Check out the great pics and letter we got back from our HOH ShipRocked contest winners, Dennis and Ann Schenkenberger… looks like they kept the HOH party tradition alive! As you can see from this photo at right of Dennis and his lovely wife Ann gearing up for the ‘80s Prom night aboard ShipRocked. Dig the tuxedo shirt. [Ship]Rock On!
Colorado-based police officer, HOH fan and ShipRocked cruise winner Dennis Schenkenberger returned from his five-day heavy metal cruise to Jamaica and Grand Cayman with tales of late night drinking sessions, day-long headbanging sessions and lots of hangin’ out with fellow metalheads and rock stars. In his own words….
I just wanted to thank you again for choosing me as one of the ShipRocked 2009 winners. My wife and I could not have had a better time. The music was fantastic and the other ShipRockers were a great group of people.
The highlights on the music side were definitely Queensryche and Tesla on the main stage, but many of the other bands stood out as well. Broken Teeth with former Dangerous Toys frontman Jason McMaster preached the gospel of keeping the metal alive and then pounded your brain with serious hard rocking tunes. Lynam, Stereoside, Nikki Barr Band and Stonerider represented the up and coming groups, and brought it late into the night at the top deck stage.
The biggest surprise of all were the Kansas City School of Rock kids. They were an amazing group of teenagers and fantastic musicians. Watching the expressions on their faces when they were surprised by Jeff Keith of Tesla, Johnny Solinger of Skid Row or Parker Lundgren of Queensryche jumping on stage to jam with them was one of the highlights of the trip. Kudos to Skid Row for having the School of Rockers on stage during their set for a great version of “Youth Gone Wild.”
Aside from all the great music, all of the band members could not have been more accessible and accommodating. Whether it was Jeff Keith and the guys from Tesla hanging out at the poolside bar all day or Geoff Tate and the guys from Queensryche on the dance floor for the ‘80s prom. They were all gracious with their time and always up for a photo or autograph. I would be remiss if I didn’t single out every member of Skid Row for being at one with the ShipRocked fans. They camped out on the deck in what was dubbed “Skid Row Corner” and were available to share a story and a beer 24/7.
Another facet of the trip was our fellow ShipRockers. They were an amazing and eclectic crowd. Some of them wanted to relive the ‘80s and some of them were still living in the ‘80s which was evident by the long hair, sleeveless concert t-shirts and relentless head banging. Whether it was two desperate housewives and an evil Betty Boop from the Midwest (who, by the way, had spun the most elaborate and complicated web of deception to insure that all three of them were on the ship without husbands), or some of the coolest metalheads from all over the country rioting to keep the poolside bar open past 2am (which insured the good times flowed until 4am), the ShipRockers represented from coast to coast and did so in true metal fashion.
The karaoke night showcased the talents of the ShipRockers; it was more like an audition than the drunken screams one usually hears at karaoke. Every singer had their niche and nailed the chosen song with the backing of the KC School of Rock kids playing the music live. The outfits for the ‘80s prom were great and watching a bunch of beer chugging long hairs at the Insania wine tasting was amazing. We would sniff the wine like a bloodhound and then chug it like we were standing in line at the keg and wanted to make sure we got another before we had to get in line again. Walking around with a Kool-Aid mustache made of cabernet and eating crab mush on a cracker was an awesome sight to see.
Finally, Alan Koenig and Gigi [ShipRocked promoters] were fantastic! They put on a great show and had constant entertainment for 5 days. They helped out several ShipRockers with various issues and really tried to make it “right” for everyone.
After going on ShipRocked you will never be able to go on another “normal cruise”again. Let me see…should I play bingo on deck five or a drunken game of quarters with all the members of Skid Row? Should I take line dancing lessons with the smarmy cruise gigolo or have a beer poolside with guys from Tesla? Should I learn how to make a fruit sculpture or listen to the greatest live music on the planet? I am definitely ruined for any “normal” cruise and I’m looking forward to making it happen for the next ShipRocked in January 2011.
— Dennis Schenkenberger in Evans, CO
Dennis and Ann chug down some cabernet, courtesy of Queensryche singer Geoff Tate’s own wine label, Insania.
Ann, Susan Tate, Geoff Tate of Queensryche and Dennis.
Hangin’ with Tesla singer Jeff Keith.
With Jason McMaster of Broken Teeth
Legal gambling on the open ocean…ahoy, money!
Ann and Dennis commune with a stingray in Grand Cayman.
WBWR/Columbus, OH, listener Lisa Berger was one of two lucky winners in our ShipRocked giveaway earlier this year. Lisa took her husband Phil along for the five day heavy metal cruise to Jamaica and Grand Cayman, and rocked out to live performances by Queensryche, Skid Row, Tesla, Ratt and tons more.
Said Lisa of her five days on the open ocean:
Well, I have to say that ShipRocked was certainly an experience of a lifetime. Between the rockin’ concerts, swimming with sting rays, meeting the most devoted metal fans around, kissing a dolphin…we had the most fun possible in a week’s time!
We were so impressed with the bands. My personal favorites were Tesla, Queensryche, Lynam, Endeverafter and the Kansas City School of Rock band (if you’ve never heard of the KC School of Rock band, you will someday — they are impressive as teenagers and will certainly make a name for themselves in the near future).
Phil and I had a great time together…our heavy metal love for one another has been rekindled but I have to admit that I missed my kids terribly. My kids, however, had so much fun with their grandparents that they informed us that we could go on a cruise again. So, if HOH needs a PR person for ShipRocked 2010, my husband and I would be available.
I think it’s safe to say in regards to cruises that if it ain’t Shiprocked, it’s crap!
Thank you HOH and Alan Koenig for our rockin’ vacation!
— Lisa Berger
Lisa Berger and her husband Phil got ShipRocked courtesy of the House of Hair.