Highbury Cemetery Logo, 2016

October 1st. It's finally here! Time for another Countdown To Halloween!

I'd like to welcome any first-time visitors, and welcome back all the regulars. It's time to get this annual Halloween shindig started! 

October. Another 31 posts in 31 days. A huge celebration leading up to the grand high holiday of Halloween!

As in previous years, I always like to get the countdown started by revealing this year's haunt logo. A little creativity to really get the juices flowing. I've been hammering on this for the past month with great feedback from a few close friends and family members, and I think we really nailed it! As in previous years, this logo will be used for posters, stickers and that all important annual t-shirt!

Ladies and gentlemonsters, boils and ghouls, I present the 2016 edition of the Highbury Cemetery yard haunt logo...

Year thirteen. It's hard to believe that we've been going that long, but the excitement still flows and there's no sign of stopping! The annual countdown is on and I'm giddy with October elation!

Be sure to stop back daily, because the posts will be hitting you nonstop. Halloween art, Halloween music, Halloween props and everything else Halloween. And don't forget the annual Cemetery Sundays, where I tour local cemeteries with my camera and post up photos of all the old, beautifully ornate tombstones and mausoleums. And if that isn't enough, stop by for Freebie Fridays, where I share the wonderful sounds of my collection of old novelty Halloween records and cassettes.

October is finally here. It's time to celebrate!


The Countdown To Halloween...

The annual Countdown To Halloween blogfest is nearly here! 31 posts in 31 days, celebrating all things Halloween, culminating in the unveiling of our annual, one-night-only yard haunt display.

Every October I get really excited for this and 2016 is shaping up to be quite the celebration. I have a ton of new posts in the can, just waiting for the official start! Halloween art, Halloween music, Halloween photos, Halloween freebies, and yes, Halloween contests! It's the big party over at the cemetery! Join me daily, starting Saturday, October 1st and we will get this party started.

Or better yet, join in on the fun. Head over to the Countdown to Halloween blog, get your own badge and get your Halloween posts a'going!! 

Just remember: No Costume, No Candy.


Ghost, Live in Cleveland 9-21-16

At this point, I don't think you can see the band Ghost too many times. Wednesday night's show in Cleveland is the fourth time I've seen them, and each time seems to get better visually AND musically. Fresh off the release of their newest ep Popestar, the band embarked on another tour and made an early stop in town. I was able to bring my camera in this time, without any problems, and made my way down to the front to stake out a position to get some good shots.

To my pleasant surprise, Pittsburgh-based horror synth duo Zombi opened with an incredible, somewhat Carpenteresque set. I had seen them before when they opened for Goblin on their first U.S. tour back in 2013, but was amazed at the lush sound produced by only two people this time around...

Once the opening act was done, it was time to begin the night's ritual. Ghost exploded onto the stage, playing their newest track, Square Hammer, and didn't let up for the next hour-and-a-half. They played a nice variety of songs from their 3 lps, and had a cool stage and light show, along with a new female Nameless Ghoul on bass, a mid-set costume change and the usual dry humor from Papa. And even though the sound system seemed to cut out a couple of times and one of the confetti launchers malfunctioned, it was still an incredible experience. I HIGHLY recommend seeing this band live at least once (or four times), just for the all-encompassing experience. The Popestar tour has just kicked off, so go check them out if they play your town.

I'm REALLY happy with the photos this time around and had a hard time narrowing down the best shots, but here they are, in all their glory. Enjoy!! 

 (For some reason, this shot reminds me of the poster for John Carpenter's The Thing!)


Red Fang - "Blood Like Cream"

With a full weekend of prop building out in the garage, I need something to power me through. Nothing like cranking some Red Fang to make it happen!!

Now back to the garage...

Ghost - "Square Hammer"

Yes, it is well documented that I am a big fan of Ghost. Isn't everyone?

Today the band dropped their first new single from the upcoming EP entitled "Popestar," which will be released September 16. Wait, that's this Friday!! The release coincides with their latest North American tour, starting in Rochester.

Anyone wanna meet me and Mrs. Highbury at the Cleveland show on September 21?

(Thanks, Damian!!)

I Will Be Ready...

I snapped to attention upon realizing what day it was. It was already far too close to dusk as the jolt of sudden horror materialized within me. As I looked out across the grey front yard, I noticed a side-by-side, single file line of tombstones stretching from one end to the other. I found it bizarre that my wife had placed them in such an odd array. Fencing formed a makeshift path from the driveway over to the neighbor's yard, ending roughly near the empty, cracked sidewalk. My dumbfounded gaze quickly flashed to anger as I realized that the yard was still barren. As the darkness settled in, I panicked at the realization that no one was on the street. Void of any movement throughout the entirety of the lifeless neighborhood. Where was everybody? 

No reason to visit this house tonight...

I jolted again, struggling to focus my blurred vision in the darkness of my surroundings. Where was I? I searched the space around me, trying to find some reference of location. My heart pounded in my chest as I noticed the red numbers beside me. 513... 

As the numbers registered, the reality finally became clearer.

5:13 am. I was lying in the darkness of my pre-dawn bedroom, dripping with sweat and heart still pounding. September 9. Another 52 days until Halloween...

It seems that every year at this time, the anxiety of Halloween preparation manifests itself into a chillingly nightmarish dream. And it's always the same thing. I realize far too late that it is Halloween night and I have nothing set up. And nobody comes to the house. I always jolt awake, fearing that what has just played out in my sleep-filled confusion is reality. Until I slowly realize that I am, in fact, still in bed, in the middle of the night, with weeks left to go before the big night.

This vivid, strange nightmare caught me off guard, as I realize that I am again behind in my yearly build schedule. It serves and an alarm to get going on some major prop building. And because of it, I buckled down this past weekend and really started cranking out the work. A few more trips to Lowe's and some serious building time in the garage will ensure that everything on my list will get done. My enthusiasm has returned (yet again) and I'm amped to make some seriously kick ass new display work. We're already half way through September, and come October 1, the real fun begins. Or is it madness? Either way, I will be ready...