Monday, April 7, 2014

New Acquisitions

Acquired some new items today!

These were nothing we were actually looking for when they were found, but of course there's always room for reapers and gargoyles at Shingle Creek Manor. Not sure what we'll do with a dragon but he's pretty cool.

Belinda met up with one of her old friends that "knew" a lady and Belinda got the "friend deal" that she just couldn't pass up... and I'm not asking any more questions...

Thinking he may be part of a new sign on the entry column. Never been happy with the one we made.

This a very cool dragon. Not sure how he will fit in but she couldn't pass it up.
Nobody needs an ashtray in this house but could be molded for a cool headstone adornment?
I want a smaller version of this guy for some fence post finials!
Know a guy looking for some lamps for his column- wonder if this would fit the bill...

Wednesday, April 2, 2014


Kept hearing about this place, "Skycraft" at a number of workshops we attended since last year. This past week I took a short drive to downtown Orlando to checkout what all the hoopla was about.

 Except for the Flying saucer hovering over the the exterior door of the building, the outside is rather unspectacular, though a bit odd and certainly a curiosity builder. Inside however may rank up there with one of the most unusual specialty stores I've ever been in. This place is a fabricators dream!

If you've ever needed an electrical part of any kind for a prop, if this place doesn't have it, I'm not sure it exists. Besides new or used electrical motors, wiring, switches and parts of every possible type, there is an incredible supply of surplus parts. I saw everything from metal and plastic gears ( steampunk anyone?), to various LED lights, to surplus gauges, and even some military ordinance hanging from the ceilings. I spent it about thirty minutes exploring the aisles and barely scratched the surface of things they had inside.

Think Skycraft may be on my "frequent visit" list. SkyCraft Parts and Surplus, 2245 West Fairbanks Ave. Winter Park, FL 32789

Friday, March 21, 2014

Making Monsters - Cancelled

I noticed I always get quite a few visitors to my blog posts about Travel Channel's "Making Monsters" that airs in the Fall. "Making Monster's is about  Ed and Marsha and their crew at "Distortions Unlimited" and the craziness of making props for the Halloween and haunt industry. Although I had heard rumors that it had been cancelled, Distortion's Unlimited posted the following this week on their Facebook page;

"Travel Channel has decided not to renew MAKING MONSTERS. It's been wonderful being a part of such an awesome project for the past 3 seasons! We've loved working with everyone at Travel ... and our film crew is absolutely the best!! ... so much fun! Thanks so much to all our customers and to everyone that watches the show ... you guys are the best! Please stay tuned ... we may not be filming MAKING MONSTERS, but Distortions is still making monsters ... forever : )"

ITunes carrys both season's episodes if your so inclined.. I've enjoyed their episodes and Belinda and I got to meet Ed and Marsha last year, very nice folks. We'll miss the program this Fall.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014


While SyFy's "Face Off" has just been trudging along rather uneventfully for me this season, the network has a new series starting after "Face Off" tonight that I am optimistic about,  - "Carvers".

Premiering Tuesday, March 4, at 10 PM EST, "Carvers" is about artisans Ray Villafane and Andy Bergholz, two friends and their carving business. While this in and of itself sounds pretty mundane and would never have captured my attention, the last few years I've seen the work of Villafane and more recently Bergholz on Food Channel's "Pumpkin Wars". It's sort of become an October Halloween tradition for us to root for the "Pumpkin War" team with Ray Villafane or his partners and the pumpkin carvings are simply amazing to watch. I expect this new program will highlight some pretty cool creations.

You can get more info and a Carvers Sneak Peak on "Villafane Studios" at Facebook.

Monday, February 24, 2014

RIP - Harold Ramis

Rest in peace Harold Ramis.

He was the director of a great number of ridiculous and entertaining movies of my youth, the least of which was "Ghost Busters".

We'll remember not to cross the streams, Egon! Thanks for the memories.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Learnin' Stuff

Got to spend the day at my favorite sculpting and casting supply store, " Reynold's Advanced Materials" in Orlando. Took their "Intro to Mold Making and Casting" class. We have a Q&A session on Thursday on using "Lifecasting". Hopefully we'll take casting up a level this year.

The class was about 20 people,  some jewelers,  a couple of wood craftsmen, a taxidermist and a sculptor or two, but no other haunters. I was a little surprised considering their showroom examples are nearly all props and scary stuff.

Once again the employees get kudos for really knowing their stuff and excellent customer service. Trainers were very good.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Haunter's Hangout

One of our bigger resources for networking with other yard haunters and Halloween fanatics these days is "Haunter's Hangout" on Facebook. If you haven't joined, it is an incredibly friendly group of people, mostly home haunters, some professional haunters, but all of the them are about sharing, sharing their latest prop build, ideas for a prop build, haunting tips, haunting questions, Halloween jokes and  memes, and pretty much anything you can imagine relating to Halloween and home haunting.

Recently the Facebook group passed 3000 members and this last Thursday started the second season of Haunter's Hangout on Google's ( YouTube ) on air live streaming function.

Haunter's Hangout Host, Deoblo Lopez
Live Streaming interviews with other haunters on YouTube was originally the brainchild of home haunter, Deoblo Lopez, aka Deoblo85 ( Haunter's Hangout ) who quickly realized he was going to need help to get his idea rolling and solicited the help of friend and home haunter, Jim Walden, aka JWAL ( The Twisted Seed ) and "Haunter's Hangout" was born.

Haunter's Hangout Host Jim Walden
Shortly thereafter they requested the expertise of home haunter, Brad Goodspeed ( The Butcher of Provincetown ) to help with the "Haunter's Hangout" Facebook group and provide his video expertise with a weekly promo vid for the upcoming Thursday night video stream.

Haunter's Hangout Host, Brad Goodspeed
Each Thursday night at 9 PM (EST) from February through May the three hosts bring on various guests and "special guests" from home haunts and professional haunts for an informal question and answer session, usually made even more informal with the consumption of each person's alcoholic beverage of choice. So in addition to exhibiting their work, experiences and ideas, there's a few alcohol enhanced jokes and some laughter to keep things from getting slow. Generally the shows I've seen last a couple hours.

Things are a bit sluggish this time of year as far as  Halloween creativity, props and projects, so Haunter's Hangout is a nice bit of Halloween entertainment for a Thursday evening. You can post questions for specific haunters on the "Haunter's Hangout" Facebook page or on the YouTube channel. 

Busy on a Thursday night? You can watch the videos from the live stream anytime afterwards at " Haunter's Hangout".