Review by Lauryn
Texas Frightmare Weekend was recently voted “Best Horror Convention” for 2014 by iHorror.com, and this past weekend’s tenth anniversary convention demonstrated exactly why it merits such an award. This year’s convention hosted guests as varied as Elvira/Cassandra Peterson, Malcolm McDowell, Udo Keir, Tom Savini, and first-time convention appearances by Neve Campbell and Skeet Ulrich, among many, many others.
The convention is jam-packed with activities for all horror fans, whatever their interests. There were Q&A sessions with many (but not all) of the convention guests, and reunion panels bringing together the casts of fan favorites Phantasm and A Nightmare on Elm Street 2. On Friday and Saturday nights, there were film screenings, so like-minded fans could come together and enjoy the genre we love. And, as with any con, there were vendors galore from which to purchase horror-related t-shirts, books, dvds, and other merch. And you never know who you will meet while you’re shopping. At one point, I found myself elbow-to-elbow with Udo Keir, shopping for t-shirts!
In addition to the celebrity panels, Texas Frightmare weekend also includes hands-on workshops for those fans who want to be more involved in the making of horror. I attended a mask-making workshop which provided everything participants needed in order to make their own horrific mask from a standard plastic mask available at most craft stores. I also attended a panel for horror authors on the subject of crafting horror in an age when audiences have become desensitized by horror. The convention also hosted a “Dark Art Gallery” that showcased work from vendors and participants.
The true highlight, however, is the one-on-one time with the celebrity guests. Texas Frightmare Weekend had a slew of guests, and while some guests, like Elvira, had lines that required waiting for hours, I was able to walk up to many tables and achieve my autograph and photo with only a 30-minute wait – if even that long. I had purchased a premium pass with two line jumps, but found that I didn’t even need to use them, as the lines moved quickly and efficiently. This did not mean, though, that we were rushed through. I was able to have a nice chat with many of the guests I visited; at no point did I feel rushed through my time with the celebrity.
Texas Frightmare Weekend is a great experience for fans of horror. It’s a weekend when we can get together, put on our scariest costume, and have fun with a crowd of like-minded people, young and old. If you attend solo (like I did), chances are you will leave the weekend with several new acquaintances and great memories. I look forward to attending TFW again next year, and for many years to come.