Friday, September 28, 2007
We will need to have a total of 14 costumed actors every night (this includes the relief performers).
Here is a breakdown for the minimum amount of performers for each attraction. This is strictly in-scene performers. There will also need to be security, entry control and relief actors.
Relief Actors: rule of thumb - one for every three performers. Each performer scares for 45 minutes, then a 15 minute break, unless they are having fun and want to continue longer.
Cemetery Scene (Door #1)- performer to operate hinged wall section to trap guests. This is a non verbal roll and the performer will need to remain hidden from guests.
Cemetery Scene (Door #2)- performer to operate hinged wall section to trap guests. This is a non verbal roll and the performer will need to remain hidden from guests.
Camping Scene- performer to be hiding in or behind camper then appear to startle guests. This is a non verbal roll.
Backyard Scene- performer to taunt guests as they pass through the scene. No physical startle, this is a verbal role.
Final Scene (Drop Door Operator)- performer to manually operate (2) drop doors. This will be a physically demanding position. This is a non verbal roll.
Final Scene (Tom Killingsly)- performer intimidates guests to enter down the wrong pathway then hides and startles guests from behind Fear Flaps in exit hallway. This is a physical and verbal role.
The Freak and Fun House
Curtain Hall (Talking Picture)- performer will be hiding behind curtain walls creating the voice for the talking portrait. As guests exit, the performer will reach his/her arm through the curtain. This is a verbal role.
Bug Exhibit (Slide Door)- performer will suddenly appear from behind a sliding bookcase of insect cages. This will be a physically demanding position. This is a non verbal roll.
Man Eating Chicken- performer to taunt guests as they pass through the scene. No physical startle, this is a verbal role.
Heckler in Cage- performer intimidates guests from within a chain link cage as they attempt to find the correct way through the maze. Performer will be blinding guests, shouting at they, squirting them with water. This is a physical and verbal role.
Thanks and let me know if you have any questions, Tom The Great Outdoors, 512-448-2992 ext 15
Event Location: The Great Outdoors, 2730 S Congress Ave., Austin, TX 78704
Dates: October 5,6,12,13,18,19,20,25-31.
Times: 7:15-10:30 weekdays, 7:15-midnight weekends
Friday, September 14, 2007
Can you believe fall is almost upon us? After a very rainy start to the summer, followed by a month of not-so-hot late summer dryness, we are on the downhill stretch to autumn. In the North, the biggest thing they have to look forward to now is fall foliage, followed by seven months of fighting off maladies like snow-blindness and frostbite, and funny accents. But, here in good ‘ol Central Texas, we are blessed with what is, essentially, a “second spring”. August to November are recovery months for many thirsty and heat-hammered plants coming out of summer, as well as show time for some of our most beautiful late-season bloomers. Sadly, though, many Central Texas gardeners don’t always recover as readily as their gardens, and tend to throw their hands up in sun-baked frustration until the following spring. Why do we do this? Here we are perched on a sweet little climatic island, sandwiched between hot, dry summer and cold, wet winter, and we’re blowing it! What’s missing?
I’ll tell you what’s missing: inspiration, the gardener’s best friend. See, every spring, after a long, restful and cabin-fever ridden winter, we jump out into spring’s splendor ready to create, heads-full of flowery visions, trowels in hand. But fall is different, VERY different. By the time summer blows her last furnace breath, we are emotionally beaten and creatively crushed. So, how do we get our horticultural Mojo back? Read on, gardeners, read on.
Matt’s Five Easy Mojo-Grabbing Steps to Happy Fall Gardening
1. Big gifts come in small spaces. Pick an area, no matter how small, that you see often, and make it pretty. It could be the little flower bed around the mailbox that you pass by every day or a terra cotta pot on the back porch that you put your cigarettes out in. Focus on this area, build a little dream around this area, and then follow through, completely ignoring the rest of the yard. If it helps, create a rule that no other area of the garden can be touched or even thought about until that one space is perfect. You will be surprised at how much more creative satisfaction you’ll feel from a small thing done right than from an entire garden done halfway.
2. Out with the old… A wise person once said “We don’t see things as they are, we see things as we are”. Don’t let compassion for last spring’s wilted, bug-eaten plants get in the way of your creative spirit! Look at your yard as if it were someone else’s and be just as critical. Pull out any plants whose season has passed, and don’t be afraid to ax those that have suffered from fiery summer neglect. This “cleaning of the canvas” will do wonders for your ability to envision new plantings.
3. …in with the BOLD! As you stroll through the garden center looking for elements that will fulfill your vision, go for drama. Generally, the smaller the space, the bolder the plants. Pass over mild-mannered mallows and subtle salvias for screaming sweet potato vines and funky fountain grass. Contrast colors and textures, and use the old florist’s rule of flower arrangement: Spiky (grasses, bulbs, yuccas), round (ligularia, rice paper plant, turk’s cap), frilly (ferns, batchelor’s buttons,’Diamond Frost’ euphorbia), and dangly (sedum, ‘Marguerite’ sweet potato, vinca).
4. Obsess, obsess, obsess. “The most important elements to a garden’s success? Footprints on the garden path.” A healthy dose of obsession in your new little patch of heaven won’t hurt a bit. Daily maintenance, regular fertilizing and pest control, and the occasional daydream not only insures thriving success, but also cultivates an appreciation and love of the plants that will carry into the rest of the garden.
5. Create. Enjoy. Repeat. The fine art of enjoying is quickly getting lost in our rat-race culture. It’s a vital skill that requires practice, so start now. Wake up 30 minutes earlier than normal and step outside to revel in your creation. Make enjoying your garden a daily part of the gardening process, and you’ll find previously torturous tasks like weeding, pruning, fertilizing and watering can be fun. Yes, I said fun!
Come on, gardeners, can it be any easier than that? Start small, be bold, and have fun!
Friday, September 7, 2007
Take a journey into the bizarre and terrifying world of Gruesome Gardens. Are the plants really alive? What are those horrid smells? Find out, if you dare! Starting October 6th, The Great Outdoors Garden Center will be transformed into Gruesome Gardens. There will be Halloween fun and festivities for all ages throughout The Great Outdoors Garden Center with the following professionally designed attractions:
Haunted Harvest - Children will have fun in this traditional autumn harvest maze. Filled with hay bales, pumpkins, corn stalks and many other “goodies”. This season’s crop looks to be our biggest ever and we’ve hired extra farm hands to help with the harvest. One might say we’ve worked them to the bone! Suggested for children under 12. Open daily, no startle scares.
A lost and forgotten neighborhood of Austin that was overgrown by a suspicious new “breed” of plants from the local garden center. Maneuver your way through eight startling scenes in search of missing horticulturist Tom “Green Thumbs” Killingsly. Suggested for ages 12 and over or accompanied by parent or guardian. Performer illusion and special effect startle scares.
The Freak and Fun House
Where does one put all the things that should not be? Things too unmentionable to speak of, to be seen. Well, let’s just say you’ll find more than skeletons in this proverbial closet. Are you daring enough to journey through this mad labyrinth of the creepy freaky? Suggested for ages 12 and over or accompanied by parent or guardian. Performer illusion and special effect startle scares.
See the fear. Hear the fear. Smell the fear. Feel the fear. All Fright here. This attraction is extremely intimidating and will cause intense feelings of fear, frustration and claustrophobia. After all, isn’t that why you’re here? Suggested for ages 12 and over or accompanied by parent or guardian. Performer illusion and special effect startle scares.
Tickets available October 1st. Proceeds benefit local non-profits on October 18th and 19th (more charity dates will posted as scheduled).