Halloween fans heed the call of Midsummer Scream.
For plenty of horror lovers and Halloween enthusiasts, October 31 is just too long to wait for the opportunity to scare or be scared. Perhaps the escapist appeal of the ghoulish imagery and lighthearted hijinks is making the holiday increasingly popular, as the demand for all things macabre and hair-raising has been on a dramatic upswing over the past several years. This weekend at the Long Beach Convention Center, the Midsummer Scream Halloween Festival celebrated the second year of its two-day event, and the spectacle was staggering.
The festival’s Executive Director, David Markland, observed that this year’s weekend attendance was at about 15,000 people — almost double last year’s attendance. Those who heeded the call had come for many things, things which the festival provided both in its programming and in its mere essence; for, what the festival didn’t provide in its diverse attractions was brought by the sheer spirit of its attendees.
Highlights of the festival’s programming included: showcases by perennial horror-themed performance groups and businesses; a film screening room featuring a host of short films (presented by Horror Buzz.com); an exhibition area with hundreds of vendors; a children’s arts and crafts area (hosted by Buster Balloon); demonstrations and classrooms for learning DIY haunt and general Halloween tips and holiday history; special guest appearances; and, of course, panels and previews of a variety of haunted attractions, which will return in full force come October.
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