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Put the Spooky Back Into Christmas


Put the Spooky Back Into Christmas with an event focused on the Spooky traditions of the holiday. This event will feature authors, artists and artisans and surprises. It should be a unique and entertaining time.

Featured Authors will have readings included in our event video and be at the venue signing books and meeting visitors.
Frank Coffman
Frank Coffman is a retired professor of English, Creative Writing, and Journalism. Three major collections of speculative verse—The Coven’s Hornbook & Other Poems, Black Flames & Gleaming Shadows and Eclipse of the Moon—will be followed by What the Night Brings (projected for publication in August 2023). His poetry spanning the popular genres has appeared in many magazines, journals, and anthologies. His collection of occult detective stories, Three Against the Dark, was published in 2022. One of his poems with a dark holiday theme was featured in "Horrifying Holidays: Holiday Spookfest." That was his initial entry into the fine tradition of spooky Christmas literature.
Ernie Fuhr
Ernie Fuhr has researched and published several non-fiction articles over the years, mostly pertaining to local history. He wrote the definitive biography of Rockford baseball player Hal Carlson, which was published in the book "Winning On the North Side: The 1929 Chicago Cubs" (SABR, 2015). Ernie’s writings have appeared in several local literary anthologies: "Secret Rockford," "Forest City Stories," "Rockford Writes" and the "Market Street Press" newspaper. He also has an interest in darker topics; his story “The Ghouls of Greenwood," about the former Forest View Abbey Mausoleum, appears in the book "Spooky Rockford," as well as a poem "The Spiritual Homestead." He has a dramatized non-fiction piece in "Horrifying Holidays Two."
Gary Hill
Gary Hill has been publishing Music Street Journal ( since 1998. He launched Tales of Wonder and Dread Publishing to release science fiction and horror books in 2018, but published a collection of those types of stories in 2017 titled "Dark Dreams and Worlds." Under the Tales of Wonder and Dread nameplate, Hill has published dozens of books. Hill launched Spooky Ventures in 2019 and has been doing video interviews, Spooky News segments and more for the Spooky Ventures YouTube Channel since then. Among the books published by Tales of Wonder and Dread are "Horrifying Holidays: Holiday Spookfest" and "Put the Spooky Back Into Christmas: Classic Holiday Horror Tales." Hill has been working to breathe new life and awareness into the tradition of spooky stories at Christmas and has pushed it via the books published, but also with merch and videos at Spooky Ventures. He will be bringing that spirit and quest to live in this event.
Kathi Kresol
Kathi Kresol has been researching the history of Northern Illinois for twenty years. She has published two solo books: “Murder & Mystery in Rockford, Illinois,” (2015); and “Haunted Rockford, Illinois,” (2017). Kathi has also collaborated with other local authors and shared articles in three books featuring compilations of Rockford authors. Kathi shares the stories she finds researching Spooky stories in her presentations, her column " Voices from the Grave" in the Rock River Times, and her events for Haunted Rockford.
Stephen Osborne
Stephen Osborne lives in rural northern Illinois with a wonderful dog called Christine, named after the heroine of The Phantom of the Opera. He loves Broadway musicals, and heads into Chicago at least 20 times a year to see shows (when Covid hasn't shut down the theaters). Other than writing, he likes folk music, watching British TV shows like Doctor Who, and playing games with his admittedly odd group of friends. He first fell in love at the age of 9. Her name was Alexandra Moltke, and she played Victoria Winters on the soap opera Dark Shadows. Yep, he was one of those kids who ran home from school to watch Barnabas and the other spooky people on that show. He obviously never lost his love for the macabre, and it turns up often in his writing. His story "Christmas Creeps" in "Horrifying Holidays: Holiday Spookfest" was his first foray into holiday horror storytelling and his "Christmas at the Raven’s Rest Inn" is in "Horrifying Holidays Two: More Holiday Spookfest."
Other vendors:
Bast & Baetyl Alchemy
Bast & Baetyl Alchemy will have a large selection of Copper jewelry and accessories, including necklaces, bracelets, rings, earrings, belts, pins and hair pins. Their aesthetic is already spooky, but they will be making a selection of winter items including pieces featuring Krampus and other holiday superstitions and mythology.
Chris Geebus
An artist specializing in comic style inks, realism acrylics, graffiti blaster and a little bit of a Jack of all visual art trades, Chris Geebus will have a table at the event. Holiday themed horror prints and originals will be on deck for this years “Put The Spooky Back Into Christmas”
Haunted Rockford.

Directly connected to Kathi Kresol, Haunted Rockford's table will have her books for sale ("Haunted Rockford, Illinois," "Murder and Mayhem in Rockford, Illinois" and "Secret Rockford") They will also have Christmas ornaments including needlepoint.
MsAndi's Creations
MsAndi's Creations will make custom sublimation and DTF items including glassware, t-shirts, key chains blankets and more. In addition to other designs, they are licensed to create official "Put the Spooky Back Into Christmas" and "Horrifying Holidays" merchandise.
Next Life Creations
Next Life Creations is focused on creating art from items found in nature. That makes everything they offer one-of-a-kind. For the Put the Spooky Back Into Christmas event Nezt Life Creations will have a selection of unique witch ball/yule ornaments, wood slice ornaments and decorative lanterns and more.
Artists Samantha S. and Britta E. create custom stained glass and fused glass art. They will have an array of works available, many of which will fit the Spooky Christmas theme.
Tinker Swiss Cottage
Samantha Hochmann will be representing Tinker Swiss Cottage and will have Christmas ornaments and Tinker Swiss Cottage T-Shirts available. Both Samantha and Tinker Swiss Cottage were recently seen on Jack Osbourne's Night of Terror."
As a bonus, there will be gift baskets available at both the Haunted Rockford and Tinker Swiss Cottage tables that will include goodies for fans of Spooky stuff. Including will be a T-Shirt, one of Kathi Kresol's books and an ornament, all at a discounted price.
Additionally there will be other spooky displays and more adding to the mood and vibe courtesy of ScaryHouse Studios.

Attendees will be eligible to win these prizes:
Christmas horror movies provided by MVD Entertainment.
50 dollar Gift Card for and provided by Maze Books.
A collection of three Christmas horror books from Tales of Wonder and Dread

Put the Spooky Back Into Christmas
  • December 2, 2023
  • Veterans Memorial Hall and Museum
  • Free