Svengoolie Joins Brookfield Zoo’s Creatures of the Night!


On Friday, October 19th, I was joined by my friend and Terror Dave Girl Friday (the 13th), Elizabeth Ocon, along with my son, Alex, to get our first glimpse at Brookfield Zoo’s 2012 “Creatures of the night!”

Horror Host, Svengoolie, was slated to arrive at 7pm but, by 6:30, there was already a long line winding around the zoo’s Discovery Center to see him. Svengoolie never disappoints when it comes to drawing large crowds at Brookfield Zoo! I remember at last year’s event (covered HERE) the line wrapped around the bison yard and eventually had to get cut off. In an effort to accomodate all of the eager fans, no pictures were permitted, just autographs. It didn’t seem to damper anyones mood and many found clever ways to snap pictures with him anyway while Sven added his own humorous touches.

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Halloween Zoo Scares at Brookfield Zoo’s “Creatures of the Night!”


While I was enjoying clear skies and all the wonderful pumpkins at the other Dave’s “Roger Williams Park Zoo” in Rhode Island (covered a few posts back), my poor Brookfield Zoo in Chicago was getting nailed with heavy rains and tornado alerts! Its the dilemma of any Midwest zoo….dealing with the unpredictable weather! Fortunately, the tempest had cleared by the time I returned to my Windy City and the following weekend proved perfect for enjoying BZ’s “Creatures of the Night!”

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Carving up Halloween Scares: Roger Williams Zoo’s “Jack O’ Lantern Spectacular!”

Anyone who really knows me understands that, interest-wise, I’m driven by two major things; zoos (animals) and genre films (horror, sci-fi, fantasy). I’ve been affiliated with my local Brookfield Zoo for the better part of 13 years and, as it was the zoo I grew up with and inspired my love of animals, consider it a sacred place. These past few years have been like a dream come true as my two worlds have finally begun to merge with regular guest appearances from my beloved horror host, Svengoolie.  These happen each spring for our annual AAZK (American Association of Zoo Keepers) Spaghetti dinner as well as the zoo’s night time Halloween event, “Creatures of the Night.”

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Svengoolie at Brookfield Zoo!

img_7672Svengoolie puts the squeeze on the Daves.

Growing up a monster kid in Rhode Island had its limitations. We did not have a local horror host though we did have our weekly Creature Double Feature, a long running series of some of the best monster movies ever put on film. As the 70’s came to an end, so did the interest in monsters it seemed. The Creature Double Feature wanted to go in a new direction and they brought in the Son Of Svengoolie. I wasn’t sure what to make of this character when I first saw that the format changed but it didn’t take long for me to become hooked on this top-hatted ghoul.

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Brookfield Zoo’s 2011 “Creatures of the Night” Unearthed!


Last month we reported the Halloween activities at the two zoos in which The Daves are volunteer docents; Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo and Rhode Island’s Roger Williams Park (in a story you can revisit HERE)! Both zoo’s served up a fantastic seasonal event that is something ALL local readers should plan on attending next year. Brookfield Zoo gets a special nod from horror fans for delving into the darker side of Halloween and proving (by its huge turn out) that us adult horror fans are a financial force to be reckoned with. “Creatures of the Night” proved a devilishly good time with lots of great activities such as this “Pumpkin Execution” – courtesy of a device created by the zoo’s exhibits department and utilizing materials laying around the zoo. While orange and black are most commonly associated with the holiday’s colors, Brookfield Zoo made it even more spectacular by going “Green.”

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