Commencing at 10 a.m., Saturday, October 18, 2014, on 108 East San Antonio Street in downtown El Paso, a festival unlike any other will take place. Southwest Horrorfest will take over the historic street and transform it into a measure of fright and oddity with a continuous barrage of live rock music, Halloween inspired sights and contests for the whole family.
The inaugural festival brought to you by Cynthia Camacho and David Alcantar in partnership with the Paso Del Norte Paranormal society is representative of an entrenched subculture of goth and horror fanatics very much alive in the Sun City.
Camacho and Alcantar, who met at work years ago, have a shared interest in the horror genre, “I’ve always been intrigued with horror since I was small. I remember watching movies like IT, Friday the 13th, and Nightmare on Elm Street with my older brothers,” said Alcantar.
Helping to bring the event together, the duo worked with the Paso Del Norte Paranormal Society. Based in downtown, their offices will serve as the nucleus of the event. The organization, also known as Ghosts 915, regularly provides history and ghost tours and their space is in a building that has a rich history itself including artifacts that are purported to be haunted.
The pair chose to take their mutual interest and create a festival to unite the horror community in a Halloween celebration, “There’s a little blood and gore in all of us, so why not bring everyone with similar interests together?” said Alcantar.
Among the attractions and guests invited is a local success story. Native El Pasoan and musician turned actor, Billy Blair will be in attendance. Noted for acting in films like, Machete, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, and The Last Stand, Blair has also been a producer and done stunt work.
The festival will also showcase the Lotus Blossoms Burlesque Revue, a student burlesque troupe lead by Saint Siren Sin. In addition, Elektra Knight, model and entertainer will be on hand for autographs.
A skate competition will also thrill audiences with their skills, “I wanted this event to be different and I haven’t seen any conventions with a skate competition,” said Alcantar.
An adult and children’s costume contest will encourage attendees to show off their best costumes. “First prize for the children’s contest is a $100 gift card for Toys R Us. First prize for the adult costume contest will be $300 cash,” said Camacho.
The Halloween season affords the opportunity to step outside of reality not just in costume but in what we perceive as normal. From the oddities in traveling carnivals of the past to the present day portrayal of the macabre in film, some of us seek out the fringe of what we deem normalcy. This is no more exemplified than in, Big Mike’s Psycho Circus. “He is basically a one-man-freak-show! He lays on a bed of nails, drives a nail through his nose, staples money to his body, and so much more – all for the love of entertaining people and freaking them out too,” said Camacho.
Fire dancers and sword swallowers will also be dazzling audiences.
With all of this, the festival will also feature live rocks bands throughout the show, horror film screenings, gaming tournaments, food and vendors.
“We definitely want to do this every year and keep catering to those individuals that like to live outside the box and be themselves,” said Camacho.
Gates open at 10 a.m., Saturday, October 18, 2014 on 108 East San Antonio street in downtown El Paso. Advance tickets can be purchased at the Groovy Smoothie.
For more information call 915-274-9531