22 January 2015
When it was announced that the Olympic Coven would be celebrating in St Helens Oregon in 2015, I got really excited. The actual film sites with the Olympic Coven would be a dream. Go to the film sites and reenact some scenes maybe and then maybe do some goofy things with it too. And what if they could get the director of Twilight movie Catherine Hardwicke there too. I’m dreaming a fangirl dream.
Add a layer in that dream that the city of Forks would get together and really support a celebration there the weekend before or after St Helens and get Stephenie Meyer to attend. Oh what a 10 year anniversary celebration that would be for the fans of the books and the movies.
Reports were that St Helens was working well with the Olympic Coven group and planning was proceeding in positive manner. Nothing was coming out of Forks for anything beyond a birthday cake celebration. Half of dream is better than none.
Then 30 December 2014 the dream is crushed. The St Helens plans have been sabotaged by petty and unprofessional actions from Forks Chamber of Commerce. Forks changed their plans and now want to throw a big celebration. They were unwilling to work with St Helens and the Olympic Coven to combine efforts on different weekends to make it a wonderful book and movie celebration. Stop and think, what that means to the fans and to the tourist dollars for St Helens and Forks and the surrounding area, it is beyond sad. It is tragic.
I am having a hard time dealing with the disappointment. I know my dream was a dream and not likely to happen, but it was a possibility. I do not trust the Forks Chamber of Commerce after their intentional sabotage of an event in a city four hours away. I do not believe the Forks Chamber of Commerce is really enthusiastic for the Stephenie Meyer Day celebration for the fans or as a tribute to Stephenie Meyer and Twilight. I do believe for the Forks Chamber of Commerce it is only about the money. They have been happy for the money brought into the area by the events Staci Chastain and the Olympic Coven have planned in the past, but have not shared that money with them.
There is added disappointment in the Twilight Forever event being planned in Gatlinburg Tn for August with the Olympic Coven. I wish they would use their time and energy and money in working with Forks to make that a better celebration. I can empathize with the East Coast fans liking a celebration closer to home for them and all of the OC members do live closer to Gatlinburg. I will miss them greatly in Forks. I want to be selfish and not share. I wish that event the best and hope I can be forgiven for wanting to be selfish. I will share information for that event, but not with much enthusiasm.
The Twilight Saga is an emotional experience. It has changed lives, mine included. I am disappointed in the unprofessional way the Forks Chamber of Commerce acted to sabotage the St Helens event. It is sad and tragic. There is time for my emotions to calm before SMD happens. It will not be the same without the Olympic Coven. I will miss them as the coven and the actors as friends.
It is very unlikely that I will be able to attend the August event. I am glad I had the opportunity of seeing most of the Olympic Coven one last time at the Cullens’ Winter Escape event and to thank them. They have given much pleasure in portraying the Cullen family as a family. Fun to watch them interacting as a family and with the nomads and Volturi guests. It has been a pleasure to talk with the actors as well. I wish all the best in their personal and professional lives. Be Safe. Live long and prosper. May the Force be with you. God bless you and yours. Take care.
31 December 2014
Yesterday afternoon, 30 Dec 2014, Stephenie Meyer Day / Olympic Coven, SMD / OC, organizers posted a heartbreaking announcement that the event planned for St Helens Oregon September 2015 was cancelled and that the OC would not be appearing at the Forks SMD events. The announcement is here: https://www.facebook.com/StephenieMeyerDay/posts/800220880024510
From that announcement: “At the end of the day, we are enormous Twilight fans, and we cannot be part of an event and a culture that may cause us to resent the franchise and the fandom we love so dearly. In order to preserve our love for Twilight, we have decided to respectfully walk away. We have quietly endured our fair share of gossip, drama, and small town politics related to this event since 2011, and we have finally reached a point where this is just too much for us.”
It is a sad that the St Helens event has been cancelled. I was looking forward to seeing the actual filming sites for Twilight with a group of fans and especially with the OC. It would have been nice for the OC to have done at least that one more event after Cullens’ Winter Escape in January at Gatlinburg TN.
That said, I understand and support their decision to walk away before the situation taints their feelings for the fans and for Twilight. In the past I was not as smart concerning a local con that I was involved with and that con experienced a similar situation.
Forks Chamber of Commerce will continue to have a SMD celebration. They do have their own coven, last I knew of just Bella and Alice. They have been having their own events these last two (2) years that I’ve attended. They have had their own web site and Facebook page for SMD. The FB page is Forks Stephenie Meyer Day / Bella’s Birthday Weekend. We can still gather there at that time. We can still have some fun times. We can still support SMD and Forks.
My initial reaction was sad and some tears, then I wanted to write not so polite letters to chamber of commerce for Forks and St Helens or to smack someone. Know that would not help the situation, but might feel a little better. ;-)
From the comments on various threads about this, the OC members seem to be open to other possibilities in the future. Not sure Staci and her assistants are willing to commit to anything right now. Personally I think we can state our support of other possibilities without pressuring them into something. Maybe Forever in Forks and SMD/OC could combine forces and bring something about? Maybe not ever year, but certain anniversaries? That could give time for planning and fundraising. It wouldn’t be running around the forest surrounding Forks, but a party to celebrate Twilight and have ‘family’ reunion. Chicago, Phoenix, and Jacksonville are the other major cities mentioned in the books. There are the places associated with Rosalie and Esme. Wonder what Ashland Wisconsin could offer? Or Rochester New York?
I want to thank all those involved with organizing the SMD/OC events and providing us with a touch of fantasy as we have celebrated Twilight. I wish the planners and organizers of SMD/OC and the members of the Olympic Coven the best with their personal and professional lives and all future endeavors. Let us move forward and remember we are celebrating Twilight and keep the Sparkle in our hearts to share with the world.