So it happened like this: Early last week I had a Facebook missive from Buddy Finethy, one of my long-time GI Joe collecting friends who is also a high mucky-muck at JoeLanta. He was wondering if your PopCulteer and his wife would be attending WonderFest USA, the annual expo for model and toy collectors of s-f, horror & comics subjects–especially plastic kits and garage kits, held in Louisville, Kentucky, this year on May 30 and 31.
To be honest, I hadn’t planned to attend, simply because things are so busy this coming month with FestivAll, a planned trip to our nation’s capitol and the Marx Toy Convention in Wheeling, but I got curious and looked at their website. I got to the guest list, and saw that, on Saturday only, Greg Nicotero, the executive producer and FX coordinator for The Walking Dead was going to be there. I was telling my wife, enthusiastic Walking Dead fan, Melanie, all of this, and when I said, “Hey, Saturday they have Greg Nico…” she cut me off with “WE’RE GOING.”
And I’m damn glad we did. Not only did we have a blast and get to hang out some with the JoeLanta gang, but Mel got to meet Greg, I got to meet one of my heroes, famed artist William Stout, plus we met Vincent Price’s daughter, Victoria, and I got to tell Mark Cantrell in person how much I enjoyed his book on Weird-Ohs artist, Bill Campbell.
We even had fun on the trip back, when we stopped for dinner at Frisch’s Big Boy in Winchester and I picked up a six-pack of Ale-8-1, a Kentucky soft drink that I haven’t tried for over thirty years and can’t remember whether or not I like.
Over the next few days you will see many more photos and video from our one-day excursion. You will NOT see an episode of Radio Free Charleston or The RFC MINI SHOW. We sort of played hooky. Radio Free Charleston will return next week, with the first of two or three consecutive full-length shows. Our streaming radio show will not miss a beat, with a fresh episode every Tuesday. Our Sunday Evening Video will likely become a Monday Evening Video for this week only.
Part one of our WonderFest USA coverage is a quick photo essay of the model-building contest entries, presented with no captions, because it was a long day and I’m still tired. Some of these models are larger than life, while others are only an inch tall. There will be more to come in PopCult over the next several days.