The first Creature Feature Weekend horror convention was held over Labor Day Weekend, on August 30 through September 1, 2019. The three-day event took place at the Wyndham Hotel in Gettysburg, PA.

The guest list was comprised of actors, horror novelist, suit actors, stunt performers, directors, and musicians. It included Corey Feldman, Jamison Newlander, and Tim Cappello (The Lost Boys), Patty Mullen, Frank Henenlotter, and James Lorinz (Frankenhooker), Alex Vincent (Child’s Play), Brian Keene (The Rising), Billy Bryan (Ghostbusters), Geretta Geretta (Demons), John Russo (The Return of the Living Dead), Tom Woodruff Jr. (Aliens), Glenn Ennis (Freddy vs. Jason), Walter Phelan (House of 1000 Corpses), Joe Bob Briggs (The Last Drive-In with Joe Bob Briggs), Stephen Blickenstaff (The Cramps), Jason Brooks and Chalet Lizette Brannan (Friday the 13th Vengeance), David Eisenhauer (Cinema Sickness), Mark Lassise and Kevin Kangas (Fear of Clowns), Sean McKnight and Frank Horror (Cinema Alliance), John Johnson (Give Up the Ghost), Jason Seaux (Necro-Man), Michael Kyne and Bianca Allaine (Zombinatrix), Robert Ford (The Compound), Kelli Owen (Six Days), Wesley Southard (The Betrayed), Somer Canon (Vicki Beautiful), Ronald Malfi (Night Parade), and Jonathan Janz (The Sorrows).

In-costume photos were available throughout the weekend with cast members of Friday the 13th: Vengeance, Frankenhooker, and The Lost Boys.

Vendors were set up in one of the ballrooms and an adjoining hallway, which ran alongside the autograph room. This kept a steady flow of traffic throughout the convention with most attractions in close proximity to one another. Food trucks were on-site, also conveniently located by the vendor and celebrity autograph areas.

Attendees had plenty of shopping opportunities with a large assortment of collectibles, artwork, and other material. Vendors had shirts and other apparel, action figures, toys, first edition horror books, comics, magazines, VHS tapes and DVDs, movie posters, board games, even aromatherapy items and hot sauce. Artists sold prints and paintings, candle holders, jewelry, masks, and handmade figurines and sculptures.

Along with the vendors, attendees could get tattoos at the con or view exhibit pieces from the Museum of Oddities, with sideshow material and items that are believed to be haunted.

Something that made Creature Feature standout was the breadth and variety of events held throughout the weekend. The show coordinated with local ghost tours for offsite tours of historical sites and film locations. There were special movie screenings of Bigfoot, Friday the 13th: Vengeance, Frankenhooker, Slasher Nurse, Crepitus, and others.

On Saturday afternoon, kids were invited to go trick ‘r treating. The con provided candy and bowls which were put on vendor and celebrity guests’ tables. It was clear that the children, parents, vendors, and guests all enjoyed the midafternoon parade of costumed kiddos.

Scares that Care hosted a silent auction for the charity organization. On Friday night, attendees could enjoy a campfire and a live commentary screening of Frankenhooker, with film guests. On Saturday Walter Phelan hosted a special effects Q&A and Tim Cappello held a concert, which attendees raved about on Sunday morning.

The consensus for the first Creature Feature Weekend was largely positive. Many vendors expressed that they were impressed with the show’s coordination and attendee turnout, considering it was a first time convention. Attendees stated that they were having a good time and hope that a bigger guest list can be developed for a second show. Other than Sunday afternoon’s activity, which slowed down significantly, the con was busy all weekend.

It was a positive start for the new Gettysburg-based horror con.

-Amanda Sheriff