Autumn Haunts – My family outings

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Autumn Haunts – My family outings

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Harbs Farm

Pumpkin Picking, Fresh Corn on the Cob, Wine Tasting. Every fall we drive out to eastern LI farm and wine country. There are a lot of farms there. When people think of New York they don’t think of beautiful open land and farm areas, but there’s some great places to visit. Harbs Farm is a favorite destination because it has pumpkin picking for the kids, fresh grilled corn on the cob, a farm stand and a wine tasting booth. Not to mention the Apple Cider Donuts made fresh in the donut shack. We spent at Sunday afternoon there, eating, picking and enjoying the great fall weather. We brought back a few pumpkins, 2 dozen ears of corn, other veggies (tomatoes, zucchini) and of course, candy apples.

 

Schmidts Farm

Schmidts Farm has a cool Haunted Mansion every year that my kids like to go through. I went through one year and it was pretty creepy, Zombie-like figures jumping out at you, Creepy Clowns and of course, in the last room hides the Killer with the Chainsaw that chases you out of the mansion. As long as you keep screaming, he’ll chase you all the way to the parking lot.

Schmidts also has a haunted corn maze which is something me and my wife can go through with the kids. After entering a smoke-filled shadowy barn, you come out in the corn maze. When you least expect it, costumed creatures will jump out at you. It also has quite a few horrific displays in the field, including a dead hillbilly family, a car whose headlight and horn go off right in front of you, and a bunch of coffins with farm-fresh deadies. Not as intense as the Haunted Mansion but fun for the family.

 

Rise of the Jack-O-Lanterns

For the 2nd year in a row we went to Rise of the Jack-O-Lanterns. It’s a trail around one of Long Island’s Gold Coast Mansions, Westbury Gardens, adorned with over 5,000 carved and lit pumpkins. Highlights this year included multiple pumpkins stacked and carved in a way to portray dinosaur bones and an outdoor pumpkin aquarium, with pumpkins carved to look like fish, seaweed, stingrays and even some giant crabs.

 

Pumpkinhead (1988) – Movie review

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Pumpkinhead (1988)

Directed by Stan Winstonmy top 10 1980s horror

Lance Henriksen
Jeff East
John D’Aquino
Kimberley Ross
Joel Hoffman
George ‘Buck’ Flower
Chance Corbitt Jr.

By now it’s become obvious what I like about 80s horror films, original creatures and monsters, practical effects, some good eerie Synth music, and most of all, classic storytelling. Pumpkinhead is simultaneously an original and unique creature-feature film and a throwback to classic 1950s sci-fi/horror flicks. The monster is an amazing humanoid design with a unique origin/manifestation story. A spiritually demonic entity in pumpkinhead 1988 dvdphysical form is a subject in horror films rarely handled as good as it is here.

To recap the story, the cutest kid in the world has Lance Henriksen as a dad, how cool is that? Kinda’ makes up for not having a mom. While helping his ‘Pa’ at the farm stand, the boy is run over by a dirt-bike riding, city slicker who, along with a group of friends, quickly seek shelter at their nearby log cabin. Ed Harley(Henriksen) takes his boy home. Now get the tissues ready, cause the boy dies. Harley asks the locals about an ol’ woman rumored to have some powers and who can assist with vengeance. The witch woman, Haggis, is one creepy witch and one of the highlights of the movie. She offers Ed Harley a means to avenge his son but it comes with a terrible price. Pumpkinhead is called forth and hunts down the city folk. Seeing the wrong in his hateful vengeance, Ed Harley joins the battle to try and stop the creature.

This film is the directorial debut from Stan Winston, famous effects artist responsible for bringing to life: Alien, Poltergeist, the Thing, and the Dinosaurs from Jurassic Park, among others. I love the duo-tone lighting in the night scenes of this film; blue tints for outdoors, yellow-orange for the indoor scenes. The back lit scene when Pumpkinhead enters the hallowed land of the burnt out church, drips with dark atmosphere and mood. The creature hisses at the cross and halts his relentless pursuit of the city folks in order to break the cross into pieces in a nasty display of evil.

Pumpkinhead follows a classic mythological storyline involving the fulfillment of a wish or desire and adhering to the adage, be careful what you wish for, because you just might not like what you get. Self destruction by the desire for revenge is another theme here, along with similarities to classics like The Monkey’s Paw, Pandora’s Box, and the cursed granted wish of a Genie. The film spawned several sub-par sequels which I would ignore, the effects were not handled as well and the stories were not nearly as good.

I’m sure most horror fans have seen this fantastic film but for those looking for a not-so-gory Halloween Creature Feature, this would be a great choice. I can’t even guess at how many times I have watched it; it’s one of my all time faves. A true Modern American Gothic classic!

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Fun Facts:
The film was inspired/based on a poem by Ed Justin.

The boys dog, Gypsy, was the same dog that was in Gremlins

Lance Henriksen gathered his own props for his character, including visiting Pawn Shops to purchase silver dollars to pay the witch for her services.

Though the creatures head is not shaped like a pumpkin it is birthed from a pumpkin patch.

George “Buck” Flowers was an often called upon character actor in the 80’s, playing small parts in films like, The Fog, They Live, and Back to the Future

Urban Legend #9 – by Michael Thomas-Knight

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Urban Legend #9 – by Michael Thomas-Knight

Michael Thomas-Knight published in the Halloween issue of Fictionterrifica.com

When you’re online, for most people that means the “Real World’ is offline. There’s a killer on the lose, looking to take advantage of your inattention. 17-year-old, blonde-hair, blue-eyed, cheerleader Nicole, has no idea she is being stalked. But all is not as it seems…

Read for FREE! Urban Legend #9

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13 Frightful Tunes! The ultimate Halloween rockin’ song list!

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13 Frightful Tunes!

Sick of the same ol’ songs being suggested for your Halloween bash?

Have you heard enough of Thriller, Monster Mash, and the Ghostbusters theme? If I hear these songs at another Halloween party, I’ll puke up my guts!

I offer you my Rockabilly, Punk-abilly, Psycho-billy, surfer-rock, Halloween play list.

A baker’s dozen of some less played-out holiday alternatives – 13 Creepy Rockers for your Halloween song list…

The Munsters Theme Song

Deadbolt – Voodoo Doll

Tito & Tarantula – After Dark – (video featuring Eiza Gonzalez)

The Ramones – Pet Sematary

Headless Horseman song

Necropolis: City if the Dead

The Frantics – Werewolf

Screamin’ Jay Hawkins – Whistlin’ Past the Graveyard

Horrorpops – Walk Like a Zombie

Nekromantics – Horny in a Hearse

Zombie Ghost Train – R.I.P

The Creepshow – The Garden

Voodoo Zombie – El Twist De La Pinup

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deadbolt band

 

The Witch Tree – by Michael Thomas-Knight

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The Witch Tree – by Michael Thomas-Knight

For those who don’t know, a few years ago I was in a Ghost Investigation group. Here’s a true story about one of our adventures.

Accepted and posted at The Fox True Ghost Story Project.

Read for FREE! The Witch Tree

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