Having fun and making a difference at the AAYC

Volunteering at the AAYC

My time volunteering at the AAYC was great, and I can’t wait until this year. My step-bother was the one who told me about being able to volunteer there for Mayhem haunted house they put on. I started helping putting up the walls and decorating the haunt and helping out when I can. I met a lot of new people and made tons of friends (sorry for the cliche but it’s true). My character at the haunt was a clown, and instead of playing typical “come play with me!” I sang. I’d hide, or stand there depending on the night then follow them closely singing Ring Around the Rosie really softly. It wouldn’t be the jump scare but I like working more on true fear, that uncomfortable feeling of being watched or just enough to make the person have chills and get a rush. My costume wasn’t the best, it was a costume I got from the store then just put rips and splattered some colors on it. My make up was simple, yet unique from a lot of the others, I had to blue X’s over my eyes, with black on my eye lids, and a big red smile to top it all off.


The haunt itself went great, as for my home life during the time though was another story. My mom had cancer that had grown too big to control. The Mayhem was somewhere I could go to clear my mind every night and hang out with friends. My mom ended up passing away at the beginning of the season, I kept going because it was somewhere I could go to escape the tragedies of my life at the time and be somewhere with smiling faces (both painted on and on their real faces) and a warm hugs of people who I could sincerely call a family. I can’t wait for this year.


I’ve been doing my research (basically sitting in a chair and watching horror films for hours during my summer) and have some new ways I can really get a good scare this year. My character plan for this year is a huge twist from last year, pretty much the only thing that’ll be the same is my make up. It’s a surprise for what I will be this year, but be sure to look for the clown with the blue X’s, and be ready to be scared. Center City Mayhem is a completely volunteer based thing but I still treat it as a job, because it’s something I love to do. It’s such an experience.
John RichWritten by John Rich johnrich398@gmail.com, Youth Volunteer at the AAYC

For more information about our haunted house, Center City Mayhem, please Check these out:

Also check out the AAYC

Center City Mayhem


Center City Mayhem is a professional level haunted house that is also the primary fundraiser for the Amarillo Activity Youth Center.  Each year around 5,000 people from around Amarillo come out to get their socks scared off of them.  The Haunted house opens every year in October on Fri and Sat nights from 7:00-midnight.

The official web-site for Center City Mayhem is www.fearamarillo.com and the contact phone is 806-373-2292.  For online discounts everyone can follow the Mayhem Facebook instagram @fearamarillo and the AAYC instagram @amarilloyouth.  Also we have coupons up in all the Toot ‘n Totum stores and throughout the city of Amarillo.

Our History

Since 2007 the AAYC has been involved in the Haunted Business.  We started out slow with a small set-up hiring/sub-leasing, owning no props or equipment at all  but now (since 2009)  have expanded to be one of the major haunted houses in the area.  We have purchased two complete haunted houses and spent thousands and thousands of dollars accumulating the best props we can.  Our youth, staff and supporters build most of our props.  Since 2007 we have been scaring people, and raising funds for our youth center.

Our Staff

The Mayhem staff is ran by the youth, parents and families that make up the Amarillo Activity Youth Center.  Under the direction of Matthew Hite, AAYC Executive Director, this fundraiser keeps our youth center up and running and is our primary fundraiser.

The youth at the AAYC take on the project each year.  It’s a learning process for them.  We teach them how to frame walls, use basic tools,  paint, square, design sets, act, make costumes, sound, lighting effects and much more.  The haunted house is born out of the ideas of the youth at the center.

We take safety of our youth and those going through our haunted house VERY serious.  All the leaders of the center and of our haunted house go through an application process and a background check each year.

We do allow new people into the process each year.  If you are interested in Scaring people  and helping a great non-profit shoot us an e-mail:  volunteers@amarilloyouth.net

For profit?

It’s important to understand that Center City Mayhem is NOT about lining anyone’s pockets with money.  All the funds raised go to support the youth of Amarillo through the center. The AAYC’s website is www.amarilloyouth.org if you’d like more info about the AAYC, or please take a few minutes to read our other blog post!


The haunted house at the AAYC has always been part of a great group of people who work together to help make all the haunted house in Amarillo great.  This group is known as Amarillohaunts.  If your trying to find out which Haunted Houses to go to this season, check out the Official Haunted house map and info on the website. www.amarillohaunts.com


The entire city of Amarillo has been very supportive of our haunted house and we look forward to the continued support!