Monday, July 13, 2009

Zion, IL goes "Footloose" about getting Dungeons of Doom

Dungeons of Doom of Lake County, IL is one of the hottest haunted attractions my dear old county has to offer. The fairgrounds have moved location meaning the haunted house needs a new home. It has been moved to Zion, IL not my "hometown" but where I attended high school. Now Zion, IL may have been founded on religious principles and has more churches per capita than any other place in the world...but the city is far from perfect. We have many faults, most of them being outside of the church atmosphere. I have written a letter in hopes that the city council votes YES to bring the attraction to our city, rather than banish it because "it promotes satanism, fornication, and high crime".

For those of you who don't know me, my name is Brittney-Jade Colangelo. For those of you who do know me, you may recognize me as the 2008 Miss Winthrop Harbor, or the first ZB to ever qualify for speech team nationals, or a co-captain of the now world champion baton twirling team the Razzle Dazzles, or ZBTHS's 2008 Best Actress and Best Voice, or the girl who started the Winthrop Harbor/Zion/Beach Park food drive "Trick Or Treat So Kids Can Eat" which raised over 5,000 pounds of food to feed our local hungry, or the voice of the Zion Farmer's Market theme song, or the 2007 runner up of the Zion Bee-Prentice scholarship program, or as the first ZB to win the LincolnLand Illinois Dollars for Scholars competition for our district. If you have seen me, chances are you have seen me with a tiara on my head, in a very proper business suit, or dressed like your average teenage girl.

I'm not sure how many of you have seen me decked out in my award winning dramatic Zombie Makeup. What many of you may NOT know about me is that around not just our community, but in over 85 countries, I am BJ-C author of Day of the Woman: a blog for the feminine side of fear. I write a blog dedicated to horror films and all things eerily entertaining. I dissect why it is people DO find joy in zombies and ghouls and why we are drawn to these films that are so terrifying to us. I've won numerous awards for excellency in writing, nominated for awards with my blogging, am now the newest member of the League of Tana Tea Drinkers, the world's most premiere and elite group of horror bloggers. My blog has helped me become a household name within the online horror community. I've been sent screeners to promote up-and-coming horror as well as to be be reviewed/critiqued. My blog is not only read by everyday ordinary people but also Amber Steele the CEO and Co-Founder of the Living Dead Girlz zombie dance troupe.

I am living proof that enjoying horror films, haunted houses, and all things creepy does NOT make you a satanist, fornicator, violent, or immoral human being. I am very secure with my relationship with Christ and am even a member of the Campus Christians at Western Illinois University. During high school I even sang for a bit in the Youth Group Worship band for North Point Community Church in Winthrop Harbor. The people that are sending the hate mail as well as flooding the City Hall meetings in protest I feel are misinformed and hypocritical. You know the saying "don't knock it til you try it?" Well, as the nicknamed "Mistress of Macabre" for the state of Illinois, I can promise you that I know a tad more about how the horror genre effects people over someone who instantly passes judgement on the very thought of anything pertaining to horror without giving it a chance or having an open mind to even the idea.

The idea of a haunted house is not to infest the minds of the youth of America, nor is it a tool to corrupt people for the praise of Satan. To be completely honest Satan has absolutely NOTHING to do with 99.9% of the horror genre. That .1% being RELIGIOUS films like The Exorcist. In both cases, THE POWER OF CHRIST is shown to overcome the evil that is Satan, and yes...has a happy ending. Haunted Houses are used ENTERTAIN people. People of all backgrounds, ages, cultures, and yes, religions all attend Haunted Houses around the Halloween season for the same reason...they like to be scared. People aren't going to a Haunted House looking for "enlightenment in the ways of Satan". When people are confused with their faith and their walk of life, they go to church; they do NOT wait until October to attend a haunted house to see how the "dark side" is. These people aren't products of Satan, they are actors playing a part. If playing a part in a haunted house makes you a Satanist, does that mean that Max Von Sydow is Jesus or Charlton Heston is Moses? No, that's absolutely preposterous.

Dungeons of Doom is something that I hold near and dear to my heart as it is one of Lake County's finest and most well known tourist attractions. I was Junior Miss Winthrop Harbor in 2003 and all of the queens had a Lake County sponsored event to go through the Dungeons of Doom. This even included the Little Misses. Yes, that means girls as young as 6 years old were given the choice whether or not they went through that Haunted House. Do you know what happened to all of us? We became class presidents, foreign exchange ambassadors, Miss Lake Counties, and leaders of our communities. The house had absolutely NO effect on our morality or our well being, if made us appreciate how beautiful the world around us is after seeing how terrifying it could be. (If we were all armed with that much corn syrup and latex :) When it really comes down to it.

Before you cast your vote as to whether or not this attraction should be implemented into the community, think not with blind knowledge, but with an open mind. Sam Raimi, director of the phenomenon The Evil Dead series which led him to direct the box office smashing Spiderman films once said "It doesn’t matter whether a film like the Evil Dead is cut or not. What matters is that if you give people permission to decide what YOU can and can’t see, then they will start taking away much more important liberties".

8 comment(s):

Monster Scholar said...

At least it isn't like my church's Judgment House. Beware AIDS, premarital sex and unwanted pregnancy!
:shakes her head:

B-Sol said...

Lunatics like this give good Christian folk a bad name. I picture this movement being led by that preacher in Poltergeist II ("God is in... His holy temple!"

Fight the good fight, Brittney-Jade!! Oh, and where'd you get that stupid shirt?

gord said...

*standing ovation+slow clap*

BJ Colangelo said...

*bows* thankyou thankyou.

I don't mess around no way.

Anonymous said...

Support the Dungeon of Doom, who was refused the permit to operate within Zion! Call the American Civil Liberty Union 1-312-201-9740 and 1-312-201-9760 (fax) and tell them the Dungeon of Doom was wronged! WE WON'T BE ABLE TO OPEN WITHOUT THIS PERMIT!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the support hopefully this works.... You actually have a bunch of my makeup jobs and custome appicances listed on here, very cool and thank you so much for your support hopefully Zion will understand where here for devoted fans/customers like you!


Nicole Howe said...

There are lots of things that people do for strictly for entertainment...that doesn't make it OK. Porn is one. It doesn't have to be blatently satanic or cultish to be dangerous.

Unknown said...

@Nicole: How exactly is porn dangerous? Got any evidence besides hearsay to back that up?

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