An Interview With Gore Galore
By Noah (AKA Jolly Pumpkin)
Today we speak with Gore Galore, the makers of Oversized Creature Costumes, My Pet Zombies and many products that have made them famous in the haunt industry.
Give us a little history on yourself and how you’re involved with Gore Galore.
Gore Galore developed out of two different influences. When I was in High school I was working as a Pizza Delivery driver and one night screams and howls were coming from the building across the street and there was a line wrapping all the way around the block. The event is known as www.newburghhauntedhouse.com. I was intrigued so that evening after work I went over and spoke to a gentleman named Dan Fischer (Fish) and he gave me a tour of the haunt.
I began working there the next day and from then on even to this day I and our company still contribute to this event. Shortly, I will explain how this influenced me. Secondly, I began working at Charter Hospital as a Mental Health counselor starting what I thought would be my occupation since I have a degree in Psychology and Sociology. After 2 years working as a counselor I decided I needed much more from my Lifelong occupation, and realized exactly what that was. I need to work with my hands. I need concrete accomplishment. Well, the same year, as a buyer and representative for the haunted house I attended the Halloween Party Show in Chicago 11 years ago and saw what it was I needed to do with my life. I needed to make Gore, so that is how Gore Galore was born.
What goes into designing one of the oversized creature costumes?
For one would be cool? I think the main factor is whether we are excited about the design. And would it fit our design scheme? This is more complicated than you might think and a very important step is to make sure it will sell. We have designed a few that didn’t, and that really hurt us. Also, does it fit how we want to progress as a company? Every year we try to up the bar so we can continue to push ourselves and to impress our buyers.
What’s involved in creating the Sounds of Gore CDs?
Luckily, I have Jason Reese of www.rustyknife.net to work with, and on top of that I have years of experience working in haunts. At first, all we did was decide what kinds of CDs could people use in their haunts that were very scene specific. So, we designed CDs based on the scenes we have done in the past. We just figured out what should be on those CDs that would convey what was happening within that scene and also decided what kind of emotion the CD should elicit from the patron. That is still how we design every disc.
What inspired you to become involved in the haunt industry creating costumes, props and music?
The first answer needs to be reiterated here. It has so much to do with the Newburgh Haunted House and attending my very first Halloween Party Show. Had it not been for going to that first show I would never had known about the vendor side of this industry. On top of that, I love making things, I love designing props, I love designing scenes, I love running haunted houses, and I especially love scaring people. Why else would I be doing this? To get rich. Hey, right. This is not a get rich quick kind of industry. So, it has to be for the love of doing it. Now, it comes down to what else do I know.
What haunted attractions across the United States use Gore Galore products?
Now that is a very difficult question to answer since we have more costumes and props at so many different Haunted Attractions it would be an insanely huge list. But, I can say we have pieces at Many Theme Parks: most Six Flags parks, Busch Gardens, Cedar Point, Universal Studios, Carowinds, and Ocean Park in Japan. I will list a couple exceptional haunted houses though: Netherworld, Creatures Crypt, Hacker House, Terror on the Fox, and I am happy to say the list goes on and on.
How has the haunt industry changed your life?
Well, since I started Gore Galore I eat, sleep, and work around Halloween. I can’t even see myself doing anything else. I am sure I could move into other industries. But it will always be working with my hands and making art. I certainly can’t see myself doing anything that doesn’t involve a creative process or problem solving. On top of that I now have so many friends both vendors and buyers alike in this industry that I don’t think I could enjoy anything else as much.
What’s the most popular product most people purchase from Gore Galore and why?
The sales are spread pretty evenly across our product lines but the best selling costumes are the Wraith, and Frankenstein. The best selling zombies are Popeye and Fleshrot, and the best selling volumes of the Sounds of Gore are Cemetery of Unrest, Zombie Attack, Playtime, and Demonic Whispers.
What prop companies inspire you to create better products?
Ex mortis of course. But Wayne doesn’t really work in the Haunted Industry anymore. He is doing all of Rob Zombies movies. But anyone that is doing things that have not been done before, and those that are in business for the love of it. I would have to say Monster Bots for the active costuming, Ghoulish gallery for the changing portraits, and Unit 70 for the awesome art and knowing how he started and what he had to deal with to be where he is today.
Where do you see Gore Galore 10 years from now?
Just bigger and better. We really strive to be better so as long as we continue on that journey we will always be where I want the company to be. We have found our permanent location with lots of room to expand so what else can I ask for except to continue to have the support of this industry. Thanks for the interview and don’t forget “Keep Gore Alive”.