The annual ghoulishly good time that is Spooky Empire‘s Ultimate Horror Weekend has once again descended upon the Wyndham on International Drive this weekend, bringing an assortment of horror movie and television celebrities, macabre merchandise, and plenty of partying opportunities. Continuing through Sunday, guests attending the Ultimate Horror Weekend can get autographs and photos with stars, mingle with other fiends, and take home a few sinister souvenirs.
The fun all began with the tradition of a massive zombie walk down I-Drive, blocking traffic with a horde of undead, many with hilariously themed costumes. The video below highlights a few of the more inventive zombies that stumbled their way down the busy street toward Spooky Empire headquarters.
Video: Spooky Empire’s Ultimate Horror Weekend 2011 zombie walk
Not even afternoon rain could prevent the undead from dragging their bodies down the road to kick off a weekend of Spooky Empire excitement.
Zombie highlights included familiar Disney characters, Ronald McDonald and Wendy, and many more gruesome walkers. Here are a few favorites, with many more zombie photos in the gallery at the end of this article:
Inside, the line of both the living and the dead stretched long on the first day of the convention, with all anticipating exploring its halls.
Costumes continue inside, even including the Spooky Empire staff. It’s encouraged to dress your best (worst?) and attract attention when you show up to the event this weekend.
One of the highlights of Spooky Empire’s Ultimate Horror Weekend is the easy meeting of big name celebrities. This year’s line-up includes Kristin Bauer and Mariana Klaveno from HBO’s “True Blood,” Malcolm McDowell from “A Clockwork Orange” among many other films and television shows, Steve Gonsalves and Dave Tango from Syfy’s “Ghost Hunters,” and even horror music favorite Midnight Syndicate. The full list of attending celebrities can be found on the Spooky Empire web site. They’re all available and quite approachable for a quick chat or, for a fee, autographs and pictures.
The vendor room at the Ultimate Horror Weekend is full of apparel, figurines, artwork, movies, and enough horror-themed items to almost guarantee fright fans will buy something. Even Busch Gardens Howl-O-Scream is there, giving away “Dark Side of the Gardens” shirts and other swag.
I picked up a couple of pieces of artwork featuring classic cartoons-turned-zombies from artist Locoduck. His Disney-inspired creations are fantastic.
And after a day of staggering around, even the undead need a little help so massages are available to prepare for parties at night.
Spooky Empire’s Ultimate Horror Weekend continues through Sunday, October 9 at the Wyndham on International Drive. Visit SpookyEmpire.com to find out more about how you can attend.
More photos from day 1 of Spooky Empire’s Ultimate Horror Weekend 2011: