I can cross another adventure off my bizarre bucket list. This year I attended my first BlobFest, Phoenixville, Pennsylvania’s annual homage to 1958’s The Blob. The highlight of the weekend is the reenactment of the Colonial Theatre run out which occurs on Friday. At over 100 years old, the Colonial Theater is an interesting place to explore. On the third floor the star of the film was available for photos. An actual portion of the silicone used in the movie was on display.
After taking photos of the Colonial, we sat through a stage show consisting of short film awards, contests, and even a skirmish between Godzilla and King Kong, which was appropriate since this year’s BlobFest theme was Clash of the Kaiju. (Kaiju means “strange beast” in Japanese. I had to check the definition since I bought a shirt).
Following the two hour stage show, it was time to run out. We watched a brief public service announcement on how to exit the theater quickly but safely. We were advised to be mindful of the large planters recently installed outside the theater.
When the time arrived, we ran from “The Blob,” out of the theater, and into a crowd gathered to watch the annual tradition. A news chopper hovered overhead to film the spectacle. The amount of onlookers was overwhelming, those perched on the balconies reminded me of Mardi Gras for the horror and sci fi set.
After our adventure, we dined alfresco at Great American Pub Hotel Bar &Grill. We were able to view fireworks from our location, ending a memorable event.
We returned for the second day of BlobFest. The Colonial Theatre was showing double features of The Blob, combined with other cult classics such as Mothra. The street fair was filled with classic cars and vendors. Shops lining the street decorated their windows for the event, with the Phoenix Village Art Center hosting a tin foil hat contest and Godzilla photo op. There was a giant cardboard cutout of The Blob, where you could snap photos being “eaten” by it. For the smallest fans, there was a table set up to build your own blob. The kid in me wanted to do this, but I restrained myself.
After the street fair, we went in search of filming locations. We found sites in Phoenixville, Royersford, and Downingtown. We took photos of Doc Hallen’s house, the high school, the street where movie patrons ran from The Blob, and Jerry’s Market.
Our weekend concluded with dinner at the home of The Blob, The Downingtown Diner. Only the basement remains of the original structure, the window where Jane and Steve eventually exit the diner is now obstructed by a handicap ramp. It’s a small establishment, with good food.
BlobFest was a good time. Even if you’re not a huge fan of the movie, it’s worth experiencing at least once. I hope next year I’m able to score tickets for the run out.