Cryptid Literacy Night deemed a wild success

Buckeye Local explores the unknown with annual event

CONNORVILLE — Buckeye Local Junior High explored the unknown with its Cryptid Literacy Night on Monday evening at the Buckeye Local High School.

Folklore and Crytpids were the themes of the event that featured displays, activities, refreshments, games, a “selfie with Sasquatch” booth and fun for all ages. The event focused on cryptids, or creatures that have never been proven to exist, all over the world as well as in our own backyard.

In preparation for the event, the students have been doing projects all month long as well as a March Madness to choose which monster is the best.

“I have a (display) board of sightings in Jefferson County since the 1970s,” said Principal Jason Kovalski, who’s a longtime cryptid enthusiast.

He also said the staff have always tried to get people involved in their yearly Literacy Night but usually have a very difficult time getting people to come. This year he said that it had a little over 100 people attend. He said that due to the success of the event, they will be planning on doing a cryptid event yearly.

“Here’s the thing about cryptozoology, whether you believe it or not it is still an interesting topic. It’s fun to research, it’s fun to talk about, and then you get to decide on your own whether you think things are real or not,” Kovalski said.

The event had about 15 displays that were created by the seventh and eighth grade students and covered a plethora of cryptids from Bigfoot to the Lochness Monster, Mothman and everything in between. Officials said the program also aligns with state language arts standards.

Jim Thompson who is an investigator for the Bigfoot Field Research Organization was in attendance to talk about his experiences and answer any questions the public had. Thompson, who is no stranger to doing presentations about cryptids, recently spoke at Barkcamp State Park this past October about Bigfoot. He had a booth set up as the main attraction of the event which had materials that were used in the field and casts from past investigations. Thompson said, “If anyone has anything that they would like to relay, they can go to BFRO.net so somebody can contact them”.

Julianna Kuchan, who is a seventh grade science teacher and is also a big fan of cryptids, said she loves the event because “it allows me a chance to show them my weird side.” She mentioned that she goes to all of the cryptid festivals.

“It gives you a chance to be argumentative without being obnoxious,” Kuchan said while discussing her fascination with the lore or cryptids.

She also said that the students who came to the event dressed as their favorite monsters did that on their own, which was a pleasant surprise.


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