Damien Reaper’s MHC Weekend!
By Damien Reaper
Edited By Noah Wullkotte
It all feels like a dream that went so fast, but it was too damn fun. Four years ago when I first stepped into the world of the Midwest Haunters Convention, I was drinking A1 sauce and grossing out the owner of The Dent Schoolhouse. The 2nd year is when I started singing at the Scary-Oke event doing Crazy Train. Then the year after that I was singing Dead Babies and seeing our one and only Julie Langenderfer winning Ms. Midwest 2010.
Bud Stross (AKA Jasper) “the co-owner of the Dent Schoolhouse” drove the Mini-Bus from Cincinnati to Columbus and I was proud of the fact that I slept very well because in years past I didn’t sleep much. Being able to rest made the trip 10 times more enjoyable. Who got a seat on Dent’s Mini Bus? Megan Schmitt (aka Jynx), Beth Kassen, Ford Corleone (aka Johnny Graves), Julie Langenderfer (aka Callopie), Leslie Wells (acting manger), Josh Wells (co owner of Dent), Maggie Wehage (acting manger assistant), Adam Kraus (aka Bubba) and Chuck Stross who rode in his truck.
While riding up, I got to hear everyone singing and listening to Bud’s Mp3 player. Luckily, I had my Ipod Touch with earphones while I listened to Metal. Before arriving at the hotel, we went to a buffet, ate and relaxed. Then we headed to the Hyatt Regency to meet up with Keith Peace (aka Booter), Maggie Baker (aka Piper), Dan Leopold (aka Fatso The 300 lb put down clown), Kari Young, Krystal Crouch (aka Krystal Skull) and Troy Baldock (aka Buddy the Ventriloquist Living Dummy). We all got signed in at the Hotel and Convention Floor, got our bus pass to The TerrorFest and the Ball.
All of us climed aboard the Mini Bus to The TerrorFest with USS Nightmare’s own Candi Oakley, Jean Rose and even Mark Hopkinson joined us. Some of the ride we sang and sadly tried to rap. Walking through the haunt itself was enjoyable. The actors were great, the 3D area was neat, but my only complaint is it needed more lighting in the 1st half because I couldn’t see the sets very well. I like how lighting illuminates actors.
They had Grandma and Grandpa pop up animatronics which were great, but when one jumped forward it knocked into a couple of actors. Every haunt, not just The TerrorFest should take note that props that jump shouldn’t touch the customers. I know accidents happen, but it’s best to try to avoid a lawsuit. Keep props like that behind a fence and keep distance between the prop and customers. I loved the 3D skulls and brickwork. The TerrorFest is in a great building which is an old brewery and I see great things coming from this haunt.
Friday Night Scary-Oke
I got dressed in an old outfit and classic make-up. But you know I’ve never been nervous in anything I do, but I was and I have no idea why. I saw that Beth and Megan found a table for Dent and so I joined them. Then the others showed up and got ready to enjoy the power of Rock! My good friend The Haunt Rocker Jerry Vayne sang “We’re Not Gonna Take It By Twisted Sister”. Sadly I didn’t video tape him, but I know Jason Dasti and the MHC film crew did because him and Melissa McKnight sat next to the Dent crew taping the event.
When I got up to sing God of Thunder, it just clicked that I’m Damien Reaper. I think I did alright and Megan was nice enough to record it for me. We then watched Keith Newsome (Scare-A-Torium) sing Too Sexy, which he is all that. Julie got up and sang I touch myself. Dan and Keith got up and sang classic Blues Brothers with Megan and Julie as their dancers. Krystal then got up there with Candi and her friends and sang a song. Dan also sang Mexican Blackbird all by himself. Mommie D and Granny did It’s Raining Men which was too funny. There were a lot of great acts and a lot of great people. After it was over, I hobbled my way up to my room and fell asleep.
Saturday (Show Floor)
I walked around seeing old friends like Katie Lane (Ravens Wolf/ RFR Podcast), Jackie Steinert (RFR’s Haunt Hottie) and Storm and Bagder walking around. They had great hearses at MHC and I definitely wanted the Reaper’s Rod. Mommie D was right next to Jerry Vayne and I proceeded to talk to them for a second. Anita and Tom of Von Charon Productions and I saw The Unknown Scare Actor wearing a cool mask. I even chatted a little with Midnight Syndicate’s own Edward Douglas as well and with my good buddy Adam Kassen. I thought the tradeshow floor had some great stuff I couldn’t buy, but would love to get.
After I was done with the tradeshow, I went to a meeting of the Haunted Actors Organization lead by Jeff Simmons and members David Butters, Amanda Reevenge and others. There is a group on Facebook about the H.A.O. It’s for actors and haunt enthusiasts wanting to give or get information to open the doors and help each other out on everything within the haunt industry. I am a proud member as well as Scott Tater Lynd and others who share the same passion which is the haunt industry.
Saturday Night (Masquerade Ball)
I was dressed in my Immortal Damned outfit plus my cane given to me by my Dent Family member Jim Millspaugh which him and his wife Brenda dressed as Kasper and Kynx, as Jasper and Jinx came to came face to face with their doppelgangers.
Also from Dent at the Masquerade Ball was Hitgirl, A Zombie Girl Scout, Ms Kassen and Waldo. Charlie Clean joined with Bubba The Hillbilly, Callopie, Johnny Graves, Fatso The 300 lb Put Down Clown and myself. Granny, Mommie D, Robot Mommie D, Katie, Shane, Jackie, Zombketh, Big Mawma Clowteen, Reverend Anthony and the whole Newsome Family, Telfore Nyte, Kelly and Neena, Leonard Pickel, Aryn Fox and Jennifer Wilson (Foci Photograpy), Ethan Mark Turon from Costume Find, Ghost Man Walking, Spook Meister, Zombie Army Productions, Ryan Alan Thierauf and Kimmie Anne from Scream Acres Ct., Melonie Gipson, the Haunted Hoochie staff, and everyone who was there from all over the world. It was an honor to be in all of their presence. Even though my knees and back were in pain most of the night, you guys keep me entertained. You’re all Monstars!
Sunday (Final Day)
The saddest thing is saying goodbye to people you only see for a short time. Barry and Kathy Schieferstein are the ones who I give my hat off too for bringing this together. They have a great team and sponsors which I love what they do. MHC is about passion, not business in my book. Everyone keeps me coming. Leslie and Bud texted Let’s roll and we rode home with a sleepy gang of monstars and owners.
The haunt season is coming. So be ready for Damnation!