COVID has made this Halloween season very different from those past. It has given rise to drive-thru haunt experiences as well as the (hopefully permanent) resurrection of the drive-in movie. One of the more notable drive-thru haunted attractions of this season is The Bite LA. Recently, we got the chance to pose some questions to the creators of the event at Meyer2Meyer Entertainment and we have our full interview below. We’d like to thank both Melissa and Justin Meyer for taking the time to answer our questions – especially with as busy as they are preparing the event. You can also find The Bite LA’s official website here.
GS: You have a lot of history in the haunted attractions industry, can you give us a brief overview of your experience and how it’s prepared you for the creation of The Bite LA?
M2M: My wife and I have (Melissa and Justin Meyer) have been in the haunt industry for about 12 years now. We spent almost a decade as the Creative Director and COO for Ten Thirty One Productions, putting on the Los Angeles Haunted Hayride and Great Horror Campout. We formed Meyer2Meyer Entertainment about three years ago and have since produced House of Spirits: A Haunted Cocktail Soiree and co-produced Rated R Horror Speakeasy. COVID really set the stage for what this Halloween season was going to look like for everyone. We knew we wanted to persevere, as long as we could design something that was safe for everyone. With our years of experience at the Hayride, we knew we could easily design content viewed from a moving vehicle, and with our experience from House of Spirits and Rated R, we knew to center the experience on what people hold in high value, while still giving them the feel of Halloween.
GS: So tell us a little about The Bite LA and what can guests expect?
M2M: The Bite LA is a three part experience. The first is our dark and eerie drive through section called the Creature Safari. The next is the Food Crawl zone with eight different food booths designed with creepy characters and macabre scenic vignettes. Lastly, we have the virtual campfire experience, with ghost stories and a fun take on traditional campfire sing-a-longs.
GS: In this COVID-conscious environment, what precautions can you tell us about?
M2M: Safety is and always will be our first priority. On our website is a very comprehensive list of COVID and SAFETY expectations–including what the guests can expect from Meyer2Meyer Entertainment, what we expect from our staff and what we expect from the guests who enter. We feel that if every guest and staff member is willing to follow the safety guidelines, this will be a very safe and fun Halloween for all.
GS: The creature safari sounds so cool, can you tell us a bit more about that part of the evening?
M2M: This is what kicks off the experience! Bring a flashlight from home, then creep your way along slowly in your car along a dark and eerie path that takes you into tree-lined areas and around the edges of Legg Lake. Look for movement in the dark, then use your flashlight to spot the giant roaming creatures who stalk the shadows!
GS: How exactly does the virtual campfire work?
M2M: This is the final part of the experience, where guests will receive their campfire dessert and warm seasonal drink to enjoy while parked around a virtual campfire. Due to safety and being conscious of wildfire concerns, we won’t be using actual fire, but what we have designed is a fun show that consists of ghost stories told by a character we’re calling The Pyre, as well as a rocking twist on the campfire sing-a-long! You’ll see and hear the entire experience from your car and car radio!
GS: How many people were on your staff this year to bring the event to life?
M2M: We are running a smaller crew for this production, to keep in step with our COVID consciousness, but don’t worry–there’s still plenty of creatures and characters that will be waiting for you in the dark!
GS: Have there been any unexpected challenges in the design or creation of The Bite LA worth mentioning?
M2M: Our biggest challenge originally was finding the right venue. A lot of places were still closed, and we needed a space that was able to have cars drive through it. That left us with only a few trails that were either VERY far away, or simply large parking lots. We knew we didn’t want the latter AT ALL. The environment had to be just right to get that eerie vibe. When we came upon Legg Lake, we knew it would be the ideal spot.
GS: Was there any part of The Bite LA that you wanted to do but couldn’t this year?
M2M: We designed this show specifically with COVID restrictions in mind. There wasn’t anything we wanted to do this season but couldn’t, rather we are excited about the possibilities for what we can do with it in the future, when COVID is more under control.
GS: Legg Lake is such a cool venue. Will guests be driving around the lake itself, just the parking lot, or both?
M2M: Legg Lake is an amazing venue and we feel extremely lucky to be hosting The Bite LA there. Guests will get the chance to drive INTO the park, through the trees and trails and drive right alongside the lake for almost the entire experience. The virtual campfire area is the only spot that is set up in a parking lot area, and that’s because that’s where you’ll take a moment to actually PARK to see the show!
GS: Finally, is there anything else you’d like our readers to know about The Bite LA?
M2M: We want people to know that this is going to be a unique Halloween experience. It is not a traditional haunt, nor is it a traditional food booth, food crawl. Safety regarding driving and COVID are our main concern–so with that in mind, there will be no startle scares or characters touching or getting too close to your vehicles. Additionally, we will have some great food that ranges from savory to sweet and will include Vegan, Vegetarian and Gluten Free options for certain items. If there is something on the menu you don’t want–simply order more of something that you do! Each person accounted for in your ticket purchase will receive 8 Bites, a Campfire Dessert and a warm Fall Drink, and you can dispense those Bites as you choose.
Once again, a big thanks to Justin and Melissa Meyer for answering our questions.
The Bite LA’s official website has ticket information and a lot more.