Saturday, September 28, 2013

Among the stars...

The ScareFest Horror and Paranormal Convention, held September 13th through the 15th at the Lexington Convention Center, was a blast.  My son, Matt, and I enjoyed being able to mingle with the stars who represented the horror and paranormal genres in film, television, and books.  There were also lots of vendors offering just about everything imaginable from books to jewelry to posters/art work to toys and figurines. 

Both the celebrities and vendors were very approachable and seemed happy to talk with everyone attending the convention.  Some of the celebrities, such as Kane Hodder from four Friday the 13th movies and the Hatchet trilogy, are very adamant about recognizing they would not be where they are today if not for the fans.

Tom Morga
Tom Morga, an award-winning stuntman known for having played Jason Voorhees" in Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning, told Matt and me that he was into bird watching, and wanted to know if we knew of any good places close by that he could visit and check out the birds.  When we suggested Bernheim Forest, Mr. Morga got out his cellphone and asked us to show him on his map app the general location of Bernheim Forest.  He also said he never knew one of his grandmothers and was trying to get information on her.  Mr. Morga was planning on going to New Albany, Indiana, after ScareFest to visit with a distant cousin, who works in a library.  They were going to do some genealogy research on his grandmother.

Adrienne King (right) and me
One of the nicest celebrities at the convention was Adrienne King; she was in the first two Friday the 13th movies.  While at the convention, Ms. King was promoting her line of Crystal Lake Wines, appropriately named for Jason's Friday the 13th stomping grounds.  I mentioned I had a website and would love to put something on it about her wines, and she seemed so excited over my wanting to do that.  She immediately wrote on a piece of paper the names of her websites and webmaster so that I could contact him if I needed anything.  Ms. King even went so far as suggesting she and I have our picture made together holding bottles of her wine so I could put them on my website.

Kane Hodder and me
To look at him, you would never know Kane Hodder was a sweetheart.  Being known for playing monstrous slasher movie villains doesn't help, either.  In his autobiography, Unmasked (co-written with Michael Aloisi), Mr. Hodder had a stunt go wrong during an interview and suffered severe burns over his neck, arms, and torso.  As a result of his injuries, Mr. Hodder suffered Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and had to overcome several obstacles such as hugging.  When I asked to have my picture taken with him, he gave me a bear hug (which you see in the accompanying picture).  After the picture was taken, I mentioned I was under the impression he didn't like to give hugs.  Mr. Hodder asked why I thought that, and when I explained about the book he immediately gave me another hug, and said the PTSD wasn't as bad as it once was.

Aaron Goodwin and me
Aaron Goodwin of the Travel Channel's Ghost Adventures is another sweetheart.    He has more energy in his little finger than I will ever dream of having.  Not long after last year's ScareFest I had an ornament made with his Big Steppin' logo on it, and presented to him at this year's convention.  Mr. Goodwin has the motto, "Why take little steps when you can be big steppin'?"  Hence, the name of his logo.  He seemed truly happy that I had presented him with the ornament, and commented that it would not go on his Christmas tree (as I had suggested) but on a wall of collections he keeps.

Another fun part of attending conventions such as ScareFest is the camaraderie among the celebrities.  During the introductions of the celebrities, John Zaffis (SyFy's Haunted Collector) and the cast of SyFy's Ghost Hunters photo-bombed the introductions of the cast of SyFy's Deep South Paranormal.  When it came time for the introduction of the Ghost Hunters cast, Deep South Paranormal decided to return the favor.  On "Celebrity Row" Kane Hodder and R. A Mihailoff ('Leatherface') had booths next to each other.  Each time a fan would come up to one of them, the other would shout something or make some type of loud noise just to get a reaction out of the other star.  In prior conventions, it has been known for the the stars to have rubber band fights.

You don't have to be into the type of movies or tv shows represented at conventions such as ScareFest to enjoy rubbing elbows with celebrities.  I highly recommend attending some type of convention where you can mingle among the stars and get to know them one-on-one.  The sights and sounds of these conventions are fun for all ages.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

ScareFest Video

The following video was made from pictures my son, Matt, and I took at the 2013 ScareFest the weekend of Sept. 13-15.