Why the Dent Schoolhouse is the Ultimate Haunted House

A Lights On tour is pretty much the only way you can get me inside the Dent Schoolhouse. I’m not good with scary and Lights ON is the only way this scardey cat can handle it.

The Dent Schoolhouse is Nationally known as a top haunted house attraction and they continue to push the boundaries of creativity with new redesigns each year to keep the guests coming back each year on their toes.

Scary makeup at Dent Schoolhouse

A visit to the Dent Schoolhouse is not for the faint of heart. It’s been known to make grown men pass out and puke. This was my second Lights On Tour with Dent Schoolhouse.

You can see additional pictures from our previous behind the scenes tour here. 

I purposely did not include the most gruesome images from our tour in this post because they are still burned in my brain.

During our preview tour, we also got to learn some scary makeup tips and techniques from the Dent Schoolhouse makeup artists who have amazing skills!

They transform over 80 actors each night as part of the experience.

Dent Schoolhouse

The Dent Schoolhouse History

  • The schoolhouse opened in 1894 and was originally the 12th of 13 school districts in Cincinnati.
  • It has a dark legend of Charlie McFree, the janitor, who was found to have kidnapped and murdered several of the students. Rumors are, this is why the school shut down in the 1950s.
  • The School still has the original working school bell in the bell tower.
  • Yes, the schoolhouse is said to actually be haunted

tour of Dent Schoolhouse

The Haunt

The Dent Schoolhouse is known as one of the tightest themed haunted attractions in America.

Not only is their slogan Cincinnati’s Scariest Haunted House… they live by creating a horror movie like experience for their guests. Charlie the Janitor has become the schoolhouse’s Mikey Mouse of horror… people from all over the United States now come to get a selfie with the infamous icon character.

Everything in the schoolhouse is themed as if the schoolhouse shut down in the 1950s.

Lights on Tour Dent Schoolhouse

The schoolhouse is jam-packed full of real antiques and artifacts from the era. The haunt is home to over 200+ prop jack o’lanterns.

The catacombs section of the schoolhouse is home to almost 4,000 handmade human skulls. It takes guests around 25+ minutes to walk through the attraction.

Lights on tour at the Dent Schoolhouse


  • The Dent Schoolhouse will be featured on the Travel Channel this year in October for a show called Scare Tactics 101.
  • BuzzFeed has ranked the schoolhouse as #1.
  • has ranked The Dent Schoolhouse as #3 in America for 2018
  • America Haunts has ranked The Dent Schoolhouse as Top 5 Scariest Haunted Houses for 2018
  • Featured on E!, HGTV, theCHIVE, Business Insider, USA Today, CNN, MSN, Yahoo!
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Dent Schoolhouse with lights on

Features added in 2018

  • SCARES are the main focus for 2018. Every scene has been redesigned to make the scare of each room better for customers.
    Just like Universal Studios, The Dent Schoolhouse has added a room that uses projection mapping.
  • Guests will walk into an old memorial for the school and the portraits on the wall come to life with warnings from past students.
  • Monster sized spiders have taken over a section of the basement
  • Guests have to walk through a trash dump filled with human body parts and gore.
  • The cafeteria now has an ice chest and an oversized saw that cuts up the meat for the school’s sloppy Joes
  • A catwalk has been welded to the top of two busses allowing a chainsaw-wielding madman to stalk guests from above


You can purchase tickets online or at the door. If you don’t want to wait in a long line they do offer front of the line and fast pass options for an additional fee.

General Admission starts at $20 and goes higher on weekends. (Check the Dent Schoolhouse website for current pricing)

*PLEASE NOTE: Cash only at The Dent Schoolhouse. An ATM is available on-site.

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(Our group had a little competition to see who could transform their Dunkin Donuts into an extra scary or creative character.)

Discounted Tickets at Dunkin

*You can get discounted tickets for the Dent Schoolhouse at all 47 Greater Cincinnati area Dunkin Donut locations.

Special Events

The Dent Schoolhouse does offer additional special events including a Lights On tour and ghost tours.

More Information

You can find more information from the Dent Schoolhouse website.

Thanks again to the Dent Schoolhouse and Dunkin Donuts for the media preview!

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Why the Dent Schoolhouse in Cincinnati is the Ultimate Haunted House

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