View Full Version : Natl Haunters Pt 2 Hanf A Domous etc

Rich Hanf
04-14-2009, 09:21 AM
Before I continue it is time to mention Hanf –A– Domous the great…sooth sayer to the haunted attraction industry…and another amazing prediction he made that has come to pass. As you know Hanf-A-Domous recently predicted that Haunted Attraction Magazine would be sold by Leonard Pickel. We can now go on record as the great one has divined yet another amazing prediction. Haunted Attraction Magazine has indeed been sold…to a gentleman named John Kennedy. I’m certain he plans on turning the direction of the magazine around but for now Leonard will stay on for a while as editor. Unfortunately that probably means more articles written by people I have never heard of….which I always felt was circumspect. It’s probably because I don’t know enough Haunters but I have felt from time to time that Leonard writes the magazine himself and just makes up the names. Again…that’s totally unsupported and I’m sure I’m wrong. Speaking of which…am I the only one who joined IAHA last year and was promised 4 issues of Haunted Attraction as a premium for joining only to receive ZERO ISSUES? It seems that the magazine that was supposed to be a quarterly has become an annual with the only issue coming out just in time to promote Hauntcon…a show that I would rather die than support, and here’s why. Listen to this one that comes to me directly from one of the promoters at Natl Haunters.
Rob and Michael announced the date for their 2010 show back a few months ago, maybe as far back as 6 months ago. Prior to doing so, they reached out to LP and asked him when HauntCon 2010 was scheduled for as they wished to avoid a conflict. (BTW Hanf-A-Domous is predicting Nashville Tenn for HC 2010). Apparently, LP responded by saying that it is his policy not to reveal the dates of his show until the time gets closer. Natl. Haunters respected that decision and went ahead and booked the first weekend in May as their dates. So last weekend LP shows up at the show and tells them that the first weekend in May is HIS date…that’s when he plans on doing HC… and wants them to change their date. Rob and Michael are floored. LP is going to go head to head with them. They feel that he could have told them his date at least 6 months ago and completely avoided this conflict. Now…unfortunately…the battle begins as both Rob and Michael are forced into a fight they never wanted.
Our story continues…as I am told… that after getting into the show, (probably for free) LP approaches any number of the vendors telling them not to attend Natl Haunters next year and they in fact need to come to HauntCon in 2010. I’m certain he didn’t approach every vendor as he didn’t talk to me (wonder why) but he did talk to enough of the vendors to make the boys at Natl Haunters feel totally betrayed. I mean it’s only my opinion but here we are at a time when the industry is coming together as never before, and there is (again…only my opinion) still this one polarizing force at work…as I see it…a divisive blot on the industry that he has no problem trying to ruin these two nice guys….at their own show. Hey…I’m entitled to my opinion…and as I’m told…it gets better. Leonard is given a free ticket to the $75 costume ball which means that he ate their food for free, drank their booze (or whatever) all night for free…and is there trying to steal their vendors and put them out of business. Let me tell you…Rob and Michael can’t believe that this was done to them and quite frankly they deserve better.
As I said earlier… they started this thing in their back yard and now several years later, thanks to tons of hard work and a devotion to both this industry and Halloween they are in an actual convention center.
Someone needs to tell these two guys not to invite Leonard to their anniversary party. If I were them I’d be afraid that he would eat their food, drink their booze, and try to have sex with their wives…lol. That may not necessarily be true but it feels like the same thing to me…feels like someone is getting f****d!!! As an industry you guys can do what you want, but I’ve grown particular about whom I choose to support with my dollars. I hope the industry continues to support Rob and Michael of Natl. Haunters as they are two decent hardworking guys committed to this industry. As far as they are concerned, they have locked in the first weekend in May for 2010 and intend to keep that date going forward. I am specifically told that the folks at Natl. Haunters hope Leonard keeps that date as well as that way he will never again attend Natl. Haunters…something that sits real well with them.

04-14-2009, 09:35 AM
I hope they can work something out. Havint 2 shows the same weekend hurts us vendors considerably. To the point where it's not even worth exhibiting at shows. If haunters don't show up to buy product at the show we guessed they would show up at, vendors will start to dissappear.

04-14-2009, 10:26 AM
Thats pretty pathetic that Leonard would do that. But I can see him doing this, and that's what's sad about it.

He feels like he has too much competition.

But as Hanf-A-Domous has predicted..........

Allen H
04-14-2009, 10:27 AM
I think this post is poorly titled. If you wish to have a post about why you thin Leonard Pickel is an assh*le then call it that, there was no review on this post at all.
Allen H

04-14-2009, 12:27 PM
Let me state that I am not taking any sides... but I know Leonard quite well and the actions you describe as occurring are very out of character for him. I could never see him walking around another show bad mouthing that show. It's just not his style.

I do know that you do not like him... Way back in Haunt World Video #3 (or was it #2?) you can be seen making fun of him while eating a jar of pickles. So it's no secret there is animosity that goes way back.

I feel like he is being attacked here on a public forum with no way to defend himself.

That's all I have to say.

04-14-2009, 02:30 PM
People know me and think of me as against Leonard. I am NOT against Leonard and never have been... I simply don't agree with everything he promotes that haunts should do in this industry. We have had many disagreements over the years, but I don't discount the positive things either. Personally I've talked to Leonard many times and I don't think he would go around and tell vendors not to vend at the next NHC. I would have to agree with Doug there.

Everytime I've talked to Leonard he gives you this 'if they want to come they will come if they don't they don't' so based on that I just can't see him running around telling people don't vend with someone else at this point. I think a few years he might have had that attitude when Hauntcon was trying to be a replacement show to Transworld when Transworld was on shaky ground but not now.

I talked to Leonard just a few weeks ago, and he told me flat out their tradeshow floor is the smallest ever and it really isn't the focus of Hauntcon, and that it would sell out and it did! If you sell out your tradeshow floor why would you care if another show sells out as well? Hauntcon is more of a way to showcase haunts by hopping around from city to city. Way back when when I was trying to help IAHA, I had proposed that IAHA do a tradeshow that went from city to city, blah, blah to raise money for IAHA, and build awareness for all industry owners, cities and states. Like 18 months later Hauntcon appeared... I will give Leonard credit, he made it happen where IAHA didn't. Hauntcon is successful on its own merits... Hauntcon in my mind made it possible for this new show to happen or for MHC to flourish.

Hauntcon happened back at a time when there was nothing but Transworld. I think Hauntcon helped get Transworld focused, and helped MHC see there could be more to it than a gathering. Overall Hauntcon has been good for the industry, even if I didn't agree with Leonard on some things.

Even Rich Strelak who has always been on Leonard for different things he didn't agree with but has always told me he thought Hauntcon was a good thing. I think the issue here really is that Leonard has NEVER published his dates for Hauntcon until Hauntcon. I doubt he did this to hurt another show he was on the block first so to speak.

With all that being said I think the new NHC is a great thing as well, and I want to promote their show, I hope everyone wants to promote their show. I think HHA needs to contact them and work something out for 2010 as wel as work with MHC, and Hauntcon in addition to Transworld.

I agree with Rich Hanf, I think we have come to a point where working together is possible, and I look forward to working with everyone including Leonard and anyone else who wants to jump on the bandwagon.

We can accomplish a lot more together than apart, and I hope this whole mess gets worked out but I seriously doubt anyone did this on purpose.

Maybe we have too many of these things, to many magazines, to much information to the point where we don't know what to believe or who to trust anymore. Are vendors under to much pressure to attend these things??? And when you get all these content providers you get competition and as we all know sometimes that leads to rumors, and other things. You can't beleive everything you hear, and I can speak for myself and say many negative things you may have heard about me are not true either. People say negative things about me, they say negative things about Leonard and frankly most of them are just not true. I do not believe Leonard did this and if it was true lets hear directly from a vendor who heard this not just gossip.

One minute we had one magazine, one website, one tradeshow, one association and now we have a million different options of everything.

They are going to overlap its just going to happen, but some will fall by the wasteside they always do and the strong will get stronger.

I do hope we can all work together going forward.

Thanks for your updates Rich! Interesting how you always hear the inside scoop on things like HAM being sold, I did not hear that... you are the master!!! I'm sure you heard the rumors about Leoard and the show dates and stuff but I just don't think that is true!

Hauntworld is a supporter of HAUNTCON...and Patti can't wait to get there!!!!


Ken Spriggs
04-14-2009, 02:37 PM
Really it's freakin April in Chicago and it's still cold!!!

Folks let me be the first to say this............I THINK HELL IS FREEZING OVER!!!!!!

Sorry had to....SORRY LARRY....don't delete this.....people will laugh!!!!!!! :)

Rich Hanf
04-14-2009, 04:36 PM
Hey…two quick things: First of all to Allen H. Not real sure why you are concerned with the title of the post but fyi…I tried to post it as one big post but HW only allows posts of 10,000 characters or less. Since my post is over 11,000 I had to break it up into 2 parts. No attempt to deceive as it read better the way I had originally written it but I had no choice.

Secondly to Frightprops and Larry…all I can suggest to you guys is to do what I did and go straight to the horses mouth. I mean you guys gotta figure that I didn’t just wake up this morning and say …hey…let me make up some shit on Leonard cause I have nothing else to do. That’s just stupid. I suggest you two guys call Rob Kocher and get the story straight from him…just as I did.

Ken is right…hell must be freezing over. God, I love this. Larry, if you can pull this one off then I’m voting for you for President 4 years from now. I love you bro, but you saying you have nothing against LP is like saying the Titanic has nothing against iceburgs. That’s really funny, but if that is the new company line…ok…I’m down with it. Larry has nothing against Leonard and never has. If we keep saying it maybe someone will believe it. Now repeat after me…everyone…Larry has nothing against Leo……..

Frightprops…WOW…what can I say but thanks. Didn’t realize you had been following our exploits for so long. I had totally forgotten about that one. Of course you painted a picture that is not really accurate. If you remember it was not just me…there were several of us sitting around that table. I know John Denley was there, maybe Larry, maybe Ed Gannon…damn…too long ago…just don’t remember. What I do remember is that it was the last Fangoria show that was in NYC, at the old New York hotel…the one that had been taken over by the Moonies. We pulled out a jar of pickles and someone said Hey John…are you hungry? He replied with something like…no I have a sour stomach or something like that. Don’t ask me how but every line after that we some how tied into that jar of pickles. After 5 minutes of this we were just flat out on the floor crying. A lot of it ended up on the cutting room floor but somewhere in the archives…either mine or Larrys…we have the original. Like I said, been way too many years to really remember but I do remember that it was all in good fun so thanks for reminding me.
And Lastly…

Love me or hate me at least I signed my name to the post…that aside. Opinions and what you think you know are meaningless. Call or e-mail Rob directly and then come back on here and report back to us what you are told.

All the best Rich

04-14-2009, 05:36 PM

I don't want to hear it from Robert Kocher he's the organizer of the show, again read my post where I state that a lot of these kinds or rumors are caused by the group who are in competition.

I'm not calling Robert a liar but to be honest I would take anything he says with a grain of salt. I would only buy in if I heard it directly for the vendor or vendors. Its one thing to make a broad accusation like this and another to say flat out 'DOUG FROM FRIGHT PROPS SAID..." or 'DAVE FROM SCAREFACTORY SAID...' Rather than Robert saying something like 'yeah Leonard contacted some of our vendors...' That is way to simple of a statement to make.

Name names, lets hear those vendors step up and say this in public not start baseless rumors. Again I do not think Leonard did this simply based on my most recent conversations with him, his attitude and how he approaches this type of thing.

Did Leanard walk the floor of Transworld, IAAPA and say NHC and tell vendors 'hey I have a show you should exhbit, or you should advertise in my magazine, errr former magazine...' I'm sure he did, I know he did, I'm 110% positive he did what a scoundrel... LOL

Well Transworld walked IAAPA they talked to vendors all weekend, Transworld will go to Hauntcon, they will go to MHC, and they will speak to vendors as well... those sconundrels. LOL

That is the nature of the beast. Everyone does it... but its different to say come here but don't go there. That is what I do NOT think he did no matter what Robert says unless I hear it directly from the vendor is told Robert this.

Rich you say at least you are man enough to sign your name... agreed! Rich Hanf is NEVER afraid to say what he thinks and sign his own name, and so do I and well Ken he always is!!! LOL

So tell the vendor to man up and put his name on the line otherwise its a false rumor I'm sure we could both agree on that point? Yes?


04-14-2009, 06:51 PM
Fright Props, Larry I agree with you guys 100% on this! I do not believe for one minute Leonard did that! First hes not that way hell you can cuss him out and argue with him all day on his forums and he will never delete it. My point is like Fright Props said its not his style.

I am sorry but this Thread comes off as a Witch hunt, burn him at the steaks kind of post! Where is the vendor or vendors that said this? Rich did you hear him say that? Why post hear say it want hold up in court so why should we listen to it here? Look people have issues with Larry they have them with Leonard hell they have had them with me! What pisses me off as just when it seems this Industry is coming together as a whole some Bull Shit has to be thrown out. Why? I don't know. Sad thing is Leonard want come here and defend himself. Look I have told Leonard to his face and I have told Larry I don't always agree with them but that don't mean I would try to distroy their character! Rich make this post on Leonards site and let Leonard set the record straight!

Ken ROTFLMAO you crack me up. Brad my friend hold off judgement till all the facts are laid out! Allen Amen Brother! Rich come on man!!!Larry I will say this I do commend you with some past history and water under the bridge as far as Leonard and you go but I do commend you for standing up on this! Shane and its I always post my name! Shane this time!

04-14-2009, 07:25 PM
As co-owner of NHC, I would like to chime in, if only to clear the air a little.

*IF* Leonard did or did not do what was stated, Rob and I really don't care.

We had a staff meeting after the con, and Rob and I made it very, very clear to our staff that we're simply *NOT* going to be involved in the politics of haunting. PERIOD.

NOTE: For the record, Rich Hanf is not a member of our staff. (Although he *IS* a valued vendor and a valued seminar speaker)

*IF* you ask us
"Do you support IAHA or HHA"
We're going to say we treat them equally.

*IF* someone asks us
"Do you support Larry or Leonard"
"Do you support Haunted Memories or Ghoulish Gallery"
"Do you support Hauntworld Magazine or Haunted Attraction Magazine"
We're going to say we support all haunt businesses and we let their product line and spokespeople speak for themselves.

*IF* a vendor said to us "Guys, I wont do your show because of a schedule conflict with another con and I choose them over you." Our response is going to be "We're disappointed by your decision, but we will still support you and wish you the best of luck."

No animosity, no threats of blackballing for future cons, no drama.

We don't own the vendors, the vendors should be free to choose which events they want to attend of their own free will.

Although I do question the ethics if any con tries to forbid a vendor from any other cons unless some sort of mutually beneficial contract was involved.

Quite a few of the older, more experienced haunters are picking up on the fact that every convention reflects the personalities of the organizers (which I find to be truly *FASCINATING*, as I didn't even know my PA Gathering had a personality) :)

Because of this fact that cons have personalities,
some of the cons are growing,
some of the cons are splitting up,
some of the cons are fading away,
and I'm sure that there are some cons that have died.
Someday soon, another con will be born and grow.

What's going to happen is that the vendors are going to choose the cons that:
1.) makes them money
2.) makes them feel comfortable and welcome
3.) makes them money (Yes, it's noted twice because it's that important)

It's our job as con organizers to make sure we get people in the door and buy the vendors *STUFF*

If we're successful, our con will grow.

If we're not successful, our con will die.

So to put this whole discussion into perspective, Rob and I are just going to host a home for vendors to set up their booths, and a home for speakers to share their knowledge, and drag people into the show floor using every single idea that we feel would succeed. If you told me I could increase attendance by 10% by giving every guest a slice of pie, I would buy a bakery, because I want to make my vendors *AND* my guests happy.

Was NHC successful?

Enough for us to plan to expand the social activities to entertain our guests.

Enough that most of our vendors have already contacted us to reserve booths for next year.

Enough that we had a three bus tour to Bates Motel on Easter weekend
(which should speak volumes in of itself.)

The goal of our con is to become, not just a place to buy product, but a place for guests to hang out and have *FUN*

Because, bottom line, each and every convention is for that guest that wants to go someplace where they feel they belong and everyone knows their name.

Michael Bruner
co-owner National Haunters Convention

04-14-2009, 09:18 PM
First off let me say this... RICH HANF does not lie. In all the years I've known him I've always known him to stand up and tell it like it is. Rich Hanf is not making up stories clearly someone told him this (Robert). Rich is a supporter of this new show and I'm sure it has got under his skin to hear this news. Rich in my opinion is only reporting what he was told.

All I'm saying is I think whomever told him this specifically Robert or whomever else was either not telling the exact truth, embellishing the truth or whatever.

Overall I think Rich's report of the show is probably dead on the money I just don't think what someone told him is true...



I think you have a lot of passion for all of this and let me be the first to thank you for everything you are trying to do because as we all know its for the passion of it not the money.

Good luck my friend!


04-14-2009, 09:45 PM
Thank you Larry,

and Thank you Rich Hanf.

Whether or not the events transpired is immaterial.

What does matter was that someone recognized the potential of our event and rose to defend it in the absence of myself or Rob.

Which is rather heartwarming, as I've been personally attacked by people who I don't even know ever since our event has started to grow. (and how on earth can some people hate someone so much that they've never even met?)

In either case - our event is growing, and at this point, it's whether we like it or not, as it truly has morphed into a living, breathing entity.

NHC was featured on the front page of Fangoria ( www.Fangoria.com ) and in the article they state that it was like "being at a family reunion" - which is exactly what the PA Gathering was all about. It was the vision Ricky Dick started. So it's rather pleasing to see that it's still maintaining that feel, despite it outgrowing a church and a hotel (and dear sweet god, don't let us outgrow the convention center because I have no idea where to move after that...)

Ken Spriggs
04-15-2009, 09:06 AM
I guess I need to throw my 3 cents in........


It is a free world folks!
Leonard can say what he wants......Larry can say what he wants.........AND Rich Hanf.....can spread the word (wether it's true or not)!

Unless there is ONE vendor who can come forward and say specifically that Leonard said "IF YOU DO THIS SHOW OVER THIS SHOW>>>>YOU CAN'T DO HAUNTCON"

Go put some effort into your haunts!!!

RICH? I love you like a brother!!!
What I would like to say to RICH is this.........
Why is it that when you SURFACE every few months.....IT IS TO START A WAR?
Maybe you say it isn't your intention.......BUT COME ON.......YOUR FIRST POST....was informational.....what happened?
Your standing on a soap box throwing the soap bars!!!
Great here comes one my way!!! You missed!!!!

Folks.........in my greatest Obi Won imitation.........THESE ARE NOT THE DROIDS YOU ARE LOOKING FOR>>>>>MOVE ON>>>>>>NOTHING TO SEE!!!!

Please stop the fighting already.......Rich just go give Leonard a big hug huh????

See....Boy its usually me starting crap on here

OH AND Hanfadomous......where are some new predictions?
I would like to see where I will be in a year with the rest of the industry

04-15-2009, 09:53 AM
I'd like to hear a Hanf-o-damus prediction about the future of NHC personally. :)

04-15-2009, 11:47 AM
First, Michael summed it up very well, and gave a good outline of everything in general...I don't want to re-invent the wheel with my post. We had a huge board meeting after the show, and the bottom line is that we are neutral. We've said that to our staff, We've said that to many vendors, we've said that to every group we've talked to in the industry, and we've said that to many many people we've talked to prior and post of the show. I hate talking about this stuff and we both really hate getting involved in politics....it's not worth the stress or the time. Our show is about being Professional and that is what I will always continue to strive to be.

It's wednesday and I STILL haven't unpacked my van yet....there has been so much post and followup stuff to do that I think I need a week just to get caught up :) ...I could write 50 pages of stuff about the National Haunters Convention if I wrote about it all but there is no time right now. Instead, I have to focus on updating our NHC website and look for a really cool Waken Productions website soon!!!! This is the beginning of the fun part of the year for websites for the halloween industry and I have a lot of awesome stuff (The Village of Darkness) is building this year.

The bottom line is this, the NHC show is very much a success and Michael and I are pushing forward with it and we want to keep it as professional as possible.

I also want to thank Rich who helped us a lot and gave some great advice on things, as well as did something that wowed people so much he got a standing ovation (more on that in a few months).....it's all part of the show. Rich has a great personality and we had many people tell us it was really cool to see him after so many years.....I can understand that people think what is happening to Leonard is unfair, but I can also tell you that if you attack Rich Hanf simply based on past history, then you really don't know Rich Hanf. I personally think he gave us some great unsolicited advice, and honestly was a very neutral and non political person at the show. I think he has mellowed some over the years and has grown very mature and is an excellent business man and a good friend to many people in this industry especially with things I've learned just over the last 6 months alone....so, please, don't attack Rich Hanf for past stuff (I don't want to judge anyone) and I can only judge by what I have seen, and Rich acted very professional at the show and Neutral.

I can say that for the vendors as well, they were very sharp, presented themselves well, and not political at the show...the National Haunters Convention ran into no problems at all with different groups or vendors....for example, some people were worried about magazines at the show, however, if you have not gotten a chance to talk to them, the new owners of Haunted Attraction Magazine handle themselves very professionally.....they are taking the magazine in a fresh direction, and encourage everyone to forget the past (this is not your fathers oldsmobile) and give them a fair shot with a clean wiped slate as well....as a matter of fact, many people were saying Rich or others had a grudge against Haunted Attraction, but from first hand experience, it didn't happen....our show was really quite NEUTRAL at the convention and even Rich himself spent time in the Haunted Attraction booth and was reading a magazine. Let's all let bygones by bygones and move forward our industry. Judge everyone by what you see, not what you hear.

The Bottom line is that (similar to what Larry and others were saying), this is a BRAVE NEW WORLD and we really should all try to work together to benefit our industry and grow instead of being labeled as a bunch of infighting people.

As far as what Rich said, although I would have worded it differently, there is much truth to the type of issue he is talking about....ripples of issues were created at the show by Leonard being there showing up last minute unannounced. Rich isn't making this type of stuff up, we were all there, but let me shed more light on how this played out.

Also, I don't think Leonard will come on this board, because there is no point, plus he needs to focus on HauntCon right now....I talked to Leonard a lot during and at the show and he knows where I stand, so I don't think there was an issue. Not only did we talk a lot at the show, but we also talked a lot at the Bates Motel Hayride....

I'm not getting into politics, cause frankly, I don't have time for it....my goal is to have our show continue to be professional, and neutral.....and have huge open arms to everyone....after being in this industry for so very many years, I think everyone is quite frankly sick of it all. I know I am.

Now, there was an issue that I do have a beef with Leonard about and it wasn't a secret and I talked about it with Leonard as well.

I kept in contact with both Barry (and he can confirm this) and Leonard more than 6 months ago about the dates of our show...the first weekend in May. Since we are in a Convention Center on the East Coast, they want us to book basically 2 years in advance and we have very little flexibility. Michael and I made every possible effort to give all information to both Barry and Leonard. Barry answered me every time, however, Leonard's policy is that he will not give out any information or dates on HauntCon. Honestly, that sucks....and I just don't see it as a good business decision....because now, at the convention, when the HauntCon dates were announced the Vendors obviously started talking and had to choose sides (which hurts the vendors and the industry). Since Leonard is in a hotel scenario, and since we had moved our dates last year for him, I did feel it would have been nice of Leonard to select ANY date except our weekend since he knew this about 6 months ago. Instead, both shows are the same date....and this did put some vendors on the spot as the Vendors DID have to choose since it did come up as a casual topic of conversation. I had quite a few vendors come up to me and tell me they either A) will do our show or B) will have to do HauntCon instead and wanted to let us know now.....

So, I think that is where the confusion is arising with everyone.....the end result of what Rich Hanf was saying is true....Vendors are forced to make decisions and take side a little during our convention, and that sucks for everyone (and hurts both shows). So, did Leonard walk around to every single vendor trying to pry them away from us?.....no, I can't see Leonard doing that....but by announcing his dates and showing up on the floor (and with Leonard obviously representing HauntCon simply because he is Leonard), the end result is that I had to personally deal with some of those issues of Vendors trying to make decisions about next year when that should have never been on the table....I think that is a longer explanation of what Rich was trying to say.

If HauntCon wasn't the same weekend as us, I don't think Rich or anyone would have had a problem with Leonard showing up, however, the simple fact that HauntCon fell on the exact same weekend as us coupled with the fact that Leonard showed up un-announced just led to a lot of issues because the talk of HauntCon would obviously come up, and thus, the talk of the fact we were on the same date came up, and thus, the talk of where would you go came up.

I did for a fact have a few vendors come up to me and talk to me about if they are going to HauntCon vs us next year (and it was split down the middle 50%/50%)...so, the bottom line is that simply by Leonard showing up it caused some political talk and choices for vendors that I would have not liked to have seen at our show.

I think anyone would obviously see that, and that is what Rich was mentioning and defending us for, and Rich was correct in this point of view. If HauntCon was not the same date as us, I don't think Rich or anyone would have had even mentioned a single 'peep' about Leonard....he was just another Haunter with us......however, the fact he showed up on a year where his future con was going to be on the same date as ours (when we previously announced our date 6 months in advance) surely did seem to at least cause some issue with the vendors.

Hope that helps clear some of the air and a bit more detailed of an explanation.......I'm back to wrapping things up for this year, and I'm already gearing up full force for next year....so much to do, so little time :)

Robert Kocher
The Village of Darkness
National Haunters Convention

04-15-2009, 12:35 PM

I don't think Leonard attacked Rich Hanf, Rich did not say that, he said you told him that vendors came up to you and said 'go to Hauntcon and not NHC'. Rich is only stating what he was told.

In your post you do not come right out and confirm or deny that this was said from you to Rich. I believe you said this to Rich and Rich merely stated what he was told. Either way did you say this to Rich?

Secondly which vendors said it? Either have these vendors come on here and tell us this is what was said otherwise I think comments need to be retracted. That is my opinion!

In your post you suggested that what Leonard did was ask vendors if they are going to Hauntcon next year... I bet he did that sure! But that is a whole different ballgame than telling people don't go to your show and go to his.


04-15-2009, 01:03 PM

Please re-read my post. I never said Leonard attacked Rich Hanf. Rich was attacked in posts from earlier threads and I was defending him on that. I also explained everything in the post.

There is no point in rehashing all this stuff on a public board anyway, Leonard and Michael and I can talk about it in a few weeks and see if we can all work something out. Right now, HauntCon is two weeks away so I'm sure Leonard is 100% focused on that. Michael, Leonard, and myself will all talk again soon, I don't think there are any issues we can't work out or at least give a good faith effort. Let's give this some time to see how things pan out first. Otherwise, this is just an endless thread of more political stuff (that I think everyone is sick of hearing).


04-15-2009, 01:14 PM
First let me say that I missed the NHC and tour. It is the only "con" of the four I cannot attend this year. Timing and budget prevailed.

Kudos to all that are keeping a cool head with responses. We have been in trouble in that respect in the past. Hopefully the organizers will make decisions that will enhance their shows respectively.

The good news is that there are more opportunities in the present then ever before. The market is still increasing as we all know. The free market allows us to decide where we spend our time and money.

The vendors and customers are regional in all four cons in respect to the industry. Just read this board and you will see that. The vendors that are showing are spending lots of money. Some are doing well from reports. The two shows being scheduled on the same weekend will force many vendors to pick one. This is because most are small in staff, usually relying on friends and family to help.

They should obviously pick one from only one perspective: business. Those that are very creative (most of them) and business minded will make alliances at some point in the future with another vendor. This alliance would have two vendors share a booth at each show. They would each pick one to man and take orders for each other. They would split expenses and possibly get the best of both worlds. This is not new as far as vendors splitting booths, it happens at every one of them. The new concept would be allowing someone else take orders. Or if that is not palatable, then split up the staff, but still share booths.

04-15-2009, 04:41 PM

I think Rich was saying you told him this and Rich was reporting it, now it sounds like you are saying you didn't say this or its a misunderstanding.

Whatever the case I'm glad we got to the bottom of this that Leonard did not do this or at least as far as you know.

Lastly, I'm happy to hear your show was a success that is good news!

I hope you and Hauntcon can work out the dates thing because that doesn't help either show only hurts them!

Good luck!


04-15-2009, 05:19 PM
Brad my friend hold off judgement till all the facts are laid out!

I agree Shane, I could have waited till Robert and Micheal posted their comments.

But based on my experience with talking to LP, I wouldn't put it past him to do this. On at least 4 occasions that I have had the chance to talk to LP, over several years time, he never treated me good, in any way.
I'm not saying that I deserve the best treatment around, but coming to him as an amature haunter, and even simply asking for advise....Or just saying hi like I would do to anybody else, he has always talked down to me.

04-15-2009, 05:50 PM
Is the theam to the Jeffersons ringing in anyones head? Shane and its moving on up to a deluxe apartment in the sky! Shane this time!

Greg Chrise
04-15-2009, 07:09 PM
Bottom line is that at some point Swampboy became Swampman and there was no barmitzva or anything.

I always sign my name. I will also sign any vacation forms any one needs signed.

04-16-2009, 08:07 AM
All of these conventions are a neat idea. It seems pretty cool to have one in bunch of different areas of the country. It makes for a good excuse to see haunts in areas that it is normally too difficult to go and see. It is too hard for me to make any show other than Transworld but it is cool that the option is there if time ever permits.

Mr Nightmarez
04-17-2009, 05:06 AM
I was at NHC. I was one of the instructors with actually 3 well attended seminars. Thanks to those that supported and maybe even learned something!

I'm not slamming, supporting nor against anyone.

I can say that Leonard asked me why I was there and not going to Hauntcon. I was also asked (By Leonard) "What would it take to get you to come to Hauntcon". Again I am not confirming but just stating what was asked of me. Was it wrong? I have been to every Hauntcon until last year and this year. But as many have stated I had to pick and choose. Plus I had a graduation to attend during Hauntcon's dates.... So decision was made.

It sucks that both conventions are being held on the same date in 2010 and I hope one or both can communicate and change their date to prevent this... I can't be in two places at once But I will admit cloning is getting better!

I think it's sad that we have such a great industry that is torn apart by Who's side are you on... etc..etc...

Just my 2 cents and Stabbo is running for president in 2012! And I believe Zombo would make an excellent Vice President!

Professor Fear - Halloween University

04-20-2009, 01:12 PM
If the focus of Hauntcon is more to showcase haunts than it is to offer a diversity of vendors, then the conflict is in theory not as much about forcing vendors to choose a show, but rather it's about forcing potential attendees to decide which show offers more bang for the buck.

Scheduling the events too close together is bad business; it's also (unfortunately) not a new issue.

Attendees will vote with their dollars, showing what is more important/more interesting to them. Leonard's offering some pretty unique opportunities to see varied cities' haunts, and perhaps to see local vendors that don't hit the permanent location shows. I for one think that if Hauntcon is choosing to push the chance to see regional haunts more than trying to push itself as a trade show, that this is a good thing. It's a clear and unique direction.

Having NHC and MHC work together on scheduling dates so they're not conflicting is a great sign of partnership within the industry. Time will tell if NHC can live up to the name change. I hope it does. MHC has done some strong trail-blazing in that regard.

This is an exciting time in the history of haunted attraction trade shows and conventions! Hauntcon and MHC have proven they have staying power. NHC has shown that there is a strong desire for this industry to own its shows and focus on its particular needs. The organizers of all these shows keep on pushing the bar to see what they can offer to all aspects of the industry. Who would have thought, 10 years ago, we'd have this much to choose from? Imagine what these shows are going to be in another 5, 10 years?