November 12, 2019
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Gathering 2017 Review [by Hanka]

What’s up guys? Hanka here with a HUGE review for the 2017 Gathering of the Juggalos.

This will be super long but be the gathering through my eyes as it happened. I was able to get plenty of pictures, but unfortunately, I didn’t get photos of all the acts I saw. For a full gallery of photos from my weekend please visit www.facebook.com/juggalopohanka. Here we go!

7/23: I had Sunday off work, so I decided to help out my family a bit with last minute errands and such. As I got home from that, Hashly was packing up and waiting on our convoy of people from North Carolina to show up to our house in South Carolina. I got home and finished last minute packing. I was exhausted from the day of running I had done. I decided to sit down and relax, but by the time that I did, the homies from NC showed up! They were all too geeked to get to the Gathering, so they decided along with Hashly that they would go ahead and leave that night instead of the next morning. I gave Hashly a hug and told her I loved her. Away they went on the trip to Oklahoma. Away I went to my bed.

7/24: I woke up at about 9am on Monday rested and ready for the monstrous 16 hour trip. I showered and got my car packed and hit the road. I had to go to Georgia to get my homie Heffe (he’s the ninja that designs and prints up the “Lathering of the Buffalos” shirts every year) I drove the hour and some change to his house, got the stuff packed up and ready to once again hit the road.

I have a serious phobia of riding in cars unless I’m in control of said car. So I decided to power through the trip as the full time driver! Heffe became my main man with the iPod-in-hand co-pilot. We hauled ass through Georgia with the quickness, save for one stop at a Wendy’s (which had some of the best fast food chicken nuggets I’ve ever fucking had from a Wendy’s). We made it into Alabama and things were going fine… once we hit the Mississippi state line I noticed something… my co-pilot was out colder than a milkshake! He slept for almost the whole trip up to Oklahoma City at this point with staggered “Fuck (whatever state we just left!)” as per tradition.

7/25: we arrived at our hotel at about 6am on Tuesday. I managed to get into the lobby only to find out that the hotel’s lobby doesn’t open until 7am! STALE. I just wanted to get some sleep man! Nevertheless I waited. 7am rolls around and I finally get a front desk clerk to help me. This part really sucks… This lady was so helpful and was going to let me check in MAAAAD early (check in was at 3pm im there at 7am y’all…before the fucking sun has fully woken up) So I go to pay with my money that i had in PayPal from all the designs and such I had done for people for months prior… it didn’t go through… I’m at this point freaking out. I call PayPal and they have locked my money due to “security reasons” none of which they tell me. So the only way I can free up my money is to transfer it to my bank account. No biggie other than it can take anywhere from 1-5 business days to transfer!  The lady working at the hotel was the freshest though! She saw how much I was struggling to get my money free and asked if I had any money in my actual bank account. I had about $137 she super fresh like GAVE me my hotel for the WEEK for $100 flat. Thank you so much to her for that! Thank you Woodsprings Suites! Now with that nightmare over, I got my bags out, went inside and laid down on my super small, but super comfy bed. I gave Hashly a call to see how the parking lot was treating her. Even though we’re not a power couple anymore, I still very much care about her and make sure she’s well taken care of. She  keeps me sane and I appreciate that. I offered her a spot in my room and a hot bath. She jumped at the idea and came right over.

I took what had to have been about a 4 or so hour nap. Woke up refreshed but feeling…. sick. Turns out that all the 5 hour energy shots I took on the ride up were not agreeing with my body and I needed to eat ASAP. We all decided to go to the local Whataburger. I had never had them before but when in Rome! The downside to all of this was the nausea I felt made the food taste like cardboard. Everyone else loved it, so I just chalk it up to me being sick. We got back to the hotel and I passed out for a bit and woke up to the Godfather of the gathering John Paul in my hotel room. It’s always good catching up with my homie from Chicago. After that I got some water in me and headed to the parking lot. As soon as I got to the parking lot that feeling of SUPER KARMA overtook me. I met up with Scottie D and his wife Amanda, along with Bryce and PsykoScott. Scottie presented me with my first gathering press pass. That was a pretty huge moment because for years I’ve always said, ” If I got a press pass you wouldn’t believe the wrestling shots I could get without being stuck behind a barricade.” I thanked them and still do! Faygoluvers is a for real family to me and if I can ever help out in any way with what they do I’m forever available. After walking around the grounds and meeting up with some ninjas my homie heffe whipped out his lathering shirts and hit the streets er…. dust trails. Everyone’s response to his new shirts were great until one salty ninja decided to try to stop heffe’s gimmick by way of violence. Now I’m never one to want to see fighting at the gathering unless sanctioned by the fine folks at JCW. But this guy was ready to beat down my homie because of a parody shirt. Whoever you are out there, if you’re reading this… you get a wack point. We’re all clowns don’t hate someone for clowning around! Now back to the rest of my story.  We left the grounds shortly after that and went back to the hotel where Hashly was getting ready to do a photoshoot with someone. We walked in and got things set up and relaxed for a while, while we waited for the brutal sun to go down. Oklahoma’s sun was no joke folks. 95+ degrees every day starting at like 9am. Once Hashly had the photoshoot done, we all went back to the parking lot for the parking lot party day 0! It was fun, I met up with Louis Simpson who is one of the designers of Into the Echoside. I wanted to thank him, and tell him how much I love that game. I also wanted to tell him in person about the “Unofficial echoside cards” I’ve made. I wanted to make sure him, as well as Jumpsteady and Tom Wood knew that when I made those designs, that wasn’t me saying I could do it better and I meant ZERO disrespect with those. They were just something that I felt was cool for people to have some of their own for their own house rule games and such. I’m glad I didn’t get the boots from all 3 of them like I imagined I would ha-ha. After roaming the grounds for the night it was time to hit the hotel again for some more rest… Day 1 was a few hours away!

Day 1.

Day one was upon us, once I woke up and showered and shaved it was time for me to step outside and feel what I was in store for… HEAT…. HOT. MUGGY. HEAT. We ended up getting dressed and heading to the grounds around 4pm the first day just due to being fatigued like you wouldn’t believe. When we got there I tried to help Heffe carry all 700 of his bags from tents, to shirts, to air mattresses. I thought it would be easy, walk across the street, through the gates, and find a camp spot… NO SIR. This year they had something in store for us. Correctly dubbed the “Juggalo Trail of Tears” that’s just what it was. A trail with tons of camping ninjas crying, and exhausted to the point of having to stop. This walk had to have been around 1.5 – 2 miles in length with ZERO shade and the sun beating your ass the whole way. Unless you had a wagon to carry your stuff you would be mad or sad one… and so we set off on the hike. Once we finally made it to the grounds we made it to main stage where they had a water cooler that on all of the programs and ads said “ICE COLD WATER” we got there opened our mouths only to get warm… almost hot water. It was just enough to piss me off a little more. When suddenly I heard a sound I haven’t heard in years! The sound of lots of juggalos on one vehicle rolling around the grounds!!! It was the new and improved love train now dubbed the “Trippin trolley”. We quickly grabbed the bags and with every ounce of strength lugged them to the trolley and got on. This saved me juggalos… I rode until i saw big ballas and jumped off and wished heffe luck in securing a decent spot. I got off the trolley and boom it hit me like a ton of bricks… PUKE. Heat exhaustion was real folks. Once I found some water to clean my mouth out with, I headed to the Faygoluvers RV to say hi to everyone and see if I could stash my stuff for a bit while I checked out the water. I walked in spoke briefly with Scottie and Amanda and PsykoScott… PsykoScott and I decided the water was a great place to be. We went out to become swimalos. I walked around these massive slides only to notice that there was no line… that meant I was gonna be all about it. I walked down to the beach got my stuff laid out on a towel and got a life jacket. As I climbed the ladder to get on top my heart was racing, you don’t realize how high up things are until you are at the mercy of gravity. I talked to the girl working at the top who happened to be one of Lost Lakes owner’s daughter. She was awesome and had nothing but love for the juggalos. I took my spot on the largest slide they had and WHOOSH… when you let go and let the slide take you…. it fucking takes you. The water was hitting my eyes with fury you can’t see much of anything and then out of nowhere you are in the air… FLYING THROUGH THE AIR! At some point in the air my brain said “Brace for the impact” but what it didn’t tell me was how close the water actually was so I braced way too early and freaked myself out… then SMACK… I hit the water super hard but holy hell was it amazing. PsykoScott was in the water and took video of it for me!

Thanks again brother! Once I was cooled off enough I went back to the camper to get dried off and get ready for Psychostick!

I LOVE Psychostick, I have listened to them for years and I was mad happy to see them at their first gathering so to see them come back was AWESOME. I walked over right before they finished “2 ton paperweight” super hyped for what I knew was coming… The Sombrero was out…. it was time… THAT MOTHER FUCKERS GOT THE SOMBRERO!!! If you’ve never seen them live you’re missing out on one of the best and funniest metal acts in the world.

Next up was supposed to be Madchild but unfortunately he was sick and couldn’t perform. So with a little more waiting and a few bottles of water later Big Hoodoo took the stage.

Always good energy with Hoodoo on the stage… after Hoodoo finished his set, I ran into Hashly again. I could see she was fatigued and looked like she would benefit from a meal and some water. I got her a plate of supreme nachos and I had a couple myself. They were OK as far as gathering nachos go… nothing will ever beat the serial killer nachos from Cave in Rock though. After we ate, we got ready for one of the biggest sets of the night at least for me.

Mushroomhead took the stage, and these guys know how to put on a killer show. Holy shit did they kill it! They played all kinds of fan favorites including some old stuff sprinkled in there! I was super happy to hear “Solitaire Unraveling”. I took tons of pictures and some that I can actually say I’m super proud of. Keep killing it out there MRH!

Next up was the Hatchet Warrior himself. Anybody Killa.

ABK had a huge, high energy set, he always does. Never a dry eye in the place when “One Last Chance” plays… it makes everyone remember the homies that are no longer with us seeing the spectacle that is the gathering. Once ABK tore down the house I was expecting and super excited to see the women’s wrestling get set up for the night. There was a problem though… I never saw them set it up, I waited for them to clean up the main stage area and start but I never saw any kind of ring getting set up so I used that as a sign that either it was canceled or they were running behind… I walked away to go to the Quest for Shangri-La tournament.

I expected to sit in the A/C for a few minutes and maybe play a round of quest before getting knocked out and heading back to wrestling. Much to my surprise I walked in and Jumpsteady and others were setting up the games. As I sat there waiting I met my opponents. Everyone was super cool and down with playing some late night games. We started playing and without getting into the nerdy rules of the game… let’s just say I won by outrunning an opponent in the first round… I was into the master table now. This is where all the winners of the games get to play around against each other for a plaque and some very cool things for the gathering champion! As we sat down I realized I was facing off against the person that got me interested in this game again from the DCG con! We played in my hotel room at DCG. So after some trash talk we all started playing… with every roll of the dice it could have been a mistake… luck was however on my side and I knocked out all 3 other masters! THE WINNER AND NEW QUEST FOR SHANGRI-LA GOTJ 2017 CHAMPION!!!! HAAAAAAANKAAAAAAA.

I was so happy that I won that I had forgotten that the women’s wrestling was going on… By the time I had grabbed my prize pack and plaque, I walked over to the JCW area only to notice the show was over. I was tired, carrying a large plaque, and ready for sleep so unfortunately I decided to head back to the hotel and skip Green Jelly and Shaggy 2 Dope’s solo set. Once I got to the hotel Hashly was already passed out and I showered and followed suit. Peace…see y’all at day 2.

Day 2.

Day two started off with a nice cold shower to make sure that I was ready for the heat to follow. As I woke up and got ready, I went to get some food, and to the grounds I went. I got there early so I could join the “Into the Echoside” tournament.

I sat down to get ready to play. Louis Simpson and Tom Wood were there helping get everything set up. Jumpsteady walked in and was about to let us start opening and playing the game when Louis stopped him and presented him on behalf of all of the juggalos, an award for being such an amazing person and giving us all something to bond over like “Into the Echoside”.

With that being said we started playing. I used every tactic I had to pull off a win but it was to no avail I was beaten in the 1st round of the Echoside tournament. I congratulated my opponent and went on my way to the FLH camp. After I showed up, Scottie, Amanda and PsykoScott all left to cover an event… I cooled off and continued getting my plans for the day situated. I talked to Chad Carsten, another one of our FLH correspondents. I told him my plans, and he told me that he needed to go shoot an interview with Kung Fu Vampire and would I be willing to walk him to the autograph tent because he hadn’t found it yet. I agreed and we went down there. Once we got there they were still on the Semi finals of the Into the Echoside tournament. We waited for KFV to show up and while we waited I watched the heated finals go down! We finally had a Echoside tournament winner crowned! He was handed his plaque and got a picture with Jumpsteady and Louis Simpson! Congratulations homie!

When KFV showed up it was super-hot outside and unfortunately we couldn’t do the interview, but we were able to get some Facebook live video shot of him signing autographs and Zug Izland even took over our Facebook for a few minutes. Feel free to look that up on the Official Faygoluvers Facebook page. Once done there, I decided to hit the water once again because it just felt so great floating out there amongst juggalos. I immediately found my friend Heffe and convinced him that we needed to do the water slide. He wasn’t about that life. I did convince him to use the slide but he only used the little one. I as always climbed up to the top and went off the big guy once again. So much fun to be had doing those slides! I met up with some other homies and Hashly in the water later on. She came floating up to me on a giant flamingo! Hilarious. We swam around for a bit before clouds started moving in and we decided to go get dried off and get her to a camp where she had stashed her boots. After we were dry, we walked up past Mike Busey’s area, and he was just sitting there… I had heard his partyies had been shut down due to violating noise ordinance. STALE. We talked with him for a few minutes about his pig “Richard Porker.” I love his pig, and I think she should have her own snapchat stories. He put us on his snapchat story.

We thanked him for the love he shows to juggalos and went about our day. We rushed to get Hashly’s boots.

I missed Kissing Candace’s set which was a huge bummer because I really dig those guys! If you haven’t heard them, look them up. I do know that after them Hashly and myself went to go get her boots that were stashed away at a camp. Shoutout to “Team Beam” for keeping some stuff safe for us! It was hilarious watching them cover Hashly in silver glitter so nobody missed her shine, lol.

We got the boots and ran back as KFV was taking the stage. KFV absolutely kills it and gives all his energy EVERY SINGLE SHOW. He may not be signed to a label but he said it himself. He doesn’t need one. He cashes his own checks and works his ass off. KFV if you read this brother keep killing it night after night!

After that I eagerly awaited CAGE. Making his gathering debut, if you don’t know about this guy… look him up.  15+ years’ worth of music and an underground legend. Cage came out with raw energy and has a sound unlike any other.  This dude was hated on even at the gathering because people didn’t know what to expect, but he came out of the gate and absolutely obliterated it. If you walked away from his set at the gathering without knowing who he was or didn’t like him I feel MAD SORRY for you. Cage is the truth and is welcome back to the gathering forever in my book!

Now that I had my underground rap fix… it’s time to get my metal fix in. DOPE. No pun intended, these guys are dope. 4 guys, loud instruments and crazy sounds. These guys came out, and I’ve never seen them live, before but I have heard of them. I instantly remembered they have a song called “Die Motherfucker Die” and I was interested from there. They’ve been in the music game for years but have always been under my radar until now. They came out and for sure are gonna stay on my radar. So much fun. With all that being said I’m to the part of my review I’ve been waiting to write about.

The Wraith Shangri-La show.

The 6th. The ending to the epic saga. This show was beyond special to me. I remember being 12 years old… skipping class to go to the local Sam Goody in my mall to pick up this album. 12 years old y’all. This CD meant the world to me. I was in the photo pit because I HAD to document what I could of this colossal moment. The BOOM of the bass started. “A PRESENCE CAN BE FELT” Those words. I have heard those words for so many years now and I could feel it. I could feel the carnival spirits, not only that… I could feel my dad right beside me. I’m getting misty eyed typing about this because this CD is the music I listen to when I need a pick me up, or if I feel the need to feel close to my dad. They started the show and I KNEW I was going to be in for the most emotional ICP show I’ve ever experienced.

I’m not going to go through each individual song, but trust me when I say this… even with the forgotten lyrics…Juggalos: it was EPIC. The amount of love I felt from ninjas was like a premonition of what was to come with this show. When The Wraith calls, I walk into the light! At this point of the show I’m in the photo pit, taking what pictures I could but I couldn’t stop singing along and feeling like my dad was right beside me. I keep going back to my dad in this review, a little backstory for those that don’t know. My father introduced me to ICP back in 1999. Long story short, he was murdered in 2006 and the final ICP show we saw together was The Wraith Shangri-La tour. With that being said, you can now see why I was so emotional. Anyway, so I’m standing there in the photo pit with some of the other photographers everyone was playing the duck and cover game with their cameras as to avoid the Faygo. Not me. I was too encompassed in what I was seeing. Welcome to the show. It hit and it was a free for all with Faygo, moshing, crowd surfing and love! I remember people talking about the song “Juggalo Homies”. Wondering if they were going to replace Twiztid’s verses with someone else… I think they did exactly what should have happened with Twiztid unwilling to be at the gathering. They just cut the verses. I am totally ok with that. It was the closest to the full cd they could do with the exception of Twiztid and Blaze verses and the “Soopa Villianz” hidden track.  They got through most of the album and once they started “The Raven’s Mirror” I walked out of the photo pit and found a place to stash my camera bag so that I could get ready for the end of the show. As I walk backstage (huge props to Scottie D for helping that happen) I talk to someone about how big this moment was for me. Dougie came by and handed me a HUGE blue and white beach ball I knew at that moment… I was going to boot that ball to the moon. They start “Thy Unveiling” and with hot tears rolling down my cheeks I sing along. I was holding this beach ball crying and looking up to the sky remembering all the good times I had with my dad and then I heard the lyrics, “THE CARNIVAL IS GOD AND MAY ALL JUGGALOS FIND HIM” I jogged out onto this massive stage with beach ball in hand, I look up to the sky and punt it out as far as I could. I know you were watching that Dad. I was on stage during the epic finale of the mighty 6th joker’s card. This is a moment I could never ever forget and it ranks up there in my 11 years of gatherings with the top if not the top memory and moment. I absolutely love the clowns, the gathering, and my family.

Thank you Psychopathic Records, Thank you Faygoluvers, and Thank you Dad; these are the memories I am so happy to have for the rest of my life. As I come off of the stage I sat down in a chair I found, soaked, and trying to get inside my bag to find dry clothes. I found my clothes and find a dark area to change and get ready for the “Lama Nama Lucha Libre” Wrestling show. After drying of for a bit I decided to walk and get some food. I walked smack dab into the Juggalo Yacht Club’s Oklahoma Wine Mixer. Those homies know how to throw down a fucking party. All kinds of free swag, drinks, food, games. Big Zane and the rest of the yacht club are party masters if they have another party at the gathering you bet I’m there. I noticed a Faygo chugging competition going on while I was walking through. It was nuts, like this party no joke. I was at the main stage for the lucha libre show and you could hear that party bumping. Zane man… I hope you guys get another party not going on during wrestling so I could peep more of it!

This was my year to show what I had for shooting wrestling. Up to this point everyone that I have ever seen shooting wrestling with a press pass had always looked uninterested or just weren’t wrestling fans in general. So this year I set out to change that! 1st up LAMA NAMA LUCHA LIBRE!  I went down to where they had set up the ring… now in past years they have had an entire area dedicated to JCW shows complete with bleachers and tons of room. This year, however, they decided that every night after the main stage acts they would set up and tear down the ring. It’s different, but I’m willing to see this… the downside was they put the barricade SUPER close to the ring. I used my press pass super excited to show off my skills I got through the first two matches SUPER HIGH on karma ready to see what I could get and then the bone came… “LOW BATTERY PLEASE CHARGE PACK” Juggalos… I have no way to describe how stale I felt. I put away my camera but even with that staleness I was able to get full results for the show which I will give now with some highlights of the night.

Winners in parentheses.

Lama Nama Lucha Libre

  1. Arial vs (El Fuegu Del Sol)
  2. Rod Street vs Alcatraz promo for BloodyMania 11
  3. Earl Cooter vs (Dirty Ron McDonald)
  4. (Moshico) vs The Auto Killer
  5. (Chile Pale Mudo Jr) vs Maniacal vs Basirario
  6. El Pastor Vs (Camalero Supremeo)
  7. Main Event Paul Puerto Rico vs (Oro Estandito)

First thing that stood out in my mind for the night was that Officer Rod Street is a watered down version of Officer Colt Cabana. Bring him back… that dude has NUCLEAR HEAT and can work a crowd like no other. Dirty Ron McDonald is a guy that dresses up in similar fashion to Ronald McDonald… only difference is this guy is buff and apparently came to the gathering to do 3 things, Beat someone up, Fuck someone, and Do Cocaine. I’m assuming he did all 3. I know he beat up Earl Cooter, and I know he did “Cocaine” off his back with a contribution from myself of a dollar bill so he could snort it up. Fucking someone we will get back to. The other thing that stood out was the main event. Oro Estandito was a luchador and wearing his mask looked to be a top physical specimen. However as his match went on he was having issues with his mask. About midway through the match he lost his mask. In traditional luchador matches, if you lose your mask not only is it the highest disrespect/dishonor, but the match was over. Not this night however. This night he kept wrestling trying his best not to show his face and to my surprise, he won the match. However after the match was over, I didn’t see or hear of him again. Once all the wrestling was over, Hashly showed up on a golf cart and offered me a lift to our cars.  The ninja driving the cart was a life saver. We got to our cars and made the ride back to the hotel. Once there we both showered and got some rest for day 3. See you in the morning.

Day 3.

Day 3 was the day that I had to relax for the most part. I didn’t have anything that I HAD to see going on until around 6pm so I just needed to get my room cleaned up a bit, and do some laundry to clean the Faygo soaked clothes from the previous night.  After getting things figured out, cleaned up, and packed for the day, Hashly and I went to the local subway to get some lunch together. Once there, we met a woman working inside and she told us about how Juggalos have been some of the nicest customers she’s had in recent years. That she would welcome us back without hesitation. We got our sandwiches and proceeded to sit down and eat. About the time that we sat down, a couple started asking us about the Gathering and what we do when we’re at home… our normal everyday lives away from the Gathering. They were super cool and totally got Juggalos. We’re just out here, trying to have some fun with more like-minded people. They understood why we call it a family. Thank you to you two! After finishing our lunch, we went back to the hotel to get ready to hit the grounds. I left before Hashly and got to the grounds around 5pm. As I walked around I met up with some friends and chatted about shit for a little while. Then I made my way to main stage so I could see LSP tear the house down. LSP is one of the underground powerhouses! They came out with their entire roster on stage! It was awesome to see an entire label on stage going back and forth. Do not sleep on LSP or you may get snuffed out!

After LSP It was time to get ready for Upon A Burning Body. I met these guys from Texas at their merch booth earlier that day. These guys came out with some heavy sounds and a boot to the face style of metal. Super heavy and super friendly. Another group I had never heard of before the gathering but will now keep them in my daily rotation.

Next up was Mayday! These Strange Music superstars are always welcome to see at the gathering. They started their gathering venture years ago on a tiny stage at like 3am, and here they are on a very great time slot on the main stage on the 3rd day! I got some of the best photos I’ve ever taken of these guys on this day. Will have some posted very soon. With their unique sound, and stage show they’re always tons of fun to listen to, and even more fun to see live. Check em out!

Next up was DJ Clay… But before I get into that. We had a special surprise waiting. Back in March, Scottie D asked me and other juggalos to be a part of the filming of a movie coming out. It’s title is “FAM-I-LY”. The director Laura Steinel came out to the gathering to shoot some more footage for the movie! That’s right juggalos if you were at the gathering you may just be in a movie on Netflix soon! So they came out on the main stage and filmed some footage for a scene looking for a little girl named Maddie! How fresh! After some booing, and some stuff being tossed at the stage they left the stage and got ready for DJ Clay. Clay came out and did his version of a dubstep, house, and rap show. Always cool seeing Clay come out and do his thing. He rocked the house and got everyone ready for the next act and juggalos… it was a fucking hell of an act. Next up was…..

WAKA FLOCKA FLAME.

This dude played the gathering a couple years ago, maybe even last year… I don’t remember. But holy shit does this guy know how to turn up! He came out to all kinds of rock remixes from Metallica to Disturbed, to rap hits from DMX and others. But that’s not what gets the crowd hype… it’s when he jumps into the crowd and moshes and raps along with the crowd. Waka Flocka has once again proved he fucks with the Juggalos and is totally a Juggalo. He goes hard in the mother fucking paint alright. He does it right beside all of us. Waka went from the front of the stage almost all the way back to the portapotties. This dude is not only a huge rap star, but was down with everyone. Even after all of the main stage acts were over he stayed on the grounds… hanging out with Juggalos. Dabbing with Juggalos. It was nuts. This dude is forever welcome back in my book. WAKA!!!

After Waka Flocka it was time for the Ice man to cometh. Vanilla Ice! Back in effezzzect! Ice came out with his hit’s and a little more. Do you know that his birthday is on Halloween? If you didn’t before the gathering you did once you saw him live because he pulled out his awesome track “Born on Halloween” which is a Juggalo favorite! He was so into the show that he wanted to have an old school block party on the stage! He invited all the Juggalos up on stage with him. Just hung out danced and rapped with a stage FULL of Juggalos! I saw many homies up there! Hashly was up there taking pictures and dancing her cute little ass off! So much fun to witness! If he comes to your town get off your ass and go see him.

I saved my camera batteries almost all night because I didn’t want a replay of what had happened the previous night. After V-Ice was done. It was time for BLOODY FUCKING MANIA 11!!!

Bloodymania is my favorite part of the Gathering just behind seeing all my national homies that I only see a few times a year. So before I got ready for that, I needed some food. It was time to hit up Burrito man! $6 for a loaded burrito and a Faygo is a godsend out there in the dirt grounds of the gathering. We rushed over to him after about a 15 minute walk, we got our burritos, and we headed on the walk back. I got back to the ring with little time to spare! They had the ring up, barricade up and even the stage… we were minutes away! I finished my burrito and headed backstage so I could get inside the barricade. I got to the gate and Security stopped me; I showed them my pass and they WOULD NOT ALLOW ME INSIDE THE BARRICADE. Now… I have had zero issues with security all week at this point. I was basically given the press pass as not only a helping gesture but to cover Bloodymania, and to show my skills being inside the barricade with no movement issues. Juggalos… I was crushed. I worked so hard and was so excited to give you the absolute best JCW pictures you’ve ever seen only to be told even with a pass I was not allowed to do so. That hurt. Big time. I took my place on the rail and almost didn’t shoot a single picture because I was so crushed. I got out of my head enough to shoot and document the entire show but I still feel like had I been able to get inside the barricade and shoot/cover the wrestling this part of the review would be completely different.

Winners in parentheses.

  1. (Taylor Jet) vs Voodoo Wizard
  2. Earl Cooter vs (Big Baby Powder)
  3. “Trash King” Ray Basura vs (“Big and bad” Blade)
  4. The Dark Storm vs (Freakshow)
  5. (Dirty Ron Mcdonald w/ The Toxic Butthole) vs Gary Galaxy
  6. Officer Rod Street vs (Alcatraz w/ Rude Boy)
  7. (Mosh Pit Mike and Cheuy Martinez) vs The Nerds
  8. MAIN EVENT for the JCW world heavyweight title. “Hood Ninja” Hyzaya vs “Iron Demon” Shane Mercer vs (Kongo Kong Champion)

I shook it off long enough to get some pictures and my thoughts on Bloodymania.

From the rip it seemed that Bloodymania was lacking some star power this year. No Ring Rydas was a huge disappointment in lots of ninja’s eyes. Nevertheless, we all watched and enjoyed the show. The first match to stick out in my mind was Earl Cooter vs Big Baby Powder. This match was fun to watch because of the gimmick. Big Baby Powder was a “Godfather-esq” gimmick where he comes out with 2 ladies dressed up (or should I say dressed down).  They had a fantastic match, but the kicker was when he used his powder to save his ass. SLAP with the powder and down goes Earl Cooter. The 1-2-3 followed soon thereafter. Dirty Ron was back and looking to take on Gary Galaxy. Now… remember earlier in this review when I said Dirty Ron came to do 3 things and he had done 2 of them? Well he came to the ring this time with female manager, “The Toxic Butthole” who was in a very skimpy singlet. Looks like Dirty Ron made good on his promise to fuck someone at the Gathering! Dirty Ron reminds me of like a cocaine filled clown version of Enzo Amore. Dirty Ron pulled off the win. Then went somewhere to do cocaine *Purely Speculation*. Officer Rod Street took on Alcatraz with the Rude Boy in his corner. Hard hitting match between these two. That asshole Rod Street was getting pummeled then whipped out pepper spray and sprayed Rude Boy in the eyes! Luckily enough that opened the door of opportunity for Alcatraz to pick up the win! At some point, Hashly ended up next to me with her camera and KG called her out! He plugged her photography and praised the calendar that the two of us worked so hard on last year, which was awesome! Shaggy and KG were striking a pose for her and just that moment, her camera said NO.  Her camera had betrayed her, as mine had the night before and I watched her face change from brightly shining to clouded with dread…I ran up and grabbed the shot so that she could preserve the positivity of the moment and I kissed her forehead. These things happen! Next up was to this day something I have never seen before… A Mosh Pit Mike match where Mike didn’t bleed! Seeing this match, I fully expected for the nerds to lose, but not as badly as they did. I remember seeing the small nerd take an awkward fall and I think he injured his leg or foot. I saw him on the grounds later the next day with a full leg cast on. Nuts! Next up was the main event. The “Hood Ninja” and JCW original, Hyzaya vs The “Iron Demon” Shane Mercer vs The JCW World Champion Kongo Kong. A triple threat match for the JCW world title. This match has been brewing for over a year y’all! I have seen these guys fight in Michigan, Florida, and now Oklahoma! This match had tons of strong hits, and feats of strength that would blow you away! Shane Mercer got the MASSIVE Kongo up and gave him a thunderous suplex! Mercer is INSANELY strong! Hyzaya was all over the place with lots of power hits, also taking to the sky to try to take down the others… in the end it was once again Kongo Kong who had the final say. He was able to conquer both opponents for the 1-2-3. Will anyone ever be able to defeat the giant Kongo Kong? One thing is for sure… Jeff the ref couldn’t! When the dust settled all three men stood in the ring as “Juggalo Homies” played and everyone shared a mutual respect for the hard work put in from these hard working men! Whoop Whoop to all of them! Can’t wait to see them all again!

After Bloodymania had concluded, I decided to walk around for a bit before jumping on the trolley and riding around with Juggalos and enjoying the “Fuck your sleep” chants that rang out all night. I had lots of fun riding around with ninjas and just screaming out things to let some of my frustrations out over the whole press pass fiasco. Once I had ridden around for a bit, I met back up with Hashly and we rode the trolley up toward the front gate and got off to walk to our cars and hit the hotel. We got back and cleaned up for the last day.

The most bittersweet day of the gathering is upon us…

Day 4.

The next morning was an early one. I had to pack laundry, eat some food, and get over to the grounds ASAP so I could get to the ICP seminar. I got inside the big tent right as the trash fight was in full effect. I walked around the back of the tent and went in for the press area. Juggalos once again… I was kicked out along with all other press from the area we were told to go. STALE. I was walking around the front and Scottie D asked me if I could live stream the seminar from the crowd’s view which I was totally happy to do! The seminar was once again the place to be and as it starts Violent J came out and said he was in a horrific car crash. Ninjas… we could have lost Violent J and I don’t know about you but that would have been worse than any celebrity death that I’ve ever been bummed out over. Thank God that’s not the case and we still have him around! I did a small bulletpoint list of things they touched on and if you would like to see the entire thing head over to Faygoluvers Official Youtube page and give the entire video a watch.

Here are some things they touched on during the seminar.

  1. Violent J was in car accident.
  2. Wraith issues blamed on nerves
  3. Shangri-la tour! In 5 years
  4. The third clown book the story of John Kickjazz
  5. Shaggys book still in the works
  6. Great Milenko coffee table book
  7. Cheap Trick and ICP song on the 20th anniversary milenko cd
  8. Fourth joker card 2nd deck revealed at Hallowicked.
  9. Great Milenko tour September
  10. Europe ICP/Mushroomhead tour
  11. Australian tour and Asia tour
  12. Golden Goldies cd seminar gift

Once the seminar was over I went to go find some food and one last dip in the lake. I got my favorite Chicken on a stick and went to get into the water once I finished. Most of the final day was spent just relaxing in the water and talking to Juggalos about the seminar and other things like the March on Washington. I am proud to say I’ll be marching with everyone! This means a lot to me. Once I was done in the water I got dried off, got dressed and ready for the main stage! I walked up as Zug Izland was starting their set! These guys rock! They always kill it on stage and I will always mark out when I hear Fire! Live. FIRE BARREL (Sorry… inside joke. Ha!) These guys came out to OKC and put it the fuck down for us! Thank you Zug! Can’t wait to see you guys again!  Next up was someone new to the Psychopathic Records roster, making his Gathering Main Stage Debut!

Lyte! This ninja came out the gate with a new style show. Normally he comes out after a small intro and starts rapping. He came out caged up and ready to be unleashed upon the main stage! Wearing a hooded robe he was let out of his cage and proceeded to show the crowd why he is a force to be recognized. Do not sleep on Lyte! He just had his Psychopathic Debut so make sure you pick up his “Psychopathic Monstar” today!

Next up was supposed to be Jellyroll But something happened and Jellyroll couldn’t make it to the gathering this year. My thoughts and prayers go out to him and his family and I hope everything is ok!

So with that being said P.O.D. was on deck! These guys have played with ICP on the Missing Link Tour and they also rocked a gathering one year when the car got destroyed! I have so much love for these guys because they were all over my middle school and high school years. I couldn’t go far without hearing “Youth of the Nation” or “Alive” in my younger years. These guys still are out there rocking it as hard as they can and have tons of Juggalo love! They always will be one of my favorites!

Once POD was done… it was time for PROF. Now I knew nothing of this guy before hearing about his announcement for the Gathering. This dude was OFF THE CHAIN. Not only has he done songs with Tech N9ne but holy shit the dude has BARS! I didn’t know any of his songs but I did enjoy watching him wild the fuck out on the stage and party with us juggalos! Look him up, he is absolutely on my rotation list now.

Once he was done it was time for the greatest show on earth.

The Insane Clown Posse has once again graced the gathering with another full set! I have to say this was one of the more insane clown show’s I’ve seen in recent years. (no pun intended) I’ll get to that in a bit. For starters they came out to a revised theme song from the Brady Bunch. Once they came out they hit us with all kinds of freshness. About midway through the show I looked behind me and I saw Scottie, and lots of security guards pushing the barricade forward… what was happening was the barricades were sinking into the mud that the faygo was making… and with the crowd pushing it was tilting forward and I HAVE to give the security team and Lost Lakes workers props for being able to get as much wood and metal as they did to help brace the barricade better as fast as they did. Sadly it wasn’t enough…about 10 minutes after that I noticed someone had kicked out a section of the barricade and from there it was on. They started to swarm the photo pit and eventually we had a full blown stage rush… it was exhilarating as hell until I got pushed onto the stage… then that’s when I felt it happen. It was like the snap of a tree branch… I thought my leg was broken. I hobbled to the back of the stage where I ran into a friend and got some help to a bench at the side of the stage. Once I was down I saw it… my knee was separated I had someone hold me up while I pushed it back into place. Once I got it set back in place and the pain had slowly subsided… I heard them start “Pass Me By” This song hits me hard y’all. It makes me miss my pops, but I just remember that he’s “Paid up there” enjoying watching me from up there. The gathering always ends with me in tears but it’s happy tears… I always love being able to look at the sky and know my dad is looking down and is right there with me at the gathering.

With the end upon us we all got away from the main stage and I had to put a lot of my weight on poor Hashly till we could get to a camp to try to nurse my leg and knee. Hashly got me a treat.. it was all marshmallow-y and delicious… it was an edible. Thank god by that point I had said goodbye to people and gotten to the hotel because it kicked in and I was loopy as shit. I couldn’t see straight and I was very dizzy, but not in any pain. So thank you to Hashly and the ones that hooked that up. I remember waking up to Hashly when she came back from the grounds. She had lost her phone on Lyte’s golf cart, so we had to go try to find her a phone the next day. What a crazy coincidence… My phone was trashed the next day as well and wouldn’t charge… So we found a local cell phone store and they hooked us up with a decent deal on a new phone for her, even though she had to use all her corset sales to buy it! As for me, I had no money to get one, but luckily our home girl Lotus from right there in OKC brought me a spare phone that she had and saved our trip home…We got some lunch together and then me and Hashly went our separate ways. She was on the way to Iowa and then on to Sturgis for ICP later in August. I headed back to South Carolina for work and rest.

With my 11th Gathering in my rear view, I set out on the way home. 16 hours of driving.

I want to give out many thanks for this year. One person in particular, thank you Hashly for being a great help every year. You make a lot possible and without you I’d just be some scrub alone in the middle of a crowded room.

Huge Special thanks to Scottie and Amanda Donihoo for helping out all week, giving me water, and a place to cool off, Not to mention press access and allowing me to cover and write up a huge review like this for FLH! Thank you guys so much for everything! Can’t wait to see you guys again!

PsykoScott for filming me going off the slide! You rock brother!

Chad Carsten. Thanks for hanging out with me and it was great to finally get some 1 on 1 facetime with you brother.

Big Zane. Thank you for hooking it up with a ride a few times and holy shit I’m humbled by seeing my work created into something physical. I’m honored. For real.

Blake Marchand. Same respects to you brother! Seeing that banner in person was dope! It was great meeting you and I’m  sorry we didn’t get to eat lunch together… next time though.

Jeff brown, John Paul, Jimmy Alicata, Jordan, Alicia, Ally, Brittnie, Luke, Carissa, Fpow, Mandi, Glo, Keegan, Raymond, and everyone else I met; Thank You!!! You guys make all the hours at work, and hours of driving worth it. I love you all for real! I can’t wait to see everyone at the March, Juggalo weekend, DCG con 2018, tours and the gathering next year.

Until then this is Hanka!

See you all soon!

Whoop Whoop!

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