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Ohio Life

‘Creature Weekend’ at Salt Fork State Park

This annual fall conference in southeast Ohio delves into the theories and folklore behind monsters said to roam the land.

“There’s a lot of things we don’t know about our world, and I think it’s important to keep an open mind,” says Bruce Harrington, director of Creature Weekend. “It’s a forum for people to network and talk about these oddities of science.

The annual fall conference was launched in 2012 and is set for Oct. 26 through 28 this year. The three-day event includes an art exhibition and auction, speeches and presentations from notable names within the field of cryptozoology, which deals with the search for and study of creatures whose existence is disputed or unsubstantiated. (Each May, Salt Fork State Park also hosts the annual Ohio Bigfoot Conference.)

Bob Gimlin, one of the men behind the famous Bigfoot footage that has been studied since it was captured in 1967, will speak at Creature Weekend this year. Other notable lecturers include Stanton Friedman, who will present information about the Flatwoods Monster of West Virginia.

Filmmakers Bill and Amy Lancaster of Virginia will screen their documentary “Cultured Bigfoot,” followed by a question-and-answer session. Local Bigfoot groups will present at the conference as well, including Ohio Bigfoot Hunters. Headed by Bigfoot researchers Ed Wiland, Wayne Larsen and Tim Stover, the group will present some of its more recent Buckeye State findings. (All-inclusive weekend passes are available that include Friday dinner with the speakers, a Sunday barbecue, VIP conference seating and a commemorative poster.)

Since its inception, Harrington says Creature Weekend has raised a total of $4,000 for the Ohio Valley Educational Service Center in Cambridge, So, even if you are a skeptic, engaging your curiosity serves a good cause.

“It’s not really about if you believe these creatures exist or not,” Harrington says. “It’s a great forum, and it’s family-friendly and fun.”

Visit website for pricing. 14755 Cadiz Rd, Lore City 43755, creatureweekend.com

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