two sons. Charlie participated in his first Trail when I was 4 months pregnant with him. Now our youngest, Forest, completes the team! The two brothers entertain themselves as we arrange bones and bats. Just your normal family business.
We hope that they grow up infused with the same passion we have for events and Halloween. We hope that they understand that all the hard work and countless hours are worth it when you see how much the community enjoys the experience you have created for them. But most importantly, we hope that they enjoy the camaraderie the Trail creates between friends and family as everyone works towards the same goal.