Svengoolie Hosts “The Nightmare on Chicago Street” Costume Contest!

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Conclusion to the 2013 Nightmare on Chicago Street…

Feeling a bit awkward, I made my way up the stage and starting snapping photos of Svengoolie addressing The Nightmare on Chicago Street crowd. I later learned there were nearly 7,000 people out there which, had I known at the time, would have me a nervous wreck! Elizabeth Haney was determined to capture a Sven’s eye view of things and the last thing I wanted to do was let her down. Seeing the immense crowd really brought home the full power Svengoolie had on my fellow fans. Sven cracked a joke about it being so cold he was glad he had his iphone because he’s “freezing his apps off” and the conest began…

DSC_0825Me behind Sven (photo courtesy of Jim Roche)

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The categories were  “Best Couple or Group, “Best Zombie, “Best Steampunk,” “Best Horror,” “Best Original,” and “Best Overall.” First up were the contestants with group costumes. A Zombie Wedding Party took 3rd prize!

DSC_0831Photo courtesy of Jim Roche

IMG_8230I guess there’s never an inappropriate time to snap a picture of Sven

I was never able to get a good look at the other contestants in this category as I was standing behind them. I decided when this group left the stage I would as well!

IMG_8244Best Zombie contestants

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I’m not a big steampunk person (I wouldn’t say I dislike it so much as I’m indifferent) but I must say that crowd really stole the show this year!

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IMG_8270I guess there’s also no inappropriate time to take a “selfie”

The horror contestants were interesting too…

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Snapshot 17 (11-7-2013 8-25 PM)

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The “Best Original Costume” portion ended up providing a bit of controversy. This was due to one of the runner’s up (a woman dressed in a muscle outfit) thinking she should have been the winner. When she discovered herself a runner up instead she demanded that Svengoolie rethink his choice which was superfluous since Sven did not pick the winners but was merely acting as the Emcee.

Snapshot 18 (11-7-2013 8-25 PM)

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I did understand her frustration to a point as the one who did win was a person dressed in an outfit from the movie Kick Ass making neither interesting nor original.  However, in all fairness, the most original of the three was in a wicked queen costume in my opinion.

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In the end, horror proved no match for the steampunk crowd as they were clearly the most original and their Iron Man-style contestant not only won in their category but the overall one as well.

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The contest ended and, along with it, most of the night’s festivities. The crowds dispersed and we headed back to Svengoolie headquarters to relax with a cup of coffee. Sven kicked back and we discussed the evening. Soon he and the gang left and, as it was nearly midnight, I did as well and, just like last year, with a big smile on my face.

Nightmare on Chicago Street remains the undisputed champion of horror events in my book and was sure to nominate them for a Rondo Award soon after. I never heard back but if anyone reading this agrees, please do so as well. One thing has become pretty obvious; Berwyn, Illinois may be Sven’s adopted town but Elgin is giving them a clear run for their money!

Dave Fuentes~

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