Sunday, July 14, 2024

Blobfest 2024

Saturday was our second time attending the annual celebration of that hungry red monster from outer space - the Blob.  Phoenixville's Blobfest is essentially an open-air horror convention honoring that time back in 1958 when portions of the The Blob were filmed at the Colonial theater.  The event is a love letter to the film.  The color red is everywhere.  Restaurants and stores are decorated in red balloons, banners, and crepe.  Vendors fill the streets selling spooky merchandise and artwork. 


Each year the Colonial theater plays the original movie (and other classic horror films), and even hosts a "Run Out" where patrons are encouraged to reenact a pivotal moment in the film when the blob attacks the theater.  Folks go running out into the street, screaming and laughing.  

This year, instead of the original, we chose to watch the 1988 remake.  


This was a formative movie for me back in the day, as the practical effects are still some of the best (and most brutal) in the business.  


The theater was packed, and the mood was light and excited.  We all laughed and groaned and cheered as the movie unfolded in the very theater that started this wonderful tradition.  

We had a fantastic time... got to try some Blob jello shots, purchased a tiny ceramic Blob, had a great meal and cocktails at a local restaurant, and got to photograph an amazing cosplayer decked out as one of the members of the biological containment team featured in the film.  There was a costume contest earlier in the day and I'm really hoping this guy took first place.
















The restaurant was playing The Blob...



The Art Of Marc Potts



Saturday, July 13, 2024

Now Playing: Daglbundes

Some Saturday morning music by Aindulmedir.


Click below...


Friday, July 12, 2024

The Strange And Unusual Oddities Parlor

On our recent trip to visit Noir Dark Spirits, we made a stop in Kingston, Pennsylvania to check out The Strange & Unusual.  It's been open for ten years and what sets this Curious Goods shop apart from most is the presence of an amazing cafe in the front of the store - a cafe that sells spooky brews all year long, and not just during the autumn season.  If we lived closer, this would be our coffee shop.  


Before perusing the store, we ordered two Pumpkin Juice Lattes.  As the barista placed our drinks on the counter, she said "Here are your drinks...and here is a little magic!"  She waved her hand and a tiny burst of flame floated over our drinks.  In the world of Magic, that's achieved with a thin piece of "Flash Paper."  Typically, this requires ignition by a small flame.  I saw no flame, and I honestly have no idea how she ignited it.  I have chosen to believe it was magic.  Coffee magic.  And it was a perfect start to our time in that spooky store.

Below are some photos we took (and some links)...



















Thursday, July 11, 2024

Memories Of Halloweens Past

Following up Mr. Macabre's favorite nostalgic possession comes something all the way from Austria - a very old (perhaps 100 years) grain sickle.  Scarecrow Atelier shares this special piece that's been in his family since the days it was used in the fields.  

Many years ago, the rusty blade was found while rummaging in the attic of his family home.  "It fascinated me so much that I couldn't get it out of my head," he shares.  "For me, it was synonymous with the harvest. The smell of hay and straw from a hard time when people told one or two scary stories in the evenings by the flickering candlelight.  And when you woke up in the middle of the night to a thunderstorm, you thought about the story from the evening again. You looked out the window and lightning lit up the night and the scarecrow that was standing out there in the field.  Watching over the crops and... why is it so close to the house? I had put it on the hill?  This story played in my head as I held the sickle in my hand in the attic. My love for scarecrows was awakened."

Thanks, Scarecrow Atelier!  It's wonderful trying to imagine what this sickle has seen over the decades.  And it's really perfect that it's currently cherished by a man who builds fantastic scarecrows.

For anyone interested in submitting, you can email me at pumpkinrot @ gmail . com (remove the spaces, of course!)

Wednesday, July 10, 2024

Mosaics

...By the incredibly talented Lady M.

I absolutely love these designs and color choices.





Zacherley's Vulture Stew

Firft, get a head. Fimmer thoroughly in broth for three dayf, to which muft be added juice of deadly mufhroom (ufe feveral), a handful of mandrake rootf dug at full moon, alfo deadly nightfhade a goodlie quantity, three toadf and a black widow fpider. Now add your vulturef (at leaft two they are meagre birdf though ftrong in flavor). Be careful that they are firmly tied or they will flop out of the pot and caufe a great commotion. Three hourf before midnight of the fifth day, remove the vulturef from the broth, ftuff well with henbane and fet afide. Now fift the brew of featherf (fifting if eafier than plucking and befidef fome monfterf are ticklifh) and combine brew and ftuffed birdf for another three hourf. On the ftroke of midnight, ferve your fupper with a garnifh of fried locuftf, followed by blood pudding for deffert.



Tuesday, July 9, 2024

Now Playing: Witchcraft

By The Spiders.


Click below...


Monday, July 8, 2024

Noir Dark Spirits

Back in February 2023 I blogged about a Scranton, Pennsylvania bar/restaurant called Noir Dark Spirits.  The gothic atmosphere looked to be off the charts.  Since that blog post, Noir moved to a new and larger location.  On Saturday we took a road trip to see if something called Noir Dark Spirits could live up to all the expectations we placed upon it.

It did.

Located in the old lobby area of the historic Ritz movie theater, the bar appeared to be one of those places you'd see in a movie or an old 90's series about vampires - one of those places you'd wish were a real thing.  A real gothic vampire bar.  Something with gloomy red lighting and long dark shadows wherever you looked.  There were alcove booths along the wall, each table with a metal plaque in the center listing one of the seven deadly sins (our table was Pride). 

We ordered our first round of drinks:  The Emperor for me (their version of an Old Fashioned [with a flaming sugar cube]) and for Jenna - The Confessional.  The friendly server informed her that the drink would be served in a small black confessional box.  Upon its arrival, we were told, Jenna would have to confess a sin.  The cocktail arrived in a tiny gothic church-shaped box, glowing red from an LED tea light.  The beautiful drink was bubbling with the help of some dry ice.  The presentation was flawless and hilarious.  

A sin was confessed.

We ordered some more drinks and some eats:  the Devil's Board (a really tasty charcuterie board) and the Phlebotomist Dough Injections (dough skulls stuffed with three cheeses and served with syringes poked through the eyes...syringes filled with marinara diavlo).  The second round of drinks arrived, and you could spot Jenna's from across the bar.  Called The Re-Animator, it was glowing green from a tiny glowstick hoop and bubbling frantically like a potion Grandpa Munster would make Herman drink.  

For dessert - a delicious raspberry cheesecake skull, with a thick outer layer of hardened white chocolate.  It came with a metal mallet...  so you can bash your dessert's head in.  

Despite the theatricality of the cocktails and food, they were actually quite good.  Everything was.  I think I was a little worried it would be style over substance in there.  Every aspect of our visit was a blast, and the best way I could describe it would be that it's like having the option to attend a really hip Halloween party literally whenever you chose to do so.  The mood, the atmosphere, and especially the music, make Noir Dark Spirits a really special place.  We wish it were closer than a couple hours away, but I have a feeling we'll be having this particular Halloween bash about two or three times a year.  It really was that good.

Below are some photos Jenna took, and definitely CLICK HERE to see some more images and a couple of neat videos over at her Instagram.