Introduction by Don Keating – Bigfoot. Sasquatch. Yeti. Ohio Grassman. Whatever you choose to call it, it really is all the same creature. Very big, hairy and tall, averaging 6 to 8 feet tall. With foot prints averaging from 13 to 17 inches long. It has been rumored to live in Ohio since the mid-1700’s. It has also been rumored to live in Ohio’s largest State Park. Salt Fork. Over 36 reported sightings have been reported to Don Keating of Newcomerstown since the middle 1980’s. With the huge amount of alleged ‘evidence’ coming from Salt Fork’s borders, Keating decided to host the “Annual Bigfoot Conference” at Salt Fork starting in 2005. So keep a keen eye open to the wood lines of Salt Fork State Park the next time you visit this wonderful State Treasure. It may be something other than a big buck you see standing along the wood line, it may be a Bigfoot! Why this location? The landscape of rural Guernsey County appears as a patchwork of forested hills, open meadows and misty valleys threaded by numerous streams. At the heart of this region is Salt Fork State Park, encompassing the woodlands and fields flanking Salt Fork Reservoir. Many Bigfoot sightings throughout the years have been reported in the Salt Fork Region. A map of the park will help the reader to locate the areas of sightings. Sightings have been reported at the following locations:
- Morgan’s Knob where much of one of the episodes of “Finding Bigfoot” was filmed. “Monsters & Mysteries in America” has also filmed an episode from Morgan’s Knob.
- Parker Road also known as “Buckeye Trail”
- The cabin area was filmed by “Monster Quest.”
- Bigfoot Ridge, the park’s primitive campground was the area where Kathy Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb filmed an episode of their “Today Show with Kathy and Hoda.”
- In 2012, the Salt Fork State Park was named as one of the USA Today’s Top Ten “Squatchiest” Places.
To learn more Salt Fork Lodge and Conference Center and Salt Fork State Park holds several conferences each year celebrating the legend of Bigfoot.
- The Annual Bigfoot Conference is the world’s longest running Bigfoot Conference. The host and master of ceremonies, Don Keating, brings back a tradition to Ohio.
- Creature Weekend is an annual conference dedicated to Cryptozoology and is held in the Spring of each year. What is Cryptozoology? It’s the study of hidden animals, (i.e. animals that have yet to be identified by science or thought to have been long extinct; Bigfoot, Yeti, Sea Serpents, Dogmen, The Abominable Snowman, The Loch Ness Monster, Thunderbirds and many other mysterious and elusive creatures fall into this category.) Outstanding speakers, workshops, night hikes and a weekend of fun and entertainment make this event stand out from the others. For more information please check www.creatureweekend.com for updates and event schedules.
- Ohio Bigfoot Conference The Ohio Bigfoot Organization and many associated organizations and friends, led by Marc DeWerth, have planned, organized and delivered the Ohio Bigfoot Conference for the past several years. The conference has reached a new level of professionalism, quality and FUN thanks to the hard work of these people and the great speakers who have honored us with their presence.
The Fork State Park Campgrounds holds several Bigfoot events as well.
- Monthly Bigfoot Night Hikes – Hike the trail after dark in search of the legendary Bigfoot with Alan and Jesse from Fathom Frontiers. Hear information about Bigfoot sightings at Salt Fork and other strange events from members of the Ohio Bigfoot Organization. For more information visit the Salt Fork Facebook Page.
- Bigfoot Adventure Weekends – Join Sharon Lee, The Bigfoot Field Reporter, and Alan and Jesse from Fathom Frontiers on a four-day, three-night all-inclusive Bigfoot campout adventure. Primitive camping, hands on training, night investigations and all meals, snacks and drinks provided. Family friendly and no experience required. Visit www.bigfootadventureweekends.com for dates, pricing and more information.
- Creature Weekend Summer Campout – Join us for this FREE EVENT held in the early summer for a multi-day campout at one of the hottest bigfoot spots in Guernsey County! Go on Bigfoot night hikes, participate in seminars where you learn how to collect evidence and cast tracks using plaster Paris. Spend the weekend hanging out with seasoned Bigfoot researchers! For more information go to www.creatureweekend.com.