Horror sites and blogs such as this are known for celebrating the Halloween season by highlighting its movies, actors, attractions, and horror hosts. Few, however, ever really get down to the ground level of Halloween – that is trick-or-treating! While it can be traced to other parts of the world, the tradition really took off in this country during the 1950’s. By the time I was old enough to start knocking on neighborhood doors and ask the question that would invariably lead to a bag full of candy, it was over 20 years later and firmly established as a holiday tradition.
One of the best parts of any convention for the Daves is re-connecting with the many horror hosts we have met since we began this site in July of 2010. The only downside is that in many instances, there is so much going on that it is hard to really spend some quality time with them. Between them signing autographs and taking pictures and us covering the event, down time is rare. Luckily this changed somewhat at the ROCK & SHOCK Convention in Worcester this year.
By Richard Church~
Please grade on a curve, as I am writing this at 3AM (and I’ve been up since 6AM, yesterday), and these accounts may or may not be completely fabricated!
I’m always going to remember this week for two reasons; 1) I was somehow able to have an accident in a rental car halfway across the country and 2) I met Ormon FREAKIN’ Grimsby! I’m happy to say that latter went a long way in easing the pain of the former!
ROCK N SHOCK 2011 brought together various cast members from the 80’s slasher franchise A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET. The most noteworthy of these was Robert Englund who has appeared many times in my native Chicago at the FLASHBACK WEEKEND conventions. Despite this fact, I had never formally met him. I’m not exactly sure why that was, but I suppose it might have been that I was never a huge fan of those films. I know this is probably coming across as horror blasphemy right now but, “back in the day,” I preferred my horror deadly serious and didn’t care for the clever puns and humorous turn the series would end up taking.
I first became aware of WerePups over a year ago. After a friend took pics of them at the HORRORFIND convention in Gettysburg, PA, I knew it was something that I wanted to find out more about (plus, of course, I wanted one). Thankfully one of the pics my friend took included the URL for the WerePups website and the rest is history so to speak. Over the past year I came into contact with Asia Eriksen (creator of the WerePups), her husband Anders Eriksen (creator of Nightmare Gloves, the BEST Freddy Krueger gloves available) and of course Eriq Chang, mastermind behind Fable Foundry, who brought everything together.
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.
There’s always a special place in my heart for the big ROCK N SHOCK horror convention that takes place each fall in Worcester, Massachusetts. Back in July 2010, when David Albaugh and I created this site, there had never been any plans for us to formally meet (that story covered HERE). ROCK N SHOCK provided the opportunity and venue for this to not only take place but to also solidify our friendship – turning online pals into best friends. By the time the weekend was over, there was never any question that I would return.