Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference set for July 2020 with an all-star lineup of ‘Squatch experts
Online PR News – 17-January-2020 – Gatlinburg, Tennessee – GATLINBURG, TENN -- There are countless theories surrounding the legendary Bigfoot. Is it a “missing link?” An alien? Surrender to the call of the wild and decide for yourself at the second annual Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, on July 25, 2020.
This highly anticipated event attracts Bigfoot enthusiasts, experts and even skeptics to discuss the possibility of and legend surrounding this elusive cryptid.
Started in 2019 by the company Gather Up Events, the Bigfoot Conference sold out weeks in advance last year; and event manager Nikki Beaty is expecting a similar interest this July.
“This is genuinely a fun, unique sanctuary for anything and everything Sasquatch,” Beaty said. “Based on last year’s success, we are expecting an even bigger turnout this year, so I can’t stress how important it is to get your tickets in advance.
Contrary to many smaller conferences focused on the unknown, the Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference has an all-star lineup of speakers ready to interact with fans and discuss their experiences and findings. These include: Bob Gimlin, Dr. Jeff Meldrum, Russell Acord, Lyle Blackburn, Adam Davies, and Ken Gerhard.
Bob Gimlin achieved worldwide fame when he, along with Roger Patterson filmed a Sasquatch in the now-famous Patterson-Gimlin Bigfoot film in California in 1967. Gimlin spoke briefly at the 2003 Willow Creek Bigfoot Symposium and was an honored guest there. He also spoke at the 2004 Crypto-Conference in Conroe, Texas. He appeared at the 2005 Bellingham conference and also the Seattle Museum of the Mysteries in June 2005. He continues to attend conferences to tell his story but expects the 2020 Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference to be one of his final public appearances, intending to retire in the near future, a fact Beaty says only adds to the conference’s exclusive allure.
Many will recognize the visage of Dr. Jeff Meldrum, a Professor of Anatomy and Anthropology and a Professor of the Department of Anthropology at Idaho State University, from his numerous television appearances featuring cryptozoological subjects. Meldrum has published various academic papers ranging from vertebrate evolutionary morphology, the emergence of bipedal locomotion in modern humans and Bigfoot, and is a co-editor of a series of books on paleontology.
Another television star known for his role as co-host of the Travel Channel series, “Expedition Bigfoot,” Russell Acord has been a Sasquatch enthusiast for much of his life, and considers it an honor to work with “Expedition Bigfoot’s” experienced team who “truly bring a level of professionalism and experience to the field of Bigfoot research.” Acord is the author of two books, “Footprints of a Legend,” and “Bigfoot and the Tripwire,” and is currently working on his third book.
Known cryptozoologist and author Lyle Blackburn is a native Texan known for his work in writing, music, film and for his trademark black cowboy hat. He is the author of several acclaimed books, including “The Beast of Boggy Creek” and “Lizard Man,” whose subject matter reflects his lifelong fascination with legends and sighting reports of unknown creatures. He is also the founder of the rock band, “Ghoultown,” and narrator/producer of documentary films such as “The Mothman of Point Pleasant” and “Boggy Creek Monster.” Blackburn is a frequent guest on radio programs such as “Coast To Coast AM,” and has been featured on numerous television shows airing on Animal Planet, Destination America, Discovery Science, and A&E. In his work with “Monsters and Mysteries in America,” he served as both consulting producer and special episode host.
Cryptozoologist, explorer, and adventurer Adam Davies has achieved unique results in his research. Expeditions which he has either led or been part of have gotten encouraging results. Examples include the Orang-Pendek in Sumatra, Sasquatch, the Yeren in China, and the Seljord Serpent in Norway. Davies has appeared on numerous television programs and channels, including National Geographic, the Discovery Channel, the History Channel’s “Monster Quest,” and Animal Planet’s “Finding Bigfoot,” to name just a few. The majority of his research and expeditions have been self-financed and he continues to devote the remainder of his spare time to his passion of discovering the world’s unknown animals.
Ken Gerhard is a cryptozoologist and field investigator for The Centre for Fortean Zoology, as well as a fellow of the Pangea Institute and consultant for several research organizations. He has traveled the world searching for evidence of mysterious animals and legendary beasts including Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster, the Chupacabra, enigmatic winged creatures, and werewolves. In addition to co-hosting the History Channel series “Missing in Alaska,” Gerhard has appeared in three episodes of the television series “Monster Quest” and is featured in the History Channel special “The Real Wolfman,” as well as other series including “Ancient Aliens,” “True Monsters,” “Unexplained Files,” “Legend Hunters,” “Paranatural,” “Weird or What? with William Shatner,” “Monsters and Mysteries in America,” “True Supernatural,” “Ultimate Encounters,” “Monster Project” and “Shipping Wars.”
“We are absolutely thrilled to have this level of cryptozoological expertise at our conference,” Beaty said. “You rarely see such a collection of well-known experts at one event, and to have so many of this magnitude is unheard of.”
Beaty is also planning to offer a VIP dinner and event-exclusive hike into the Smoky Mountains, with more information to be released soon.
Think you’ve seen the hairy cryptid? Fill out a form on the conference website for a chance to regale attendants with your own close encounter during a two-hour window when 10-12 lucky speakers will take the stage to recount their own, unique run-ins with Sasquatch. Speakers can share photos, audio and/or video during their allotted time.
The Sasquatch Encounters portion will be hosted by the “She-Squatchers,” a team of three women -- Jena Grover, Tammy Treichel, and team lead Jen Kruse -- who use psychic abilities to conduct Sasquatch investigations.
In addition to the numerous vendors selling event-exclusive cryptid merchandise, Gather Up Events is currently selling official Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference short-sleeve T-shirts, ¾ sleeve raglan shirts and embroidered patches on its website. Beaty cautioned that these products are available in limited quantities, so purchase yours before they sell out.
Vendor booths are still available but are filling up fast. The cost for a booth is $100. All vendors must have Bigfoot and cryptozoology products and/or outdoor gear.
The Bigfoot Conference is also accepting sponsorships, which will provide ample opportunity to showcase your business to the 1,500-2,000 ‘Squatch enthusiasts.
“We expect this place to be packed, so all sponsors will have great placement for their products and services,” Beaty added.
Anyone interested in attending can purchase tickets at www.gatherupevents.com. It is essential to provide a valid email address, as you will receive an email confirmation and electronic ticket upon successful registration. Attendants will also receive a Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference Information Sheet including hotel and venue information prior to the event.
This year the attendants will have the option of choosing between three levels of reserved seating or general admission seating. Based on your choice, tickets range between $25-$50. VIP seating includes assigned seating and early admission seating only. Additional events like the VIP dinner and hike are not included in your ticket price.
Tickets are expected to sell out by May, so early purchases are encouraged.
The Smoky Mountain Bigfoot Conference is held at the Gatlinburg Convention Center located at 234 Historic Nature Trl. Gatlinburg, TN 37738. Doors open at 9 a.m. and close at 6 p.m.