Unlike the last few years, 2013′s March Horrorhound Weekend featured only a sparse number of horror hosts which, in many ways, seemed like a “last stand.” After the Vampira Tribute in 2010, Jason Hignite continued the Horrorhound Weekend/Horror Host tradition with a Zacherley Tribute in 2011 along with “inducting” at least ten horror hosts into the Ripley’s Believe it or Not, Horror Host Hall of Fame. The tradition of choosing ten random hosts for induction would continue in 2012 and, despite the lower turn-out, took place again this year.
TERROR FROM BEYOND THE DAVES is pleased to announce the re-release of the quintessential guide to Chicago horror hosts and horror programming – “Chicago TV Horror Movie Shows: From Shock Theatre to Svengoolie!” I remember buying this book at “Horrorbles” in Berrrr-wyn, Illinois during its first release. As a die-hard Rich Koz/Svengoolie fan, I was elated to see his visage on the cover of a book. It seems so odd now but, when I look back, I actually used to feel isolated in my fandom of him. Thanks to the Internet and the Svengoolie YAHOO forum I soon discovered that I was far from alone. And, thanks to THIS book, it filled in a lot of Svengoolie-gaps in information that I had been unaware of…
Recently we shared some pictures taken by Svengoolie fan, Jerry Victory, while visiting the host at The Little Boots Rodeo. Jerry also had the privilege of addressing Elvira: Mistress of the Dark during a recent appearance on The Stephanie Miller Show. Svengoolie and Elvira met at The Flashback Weekend convention in 2008. See that clip below… and she had this to say…
Well, gang, this is our final post regarding the Ohio 2012 Horrorhound Weekend before we aim our focus at future events! As mentioned prior to this gathering, David and I were asked by Jason Hignite to participate in this year’s Horror Host Hall of Fame ceremony by doing an induction of our own. Not for a specific host, but for a unique package of films that lead to their proliferation.
It was a beautiful sunny day in Chicago when I arrived at DePaul University to see a Q&A session with national horror host and broadcaster, Rich Koz/Svengoolie! While I’ve seen him at various appearances this would mark the first time I would catch him without his familiar make-up and, rather than greet fans, get to see him discuss his vast career.
This past week, I had the unique opportunity to experience two zoo Halloween attractions located over a thousand miles from each other. Both Daves are volunteer docents (from the Greek word “to teach”) at their respective zoos and enjoy sharing their important conservation messages with thier guests. I have been affiliated with Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo for over 13 years (both as employee and volunteer) and David Albaugh joined his zoo (Roger Williams Park in Rhode Island) earlier this year. Before I continue, let me state that this is NOT a compare/contrast piece. Each year, numerous guests at the zoo will say things to me like, “Your zoo is better than mine,” “My zoo is better than yours,” etc. The truth is, all Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) accredited zoos are not in competition with one another. In fact, it is quite the contrary. These non-profit organizations all work together for the singular purpose of doing important conservation research around the world (which most of the public is unaware of ) while also educating and connecting their visitors with nature during their recreational visits.
Recently, I joked with friends that this Halloween season I’d be like a Grateful Dead “Deadhead” or Jimmy Buffett “Parrot head” and follow the Horror Host Svengoolie around wherever he goes. Throughout this latest Svengoolie “tour,” I’ve made it as far north as J.J. Blinkers near the Wisconsin border and all the way out to The Amhurst Asylum in Valparaiso, Indiana with the month not even half over. I do have to say that of all these wonderful venues, NONE were as beautiful as Long Grove, Illinois where Sven appeared last Saturday at a new 365 day Halloween store – “Harper’s Hollow!”
Last Sunday, I grabbed the kids and headed over to the town made infamous by the Svengoolies – Berwyn, Illinois – to observe a rather unusual event. The Annual “Houby” parade has taken place for over forty years now and, along with the National horror host, has become a local Berwyn tradition! For those scratching their heads wondering what a “Houby” is, it is the Czechoslovakian word for “mushroom.” Yes, you are reading this correctly, the entire parade is dedicated to mushrooms! Mushrooms and truffles are to the Czechs’ what the tomato is to the Italians. It is a big part of their culture and it should also be noted that other “Houby” events take place throughout the year in other places throughout the United States.
While it was the National Horror Host, Svengoolie, who is indirectly responsible for bringing the Daves together as friends, it has always been our stance that TERROR FROM BEYOND THE DAVES was really the bastard child of the 2010 Vampira Tribute and SCARY MONSTERS MAGAZINE. In reality, the two are complimentary of each other. Within the pulpy pages of the world’s only “REAL Monsters Magazine,” classic monsters as well as Horror Hosts have always been featured side-by-side. And why shouldn’t they be? For many of us adult Monster kids, it was the classic commercial hosts who introduced us to all the greats be it Godzilla, The Universal Monsters, the films of Hammer Studios, the wonderful “B” movies of Roger Corman, as well as those from directors who were slightly…ahem…less gifted.
TERROR FROM BEYOND THE DAVES is pleased to welcome Richard Church as a guest writer! Mr. Church generously agreed to not only share his personal experiences in collecting autographs, but photos from his amazing collection as well!