We were walking around at Dutch X-Mas Con, when we saw the stand of the Ghostbusters Dutch Division. It wasn't the first time that we saw them at a convention. We are all huge "Ghostbusters" fans, so this definitely caught our attention. So this time we decided to have a talk. We asked if we could interview them by sending over a couple of questions via
e-mail. They instantly agreed! And we are happy to present this article to you today. It will give you a lot of insights in the activities of the Ghostbusters Dutch Division. We love it!
Let's start at the very beginning by introducing you to this awesome group:
The group originally started almost six years ago as an internet group. During the first two years, their activities mainly were on the internet, where they discussed the movies, the props etc. But none of them actively geared up and went out as Ghostbusters. After a while, Andre joined the group and he thought it would be great to share the passion. To actually go out, be Ghostbusters and spread the love of all things related to Ghostbusters.
Last year the original group ceased to exist, but Andre took the name with him (since he had registered it at Sony). He started a new group, with some of the old members and they revamped and re-imagined the group. GhostCorps: Ghostbusters Dutch Division was born. They are an active group with 14 members and they spend every free moment visiting conventions, but also doing charity work. Their goal is to keep the love for both the old movies alive, as well as the new one.
Of course, we wanted to know more about the group! We were wondering if there are also divisions in other countries. Andre told us:
"There are several chapters all over the world. In America, for instance, every state has its own chapter, and in Europe, we see several groups as well, mostly one per country, but there are places where there are several groups per country. We don't actively work with any other groups, mostly because of distance. But we have an active working Alliance with the Ghostbusters German Division. They inform us about and invite us to conventions in their country. And of course, we do the same. There is a lot of internet contact between all the chapters in the world, mostly through a large amount of Facebook groups."
It sounds like they are accomplishing their goal very well! At least from our point of view. We always enjoy seeing the Ghostbusters Dutch Division at conventions. It keeps the spirit alive and it keeps on reminding us of the awesomeness of Ghostbusters. So.. let's talk about conventions! Ghostbusters Dutch Division attends all of the major conventions in the Netherlands. With the rise of several new ones, they are working to get an agreement with the new ones. They also attend conventions abroad, but only the ones within driving distance like Frankfurt and Germany. And of course, we asked what the best thing is about being at a con with the Ghostbusters Dutch Division.
"The intense amount of fun we have together, which reflects on the people attending the con. They join in for a sing-a-long, ask for pictures and ask away about all the props that we are bringing. And always they are greeted with a smile. We love what we do, and we do what we love. And I am sure, from all the positive comments that we have gotten, that it shows."
We agree! It definitely shows. We were also curious about their best convention memory:
" That has to be the recent Dutch Xmas Con, mainly because we saw the Ecto 1 from the new movie there for the first time. But it's really hard to pick out one that stands out. As said we do what we love and we love what we do. And all the cons we attend we are greeted by people who follow us on Facebook, and together with them we turn every con into something special."
And we also want to know.. How much work is it to prepare for a convention?
"It depends on the con. Most cons are easy but a convention like DCC of DXC takes a lot of planning. We have a lot of space to fill and there will be visitors from all walks of life. We want to ensure that there's something for everyone. Be it actively participating in something at our booth or just enjoying all the wonderful things on display. And of course, there's music. What would Ghostbusters be without the theme song?"
Meeting the actors
Since we always love meeting actors at conventions, we were curious about meeting Ghostbusters actors. We already met Ernie Hudson 2 years ago which was great! So we asked Andre: When there are guests from Ghostbusters will you go and talk to them/ take pictures or go for an autograph?
"Oh, of course, we event travel for it. If a guest were to be attending in Germany or Belgium, no doubt we would go there. Some of us even had their proton packs signed by actors."
That is so cool! Which actors/ actresses from the movies have you already met?
"We had the pleasure of meeting Dan Aykroyd in Cologne two years ago, which was really the highlight of my Ghostbusters fandom and we met Ernie Hudson in Ghent a year ago. Both were amazing to talk to and really took their time with the fans. Apart from those two, we haven't had the pleasure of meeting any Ghostbusters actors in person. But we do have two actors in our friends list on Facebook. And they are both awesome and really love it when fans contact them."
And who would you still love to meet?
"Well apart from Bill Murray of course, who is number one on the list but also nearly impossible to meet, there would be Kate McKinnon and Kristen Wiig from the new movies. And from the classics, I would love to meet Robin Shelby, William Atherton, and Annie Potts."
Ghostbusters: Dutch Division
We can talk about conventions for hours! But there's more to discuss. Let's not forget about that! The Ghostbusters group doesn't only attend conventions, they do more than that. They also attend special events like Ghostbusters Screenings and promotions for Sony. Since last year they have a great working relationship with Sony and they got asked to promote the new movie upon its release. They see that as a huge honor. And it's a great accomplishment! I can totally imagine why Sony asked them. The Ghostbusters Dutch Division is an awesome group with a lot of energy. And a great passion for the movies. It's great. Logically, our next question was how often they are asked to attend events:
"Well, we get asked more and more, from large conventions to small gatherings and all sorts of events in between. It's the result of what I described above. Wherever we are, we meet people with a smile and take our time to answer questions, or just talk. This results in us being asked more and more. To be honest our 2017 roster is so full we aren't sure we can attend them all."
And then as the last point, we noticed how the group also cares about charities. So we asked if they could tell us a bit more about it:
"We actively support Stichting Opkikker, a foundation who supports children with long-lasting illnesses as well as their families. Their goal is to take their mind off their troubles for a day. And we help out whenever we can. The "Fantasydag" is a day where they travel through all sorts of wonderful worlds and engage in special activities there. One of the stops is Ghostbusters, where they get to clear out ghosts from our firehouse and help out creating slime in our lab. Also in the past, we collected money for KIKA, an organization devoted to kids with cancer. We raised money for them at our first event. We hope to be able to pick it up again this year."
We'd like to thank the Ghostbusters Dutch Division for answering all of our questions (we had so many questions haha). We think you're doing great work. And we hope that all of you enjoyed reading this and have a better insight now in what kind group this is and what they do. It's a lot of work to maintain a group and attend all the events. And we're just lucky we can enjoy it at conventions!