Portland is one of the more interesting place to live in this country, especially if you’re into the genre stuff that gets lumped into geek culture. My girlfriend runs a biweekly event called Geek Trivia, held at an old school that’s been converted into a microbrewery and a movie theater. Prizes include a trip to San Diego Comic Con. Portlanders mean it when it comes to getting your geek on.
Last night I returned to Portland after a couple weeks away (in Massachusetts, actual Lovecraft country), and rolled right into an event that could perhaps only happen here. In the Lovecraft Bar at Grand and Stark, Horroregon (get it, Horror+Oregon?) hosted Ash Wednesday, a birthday party for the great Oregon son Bruce Campbell. We were all sort of amazed that Safeway, the local grocery chain, was willing to make the cake.(Picured above!)
Dark Horse and our sister company, Things from Another World, provided prizes. Lukas Kettner, whose Witch Doctor comic comes out this week, was there, as well as the Portland Mercury’s Alison Hallett and local painters Rex Church and Tony Morgan. And our hosts, Horroregon’s Jack Maraglia and Jayne Hollenbeck, moved through a room full of horror geeks in requisite black clothes, brightened by a generous assortment of taut Hawaiian shirts.
Although the man of the hour, himself a southern Oregon resident, was unable to attend in person, Bruce provided this message to the attendants: “Listen up, you primitive screwheads! I hope you and your freaky friends enjoy Ash Wednesday. I would be there, but I have to watch the paint dry on my new house - you know, the one you bought for me by renting Army of Darkness 100,000 times! May your night be merry, your chest be hairy and all your dreams come true.
Beast Witches from Bruce “don’t call me Ash” Campbell"
Scott Allie is the senior managing editor at Dark Horse Comics.