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HOLMBERG: Dave Brockie’s funeral pyre spotlights weekend “GWAR-B-Q” & Hadad’s

RICHMOND, Va. – Friday afternoon we saw an alien from outer space who came here via Antarctica burned on a floating funeral pyre as thousands of metalhead GWAR fans chanted the name of the Richmond legend who depicted that alien (known around the world as  Oderus Urungus).

And where else would you do something like that than at Hadad’s Lake, owned by one of Richmond’s key rebels and the host of Saturday’s GWAR-B-Q.

“I think I’m the only place in Virginia that allows different cultures, different societies, to congregate and have a good time,” said Ron Hadad, the owner of this unusual water park and party place that has hosted by church events, sweet-16 soirees, Latin parties and cookouts, among countless other events.

It is a most unusual place for the rather unusual memorial service for Davie Brockie,  my friend and friend to millions of heavy music and art fans around the world. He died in March of a heroin overdose.

He was the main architect of GWAR, Richmond’s most famous musical export, an icon of wildly funny irreverancy.

One of GWAR’s monstrosities its its annual GWAR-B-Q festival at Hadad’s Lake in eastern Henrico, 7900 Osborne Turnpike. It’s Richmond’s miniature Woodstock, drawing several thousand people. It’s definitely wild.

This year’s event, Saturday, features GWAR, Ice-T (the actor) and Body Count, Hatebreed, the Misfits, Goatwhore and several others.

It’ll be a mixed crowd of all ages, including children coming with their parents and grandparents who have been fans of the 30-year-old Richmond-based GWAR.

It’s a musical and art world that not everyone gets. But for those who do, it tells them it’s okay to be different, to bang your head to make the world feel right.

Check out the video to get a taste of it.



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