For at least a hundred years, residents of the Midwest have reported frightening encounters with mysterious cryptids described as “Dogmen”. Now, the very first conference dedicated to the werewolf-like creature is coming to Ohio, and bringing over half a dozen of the world’s foremost Dogman experts with them.
In 1972, the city of Defiance, Ohio was ground zero for a rash of “wolfman” attacks. Numerous townspeople reported an eight-foot-tall man with “some kind of animal head”, creeping out of the shadows and assaulting horrified residents. When the reports, each describing the same bizarre creature, continued for several weeks, Donald Breckler, the local police chief, told reporters, “We didn’t release it [to the media] when we got the first report about a week ago. But now we’re taking it seriously. We’re concerned for the safety of our people.” The case was never solved.
Believe it or not, the sightings in Defiance were not an isolated incident, and each year, hundreds of encounters with werewolf-like creatures are reported around the world. From frightening attacks in New York, to regular sightings in Michigan, the Dogman has become a pervasive legend that draws interest from some of cryptozoology’s top researchers. On August 6th, seven of those experts will bring the wolfman back to Defiance with the first-ever Dogman Symposium.
Cryptozoologist and Dogman Symposium organizer Ken Gerhard
The Dogman Symposium, organized by Missing in Alaska‘s Ken Gerhard, is a family-friendly event full of fascinating lectures about the Midwest’s most mysterious monster, opportunities to pick the brains of the men and women chasing real-life monsters, and vendors with plenty of weird wares for purchase.
“We’re focused on the Midwest Dogman accounts, but broadening accounts to look at the phenomenon overall,” Gerhard told the Crescent News. “Is it possible they could be some unknown creature, something metaphysical or supernatural that can explain the enduring legends throughout the years?”
Dogman Symposium speakers include Michigan Dogman investigator and veteran paranormal researcher John E.L. Tenney, Beast of Bray Road investigator Linda Godfrey, prolific paranormal author Nick Redfern, and many more.
“With all of the fascination people have surrounding cryptids like Bigfoot or lake monsters I find it almost bizarre that the stories about Dogmen sometimes fall to the wayside,” John E.L. Tenney said. “It’s exciting to finally have a chance to focus on the creature(s) commonly called The Dogman, to be able to put to rest some of the hyperbolic stories and get down to the really chilling information about this truly mysterious monster.”
Tickets for the world’s first-ever Dogman Symposium are on sale now, with general admission and special V.I.P. access options available. For more information about the event, including speaker list, schedule, and directions, visit the official Dogman Symposium website.
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