The Marvelous Mystery Presents the Spooky Funhouse this Saturday, Aug 25 in the Highlands!

Marvelous Mystery

Creative madman Will Russell is back with a new mystery gift shop and a one-night Spooky Funhouse event this Saturday just prior to the Louisville Zombie Walk!

Marvelous Mystery

The Highlands is going to look like Halloween Central this Saturday with an expected horde of 45,000 flesh-eating zombies hitting the streets at exactly 8:30 PM. Before the living dead consume the Highlands, however, another Halloween-centric attraction will be open to explore between 4PM-8PM at 414 Baxter Ave. The Spooky Funhouse is a one-day only, pop-up art exhibit/walk thru funhouse that serves to alert the world to the arrival of Will Russell’s new local gift shop, The Marvelous Mystery.

Russell has earned a degree of infamy amongst the local population after the colossal failure of his Funtown Mountain project in Cave City and the accompanying mental breakdown that also scuttled his popular WHY Louisville gift shops. After a couple of years spent in relative obscurity while engaged in therapy and recovery, Russell is back and ready to Keep Louisville Weird again. I caught up with him while he was on the road driving towards his own personal mecca, The Mystery Hole in Ansted, West Virginia.

So, what is The Marvelous Mystery?

“It’s my dream come true,” claims Russell from the speaker phone in his car. “It’s all I’ve wanted since I was 17 years old when my dad took me to The Mystery Hole in West Virginia where I became obsessed with roadside attractions. I call it my ‘insighting incident’.”

Russell sites original Mystery Hole owner, Donald Wilson, who opened the roadside attraction in 1972, as the inspiration for what would have been Funtown Mountain and what he hopes will ultimately become The Marvelous Mystery. Russell is currently working with a screenwriter to develop a feature film based on the whole Funtown Mountain catastrophe tentatively called “Everything Will Be OK,” and he envisions actor Jeff Bridges playing Wilson in the movie.

Russell revealed to me today that The Marvelous Mystery has found a permanent home in the Portland neighborhood of Louisville, KY and will open officially to the public on Oct. 6 with an art show by local horror artist, Adrian Wright.

Marvelous Mystery

The Spooky Funhouse that can be explored this weekend is the creative mind meld of Russell and local artist Billy Williams AKA Billy Lilly. “It opens with the Museum of Grandeur,” says Russell, “which is basically the surviving collectibles and curiosities from the wreckage of Funtown Mountain. This whole project is an exercise in defeating shame.”

Curiosity seekers will enter a bizarre underground world of monsters, pop culture art and funhouse lunacy. You’ll see a tribute to Charmin’ Charles, the piano playing skeleton seen for decades at the Haunted House in Guntown Mountain. You’ll find a photo opportunity with Blacula, vintage arcade and pinball games, forgotten McDonaldland rides, creepy waving inflatable tube men, kissing booths, beer wolves and God knows what else.

Curiosity piqued yet? Well, you’ll also get first opportunity to purchase the new locally designed t-shirts that will ultimately be sold at the permanent Marvelous Mystery location in October. “There are 25 different designs printed on the highest quality t-shirts available,” says Russell. “These are the softest shirts known to man.” New designs include “The Hammer Over Louisville” depicting local attorney, Darryl Isaacs, and a shirt depicting local musician Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy. Local cryptozoology fans will be happy to know that the popular “Goatman Lives” t-shirt, depicting the Pope Lick Monster, that was once sold in WHY Louisville stores will be available to purchase again.

If you’re planning to come out to the Louisville Zombie Walk this Saturday, Aug. 25 (and I’m sure you ARE planning to come out) anyway, check out the Spooky Funhouse from 4PM-8PM at 414 Baxter Ave. in Phoenix Hill. Stay tuned for more about The Marvelous Mystery coming soon!

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