It was a brisk day this past Saturday when I headed out to the Niabi Zoo in Coal Valley, Illinois to see their local horror hostesses, Midnite Mausoleum! For over the past year the unforgettable Marlena Midnite and her effervescent co-host, Robyn Graves, have been entertaining monster fans in the Quad Cities (Northwest Illinois and Southeaster Iowa) via WQAD TV. I hadn’t seen them since back in their Public Access days and wanted to give a quick Terror Dave “Hello” before zooming back to my neck of the woods for another event which I’ll be covering in my next post.
This part of my home state is lot more rural than the bustling Chicago area I live in, and it really nice getting to see the fall leaves before arriving at the zoo. Soon after entering the park I saw the familiar Midnite Mausoleum logo hanging on a tent stand; one of many featured in this annual “Boo at the Zoo” event. I also saw the ladies who, despite the chilly weather, were busy passing out Halloween candy to a crowd of happy children stopping by for a visit.
I noticed them pass out a Heath Bar and complimented them for handing out the good stuff instead of crappy Tootsie Rolls like most do these days. Marlena smiled while pointing to an orange jack o’lantern sitting behind her. “Oh we’ve got those too but, since they’re my favorite, I try and keep them hidden,” she laughed.
We were interrupted by a little girl who handed them a picture she’d drawn of the the duo getting chased by a zombie. “We love showing stuff like this on the show, ” said producer Blake Powell. He also spoke of how proud he was of the mammoth-sized Box Set they’d put together and that we featured in a recent post. You can order yours HERE!
I asked Robyn if being on local TV had garnered her a lot recognition on the street. “Yeah, I think the purple hair is the biggest give away,” she quipped. I left them to their young fans and took a brief stroll through the zoo before beginning my 3 hour journey to Elgin. The day had kicked off with Midnite Mausoleum and would end with Svengoolie and a Nightmare on Chicago Street!