“Hocus Pocus” has become a popular Halloween movie, sparking group costumes honoring the Sanderson sisters, the witch antagonists in the 1993 film.
But many people have probably not experienced some of the movie’s scenes and songs in the way they were presented during the Drag Monster Mash at Tahlequah Elks Lodge No. 2601 on Halloween night.
With Josie Lee Turrelle as Winifred, Sasha Turrelle as Sarah, and Alistair Turrelle as Mary, the sisters were again resurrected in full costume. Portions of the witches' house were recreated on stage as audio clips from the movie played, with the sisters acting or lip-syncing along right on cue.
This Sanderson sisters have performed other locations, as well as just offering photo opportunities, such as they did for a showing of “Hocus Pocus” at the Admiral Twin Drive-in.
“We’ve been busy still, just staying COVID-safe and friendly. We perform almost every weekend at CLJ’s Bar in Tulsa,” said Josie Lee.
Some places require performers to wear masks or face shields, but the Elks did not. Guests were also not required to keep masks on inside the building. Some tables had been removed for the show, so patrons were sharing tables or moving chairs to make their own areas.
“It was a good turnout. Almost every table was full,” said Andrea Chaffin, Tahlequah Elks Lodge No. 2601 exalted ruler.
Josie Lee has supported TahlEquality since its founding, performing and announcing at events, and has also worked with Northeastern State University for over a decade.
“Come out and support the Elks. It’s a great organization. Everyone should join,” said Josie Lee.
The Halloween performance was only for the 21-and-over crowd, so performers were prepared to get a bit more risqué than in some other shows. Not all songs and costumes were as PG as “Hocus Pocus,” although some still had a Halloween feel.
The event featured three sets of drag performances by eight queens, including “drag roulette,” which is where performers choose the songs, but don’t know which of the collection they will have to do when it’s their time on stage.
This was Keisha Kye’s second year to perform at an Elks event.
“It’s worth my time to come out here, because you guys know how to take care of entertainers here better than the big city,” said Keisha, who makes most of her own clothing for shows.
Cheri Bomb Lekohl was excited about performing in Tahlequah for the first time, and she had been preparing for a couple of weeks. She and Aurora LeKohl just moved back to Oklahoma after living in South Carolina for six years.
Originally from Muskogee, Iman Scott now lives in Tulsa, but enjoys performing in Tahlequah, especially for Halloween.
“I get to be spooky and show the crowd a good time and be entertaining,” said Scott, an Air Force veteran. “I’m happy to be here. It’s been tough because of the COVID rules. We make sure we do safety first.”
The audience added to the fun by playing games, which may have embarrassed some participants as they included a twerk-off, a “lap dance,” and a competition to hear who had the best witch’s laugh and other sounds. Prizes were given to those winners, as well as the best of the costume contest.
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For more information about events at Tahlequah Elks Lodge No. 2601, visit www.facebook.com/tahlequahlodge.