MIDSUMMER SCREAM 2106
For those of us who love Halloween, there is never enough we can do to celebrate the Holiday season. Midsummer Scream has fixed that problem by allowing all of us to celebrate Halloween for a short moment from July 30th to July 31st. Over the last weekend, the Long Beach Convention Center became the epicenter for all things Halloween. As you traversed the isles of the festival, your senses were bombarded by all things spooky and scary. Plumes of fog, hordes of monsters, and halloween treats galore! All of that and much more on our trip to Midsummer Scream 2016.
THE SHOW FLOOR
The show floor for Midsummer Scream was overflowing with vendors. I was pleasantly surprised by how many booths were operating at the event. On one end, you could experience the new VR adventure by Spectral Illusion called Ghost Town Mine Ride and shoot the living dead at the Zombie Shooting Gallery. We both had to buy a Time Box from Author and Resident Knott’s Scary Farm Rep, Jeff Tucker (@thesixthkey).On the other end of the expo hall, you had a demo stage where guests can watch experts such as Scott Ramp from Six Flags Fright Fest create monsters. As well as see Mudd The Magnificent (http://themuddshow.com) stun and amaze festival goers with his special brand of malicious magic.
The range of interests and hobbies that encompass the passion of Halloween was very impressive! If you love Halloween in any capacity, you bet that there was a booth selling something that you could Ghoul over (kneeslapper?) The Midsummer Scream was a perfect mix between old school Halloween fun and new school scares.
BLACK CAT ADOPTION
Although Midsummer Scream highlighted the creepy parts of Halloween, there is always time for the cute side. Outside the show floor in the halls of the convention center, you could have the opportunity to adopt a black cat. This is the first time that I have seen this type of booth at an event such as Midsummer Scream. It is the perfect crowd to gather around in black clothes to gush over black cats. It was a very sweet idea to help animals find a brand new home where they will definitely fit in!
THE HALL OF SHADOWS
The Hall of Shadows at Midsummer Scream was a large portion of the convention floor where guests can enter 9 different mini haunts. But in order to get to them, you had to pass through Toxicity! Created by Larry Bones of Boneyard Effects. Toxicity is an immersive experience set within the walls of a genetics lab that has suffered a toxic explosion that will leave guests screaming as they are attacked by twisted, mutated scientist from all sides! Everyone I spoke to at the event was thoroughly impressed with the detail that Boneyard Effects was able to obtain with such short notice. Keep in mind that this is the same man that works hand in hand with John Murdy and Chris Williams of Halloween Horror Nights year after year. So on top of creating hundreds, if not thousands, of prosthetics and masks for Halloween Horror Nights, he created Toxicity. I had the pleasure of speaking to Larry Bones briefly at the event. He told me that it was all passion driven. He was beyond busy with Halloween Horror Nights, but loves Halloween too much to pass an opportunity like this. After exiting Toxicity, you can enter the mini haunts which included:
– You’ve wandered into the most feared place in the Old West: The Higgins & Co Work Camp. Can you survive the rowdiest, most dangerousest, most horriblest clan of townsfolk this side of Deadwood?
Perdition Home Haunt
– The notion that in outer space, no one can hear you scream simply isn’t true. Venturing into the depths of an ill-fated spacecraft, everyone will hear you cry for mercy when you face the horrors within.
The Blackout Anthology
– Emmy-Award winning content creation studio Secret Location has partnered with the team behind BLACKOUT to create a new vision of terror. Immerse yourself in a virtual world of horror as different stories from the BLACKOUT Experience come to life. No one under 18 ALLOWED!
Dead Zone 805
– Fight for survival at every turn as you enter the zombie filled apocalyptic world of Dr. Red Eyes and the dreaded D.R.E. Gang; date is the easy way out here. The doctor will see you now…
– Not every home is safe. Madness lingers beyond the threshold of a decrepit old cabin, concealing evil so vie that those who manage to escape will never be the same. The Fleshyard is a bad place.
Fear Station: Midway of Fear
– Hurry, hurry! Step right up! Come peek inside and see the evil thats come to town as you brave the bizarre creatures that call this dark midway “home”.
– Follow the trail of a madman through the basin swampland, where he attempted and failed to achieve mortality, leaving a trail of wasted souls in his wake before falling city to his own worst nightmares.
Scare ventures Presents: Sea of Terror
– To date, man has explored less than 5% of Earth’s oceans. Perhaps theres a reason why. Take a terror trip into the depths where undersea creatures lie in wait as you attempt to escape your watery grave.
Gorlesque: The Haunted Burlesque
– Are you “perfect” enough to join the Weltschmerz Society? Come find out and experience a naughty taste of the frights, frills, and folic that awaits you this Halloween in Los Angeles!
What we loved most about all of these experiences was that all of them brought their A game. Even though these experiences were relatively short, none of the talent let that idea stop them from bringing the best experience possible. Just from the impression these haunts made at the event, we will be visiting them during the Haunt season! They were that good!
THE DECADE BRIGADE SLIDER SHOW
One of the main stays of the Southern California Halloween Community is The Decade Brigade. This rugged band of sliders brings the high energy talent of sliding to life for the guests of Midsummer Scream. The talented team put on three different shows a day, each progressively becoming more and more difficult. When watching this group, you can’t help but put on a smile and get pumped! If there is ever a chance to see a show put on by this group, DO NOT hesitate to watch! Make sure to check out their website and support http://decayedbrigade.bigcartel.com
OINGO BOINGO DANCE PARTY!
The end of day 1 was wrapped up with a concert by Oingo Boingo Dance Party! It truly was a Dead Man’s Party with such an iconic band playing the night away. For a nominal fee, you could also get your face painted to look like a sugar skull and truly embody the dead man party spirit. Everyone danced the night away to wonderful 80’s music and for that small moment, it felt as though everyone had time traveled to the 80’s. What a wonderful way to cap a perfect first day of an event.
All in all, Midsummer Scream turned out to be a scary success! The weekend was jam packed with Halloween excitement. If we were to pin point one specific aspect of Midsummer Scream, it would be the people. Everyone who attended this event acted as if you were extended family. In fact, we are all part of the spooky Halloween family. You could feel the camaraderie and love from everyone at the event. Its such a great feeling to have, knowing that you are surrounded by your closest friends who love the same WEIRD things you do. We would like to give a special shout out to the staff of Midsummer Scream. You all did a spectacular job. From the Creative Directors to the Volunteers, we would like to thank you for all of your hard work. This was a spectacular convention, especially considering that it was its first year. Congragulations Midsummer Scream! We will see you next year!