Arizona Ghostbusters

They’ve rocked out with the ubiquitous Will Wheaton, restored their own Ecto-AZ, and donned proton packs for charity. And now, they answer some questions for us!

And yes, that picture up there of them busting a ghost from Pac-man is one of my favorite pictures ever.

Jeff of the Arizona Ghostbusters is a great guy and has some great Ghostbuster stories if you happen to catch him at an event. They’ll be out this Friday for a giant downtown zombie walk, so catch him there.

Tell us what the Arizona Ghostbusters are all about.

We’re a Ghostbusters costuming fan club that focuses on volunteering in the community at non-profit events.

Over the last several years we’ve raised money for many charities and appeared at a variety of events. Everyone loves Ghostbusters and it’s been a great tool in fundraising and bringing awareness to many causes.

It’s also tons of fun at the same time.

Proton packs – hard to make? Radioactive?

Very hard to make. They’re often many months of work.

There are general blueprints out there to follow out there, but everyone’s pack is also unique and fits their personality. Some packs are clean and others look like they got dropped down a flight of stairs. Sometimes they really did get dropped down a flight of stairs.

They can also be made out of a variety of materials. Fiberglass, wood, foamboard, and many others, but once done they all look the same.

As for being radioactive, ours just run off of the common household batteries. We’ve worn our packs for over 300 hours at events. If they were radioactive, we’d probably be in pretty poor health by now.

What’s one of the most rewarding events you’ve been a part of?

Definitely our Children’s hospital visits.

They’re the hardest events we’ve ever done. It’s never easy to see children in a hospital but you focus on what you’re there for, to put smiles on their faces and to take their mind off being in a hospital. They’re the strongest, most determined people I’ve ever met. We can’t wait to go again.

How often are you called about actual hauntings?

Luckily the large amount of local ghost hunting clubs takes the real calls for us, but we have still gotten plenty of calls as well. Some in the middle of the night. When I inform the callers we don’t really bust ghosts, they truly are disappointed.

How’d you get the Ecto-1?

The Ecto-AZ as we call it, was found by our team’s Captain, Matt Haynes, on a farm in Colorado back in the summer of 2007.

It was eventually towed down here to the car restoration shop his family owns to get worked on. It took the blood, sweat, and tears of a lot of people to get it on the road. It’s definitely got personality and we’ve grown to love it far more than the real Ecto-1.

Riding in it is very surrealistic at times. 25 years ago I was a kid wanting to be a Ghostbuster riding around town in an Ecto. 25 years later I am.

Photo from the AZ Ghostbuster's Site

Tell us about this weekend’s Zombie Walk.

This Friday’s Zombie Walk will be the 2nd in Phoenix for the Downtown Ambassadors and this will be our first year being a part of it.

The walk will begin and end at Heritage Square and will wind through downtown for about a mile.

For entrance to the walk we’ll be collecting non-perishable food items for St. Mary’s Food Bank.

Our team will be in front of the zombie hoard warning the passers-by that they’re coming. Our Ecto will have a police escort so we can run full lights and sirens on the streets and will be running along side us.

The Phoenix Ambassadors will be helping to keep all the zombies together and on the sidewalks. We’re hoping for as many zombies as possible. The scarier and gruesome the better. (We do have rules at the walk we’ll go over with everyone. No running and leaving bloody handprints are the most important ones.)

There will be activites at Heritage Square all night long for all ages so bring the whole family.

Phoenix Zombie Walk

Maybe someday they’ll give me a ride in the Ecto-AZ!

This Friday should be pretty fun for the living and the dead.

Bring the whole (bloody) family and support a great group!