Black paint, fake cobwebs, and spooky foam signs. These are just a few of the items you’ll see when you enter the warehouse where The Villages Entertainment Special Events crew is hard at work prepping for this year’s Hometown Halloween. Featuring a newly designed haunted house, Brian Mullany, Special Events Assistant Manager, discussed the initial concept creation that inspired their set design.
“The haunted house contains the dreams and nightmares of a widow who just watched her son leave for a war he would never return from. Once you step inside, you will enter her memories and dreams and watch as they are turned to her nightmares.”
THE HEART OF DESIGN
The backdrop to every Special Event wouldn’t exist without a team of designers and builders. Special Events Designer, Melanie Davidson, said that discussions on this year’s Halloween design began as early as the day after Halloween last year!
This year, Special Events is excited to reveal new facades to their haunted house. Created with lightweight foam, the haunted house has been designed to emulate a creaky old house. “[It] gives you that spooky, eerie feeling you want to feel going into a haunted house.”
BRINGING LIFE TO OLD MEMORIES
Special Events Coordinator and Specialist, Stan and Cody, think people would be surprised to know how much of the material is recycled from previous events. “We repurpose everything we can.” While this requires taking the time (and having the patience) to deconstruct old sets, it’s a comfort to know that at the end of the day, those resources will be reborn as a new piece of art for Villagers to enjoy. “We’re bringing new life to old memories”.
A great example of this comes with the Halloween sets they are currently constructing. While there are spider webs and creepy crawlers to be imagined on one side of the facades, the flip side of each set is already getting primed for their Christmas events this winter!
Anyone wanting a sneak peak of what’s to come for Halloween will want to visit The Villages Entertainment tent during Heritage Festival at Brownwood Paddock Square on September 30 or Spanish Springs Town Squareon October 7. Here, Special Events team members will be displaying some of the set along with sharing information on brand new carnival games, this year’s new maze, and the upcoming rock wall that will be brought in for Halloween.
With “scaracters” and haunting decorations, this year’s Hometown Halloween is sure to be a treat for those with a passion for anything spooky.
TRICK OR TREAT
Starting soon, The Villages Entertainment will begin the collection of unopened bags of wrapped candies for their annual candy drive. This candy drive supplies the Trunk or Treat event at Hometown Halloween. Last year, The Villages Entertainment collected twenty-seven 18-gallon totes stuffed with candy. Hometown Halloween will be a two day event, meaning the demand for donations is higher than ever! While excited for the two day event, Special Events Manager, Chalsi Cox, expressed the need to spread the word. “We need more candy!”
Donations will begin September 19th and end October 21st with collection bins located at Regional Recreation Centers, Box Office locations, and at The Villages Entertainment tent at upcoming Market Nights.
JOIN OUR CREW AT THIS SPOOKTACULAR EVENT
With so many new and exciting activities, Special Events is calling all volunteers for future events. They’re looking for scare actors (or “scaracters) and monitors for the haunted house, ticket takers, and carnival game attendants. Anyone interested can contact Melanie Davidson at Melanie.Davidson@TheVillages.com
Don’t miss our TWO days of Hometown Halloween this year, October 28 and 29 at Brownwood Paddock Square featuring The Rundown Band, Blue Stone Circle, Trunk or Treat, The Villages Resident Lifestyle Performance Groups, new games, and our newly designed haunted house. Enter if you dare!
Few of us could help falling in love with Elvis Aaron Presley, the “King of Rock and Roll.” His crooning voice and swiveling hips captured the imagination of a generation. The new Baz Luhrmann film, “Elvis,” explores the life of this music icon, from his childhood through his meteoritic rise to fame in the 1950s to conquering Hollywood throughout the 1960s, to his 3rd act dazzling audiences for almost a decade in Las Vegas.
Do you remember the first time you fell in love with his music? Did you see the legend in concert? Or maybe you listened to him on the radio or heard his music at a sock hop?
Did you fall in love with his impact and influence? This cultural phenomena created a new style of music and paved the way for future generations of singers and musicians.
I fell in love with Elvis through his movies “Blue Hawaii” and “Jailhouse Rock.” As with his charismatic showmanship on stage,Elvis also captured our hearts on the silver screen.
Now, a new generation is captivated by Elvis mania.
From his first concert in Florida on May 7, 1955, to filming Follow that Dream in and around Citrus, Levy, and Marion Counties in 1961, Elvis and Florida left a big impression on each other. He even visited the Weeki Wachi Mermaids in July 1961!
What makes a man a legend? Even after his infamous passing on August 16, 1977, the world was not ready for such an icon to leave this world. Even notorious rumors implied he faked his death and is living a peaceful life out of the spotlight. Could he be residing in the Villages? It would be no surprise, given his past history with Florida.
No matter what you choose to believe is true, the legacy of Elvis continues to live on today. He is so beloved that he has inspired decades of impersonators emulating and recapturing his greatness. With the movie premiere of the latest biopic,“Elvis,” a new generation is being introduced to the King.
And that legacy returns to Florida again on September 27 at The Savannah Center.