Horror Conventions 2022

Featured Horror News Indie Horror

Another year and another chance to meet your favorite actor/actresses at a Horror convention. 2020 horror cons were a bust, thanks a lot COVID. 2021 we were at 70% power at the conventions. 2022 is the year of the “Horror Con Comeback.” We’re calling it now. Undoubtedly things will change but here is a list of cons to keep an eye on for 2022. We tossed in some of the comicons as well, many are featuring horror celebrities this year. Stay safe out there and mind the zombies.

January 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions:


  1. Villicon, 21-23, Orlando, FL https://horrorcons.com/event/17461/villicon-2022
  2. HorrorVille, 22-23, Cocoa, FL https://horrorvillecon.com/
  3. Cowtown Horror Fest, 29-30, Hurst, TX https://www.cowtowncomiccon.com/


  1. Fan expo New Orleans, 7-9, New Orleans, LA https://fanexpohq.com/fanexponeworleans/
  2. Albuquerque Comic Con, 14-16, Albuquerque, NM https://albuquerquecomiccon.com/
  3. Fan Expo Portland, 21-23, Portland, OR https://fanexpohq.com/fanexpoportland/

February 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions:


  1. Mad Monster Party Carolina, 18-20, Concord, NC http://madmonsterparty.com/events/carolina2022/
  2. Days of the Dead Atlanta, 25-27, Atlanta, GA https://www.daysofthedead.com/atlanta/
  3. MystiCon, 25-27, Roanoke, VA https://mysticon-va.com/


  1. Simi Valley Toy and Comic Fest, 6, Simi Valley, CA https://simivalleytoycomicfest.com/
  2. Long Beach Comic Expo, 12-13, Long Beach, CA https://longbeachcomicexpo.com/
  3. Con Nooga, 18-20, Chattanooga, TN http://www.connooga.com/
  4. Pensacon, 18-20, Pensacola, FL https://pensacon.com/
  5. Farpoint, 25-27, Hunt Valley MD https://www.farpointcon.com/
  6. Alaska ComicCon, 19-20, Fairbanks, AK https://www.alaskacomicon.com/

March 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions::


  1. The Fandemic Dead, 18-20, Atlanta, GA https://www.fandemictour.com/
  2. TransWorld Halloween Con, 17-20, St. Louis, MO https://www.haashow.com/

April 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions:


  1. TBD


  1. WonderCon, 1-3, Anaheim, CA https://www.comic-con.org/wca
  2. MoCCa Arts Fest, 2-3, New York City, NY https://www.moccafest.org/
  3. Fan Expo Philadelphia, 8-10, Philadelphia, PA  https://fanexpohq.com/fanexpophiladelphia/
  4. Star Trek: Mission Chicago, 8-10, Chicago IL https://www.startrekmissions.com/en-us.html
  5. Ratha Con, 9, Athens, OH https://www.therathacon.com/
  6. Fanboy Expo: Las Vegas, 22-24, https://fanboyexpo.com/
  7. Fan Expo Cleveland, 29- May 1, Cleveland OH https://fanexpohq.com/fanexpocleveland/

May 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions::


  1. Crypticon Seattle, 20-22, Seattle, WA https://crypticonseattle.com/
  2. Stranger Con Chicago, 21-22, Schaumburg IL https://www.creationent.com/cal/stranger_chicago.htm


  1. Fan Expo St. Louis, 13-15, St. Louis, Missouri https://fanexpohq.com/fanexpostlouis/
  2. MegaCon Orlando, 19-22, Orlando, FL https://fanexpohq.com/megaconorlando/
  3. Florida Supercon, 20-22, Miami Beach, FL https://www.floridasupercon.com/en-us.html
  4. Kids Con New England, 21, Concord NH https://kidsconne.com/
  5. Star Wars Celebration, 26-29, Anaheim, CA https://www.starwarscelebration.com/en-us/home/announcement.html
  6. Corecon, 26-29, Fargo, ND https://www.fargocorecon.org/
  7. Comicpalooza, 27-29, Houston, TX https://www.comicpalooza.com/
  8. Fanboy Expo Columbus, 27-29, Columbus, OH https://fanboyexpo.com/
  9. Phoenix Fan Fusion, 27-29, Phoenix, AZ https://www.phoenixfanfusion.com/
  10. Stoker Con May 12th – May 15th (Stoker Awards for Writers) https://www.stokercon.com/

June 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions:


  1. Spooky Empire June 17-19, 2022 @ Wyndham Orlando Resort https://spookyempire.com/
  2. Stranger Con New Jersey, 25-26, Edison, NJ https://www.creationent.com/cal/stranger_nj.htm


July 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions:


  1. Southeast Hollows Haunt Convention, 29-31, Savannah, GA https://www.sehhc.com/
  2. Midsummer Scream Halloween and Horror Convention, 29-31, Long Beach, CA https://midsummerscream.org/
  3. Motor City Nightmares, 29-31, Novi, MI https://www.motorcitynightmares.com/

August 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions:


  1. Idaho Halloween and Horror Convention, 12-14, Boise, ID https://www.idahohorror.com/
  2. Midwest SlaughterFest, 13-14, Bellevue, NE https://www.eventbrite.com/e/midwest-slaughterfest-2022-tickets-137715746505
  3. CreepyCon Knoxville, 26-28, Knoxville, TN https://creepyconknoxville.com/
  4. Maryland Pop and Horror Con, 27-28, Linthicum Heights, MD https://marylandpopandhorrorcon.com/

September 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions:


  1. Tidewater Horror Convention, 9-11, Norfolk, VA https://tidewaterhorrorconvention.com/

October 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions:


  1. Biohazard Con, 22, Sacramento, CA https://www.biohazardcon.com/
  2. Scarefest Horror and Paranormal Convention, 21-23, Lexington, KY https://scarefestweekend.com/

November 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions:

December 2022 Horror and Comic Conventions:

  • Stranger Con December 17-18
  • Did we miss any? Leave us a comment if you have the inside scoop on a Horror Convention we might have missed for 2022. Check the websites and our advice is not to buy too early with the current state of things. Here’s to hoping 2o22 is the year of the Horror Con Comeback! See you all there.



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    Featured Horror News Indie Horror

    Greetings, fellow horror aficionados! Grab your garlic necklaces, sharpen your stakes, and make sure your flashlight batteries are fresh because we’re about to dive headfirst into the spine-chilling circus that is the Horror Conventions of 2024. If you thought your Aunt Mildred’s haunted porcelain doll collection was terrifying, just wait until you step into a convention hall filled with creatures that go bump in the night and cosplayers who take “creepy” to a whole new level. Join me, and all our weird friends, as we navigate the haunted landscape of this year’s frightful festivities. It’s time to embrace the darkness, but remember to keep an eye on your shadow—it might be attending its own panel discussion.



    1. Days of the Dead Atlanta, 26-28, Atlanta, GA https://www.daysofthedead.com/atlanta/


    1. Fan Expo New Orleans, 5-7, New Orleans, LA https://horrorcons.com/event/20536/fan-expo-new-orleans-2024
    2. Fan Expo Portland, 12 – 14, Portland, OR https://fanexpohq.com/fanexpoportland/
    3. Albuquerque Comic Con, 19-21, Albuquerque, NM https://albuquerquecomiccon.com/



    1. Creep I.E. Con, 2-4, Ontario, CA https://horrorcons.com/event/21216/creep-i-e–con-2024
    2. The Fandemic Dead, 9-11, Atlanta, GA https://comic-cons.xyz/event/the-fandemic-dead-atlanta-georgia/
    3. Mad Monster Party Carolina, 16-18, Concord, NC https://madmonster.com/c24/


    1. MegaCon Orlando, 1-4, Orlando, FL https://horrorcons.com/event/21233/megacon-orlando-2024
    2. AggieCon, 2-4, College Station, TX https://fancons.com/events/info/21653/aggiecon-2024
    3. Alaska ComicCon, 3-4, Fairbanks, AK https://www.alaskacomicon.com/
    4. Simi Valley Toy and Comic Fest, 4, Simi Valley, CA https://www.rostercon.com/en/event-convention/simi-valley-toy-and-comic-fest-2024
    5. Farpoint, 9-11, Hunt Valley, MD https://farpointcon.com/
    6. Con Nooga, 23-25, Chattanooga, TN http://www.connooga.com/
    7. Pensacon, 23-25, Pensacola, FL https://www.floridacomiccons.com/event/pensacon-2024/



    1. Ret-Con, 1-3, Cary, NC https://horrorcons.com/event/21391/ret-con-2024
    2. TransWorld Halloween Con, 7-10, Louis, MO https://www.haashow.com/
    3. Stranger Con, 15-17, Burbank, CA https://eventsinamerica.com/events/stranger-con-2024-2023-2024/sports-entertainment/films/kbgy9nop7rhwvbhy


    1. MoCCa Arts Fest, 16-17, New York, NY https://www.moccafest.org/
    2. WonderCon, 29-31, Anaheim, CA https://www.comic-con.org/wc/



    1. Fan Expo Cleveland, 12-14, Cleveland, OH https://fanexpohq.com/fanexpocleveland/



    1. Crypticon Seattle, 3-5, Seattle, WA https://crypticonseattle.com/
    2. Franken Con, 10-11, Alcoa, TN https://www.frankencontn.com/
    3. Texas Frightmare Weekend, 17-19, Irving, TX https://texasfrightmareweekend.com/


    1. Fan Expo Philadelphia, 3-5, Philadelphia, PA https://horrorcons.com/event/21570/fan-expo-philadelphia-2024
    2. Kids Con New England, 11, Concord, NH https://kidsconne.com/
    3. Corecon, 23-26, Fargo, ND https://boothsquare.com/events/corecon/editions/corecon-2024/a560ad27-6925-4d93-9443-63587a57e7d1/
    4. Comicpalooza, 24-26, Houston, TX https://www.comicpalooza.com/
    5. Phoenix Fan Fusion, 24-26, Phoenix, AZ https://www.phoenixfanfusion.com/
    6. Stoker Con, May 30 – June 2, San Diego, CA https://www.stokercon2024.com/



    1. Living Dead Weekend: Monroeville, 7-9, Monroeille, PA https://horrorcons.com/event/21847/living-dead-weekend-monroeville-2024
    2. Horror on Main, 28-30, Harrisburg, PA https://horrorcons.com/event/21829/horror-on-main-2024


    1. Fan Expo Dallas, 7-9, Dallas, TX https://horrorcons.com/event/21749/fan-expo-dallas-2024
    2. Fan Expo Boston, 28-30, Boston, MA https://horrorcons.com/event/21885/fan-expo-boston-2024



    1. Idaho Horror & Pop Con, 12-14, Garden City, ID https://www.idahohorror.com/
    2. Midsummer Scream Halloween and Horror Convention, 26-28, Long Beach, CA https://mp3sandnpcs.com/home/midsummer-scream-announces-2024-dates
    3. Motor City Nightmares, 26-28, Novi, MI https://www.eventbrite.com/e/motor-city-nightmares-2024-tickets-737512799637


    1. Fan Expo Denver, 4-7, Denver, CO https://horrorcons.com/event/21750/fan-expo-denver-2024
    2. Fanboy Expo, 12-14, Knoxville, TN https://fanboyexpo.com/
    3. Florida Supercon, 12-14, Miami Beach, FL https://www.floridasupercon.com/



    1. Maryland Pop and Horror Con, Pikesville, MD https://marylandpopandhorrorcon.com/


    1. Fan Expo Chicago, 16-18, Rosemont, IL https://horrorcons.com/event/21895/fan-expo-chicago-2024



    1. Horror Fiesta, 14, Peoria, IL https://horrorcons.com/event/22072/horror-fiesta-2024
    2. Tidewater Horror Convention, Norfolk, VA https://tidewaterhorrorconvention.com/



    1. Spooktobercon, 4-6, Fairmont, WV https://horrorcons.com/event/21286/spooktobercon-2024


    1. Dallas Fan Festival, 18-20, Irving, TX https://fanexpohq.com/dallasfanfestival/


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    Horror Hub Marketplace Releases 4 Limited Edition Masks in Collaborations with Zagone Studios

    Featured Lifestyle

    Horror Hub Marketplace is the biggest horror marketplace on the planet with vendors ranging from custom halloween masks to original small run horror collectibles, horror books, oddities, haunt supplies, and even horror coffee. Zagone Studios creates Halloween Masks and Costumes. Family owned and managed for over 40 years Zagone Masks and Costumes continues to design, innovate and manufacture right here in the U.S.A. Featuring the sculpts of Bill Ystrom (known as BY B.Y.) Zagone Studios has developed and originated multi lines of super soft latex, ultra-comfortable head sock and moving mouth harness masks. Their masks are great fitting while maintaining true to life, beautiful and intricate sculpts.  

    Each of the 4 masks are available exclusively on horrorhubmarketplace.com.

    Balthazar Demon Mask

    Balthazar halloween mask

    Balthazar is a vain and manipulative demon with a predilection for ugly ties. He enjoys bottled water, looking like a smug, impeccable bastard, and toying with people.The Balthazar Demon mask is an over the head mask with fur hair and huge horns. Perfect for theater, Halloween or haunted houses. It’s dark and it’s terrifying 

    Mohawk Skull Mask

    Skeleton Mask with moveable mouth

    Moving mouth mask! What is more terrifying than a skull mask? One that has a moveable mouth. The sock mask design with the latex on top of the sock allows the wearer the capacity to make the mask move simply by making facial expressions. The sock acts as the buffer for the actor’s skin to the latex adding to the comfort. Very comfortable to wear with excellent visibility.

    Pink Alien Mask

    This mask utilizes a foam insert to help keep the wearer comfortable and prevent the mask from shifting on the wearer’s head. The plastic eyes snap fit into the eye sockets. Hand poured, painted and assembled in the US.

    The Halloween mask can be used comfortably and safely for a Trick or Treating costume, actor mask in theater, tv shows & movies, horror costume, haunted house masks, cosplay, advertising model, window display and costuming prop.

    This pink alien variation is a limited run HorrorHub brand exclusive.

    Pink Alien Mask

    Dread Head Shrunken Head

    Hang this shrunken head to keep the evil spirits from clogging up your mojo. This ghastly decoration is meant for indoor use, but can be placed outside to add creepy fun to your haunted house, graveyard scene, or Halloween home decor.

    shrunken head halloween prop


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    Horror vs Thriller an Age Old Battle

    Featured Horror Books Scary Movies and Series

    Calling all film buffs, we’re about to play a game – Jigsaw style. There are many ways to differentiate horror vs. thriller films, and have no fear (pun intended)… we’re going to explain them all shortly. That being said, there is something important to note about thrillers. You’ve probably lived one. The time you forgot your project at school, tried to figure out the mystery of your favorite show, or just played a very stressful football game. These real world scenarios all build up undeniable tension and create a climactic moment that you’ll never forget… which is what thrillers are all about. Now, are you ready to talk about the gore, ghosts, and gross aspects of horror? Let’s discuss these differences in the horror vs. thriller debate.

    Horror vs Thriller: What to Know


    Don’t be fooled by Michael Jackson’s iconic “Thriller” music video with dancing zombies, these creatures would most likely belong to the horror genre. Why? Because the horror genre is all about scaring you. A horror movie creates a terrifying atmosphere that produces feelings of dread, terror, and tension about the inevitable doom coming your way – at the hands of a serial killer, witch, ghost, or occasional mix of the three (Bathsheba from The Conjuring, anyone?). That brings us to our next point about the difference between horror and thriller movies… the latter falls into a few “unofficial” genres: killers, paranormal, psychological horror and monsters.

    The Conjuring Horror Movie Poster
    The Conjuring Horror movie poster

    Horror franchises like Friday the 13th and The Conjuring have all the jump scares, dead people, gore and paranormal elements you need to become frightened out of your mind, and they’re inspired by classic supernatural horror films like 1931’s Dracula and Frankenstein. While these films were made decades apart, all of them encompass the key elements of the horror genre to present the audience with an evil antagonist – and present the protagonist’s journey to escape it. Sometimes successfully, and sometimes not. The “tldr” of this lengthy paragraph about the two genres? The premise of horror movies is to do just that… horrify the audience. In fact, the word “horror” originates from the Latin word “horrere,” – to tremble or shudder, just like you’ve done in every horror film in the Saw franchise since 2004.

    Speaking of Saw, the terrifying Jigsaw is just one of the many iconic monsters that you’ll recognize within the horror genre. There’s also Samara from The Ring, Freddy Krueger from A Nightmare on Elm Street, Pennywise from IT and more frightening monsters that have haunted your dreams for decades. If the killing sprees and psychological torment weren’t enough to scare you, all you need to do is glance at one of these creatures. Each is made with a demented design to instill terror in all who look at them – and this first impression will be one of fear and discomfort, as opposed to the tension and suspense that typically occurs while watching thriller films. These monsters don’t just serve as a symbol of the horror genre as a whole, they’re also a key factor in understanding the horror and thriller differences. And speaking of which, let’s talk about the latter!


    Don’t think that thriller films aren’t just as scary as the horror genre, because they truly can be- just in a different way. You’ll still have occasional dead people and serial killers, but they aren’t there just to make you scream. As the name suggests, the goal of thriller films is to thrill you and bring the audience to the edge of the movie theater seat – building up tension and suspense throughout the movie while watching a mystery unravel in fascinating ways. There’s a good chance that thriller movies will leave you biting your nails and shaking your leg with nervousness as opposed to screaming and clutching your partner’s hand like a scary movie might, and this is one of the greatest differences between horror and thriller films. 

    Split thriller or horror movie poster

    Thriller films are a bit more mainstream than horror films, for lack of a better term. Don’t get us wrong, the horror world has reached cult status over the decades… but it typically attracts a specific type of crowd. Meanwhile, nearly everybody can enjoy a good psychological thriller like Gone Girl, Black Swan, or Split. In fact, two out of three of these films have been nominated for an Academy Award… a rare (if not unheard of) feat for a traditional horror film. When you think about these films from the thriller genre, they’re quite a bit different from the horror films we discussed earlier – with less killer clowns and gore and more mystery and suspense. The protagonist often deals with themes like identity, loss, death, existence and perception – and you’ll feel like you’re solving the mystery alongside them as you decipher hard-to-find clues within the plot of a thriller film. 

    A great example would be Martin Scorcese’s 2010 psychological thriller film Shutter Island, in which Leonardo DiCaprio investigates the patients at an insane asylum as he discovers that he’s not as sane as he once believed. And then there’s the thriller television shows that bring horror elements like serial killers, blood, and death – such as Dexter and You. Many of us have that one friend who just is too much of a scaredy-cat for classic horror films (okay, maybe you are that friend)… and thrillers are often the ideal compromise for a scary and suspenseful good time. 

    Differences Between Thriller and Horror

    Dark figure horror or thriller

    The differences between horror and thriller films aren’t always as black-and-white as we’ve explained above, as there are certain movies that have equal elements of both. Think The Quiet Place, Silence of the Lambs, and Get Out. And then there’s The Sixth Sense. It has dead people and paranormal elements, so it must be a horror movie, right? Wrong. The ghosts that Haley Joel Osment sees aren’t meant to be a source of fear, but rather a plot device to build tension and unveil one of M. Night Shymalan’s most famous twist endings. It may seem confusing, but there are a few ways to determine whether you’re watching a horror or a thriller film. 

    You know the trope of the girl who goes down into the basement alone, despite the entire movie theater yelling at her not to, and gets murdered instantly by a masked monster? It’s a key example of the predictability in horror movies. We’re definitely not saying that you should predict the ending immediately, but scary flicks often come with a few tropes that you can recognize. Think empty cabins, picking up the phone with nobody there, and the first three friends getting murdered before the protagonist finally realizes that evil is at bay. Meanwhile, a thriller should be next to impossible to predict without an eagle eye, and three times rewatching the film. It’s just the way it is. 

    Remember when Jessica Lange said “all monsters are human” to Evan Peters in American Horror Story: Asylum? It’s a common theme in both the horror and thriller genres, but especially the latter. Thrillers focus less on evil monsters and distorted figures to uncover the scary aspects of real life – such as losing your memory, getting kidnapped, or being tricked by humans that you thought were close to you. And since humans are so complex, it’s pretty rare that you’ll guess the plot twist of a thriller halfway through the film. Not the good ones, anyway. What’s your favorite thriller film that you initially thought was horror? Or vice versa? Tell us, as we want to know about your favorite tales of scares and suspense. 



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    How Friday the 13th Became a Renowned Superstition

    Featured Horror Mystery and Lore Lifestyle

    Friday the 13th is an iconic day, especially for horror fans. So let’s dig into the history of Friday the 13th and rediscover where this all began, shall we?

    The History of Friday the 13th

    Paraskevidekatriaphobia—do you have it? Well, if you’re irrationally afraid of the natural occurrence of the thirteenth of any given month falling on a Friday, then yes—yes, you do. If so, then you might have a hard time this year, since we’ve got two of them coming up. Friday the 13th, supposedly the unluckiest day of the year, occurs at least once, but never more than three times in a calendar year. March and November are the unlucky winners this year, so if you’re scared, arm yourself with some of these facts and prepare to understand your superstition better than ever before.

    The Origin of the Superstition

    Within western culture, there are many superstitions that circulate on a regular basis—Friday the 13th is but one example of a superstition that has become so well-known that it has been worked into the very fabric of horror culture itself. From walking under ladders to breaking mirrors, stepping on cracks, or having a black cat cross your path, it seems as if there is always something to be superstitious of—people even subject themselves to their own superstitions, such as wearing their favorite sports team’s jersey to increase the odds of their team winning. Regardless, it seems that people still choose to purposefully avoid black cats, sidewalk cracks, and treat mirrors with respect, especially on Friday the 13th—as if these superstitions, when combined escalate into something even worse. Dr. Phil Stevens, an associate anthropology professor at the University of Buffalo, suggests that it’s important to respect the convictions that people display about their superstitions, noting that, “sometimes these are frivolous things, but sometimes they are deeply rooted cultural fears … you can insult somebody by making fun of it or you can be ignorant yourself. Some people have deep cultural taboos that you cannot change by denying them.” The question that has long plagued people, however, is why do we subject ourselves to these blatant paranoias—how did these things evolve to being harbingers of bad luck, and why do we continue to pay tribute to these traditions year after year?

    How Thirteen Became an Unlucky Number

    According to Dr. Simon Bronner, a notable professor of American studies and folklore at Pennsylvania State University, Friday the 13th is just a “convenient milestone for people who are looking to trace bad luck to a certain cause,” but he always state that there really is nothing special about the date itself—in fact, in countries like Italy, the number thirteen is actually considered a lucky number! To be perfectly honest, it’s unclear how Friday the 13th became such a totem for bad luck, but the number thirteen itself has been speculated, to have been considered unlucky since the Middle Ages.

    First mentioned in the English language, this day was first introduced as an unlucky happenstance in the biography of Gioachino Rossini, an Italian composer who died on—you guessed it—Friday, November 13th, 1868. It was further extended into superstition by Thomas W. Lawson, an American businessman who published a book titled Friday the Thirteenth, in which a crooked stockbroker takes advantage of this superstition to create wide-spread panic on Wall Street.

    In Manhattan and Brooklyn, New York an analysis conducted by CityRealty presented findings that fewer than five percent of mid-rise and high-rise residential condo buildings have a thirteenth floor. Not to say that the thirteenth floor doesn’t exist—it’s just not labeled under the number thirteen.

    Norse Mythological Origins

    While not the most notable mythological origin, according to Donald Dossey, in Holiday Folklore, Phobias and Fun, a Norse myth told of a dinner party that was set for twelve gods, where the thirteenth guest—the god of trickery, Loki—crashed the party and shot Baldr, the god of joy and happiness. Thanks for all the bad luck, Loki.

    The Last Supper

    Folklore historians all agree that isolating the exact time when Friday the 13th came to be known as a taboo and superstition, many of them agree that it may have originated from the Last Supper. As popular mythology agrees, Jesus was crucified on a Friday—some speculate Friday the 13th, immediately after the Last Supper, attended by Jesus and his twelve apostles to a total of thirteen people at the table. The longstanding superstition within the Christian religion is that having thirteen guests at a table is a bad omen that, “courts death.” Dr. Stevens told TIME that “when those two events come together, you are reenacting at least a portion of that terrible event … you are reestablishing two things that were connected to that terrible event.” So what started with what happened in Christian mythology, this somehow led to the modern phenomenon that has Americans avoiding things that are labeled with thirteen. Room number thirteen in a hotel, the thirteenth floor, the thirteenth row in an airplane—all of these superstitions are attached to the number of people who sat at the table the night before the crucifixion. Bronner believes that there is, “a grain of truth,” to the theory of the Last Supper, but that there is, “not much of a connection to the modern belief … it may be a case of religious folklore that rose to explain a belief.” He further tells us how psychologists treat the fear of Friday the 13th as a real phenomenon, but he believes that it was a constructed belief that is convenient for people to place blame upon.

    Oddly enough, the crucifixion wasn’t the only biblical tragedy that befell mankind on Friday the 13th—in fact, it’s said that the story of Adam and Eve being expelled from the Garden of Eden, the day Cain killed Abel, the Great Flood during the time of Noah, and the confusion of languages at the Tower of Babel also took place on this fated day.

    The Occult, Witches and their Covens

    A long-standing myth that surrounds Friday the 13th puts a firm association with witches—likely another confirmation from the origination of this superstition from Christianity. For those that are not in-the-know, covens are said to be a formal gathering of witches who perform rituals together—a sort of religious or spiritual gathering, where they perform spells, rituals, or seasonal offerings to honor whoever they may worship. The Christian leaning of this is due to the witch trials where women were forced through torture to admit to things that weren’t necessarily true, stating that they were convening with the devil and attacking other members of the community to do his bidding.

    What holds in the tradition of witchcraft is that a traditional coven recognizes twelve followers and a leader, which brings the total to—you guessed it—thirteen. In medieval covens, it is stated in The God of the Witches from 1931 that, “the number in a coven never varied, there were always thirteen, i.e., twelve members and the god.” In any case, the leader or god was always believed to be the Devil himself—or a man who represented the devil. This is of course, not backed by any substantial evidence from within the community of witchcraft practitioners, but instead considered more of an accusation from more mainstream religions such as Christianity.

    The Thirteen Club

    A New Yorker by the name Captain William Fowler made an attempt to remove the hardened stigma of the number thirteen in the late 19th century. In particular, his goal was to remove the stigma surrounding thirteen guests at a table—he attempted this vigorously by establishing a private society by the name of The Thirteen Club. As a general practice, this group dined on the thirteenth day of each month in room 13 of the Knickerbocker Cottage, which Fowler owned from 1863 to 1883. Before sitting down to dinner with twelve other guests, each participant of the club would pass under a ladder and a banner that read, “those of us who are about to die salute you,” in Latin. Notable members of this club were four former presidents of the United States of America, Chester A. Arthur, Grover Cleveland, Benjamin Harrison, and Theodore Roosevelt.

    HMS Friday—The Urban Legend

    An urban legend centering around the Royal Navy from the 19th century considers this the ultimate Friday the 13th legend—the story goes, that it was an attempt by the Royal Navy to dismiss the superstition against sailing on a Friday. While the details vary from telling to telling, they christened the ship HMS Friday; her keel was laid on a Friday, she was launched on a Friday, she set sail on her maiden voyage on Friday the 13th, and all of this under the command of a man by the name of Captain James Friday. After her launch, she was never seen or heard from again. While it’s a great story, the truth is there has never been a Royal Navy ship by the name of HMS Friday.

    Staring up the stairs, in the darkness
    Photography by Yang Miao

    A Timeline of Friday the 13thDisasters

    • October 13, 1307—officers of King Philip IV of France imprisoned and executed hundreds of the Knights Templar.
    • September 13, 1940—German forces bombed Buckingham Palace during WWII.
    • November 13, 1970—A cyclone in Bangladesh killed 300,000 people.
    • October 13, 1972—A Chilean Airforce plane disappeared in the Andes mountains, sixteen survivors turned up two months later, having been forced to cannibalize the dead in order to survive.
    • February/August 13, 1976—(no we’re really not sure which month) Daz Baxter a New Yorker with a raging case of paraskevidekatriaphobia decided to ride out his least favorite day of the year by staying in bed; his bad luck was illustrated when the floor of his apartment block collapsed that day and he fell to his death.
    • October 13, 1989—Black Friday—a $6.75 billion buyout for the parent company of United Airlines caused the crash of global markets.
    • September 13, 1996—Tupac Shakur succumbed to his gunshot wounds six days after multiple gunshot wounds during a drive-by shooting.
    • March 13, 2009—the SAW ride at Thorpe Park in Chertsey was scheduled to open but was shut down due to computer failure.
    • January 13, 2012—the Costa Concordia cruise ship crashed off of the coast of Italy, killing 30 people.
    • November 13, 2015—ISIS organized seven simultaneous terror attacks in Paris, killing 130 people and leaving hundreds wounded.
    • April 13, 2029—an asteroid is rumored to come within 22,000 miles of Earth—what will happen?

    Strange Friday the 13th Facts

    There are of course strange facts surrounding any supernatural phenomenon or superstition, but Friday the 13th even more so—perhaps because more people pay attention to things that they’re afraid of, or perhaps because Friday the 13th is such a notorious date for strange occurrences. Here are a few—maybe more than a few—strange facts about the superstitions regarding Fridays.

    • In Somerset, if you turn a bed over on a Friday, you’re risking turning a ship over at sea.
    • In Cumbria, if a baby is born on a Friday, they immediately lay them upon the family Bible.
    • In some areas, if a doctor is called upon for the first time on a Friday, it is an omen of certain death.
    • According to English Folklore from the 1800s, a marriage conducted on a Friday is destined for an unhappy future—on the plus side, this superstition generally leads weddings conducted on Friday the 13th is substantially cheaper for couples.
    • If you cut your hair or nails on a Friday, you’re doomed for misfortune.
    • If thirteen people unwittingly dine together, the first to rise will certainly be condemned to misfortune—another fun fact attached to this one is that President Franklin D. Roosevelt was known to uphold this superstition almost religiously.
    • President Franklin D. Roosevelt also refused to travel on Friday the 13th.
    • Winston Churchill refused to sit in any row that was numbered thirteen—cited in particular are rows on planes or theatres.
    • In North Carolina, the Stress Management Center and Phobia Institute conducted a study that found a loss of $700-800 million every single Friday the 13th because people simply refuse to conduct their lives as they normally would.
    • If you’re brave enough to fly on what’s considered the unluckiest day of the year, you’ll find that prices are actually a little bit more reasonable.

    Unlucky in Reality, but a Pop-Culture Boon

    Just like anything in the horror genre—if it’s unlucky, scary, gruesome, or lies somewhere within the realm of supernatural, it’s bound to have a selling idea. The movie franchise Friday the 13th firmly placed the date into the greater arena of cultural recognition. Jason Voorhees, the star and villain of the franchise has inspired so many sequels, spinoffs and more that if you were to google Friday the 13th, you’ll get more results about the franchise than the lore that launched the idea for it in the first place.

    Final Thoughts…

    It seems that Friday the 13th may only be a western superstition though—as it’s cited that in Italy, the number thirteen is actually quite lucky, instead they rather fear Friday the 17th. Personal curiosity causes one to wonder if the movie franchise of Friday the 13th should be renamed in countries like Italy, to make it more culturally relevant. In Greece, it’s not Friday the 13th, but Tuesday the 13th that causes people to be unsettled, whereas in China the number four is considered to be unlucky as it has a similar pronunciation to the word for “death.”

    So, in the long run—is Friday the 13th really a day of bad luck? According to Dr. Caroline Watt at the University of Edinburgh, it’s actually the belief in the superstition that causes all of the kerfuffle to happen on this date. She appeals to baser instincts when she suggests that, “if people believe in the superstition of Friday the 13th then they believe they are in greater danger on that day. As a result, they may be more anxious and distracted and this could lead to accidents. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy … It is like telling someone they are cursed. If they believe they are then they will worry, their blood pressure will go up and they put themselves at risk.” With that in mind—are you still afraid of a naturally occurring phenomenon?



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