Georgios Quality Inn & Suites Conference Center
Orland Park, IL
July 29-31, 2016

Education

2016 Education

chicago-frights-739Education is THE key being successful in any business, but especially in the fright attraction industry. Chicago Frights prides itself with bring you, the attendee the very best and least expensive “Haunt-ucation” found anywhere! Admission to all day time classes are INCLUDED with the show registration. No more paying $80 per class for what ends up being a sales pitch from the speaker. Education should be FREE! And at Chicago Fights it is. (Note: There is a materials fee for the workshop classes, however, attendees take home their project after the class.)

NOTE: Speakers, topics, sessions, days and times are subject to change!

Use Schedule At A Glance for a quick look at this year’s Education!

 

Keynote Session

Keynote- Saturday 6:00pm-7:30pm
Arcs and Sparks: High Voltage Special Effects from Dr. Frankenstein’s Laboratory
By John Grzywacz of OSHA Professor.com

ALIVE, ALIVE , ALIVE and on stage! See some of the high voltage special effects devices sparking and throwing spectacular electrical bolts just as they did on the set when originally filmed. See the “Nebularium” as seen in the 1931 film Frankenstein, The Mask of Fu Manchu and Bride of Frankenstein. The “Cosmic Ray Diffuser” featured in Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein and The Vanishing Shadow. The 75,000 volt “Lightning Screen” as seen in Frankenstein, Dracula vs. Frankenstein and The Munster’s TV show. See the “Digital Disputer” featured in Dracula vs. Frankenstein 1971 and Young Frankenstein. As well as a 6′ Jacob’s Ladder and 3′ electrical arcs from a 250,000 volt Tesla Coil, one of Nikola Tesla’s greatest inventions.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Actor Development Classes

Actor Development- Saturday 10:00am-11:00am
Managing Actors Doesn’t Have to be Scary
ByJapes Palles 0

Actors. They are the lifeblood of any haunt. They can also make you want to rip your hair out. In this session, we will discuss management structures that will improve communication and provide your team with clear expectations. We will also discuss strategies to provide meaningful feedback, set limits, and create a safe, supportive environment for actors to reach their full potential. Of course, even the best laid plans can go off the tracks sometimes. Japes will provide advice on how to handle the road bumps that we inevitably face with the unique individuals who come to act in Haunted Houses. All attendees will leave with several free digital resources to help keep track of and maintain an actor database. Laptops are not necessary, but are recommended.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Actor Development- Saturday 11:30am-12:30pm
Entry Level Haunting: Everything I Wish I Had Known
By Nicole Metzger of Scare Actor-The 17th Door

This session is an in-depth look at everything you might not think about when you sign up to be “scareactor” at your local haunted attraction. Haunt actor Nicole Metzger will discuss the ins and outs of haunt acting and how to work around some of these issues, even turning some of them into advantages to prepare attendees for working at a haunt.
Come discuss ideas, strategy and learn what Nicole wished she had known as a freshman monster.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Actor Development- Saturday 1:30pm-2:30pm
How To Be An Effective Scare Actor In Today’s More Jaded Society
By Brian Sichelle

Are you thinking about getting in haunt acting, and want to know what it takes to scare people effectively? Or do you find you’re not getting the screams from patrons that you used to?
Join 19 year veteran scare actor, Brian Sichelle, for an open discussion about scaring in a society of people that are growing ever more jaded every day. Learn the psychology behind the scare and the difference between gross-out gore and true horror. This fun class will delving into different methods of scaring, from the pop and scare startle, to the intimidating scares that leave victims with lifelong nightmares. Join other like minded “scareactors” and learn what it takes to get under people’s skin……

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Actor Development- Saturday 3:00pm-4pm
The Haunt Life: How To Start Haunt Acting?
By Kevin Biksacky of Designing the Fear

In this positive energy and motivation session, Kevin Biksacky of Ghoulson Family Reunion will provide the haunt-curious with the tools needed to actively participate as an actor in their local haunted house. Topics include tools to research haunt entertainment locations, and audition details. Where to start and other resources that are essential to a new haunt actor’s arsenal will be provided. Networking and self-promotion will also be covered.
This is not an acting class but a informative, interactive, open dialogue forum. Kevin will explain what haunt owners expect from their applicants and provide examples of Haunt-etiquette standards. Kevin ‘s goal is to help empower those who want to own and embrace their own haunt character, or create a persona for themselves.
Existing haunt actors will learn that their skills are not just needed during the fall, that their talents can be harnessed all year long. A Q&A session follows the presentation. So bring your creativity and your most daunting questions to this no judgment zone, all skill level session.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Actor Development- Saturday 4:30pm-5:30pm
Monsters for the Media: Creating Characters That Draw Attention
By Scott Swenson of Scott Swenson Creative Development LLC

The worlds of creative design and savvy marketing come crashing together in this information packed seminar. Scott Swenson (Creative Director for “The Vault of Souls”, former Creative Director for “Howl-O-Scream” at Busch Gardens Tampa and head of Scott Swenson Creative Development, LLC) shares over 15 years of professional haunt and theme park experience. He will discuss creating characters that generate interest from the Instagram whiz kid to the television media. This seminar will explore why it is important to have a “spokescreature” and how to develop one that will be compelling to your audience. Scott will explain some of the skills needed for actors to represent their haunt appropriately and how to seamlessly integrate the media message into the haunt experience. Everyone at every level of this industry wants more people to visit their Haunts, this seminar will help you learn how to do that.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Actor Development- Sunday 10:30am-11:30am
Freaky Facepainting for Haunted Attractions
By Nick Wolfe of Evil Twin FX

Join haunted attraction industry icon, actor and haunt designer Joe Jensen for an actor training class using the technique of “Machine inferno.” Giving them a safe place to try things and explore, actors have the means of taking their art form further. This acting technique allows the production style, parameters, and theme to be refined and practiced.
Don’t miss this once in a lifetime opportunity to learn this acting technique from one of the true masters of fright.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Actor Development- Sunday 12:00pm-1:00pm
Bring The Evil: An Interactive Scare Class
By Brian Sichelle

Join 19-year actor and haunt veteran, Brian “Psycho” Sichelle, for an interactive hour of fun and learning for scare actors of all levels, from beginner, to long time pros. Learn the psychology of the scare, what it takes to be a “scareactor,” and trade scare techniques and experiences with other attendees, as we grow and learn together, the different methods of scaring. Advance your fright technique, or develop a new one.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Actor Development- Sunday 2:00pm-3:00pm
Haunt Characters: Make A Profit Year Round Doing What You Love!
By George Bellefeuille of Freaky Farmers show

In this session, attendees will learn how their haunt character can make money year round! We all love scaring people and dream of a time when we can do it for a living. It takes a lot of time, preparation and even money to scare the doo-wah- diddle out of people. So why not make money with your haunt character?
Interesting personas are in demand by theme parks, fairs and attractions across America. From birthday parties and backyard shows to Vegas and Branson style shows; a creative, well-crafted character can make more than 100 dollars per hour!
This seminar is all about the 5 “M”s of being a money making monster. Topics include how to locate the target audience, how to attract that audience, how to contract with them, perform, and how to make money doing what you love to do… getting in costume and scaring people!

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Actor Development- Sunday 3:30pm-4:30pm
Advance Acting Workshop… the Hades way!
By Joe Jensen of Joe Jensen Studios

Join haunted attraction industry icon, actor and haunt designer Joe Jensen for an actor training class using the technique of “Machine inferno.” Giving them a safe place to try things and explore, actors have the means of taking their art form further. This acting technique allows the production style, parameters, and theme to be refined and practiced.
Don’t miss this once in a lifetime opportunity to learn this acting technique from one of the true masters of fright.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Business Seminars

Business Seminar- Saturday 10:00am-11:00am
OSHA Regulatory Concerns for Haunted Attractions
ByJohn Grzywacz 0 0

Building codes are not the only regulations a Halloween event needs to be aware of, physical conditions or hazards in your themed attraction can result in citations and fines from OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. In the session, attendees will learn: what triggers an OSHA inspection, what OSHA looks for, what special types of records or documents you will need to provide inspectors. Companies found in violation of OSHA regulations can be fined or worse. Find out what haunters need to look for in their themed attraction to be sure they are in compliance, and where to obtain free help in assessing your attraction/workplace with respect to OSHA.
Just following one of the many tips you’ll learn in this seminar could save you tens of thousands of dollars in OSHA fines and citations. Join John “Grizzy” Grzywacz, OSHA renowned professor from OSHA’s National Training Institute, the same professor who teaches OSHA inspectors and learn what to do to protect yourself from an OSHA inspection. NOTE: This seminar is not to be construed as legal advice obtained from legal counsel.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Business Seminar- Saturday 11:30am-12:30pm
Brewing Up a Spooky Brand That Gets People Screaming, Talking, and Lining Up For More
By Mike Ganino

Creating buzz around your haunted attraction is key to success and continued growth. But what does it take to make something worth talking about? How do you keep them running away– and then running back for more? It all starts with the culture you create on your team.
The heart of every great brand starts with you (the leader). Being intentional with your vision helps you build something better. Getting your team all-in helps you win. Taking it all together– you can really make your haunted attraction sizzle with consumers.
Recognized brand and hospitality expert, Mike Ganino, is known for creating experiences and strong brands. In this session, he will show you how.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Business Seminar- Saturday 1:30pm-2:30pm
Maximizing Revenue with Digital Media, Social Media, and PR
ByAlex Linebrink of HauntPay

TBA

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Business Seminar- Saturday 3:00pm-4pm
Newbie Home Haunter Tips For Success
By Dr. William Ramsay

Are you looking for ways to take your Home Haunt to the next level? Then let “Dr. TerrorEyes” (Dr. Bill Ramsay) provide you with the cure your ailing Home Haunt needs. If you are looking for help, ideas, resources, and guidance on what to do to scare and entertain in your Home Haunt, then let the kind Doctor prescribe suggestions. His 42 years of Haunt experience may provide the perfect therapy! This class will also provide suggestions about creating unusual props and decorations at home.
Resources, support sites and networking sites dedicated to Halloween enthusiasts and Home Haunters will be shared. “Dr. TerrorEyes” will help attendees find inspiration and tools to transform a “Wal-Mart” yard to a spooky Home Haunt worthy of the talk of the neighborhood.
Seminar attendees will also be eligible for his several door prize drawings.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Business Seminar- Saturday 4:30pm-5:30pm
Preparing A Business Plan For A Haunted House
By Tania Zaia of Antioch Asylum

Failing to plan is the same as planning to fail! If you are a Haunt Entrepreneur, either in the haunt biz or planning to be in the haunt biz, then his session is for you! Attendees will learn how to create an effective business plan for a Halloween event. Topics include, vaious ways to effectively cut costs on starting up a first time haunted attraction.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Business Seminar- Sunday 10:30am-11:30am
Psychological Scares: Fear is All in the Mind!
By Leonard Pickel of Hauntrepreneurs

You’ve got a talent for scaring people…a vision for how to take haunting to the next level, and a dream of owning your own haunted Attraction, but how do you take these traits and turn them into a profitable business? The first step is usually the hardest, and in this session, Jean Keny will share with you ticks and tips on how to get started in the haunt biz – including purpose, bridging, hiring the right people and logistics. This session will be the start of making your haunting dreams come true!

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Business Seminar- Sunday 12:00pm-1:00pm
Making Money With a Haunted… How hard could it be?
By Leonard Pickel of Hauntrepreneurs

It is just a Haunted House… How hard could it be? If you added up all the hours that Haunt owners put into their attractions and divided that by how much money they actually clear each October, some of them do not even earn minimum wage. All that risk, all that stress, all that effort and many Haunters would be better off flipping burgers. Using lessons learned from over three decades of experience in the haunt industry, Leonard Pickel will explain how you turn your passion for haunting into a profitable (ad)venture. Leonard will outline your journey, point out the pitfalls, and reveal exactly what you need to do on your trek to achieve a haunting success. Anyone can design and open a haunted house, but will that business make money? Building cool props, detailed sets and great scares is a lot of fun, but Haunting is a business; it has to be structured to make money! Remember, “If you don’t make money, you don’t get to play anymore!” in this informative session industry veteran Leonard Pickel will share with you his vision on what a successful Haunted Event consists of, what variables have to be reached for a first time Haunt or a seasoned veteran event to make money in the Haunted Attraction Business.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Business Seminar- Sunday 2:00pm-3:00pm
Living your Dream: Getting started in the Haunted Amusement Industry – and keeping it going.
By Jean Kent of Haunted Emporium

You’ve got a talent for scaring people…a vision for how to take haunting to the next level, and a dream of owning your own haunted Attraction, but how do you take these traits and turn them into a profitable business? The first step is usually the hardest, and in this session, Jean Keny will share with you ticks and tips on how to get started in the haunt biz – including purpose, bridging, hiring the right people and logistics. This session will be the start of making your haunting dreams come true!

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Business Seminar- Sunday 3:30pm-4:30pm
Haunting in the Digital Age: Developing an Effective, Modern Marketing Plan
By Ryan Kasnick of Fables Studios

Haunters have a great many issues to deal with and sometimes haunters spend less time than they should marketing their event. And with the constantly expanding ways to reach an audience, it’s very easy to get lost in the choices. Just throwing out a video on YouTube, posting an event on Facebook or some pictures on Instagram is no longer good enough to make your event a success! In this session, Ryan Kasnick will show attendees how easy it can be to develop an effective marketing plan for your attraction. From developing a strategy to proper metrics analysis, understanding the marketing mix to the importance of each platform, attendees will learn the tips and tricks that professional marketers use to create smart, comprehensive, and relevant marketing plans that engage customers and will drive them to your door in October!
PAY FEE
See SPEAKER’S BIO

Creative Sessions

Creative Session- Saturday 10:00am-11:00am
Creating Your Own Horror Blog or Website
By Brianna Abello of Eerie Dolls

We live in an era where technology dominates most of our time and activities. The number of horror, paranormal, haunt reviews, blogs, YouTube Channels and podcasts is exploding, and it only makes sense to use it to our advantage. You enjoy reading, commenting and watching these different media outlets, why not create one of your own?
This session will include brainstorming ideas and tips on how to create your own haunt review, horror blog or website. Brianna Abello will guide you through the creation of your site and ways to connect with other bloggers. Attendees will learn the basics of promoting their site through social media and how to manage content or a blog or website.
If you’ve ever been interested in reviewing haunts and horror movies, books or graphic novels or discussing other creepy topics this is the session for you.
A horror and paranormal enthusiast, Brianna will share her own experiences with creating an online horror website, “Eerie Dolls,” after years of wanting to share her passion for all things creepy and unexplainable.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Creative Session- Saturday 11:30am-12:30pm
Painting With Light For The Ultimate Fright Sight
By Joe Jensen of Joe Jensen Studios

Join haunted attraction industry icon, actor and haunt designer Joe Jensen for a look into the cutting edge use of video projectors as lighting sources for an attraction. Using projectors to paint sets with video, haunt designers can create ghostly images, faux flames and bizarre lighting effect on scenery, props and actors.
Don’t miss this innovative approach to lighting a haunt by one of the true masters of fright.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Creative Session- Saturday 1:30pm-2:30pm
Brainstorming Panel Discussion On Haunted Attraction Room Designs
By Joe Jensen, John Laflamboy and Scott Swenson

Join Haunt Industry Icons, Joe Jensen, Jon La Flamboy and Scott Swenson for this brainstorming panel discussion on haunted attraction room designs. This not to be missed session is sure to create some never before dreamed of care concepts. Moderated by Leonard Pickel.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Creative Session- Saturday 3:00pm-4pm
Haunt Design Theory: What Improv Teaches us about Designing Effective Haunts
By Brad Weinstein

Scaring people is like telling them a joke… it’s all in the set up and the timing of the punch line (scare). In this lively session attendees will learn haunt design techniques that were derived from an unlikely source – comedy! In fact the tactics used by professional improvisational performers to deliver laughs can be directly utilized by haunters to create scenes that deliver scares.
Drawing from his experience as a professional haunter and UCB trained “improv” performer, Brad Weinstein will explore an array of comedy tactics that can help haunters increase the frights during their attraction design process. These tactics range from the importance of creating a believable “base reality” to methods for developing realistic character identities and haunt themes.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Creative Session- Saturday 4:30pm-5:30pm
What Makes a Great Haunted Event
By Bryan Gruszka of Horror Tourers

As more and more haunted attraction spring up across the country of varying quality, haunt fans find themselves wondering where to best spend their money and their time during the Halloween season.
Over the last 15 years, Bryan Gruszka has been visiting and reviewing haunts and believes he has found what the best Haunted events in the country have in common. In this provocative session, learn what Bryan looks for when he reviews Halloween events, and what makes one attraction better than the rest. Practical examples of what makes a haunt enjoyable examples of pay haunts, home haunts, and even yard displays will be provided. This is a great session for anyone looking to find some hidden gems among the many haunt choices and anyone who is interested in what makes a great haunt experience.
Join us as we discuss the criteria of what makes a great haunted event!

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Creative Session- Sunday 10:30am-11:30am
An Introduction to Haunt LED Lighting: Or How To Play With Electricity Without Becoming An Addition To Your Display
By Dan Gunnell of Grimbold Manor

This presentation is intended to provide the novice haunter an overview of utilizing different LED light products that can be easily constructed by the beginning haunter to maximize their ability to light their haunt in a safe, effective and inexpensive manner. With little to no technical skill and hardly any specialized tools, it is possible for the Halloween enthusiast to create professional quality LED lights at a fraction of the cost of commercially produced items. The satisfaction gained from “doing it yourself” coupled with the inherent frugality of the typical haunter, makes LED lighting a win-win for everyone.
Topics covered include the “lighting triangle.” That being the three components necessary in lighting any scene; the power supply, the method of power transfer and the lights themselves. Multiple options, which are all within most haunter’s budget, will be covered. Examples of the various LED lights that can be constructed at a very reasonable cost will be demonstrated. Detailed plans as well as the sources for the materials will also be provided to the participants in a handout. Participant will gain an appreciation for the cost effectiveness, the versatility as well as the safety of LEDs and enjoy their construction and use in their attractions.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Creative Session- Sunday 12:00pm-1:00pm
Telling Scary Stories: From Campfire to Haunted Attraction
ByScott Swenson Scott Swenson Creative Development LLC

Whether you are sitting around a flashlight telling tales or producing multi-million dollar haunted attractions, the art of storytelling is essential to success. This workshop will explore what makes a good story, how important it is to have a good story and the tools you can use to tell a good story. Haunt actors, designers and directors will all benefit from this journey into storytelling. Scott my even share some of his own gothic poetry and prose.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Creative Session- Sunday 2:00pm-3:00pm
3 Hades Haunted House Ideas Never Seen Before
By Joe Jensen of Joe Jensen Studios

A description of three Hades room designs that did not see the light of night. Ambitious and bold , perhaps you could run with the ideas. This will also serve as a jumping off to the discussion of design and Hades.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Creative Session- Sunday 3:30pm-4:30pm
Haunt Design Do’s and Don’ts: Avoiding Common Errors That Decreases Haunt Effectiveness
By Leonard Pickel of Hauntrepreneurs

You’ve been there; gone through a famous haunted house that you’ve heard so much about and thought, “it was pretty, but it wasn’t really scary.” Maybe you ran into the group ahead of you, or the actor was just standing in the room when you came in and never did anything to create fear in your group, but what was missing, and how can you fix the same problems that are in your own haunt?

In this lively session, Leonard Pickel of Hauntrepreneurs(R) Themed Attraction Design will point out the good and the bad, the do’s and don’ts of haunted house design. To keeping abreast of what the industry is doing, Leonard
scours the country each October searching for new design concepts and innovative room designs. In these travels he has noticed some great new scare ideas and some common mistakes that haunt designers are making.

This session covers both the best and the worst attraction design concepts in the industry; why the great ones are working and how to fix the designs that are not. Drastically increase the scare factor of your attraction and get some great new ideas for your next haunt design taught by an industry icon now in his 40th year on pro haunting.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Creative Session- Monday 3:30pm-4:30pm
How To Be An Effective Scare Actor In Today’s More Jaded Society
By Brian Sichelle

Are you thinking about getting in haunt acting, and want to know what it takes to scare people effectively? Or do you find you’re not getting the screams from patrons that you used to?
Join 19 year veteran scare actor, Brian Sichelle, for an open discussion about scaring in a society of people that are growing ever more jaded every day. Learn the psychology behind the scare and the difference between gross-out gore and true horror. This fun class will delving into different methods of scaring, from the pop and scare startle, to the intimidating scares that leave victims with lifelong nightmares. Join other like minded “scareactors” and learn what it takes to get under people’s skin……

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Demo/Tech Presentations

Demo/Tech Presentation- Saturday 10:00am-11:00am
Scenic Distressing: The Art of Ugly
By Sean Jaster of Evil Intentions Haunted House

The final details of a scene can make or break the realism demanded by today’s audiences. Seasoned professionals Sean Jaster and Andrea Fitzpatrick of Evil Intentions Haunted House will cover the concepts, tools and techniques to take your haunt to the next level without breaking the bank. Learn the set distressing tricks that the big haunts don’t want you to know and turn your haunt into a masterpiece of beautiful ugly.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Demo/Tech Presentation- Saturday 11:30am-12:30pm
Pneumatics 101: Animating Props With Air
By Jim Slanker of Canyon Trail Cemetery

A beginner’s guide to pneumatics, this session will review the different components to safely and effectively use pneumatics to create your own animated Halloween props. A review of what to use and what not to use, including the basics of compressors, cylinders, solenoids, triggers, controllers and other accessories in a pneumatic prop will be covered.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Demo/Tech Presentation- Saturday 1:30pm-2:30pm
Horrifyingly Easy Scary Costume Distressing Presentation
By Dr. William Ramsay

No respectable zombie or scareactor wants be seen in pristine clothing!! Listen as Halloween zealot “Dr. TerrorEyes” (Dr. Bill Ramsay) provides you with the some tips, tricks, ideas, and effects you need to make your living-dead actor or prop look like just he/she just clawed themselves out from six feet beneath a granite headstone.
You will see samples of techniques to age, decay, distress, bloody-up, and grubby-up your squalid costume’s clothing. Hey, this isn’t a “learn how to cut cloth with scissors” course! You’ll get details, an up-close look and a course handout that will inspire you. (You’ll even learn the secret importance of using a common shovel.) Let the Doctor’s 42 years of Haunt experience provide you with the insight and ideas to create truly gruesome clothing. To add to the fun, course attendees are also eligible for several door prize drawings throughout the presentation.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Demo/Tech Presentation- Saturday 3:00pm-4pm
Wounds and Skin Effects Part 1
By Eric Petersen and Michael Barber of Reynolds Advanced Materials

In this two part, two hour, practical demonstration, Eric Petersen and Michael Barber of Reynolds Advanced Materials, will cover the basics of using skin safe silicones to create prosthetics and skin effects. Learn how to make your own rotting flesh, knife wounds, burns, bullet holes, and ultra realistic gore effects. Topics include skin safe mold making materials, proper silicone mixing and application. Basic life casting and casting techniques using silicone will also be covered.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Demo/Tech Presentation- Saturday 4:00pm-5:00pm
Wounds and Skin Effects Part 2
By Eric Petersen and Michael Barber of Reynolds Advanced Materials

In this two part, two hour, practical demonstration, Eric Petersen and Michael Barber of Reynolds Advanced Materials, will cover the basics of using skin safe silicones to create prosthetics and skin effects. Learn how to make your own rotting flesh, knife wounds, burns, bullet holes, and ultra realistic gore effects. Topics include skin safe mold making materials, proper silicone mixing and application. Basic life casting and casting techniques using silicone will also be covered.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Demo/Tech Presentation- Sunday 10:30am-11:30am
DAZL: Automating Your Next Haunt or Escape Room
By David Peterson of Misery Bay Software

In this product demonstration, David Peterson of Misery Bay Software will introduce attendees to the haunted attraction/escape room automation capabilities of DAZL show control software. The best haunted attractions and escape rooms tie together many media elements—lights, audio, video, sensors, special effects and stand-alone animatronic props—into a cohesive whole. Their seamless presentation allows patrons to become fully immersed in the storyline, making for a more dramatic experience. Computer automation allows shows to be delivered in a repeatably cohesive way, with a minimum of human oversight. Using DAZL, your creative vision can be achieved, from displays and interactive puzzles to entire escape rooms or haunted attractions. This session will explore many of DAZL’s features by demonstrating how to: organize a show into sets and scenes, craft a soundscape or two, record a performed animation, graphically edit an animation, wire up show elements using conditional triggering, synchronize video playback, as well as a quick look at other DAZL features. DAZL is a thoroughly modern take on show control software; so intuitive that almost anyone can create or tweak their own shows.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Demo/Tech Presentation- Sunday 12:00pm-1:00pm
Basic Special Effects Makeup: Tips and Tricks for Getting Started as a Makeup Artist
By Sophie Roth of Midnight Terror Haunted House

If you have ever seen incredible SFX makeups on your Facebook feed and wondered how it was created, or walked through a haunted house and been amazed at the creatures within. If you have ever thought to yourself, “I want to learn how to do that!” – only to be unsure of where to start? Then join us this session on how to start a new career in makeup. Attendees will learn the basics of special effects makeup from Sophie Roth, a mostly self taught makeup artist from Bridgeview, IL. Perfect for beginners, this informative discussion and demo includes some tips and tricks on applying horror makeup and how to save money along the way.

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Demo/Tech Presentation- Sunday 2:00pm-3:00pm
Working With Silicone, It’s Not That Scary
By Wendy Ferris

In this tombstone demonstration, attendees will learn techniques to cut and carve foam boards as well how to distress the tombstones by adding pock marks, cracks and rough edges to give it that ancient abandoned look. We will also use other common Halloween materials like plastic skulls, fake plants, creepy hands, etc. to make an epic tombstone. Final touches will include sealing, painting, dry brushing drip marks, and moss to create a realistic and creepy tombstone for your cemetery display. Carving and finishing techniques learned in this session will be useful when creating more and even larger headstones and crypts and are only limited by your imagination.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Demo/Tech Presentation- Sunday 3:30pm-4:30pm
Tombstone Design And Creation: Combining Common Halloween Items With Foam Board To Make Epic Tombstones
By Wayne & Shelly Dvorak

Creating buzz around your haunted attraction is key to success and continued growth. But what does it take to make something worth talking about? How do you keep them running away– and then running back for more? It all starts with the culture you create on your team.
The heart of every great brand starts with you (the leader). Being intentional with your vision helps you build something better. Getting your team all-in helps you win. Taking it all together– you can really make your haunted attraction sizzle with consumers.
Recognized brand and hospitality expert, Mike Ganino, is known for creating experiences and strong brands. In this session, he will show you how.

See SPEAKER’S BIO

Hands-On Workshops (Materials Fee Required)

Hands-On Workshop (Materials Fee Required)- Saturday 11:30am-1:00pm
Easy “No Latex Mess” Skull Corpsification Workshop
By Dr. William Ramsay

Skeletons are a staple of haunting, but when you buy them they are stripped of flesh and ready for the anatomy class, not the creepy rotted remains of a long dead victim. Changing clean white bone into a rotting body is known in the industry as “Corpsification,” and is a crucial technique for any haunted house props maker.
In this hands-on workshop, 42-year Haunt veteran Bill Ramsay/Dr. TerrorEyes will instruct attendees in an inexpensive way to transform the average white resin skull into a rotting corpse head — without the mess of latex, contact cement or paper mache. Attendees will be provided with a skull, tools, materials and instruction on Corpsification. When completed, attendees will take home their creation.
Materials Fee is required for this class and seating is limited. Class is sponsored in part by Skeletons and More. To add to the fun, course attendees are also eligible for several door prize drawings throughout the workshop. This “Make-n-Take” course teaches you how to create a quick corpsed effect on sturdy, plastic, cast resin skull. Unlike messy latex adhesive, this quick and simple technique utilizes few inexpensive and easy to acquire components.
Course attendees will also be eligible for several door prizes offered by the kind doctor and his sponsors.
SIGN UP FOR THE WORKSHOP
See SPEAKER’S BIO

Hands-On Workshop (Materials Fee Required)- Saturday 2:00pm-3:30pm
Intro To Basic Haunt Makeup Hands On Tutorial
By Brent Skowronek of Brents Effects

Hands-On Workshop (Materials Fee Required) 2 – Saturday 2:00pm-3:30pm
Bring a model with you for this this hands on makeup workshop. Brent Skowronek will instruct the class with the step by step procedure of basic haunt makeup. He will guide you through a hands on tutorial of how to create an quick and easy “dead look” for your haunt actors using just your basic makeups and face paints.
This session is fantastic for beginner makeup artists or anyone interested in learning some new makeup techniques, especially the new comers in this industry. Attendees will receive a beginner makeup kit provided by Evil Fire Lizard.
Education Registration (Full Weekend or Sunday Only) for Chicago Frights is required to take this class. Seating is limited, so reserve your spot now. Materials Fee Required.
SIGN UP FOR THE WORKSHOP
See SPEAKER’S BIO

Hands-On Workshop (Materials Fee Required)- Sunday 10:30pm-12:00pm
Spooky Witch’s Poison Bottle
By Dr. William Ramsay

Are you looking for a simple, yet awesome prop for your Witch’s Kitchen/Apothecary? During this fun Make-n-Take course, Dr. TerrorEyes (Dr. Bill Ramsay) will show you how to create a detailed and aged bottle of “witch’s poison” — a basic necessity of ANY witch’s kitchen – by using simple crafting tricks. Let the kind Doctor provide you with assistance in creating your own masterpiece in less than an hour. His 42 years of Haunt experience may provide the perfect inspiration you need! Plus, course attendees are eligible for the several door prize drawings throughout the Doctor’s course.
SIGN UP FOR THE WORKSHOP
See SPEAKER’S BIO

Hands-On Workshop (Materials Fee Required)- Monday 2:00pm-3:30pm
Prop Destressing: Killer Hockey Mask Workshop
By Scott Morrow Fearless Ghost Hunter

This hands on workshop covers taking a brand new hockey mask and turning it into a featured piece of wardrobe any machete wielding serial killer would be proud of. Attendees will painting their masks to make it look like it just escaped from a grave or the bottom of a lake. This workshop will show attendees how to distress the mask with claw marks or scratches, how to age the mask for that warn lived in look. The techniques presented in this workshop can be used on a variety of other projects around the haunt, or to create an army of spooky masked creatures to roam your event. Materials Fee Required, Seating is Limited.
SIGN UP FOR THE WORKSHOP
See SPEAKER’S BIO

 

Use Schedule At A Glance for a quick look at this year’s Education!

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Georgios Quality Inn & Suites Conference Center
8800 W 159th St, Orland Park, IL 60462
(708) 403-1100

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Event Coordinator: 
Leonard Pickel
972-951-5100
chicagofrights@gmail.com

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