For years now, I would get excited at the approach of Halloween. As October would arrive, I would tune up my stilts and prepare for the fun that was to come. Finally, during Halloween week I would pick up a few gigs and have the time of my life. However, without fail, November 1st would leave me feeling sad that it was all over and that it was again time to say goodbye to my big, green alter-ego.
This past year I decided that something needed to be done about this. At 42 years of age, the years were going by too fast. I realized that my days of tramping around as a 9′ tall monster were numbered. I decided to search out new events throughout the year where I could “suit-up”.
Zombie walks were my first discovery and my brushes with them thus far have yielded nothing but joy. During the couple I managed to take part in last year, I not only had a blast but also met many wonderful people…err, zombies.
Rolling out of the holiday season, I began to feel the itch for another event. Perhaps I could find a spring zombie walk or even a “halfway to Halloween” party. Well, my search ended upon reading a post on the Terror from Beyond the Daves blog. For those of you who may not be aware, the “Daves” write a lovingly crafted blog which pays homage to horror movie hosts and all things relevant to the genre.
At any rate, they had written a post about the upcoming HorrorHound Weekend convention in Columbus, OH. With celebrity guests, vendors, movie screenings, and guest panels, this sounded like it would be right up my alley. I immediately started making preparations.
The event was held at the Crowne Plaza Columbus North in Columbus, OH. I arrived in town on Friday evening and it was immediately apparent that I was in the midst of “my kind of folks”. I checked in, made my way to my room, and suited-up. Before you could say “trick-or-treat”, my monster was in the thick of things.
While this was my first horror convention, there was a very familiar feeling about it. It’s hard to explain but I guess it’s a shared experience thing. It was not unlike the feeling that I would have while hanging out with the crew from a haunted attraction or sitting around chatting with a bunch of home haunters. You take this big bunch of people, from all different age ranges and walks of life, and because of a shared interest, there’s just an electricity in the air.
There were a fair number of costumed folks around and I must say that the vast majority of them were absolutely fabulous. Heavens, some of the make-up was just amazing. I felt a bit like a girl who’d worn a burlap bag to the prom. Nonetheless, I didn’t get the feeling that anyone was looking down on me. Quite to the contrary, folks were coming up to introduce themselves and take pictures left and right.
In the dealer’s room, I was able to meet Ben Scrivens from Fright-Rags.com (an amazing horror t-shirt company from my hometown of Rochester, NY). I also bumped into Marlena Midnite & Robyn Graves, the hosts of Midnite Mausoleum.
I caught glimpses of or literally bumped into a number of the celebrity guests during the evening but there was one in particular who I was dying to meet. You see, I met Cassandra Peterson (Elvira, Mistress of the Dark) years ago in Massachusetts. However, I didn’t have my monster with me at the time and I’d always hoped to get a picture of her with the monster. Well, I managed to check that one off the list. Let me just say, that at 61, she’s just as lovely as ever (and still quite quick with the one-liners).
Much of the rest of the evening was spent drinking and mingling with other convention-goers. What a friendly and easy-going bunch of folks. I swear you could walk right up and talk to just about anyone without it being the slightest bit awkward.
It was during this later part of the evening that I was able to cross paths with and grab a picture with the “Daves”, who had been responsible for me learning of the event in the first place.
On Saturday, I went in on foot and did a bit of shopping. The venue, was considerably more busy (due in large part to the throng of people waiting in line to meet Norman Reedus from The Walking Dead). Despite this, folks were still quite friendly and in good spirits.
While I could have easily spent the night and all of the following day, I decided to hold off and get back home. Again, I’m really feeling the desire to tinker with my costume and come up with something truly fantastic. It’s simply not built for these types of appearances. I will have to see what I can come up with so I can be ready for next time.
Thank you so much for reading about my adventures. If you happened to be at the show or have any questions or comments, please leave me a note below. I’ll leave you with a couple more pictures. If you care to see all of my shots, you can find them here.