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Meet America’s Scariest Motel

Just off Highway 95, about halfway between Las Vegas and Reno, lies the sleepy desert town of Tonopah. For many, the town is just another oasis to fuel up in the middle of the desert, but one building at the edge of town offers more than just gasoline… it offers nightmare fuel. Tremble in fear at the most terrifying motel in the world: The Clown Motel.

Once a booming, goldmining hotspot with a population of over 50,000, Tonopah now houses just around 2,500 people, most of whom work for the local military test range. As the town numbers dwindled, Tonopah became less of a must-stop and more of a pit-stop, a place travelers would find themselves in the middle of the night, not wanting to drive another 70 miles to the nearest town. Imagine, if you will, being that weary traveler, rolling into town at midnight to discover that the only vacancy in town is within the confines of the Clown Motel. Dear God.

Not only is the lobby filled with hundreds of menacing clowns, but each and every room is clown themed as well. On each of the walls are hung portraits of famous clowns, from Bozo to Pagliacci, their soulless eyes intent on watching your every move from their faux-gold frames.

As if it couldn’t be any more horrifying, The Clown Motel shares a lot with a cemetery full of gold miners who died from a plague. I’m talking right next door. It’s like From Dusk ‘Til Dawn conspired with Steven King’s IT to create a real-life horror film.

Written, hosted, and edited by Greg Newkirk