domenica 28 agosto 2011

Ghostbusters Mania: "Interviews Ghostheads" Brock the Alabama Ghostbusters

Ghostbusters Mania is proud to present  N°15 "Interview with Ghosthead" with Brock of the Alabama Ghostbusters

Brock, tell us a bit about yourself. Who are you? What are you doing? Other hobbies or interests?
I’m Brock Parker, chief of the Alabama Ghostbusters. In my everyday life, I run the website and social media for Auburn University.  I’ve been happily married for 12 years, and I have two awesome kids.

Outside of being a “Ghostbuster,” I’m an avid collector.  I not only collect GB, but “Batman,” “Star Trek” and “Back to the Future.”  I really don’t have any other costuming interests.

Where did you love for Ghostbusters come from?
I was eight-years-old when the first movie came out.  I vividly remember seeing the commercials and begging Mom to take me.  When she did, I was hooked (well, after getting over my fear of the terror dogs).  My friends and I would pretend to be GBs after school, then the cartoon and second movie kept the fire alive.  It’s never died down.

When and why did you start building your GB uniform and equipment?
Since 1984, I always wanted a proton pack. To me, it’s one of the most iconic movie props out there.  Unfortunately, it wasn’t until 2007 that I really started trying to build one.  After researching plans online, I got pretty nervous about building it, so I opted to buy one from a member on

I bought the pack and started piecing together my flight suit and belt.  Eventually, I upgraded the suit, but I really wanted to try my hand at building the pack. I gathered as many GB1 accurate parts as I could for more than two years, then finally got the courage to put them all together this year.

Once I finished my new pack this summer, my first pack went to another home.

We see that you've participated in many events. What's been your favorite event so far? And why?
That’s a tough one.  I absolutely love Dragon*Con in Atlanta. I love seeing everyone from all over the country. It’s the one time a year I can have a few days with some wonderful guys and gals that I normally only get to talk with online.

That being said, we have started hosting an annual movie screening at the historic Alabama Theatre in downtown Birmingham.  Last year, we had 25 GBs show up for it, along with a crowd of 500.  This year, we had 40 GBs from all over the Southeast, and we held a charity auction for the April 27, 2011, tornado victims in our state.  It was an incredible response, and we are hoping to have a bigger event there next year.

I would say it’s a close tie between D*C and our annual screening as far as being my favorite. However, we have lots of events throughout the year, and we always enjoy getting together and meeting the public.

Tell us about PKE Surge.
PKE Surge is an incredibly large gathering of Ghostheads at Dragon*Con. It’s held ever Labor Day weekend, which is normally the first weekend in September.  This is our third year, and it’s the main event at D*C for me personally. We have a fan table the entire weekend, but the main Surge day is Saturday.

We start the day by participating in the D*C parade. In 2009, we had approximately 55 GBs and one or two Ectomobiles. Last year, we had about 80 marchers and seven Ectos. This time, we had about the same number of people and cars register, so it should be another awesome turnout.

At the end of the day, we have our dinner, known every year as “Night on the Town.” We’ll eat, have a few drinks and hand out awards. For example, we give awards for best representation of a GB, the Ecto that traveled the farthest to get to Surge and an award for the pack/equipment that took the most damage in the parade.  There are several categories, and the awards are gold and silver Crunch bars.

What does the term "Ghosthead" mean to you? Why did you get involved with a "franchise"?
A Ghosthead is an avid fan of “Ghostbusters.” It’s a person who pours countless hours of love and commitment into this fandom.

I got involved with the Alabama Ghostbusters back in February 2009. Once I had my suit and pack, I started looking for a local group of people I could hang out with and share my love of “Ghostbusters.”  I wanted to start attending events and doing charity work, and I thought being part of a franchise would be a great outlet for both.

What does it mean to you Alabama Ghostbusters?
This group of people means the world to me. We have some awesome and talented folks in the group, and it would be hard to find a more passionate organization anywhere in our state. These guys and gals are some of my dearest friends.

When my franchise search started, I found the Birmingham Ghostbusters, and we had our first workshop/meeting that June. Only four of us met the two founding members, me and another gentleman. We started planning events and how we could tackle them, and it wasn’t long before others took notice. A few months later, I was named the public relations officer, and was eventually chosen by the others to head up the group when the founder moved to another state.

I changed the name of the group to Alabama Ghostbusters so we could focus on becoming a statewide group.  So far, it’s paid off as we have more than 100 members on our website and about 30 active members from all areas of the state.

ALGB Podcast
Tell us about Alabama Ghostbusters podcasts, the radio podcast conduct and direct by you.
My college degree is in broadcast journalism, and I spent 21 years as a radio and television reporter. When my wife and I had kids, I wanted to find a job more conducive to family life.  I was tired of working long hours and getting called out to cover stories in the middle of the night.

Three years after leaving the broadcast business, I really started to miss it. I bought a new microphone, computer and mixing board, and I built a small home studio. I had always wanted to do a podcast, so I got with Bo Bearden and Kevin Gardner in our group. We thought it would be a great way to discuss what we’re doing as a franchise and add a little public personality.

It’s been a lot of fun so far, and it’s opened the door for us to appear on other podcasts, such as Ghostheads and Cross The Streams Radio.  I really enjoy being on with those guys.  It’s created yet another avenue for us to interact with fellow Ghostheads and create new friendships.

Plans for the future? Want to make a greeting to all GBFans?
My personal plan is to keep doing this as long as I can.  I’ve made so many great friends by joining the GB fandom.  It’s awesome to have such a diverse group of people brought together by the love of a classic movie franchise.

As far as future plans for the Alabama Ghostbusters, we just purchased our first car to convert into an Ectomobile.  Getting her up and running is a top priority so we can draw even more attention to our events and charities.  We’ll also keep recruiting new members and traveling all over the state hoping to help people and make them smile.

To all “Ghostbusters” fans, I will say keep having fun! We have a common bond that so many people enjoy, and thank you to all the people I’ve gotten to know because of it.

Thank you, Ghostbusters Mania, for this opportunity and for keeping the fandom going!

Thanks so much Brock!


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