Louisiana Comic Con and Lake Charles Film Festival

First Two Weekends In October!

I had a very busy month in October. I spent the first two weekends at two excellent events. First up was Louisiana Comic Con in Lafayette, LA. Between COVID-19 and a few hurricanes, I believe that this is the first Louisiana Comic Con since 2019. It’s been a long time for me, that’s for sure. Thankfully I was asked to present a panel and I did just that on Sunday, October 2. My panel was The First Superheroes, which focused on the first comic book superheroes to appear on the big screen in cliffhanger serials. Some of the heroes that I talked about included Captain Marvel (Fawcett/DC Comics), Spy Smasher (Fawcett/DC Comics), and Batman (DC Comics).

I also got to hang out with Orey Kimbler of Geeky Vengeance, chatted up a few friends like Patrick Bennett (POP Ninja, Filmsquatch), Jamie Ray (Fave Five From Fans), and Nick Foreman (Toad Sage Cosplay), and checked out the amazing vendor area. The layout was a little bit different than I remember from previous events and I have to say that I loved the way that the crowd flowed this time around. There were a ton of fans at the event and plenty of amazing guests as well. Highlights for me included meeting the amazing Kristy Swanson (Buffy The Vampire Slayer, The Phantom) and Judith Hoag (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Halloween Town) and seeing the beautiful siren singer/voice actor/all around awesome lady, Bonnie Gordon (Star Trek Prodigy, Library Bards), for a second time!

Louisiana Comic Con has already announced next year’s event which will hit on March 11th and 12th. Check that date! The convention has been bumped up a bit to avoid hurricanes and (hopefully) any potential pandemics! Be sure to check their web page as they have been announcing some amazing guests already and are blowing the competition out of the water! Louisiana Comic Con is quickly becoming my favorite in-state convention. They cater to fans, give big support to their panelists (including an in-room assistant), and seem to cater to multiple fanbases from anime to horror to science fiction. I can’t wait to attend next year. I am planning on going for the full weekend.

One week later I assisted (ran the projector and whatever else was needed) Patrick with the Lake Charles Film Festival. I didn’t get many photographs because I was working, but the event was an amazing success. The special guest this year was Jean Bruce Scott of Airwolf, St. Elsewhere, Magnum PI, and tons of other shows from the 80’s. She and her amazing husband, Randy Reinholz, were at the festival all weekend. It was great to get to talk with both of them and learn about their careers. Plus, Jean is definitely one of those childhood heroes that one will not regret meeting. She was so friendly (as was Randy) and it was cool to see Caitlin O’Shanessy/Lt Cmdr Maggile Poole live and in person.

Yours truly, Ken’s Alternate Universe, was a sponsor in kind this year as was Pop Ninja and Fave Five From Fans and the awards ceremony was held at MacFarlane’s Celtic Pub (which is always amazing). We also showed 1922’s Nosferatu in celebration of its 100 year anniversary on the Friday evening of the festival. This event continues to grow each year and it was great to see a few new faces this year.

Thanks for checking out this post! I’ve got a few more things to post from last month that had to take a backseat to the Reign Of The Scream Queens, so keep an eye out for them later this month!

Calcasieu SerialFest Chapter 8!

Welcome To The Jungle!

Calcasieu SerialFest made its triumphant return to Sulphur, LA on July 30th! After a small event in 2020 due to COVID-19 restrictions and no event at all last year due to the total destruction of the Brimstone Museum in Sulphur after Hurricane Laura hit southwest Louisiana, retro film fans were hungry to visit classic serial cliffhangers. The Henning House hosted SerialFest this year in place of the Brimstone. Both buildings are part of the same property, so while we definitely miss the Brimstone, the Henning House was a wonderful place to hold the event.

Deacon William Necessary was in attendance yet again and he brought along a number of his classic cosplays. Throughout the day, Deacon Necessary suited up as The Phantom, Captain Africa (below, next to a dashing jungle explorer), Captain Marvel, The Green Hornet, and the Lone Ranger. Between chapters of serials, Deacon Necessary would give the audience historical information and trivia tidbits, all while in costume. He also posed for pictures with anyone that asked and was happy to discuss how he created each costume.

This year’s event was the best attended ever if my memory serves me correctly. We had a number of visitors throughout the day who watched serials, ate popcorn, and talked about their favorite characters and serials. They also helped themselves to some wonderful freebies including stickers, 8″x10″ prints of The Phantom, Phantom rings, Green Hornet rings, and festival masks. They also got a sneak peek at a few of the items that will be on display during the Henning House’s upcoming Chaos Theory art event. I won’t post any photos of the Chaos Theory display, as I don’t want to spoil the surprise for anyone that plans on attending the event.

This year’s lineup of chapters.

Calcasieu SerialFest continues to grow and I’m proud to say that Ken’s Alternate Universe was a sponsor in kind this year and will remain so for as long as the event takes place. If you’re in southwest Louisiana in July, be sure to swing by and check out this wonderful event!

Thanks for checking out my post. See you again real soon!

Houston Horror Film Festival 2022!

July 22-24, Houston, TX

I ventured a few hours into the Lone Star State on Saturday, July 23rd, to attend the Houston Horror Film Festival for the first time. Thankfully it took place at the Westchase Marriott, a hotel that I attended another event in a few years ago. That came in handy, as I was already familiar with the layout of the property. Once I arrived I headed to the back of a very long (but swiftly moving) line to pick up my wristband.

The event was well attended despite a number of late and popular cancellations. Rachel True (The Craft), Tiffany Shepis (Abominable), and William Forsythe (The Devil’s Rejects) were just a few of the celebrities that cancelled their appearances. Thankfully the festival managed to snag some amazing replacements including William Ragsdale (Fright Night, Herman’s Head) and Amanda Bearse (Fright Night, Married….With Children) that helped soften the blow of missing out on those that cancelled.

There were two vendor areas, both of which also included celebrity guest areas. Vendor Room One featured a number of great guests, artists, and vendors. It was also the hottest room in the building. The second vendor room was much nicer. It was larger, well cooled, more open for walking, and divided into two areas. One part of the area featured greenish lighting that gave a pretty cool effect to photos. It was in this area where I got to meet both William Ragsdale and Amanda Bearse. Both of them were amazing but Amanda Bearse went above and beyond with her kindness. “Marcy loves you, too!” was the last thing she said to me as I left her table, autograph and selfie in tow. She was so lively and fun. If you get the opportunity to meet her I highly recommend it. William Ragsdale was laid back and very nice as well. I also recommend meeting him if you have the chance.

The vendor area was loaded with items featuring all of the major properties including Friday The 13th, A Nightmare On Elm Street, Scream, Halloween, and Saw. There were also quite a few vendors selling KISS related items. Surprisingly, I couldn’t find a lot of Universal Monsters items with the exception of just a few vendors. One vendor in particular had a lot of Universal Monsters items and I managed to snag two beautiful ornaments that i mistook for busts. I am now the proud owner of an Invisible Man ornament and a Wolf Man ornament.

Due to the limited amount of time that I had I was unable to meet some of the other guests but I did get to enjoy Purgatory Park’s Stranger Things display and I also saw a ton of cool cosplays. The entire event was set up well and ran smoothly. I plan on attending again next year with the intention of staying at the host hotel for the entire event.

I really did have a great time at this festival. They’ve already started teasing upcoming pop up markets and next year’s event. Thanks for checking out my review. Hopefully I’ll see some of you at the Houston Horror Film Festival next year!

Upcoming Events!!!

Will I See You There?????

I have two full weekends coming up beginning on July 23rd! I’ll be attending the Houston Horror Film Fest at the Houston Marriott Westchase in Houston, TX, and will then be attending Calcasieu Serial Fest on July 30th at the Henning House (Brimstone Museum) in Sulphur, LA. The HHFF looks like it is going to be amazing and I can’t wait to see all of the wonderful guests and check out some sweet independent horror films as well. The official Facebook event for the festival can be found here. Be sure to let them know if you’re attending or are interested in going to the event. More information about the festival guests, films, panels, cancellations, and more can be found on the festival webpage.

Due to a few late cancellations, a few new guests have been added to the festival’s lineup. If you’re a fan of Fright Night, Herman’s Head, Justified, or Mannequin 2, you’re in for a surprise. William Ragsdale has been added to the lineup THIS WEEK. Another amazing guest added this week is Fright Night and Married….With Children star, Amanda Bearse! I cannot wait to meet her! She’s always been one of my favorite actresses and a great director as well.

The festival will take place July 22nd through July 24th, but I am only able to attend on Saturday, the 23rd. If you happen to be attending that day, be sure to visit the Ken’s Alternate Universe Facebook page on Friday to find out the secret word that I’ll be revealing in a special live update at 9PM that evening. Find me at the festival on Saturday and mention the secret word and I’ll give you a free KAU sticker AND an additional special horror-themed sticker. I’ll have a limited number of KAU stickers, so find me early!

I’ll have one week to rest up for a second weekend of fun. I’ll be attending Calcasieu Serial Fest on the 30th. It will take place from 10AM to 5PM. It’s a free event that will feature chapters from classic serials from the 1930’s and 40’s. Popcorn and drinks will be served as well. An official list of serial chapters to be shown has not been published yet, but expect plenty of jungle-themed adventures as this year’s event is dubbed “Welcome To The Jungle.” I’ll be assisting with the festivities but feel free to talk with me about the event or anything else that interests you. This is expected to be the festival’s biggest year yet, and hopefully it will continue to grow.

I hope to see some of you at both of these events. If you plan on attending, comment below, DM me on the KAU Facebook page, the KAU Instagram page or hit me up on Twitter. Don’t forget to check for the secret word next Friday!

As always, thanks for checking out my post. See you soon!

Upcoming Events!!!

Summer Convention Updates

I’m happy to say that I’m in full convention mode this summer! I’m attending three conventions/festivals this summer. I’ll be at two events as an attendee and one event as a guest/volunteer. I’m so happy to be attending events again and can’t wait to blog about each of them after I get home.

The first event that I’ll be attending is the Fouke Monster Festival in Fouke, Arkansas. It’s an all day event on June 18th that will feature guest speakers like Lyle Blackburn, Chester Moore, Marvin Leeper, and Ken Gerhard and a number of actors from The Legend Of Boggy Creek. There will also be a special presentation of The Legend Of Boggy Creek in celebration of its fiftieth anniversary. I’ll be checking out the speakers, looking at the goods for sale from the numerous vendors, and I’ll hopefully get one of my Ghoultown CDs autographed by Lyle! I’ll also be taking a bus tour of Fouke and numerous sites from the film. As many of my regular readers know, cryptids are one of my biggest passions and I can’t wait to attend this event!

The second event that I’ll be attending will be the Houston Horror Film Fest in Houston, Texas! I’ve been wanting to check out this festival for a couple of years now and the stars finally aligned in order for me to attend. This event is three days long but I’ll only be attending on Saturday, July 23rd. This event is loaded with great independent horror films and a ton of actors and legends from horror.

I’ll finally get to meet Felissa Rose at the festival. She has appeared in a number of horror films over the years but she is perhaps best known for her performance as Angela in the shocking Sleepaway Camp. I also hope to meet Christine Elise (Child’s Play), Rachel True (The Craft), and Tiffany Shepis (Abominable). Also in attendance will be Danielle Harris and Scout Taylor Compton of the Rob Zombie Halloween films and other horror films. Harris also appeared in the classic Halloween 4 and Halloween 5 as Laurie Strode’s daughter. The duo will also have a live airing of their popular podcast, Talk Scary To Me, at the event.

The final event that I’ll be attending this summer is very near and dear to my heart. Calcasieu SerialFest makes its triumphant return to the Brimstone Museum Annex! A worldwide pandemic limited Chapter 7 to a small event and just a few weeks later the Brimstone Museum was destroyed by Hurricane Laura, forcing Chapter 8 to be postponed last year due to repairs still underway. Thankfully the Brimstone Annex has been fully repaired but the museum itself is still being rebuilt. I’ll be volunteering at the event this year and watching chapters from tons of classic serials.

This year’s theme is “Welcome To The Jungle” and will focus on serials that take place in the deepest, darkest corners of the world full of wild animals, ancient curses, and bloodthirsty villains! Some of the serials that we’ll get to check out include The Perils Of Nyoka and The Phantom! This has become one of my favorite events over the years and I am glad to see it return!

Let me know if you’ll be attending any of these events. It would be great to meet up with you and you’d also get the chance to nab one of my stickers! I’ll have a limited amount of stickers with me at each event to hand out in order to spread the word about Ken’s Alternate Universe! Find me at the events and let me know that you want a sticker!

Thanks for checking out my post. See you again real soon!

Calcasieu Parish Short Film Festival!

If you happen to be in the Lake Charles area this weekend, be sure to drop by the Calcasieu Parish Short Film Festival! This year the festival will take place at the Cinemark Theater located at the Prien Lake Mall. The festivities begin at 11AM and will feature three blocks of short films from local, state, national, and international filmmakers.

At 1PM in the afternoon the festival will celebrate the one hundred year anniversary of Charlie Chaplin’s Pay Day. If you get your tickets early they are only five bucks! The price goes up to ten dollars at the door and only cash will be accepted. While you’re at the theater you might as well check out one of the films that Cinemark will be showing this weekend.

Yours truly will be on hand assisting with the event this year once again and I’m also an in kind sponsor this year. Check out www.calcashorts.com for more information and support independent filmmakers!

I hope to see you at the show!!!!

Finally! I’m Going To A Convention (Or Two, Or Three)

Maybe, Just Maybe!

The last couple of years have been pretty brutal to everyone. In my case and in the case of many others in southwest Louisiana, 2020 and 2021 were downright evil. From COVID-19 shutting down everything to Hurricane Laura destroying my family’s home to last year’s February freeze out that myself and my family lived through in a camper, I’m ready to have some fun.

I got to attend the Lake Charles Film Festival late last year, but the venue that normally hosts two other events that are near and dear to my heart, the Calcasieu Short Film Festival and Calcasieu Serial Fest, was literally wiped out by Hurricane Laura. That venue, the Brimstone Museum in Sulphur, LA, is still recovering from the hurricane. The Lake Charles Civic Center, which hosts CyPhaCon and a number of other events throughout the year, was also heavily damaged by the hurricane, but enough of it has been repaired that some events are going to take place.

With a few things finally getting back to normal, I plan on attending CyPhaCon in April. Most of the guests that were originally going to attend the event that was postponed two years ago are returning including Doug Jones. Also in attendance will be one of my favorite bands, The Suzaku 7! As usual the event will be heavy on anime so if that’s your thing, be sure to attend CyPhaCon in the early spring. I’ll be there with my good friend, Patrick Bennett, to help him promote the Lake Charles Film Festival, Calcasieu Serial Fest, and the Calcasieu Short Film Festival. We’ve submitted a panel and hopefully it will be approved.

CoastCon will make it’s triumphant return to the Mississippi Gulf Coast on March 4-6th. Unfortunately I won’t be able to attend this year’s event but it looks like it’s going to be amazing. Not only will Jason Carter be in attendance, but my good friends, THE Rob Cerio and Rafe White will be guests as well! CoastCon always feels like a family get-together for me as many of my best friends attend that event. I have some personal things to take care of in February and early March that will prevent me from attending, but I hope to make it next year.

Louisiana Comic Con almost happened in 2020 when COVID-19 first reared its ugly head, but the event was cancelled at the last minute. Then it was abruptly cancelled again in 2021 whenever Hurricane Ida threatened the area. Plans are in motion to have the event return in 2022, but no dates nor any guests have been announced yet. I attend this convention every year and have presented panels at the last two events. There were plans for me to present panels at both of the cancelled events as well. I look forward to submitting a panel to the convention again this year and hope to attend this great event.

One event that I’ve never been able to attend but have also wanted to check out is the Houston Horror Film Fest. It has taken place during the summer for the last couple of years and I’m hoping to attend this year. Why? Because Rachel True will be in attendance. She starred in one of my favorite films of all time, the very 90’s The Craft! There will be many other awesome guests in attendance and there are going to be some great horror films to watch as well. I’ll keep all of you posted if and when I make it to this event!

I cannot wait to get back into the swing of things with conventions! I’ve missed attending these events for over two years now! Get ready for coverage of each event that I attend and be sure to look me up if you attend any of these events. Tell me hello and let’s hang out!

Thanks for reading my post. It’s FINALLY convention season again!

The Lake Charles Film Festival!

Yarrrrr!!!!!

2020 and 2021 dealt massive blows to southwest Louisiana. Between COVID-19, a massive freeze, and two hurricanes (one was the largest in over 200 years to hit Louisiana), the area saw numerous businesses close, lifelong citizens move away due to damage or total destruction of their homes, and many events, including Mardi Gras, were cancelled or postponed. The area is still recovering from Hurricane Laura and slowly making a comeback from the other tragedies as well. Thankfully one event is returning tomorrow night at a new venue. The Lake Charles Film Festival will make its triumphant return on October 1st and 2nd and the Cinemark Theater located at the Prien Lake Mall.

The festival will begin showing films at 6PM on Friday evening and will wrap up with an awards ceremony on Saturday evening. This will be the first time that the festival will take place in an actual movie theater, so the staff is very excited about this year’s event. COVID-19 protocols will be in place, so bring a mask for the event. Tickets are extremely limited, so be sure to purchase them online prior to arrival to secure your seat. Any remaining tickets will be sold at the door, exact cash only. More information can be found at www.lakecharlesfilmfestival.com.

I hope to see you at this event! If you do come, say hello and let me know what you think about my blog. Remember, tomorrow begins the annual Thirty-One Days O’Horror event on my page, so I hope you’ll check out the first post tomorrow!

See you all very soon!

Outpost: Texas Renaissance Festival 2020

Heroes and Villains Weekend

If memory serves me correctly, this is my twelfth visit to the Texas Renaissance Festival in Todd Mission, TX (just northwest of Houston). I love this festival. Not only do you get to step back in time, but the music, the shows, the food, and the fun are wonderful. Having been to this festival a number of times now, I’ve seen a few of my favorite acts come and go. Thankfully, a couple of my favorites are mainstays and new acts are added all of the time to keep me coming back for more.

This year’s festival was a bit different than prior years thanks to COVID-19. Regulations and requests were put in place in order to provide a safe environment for performers, employees, and visitors. The biggest change this year was that tickets had to be purchased ahead of time on the web for specific dates. A limited amount of at-the-gate tickets were available, but only for military, seniors, and students.

Clan Tynker, one of the mainstays of TRF that also happen to be my favorite performers.

As I have done every single time that I’ve attended TRF, I checked out the Clan Tynker show first. As always, they brought smiles to the crowd with their mixture of magic, music, and mind-blowing stunts. I love this group and I look forward to watching them every year. I normally grab a photo with at least one of the group each year, but I had to skip this year due to the restrictions at the festival. I guess I’ll have to grab two photos with group members next year.

The gypsy dancers are beautiful and their band is nothing short of wonderful.

I attended a number of other favorite shows including Gypsy Dance Theatre and Cirque Olympus. I know that the lovely dancers get all of the attention when it comes to Gypsy Dance Theatre, but folks need to show a little appreciation to the band as well. They are simply amazing.

Apollo gets “loopy” as Athena encourages him during his performance.

Three of the hardest working performers at the festival, at least in my opinion, are Apollo, Aphrodite, and Athena, collectively known as Cirque Olympus. Their dazzling display of rope work, balancing, hula hoop spinning, archery, and more is simply fun to watch. On top of that, they are hilarious as well. Athena brings high energy and neck-breaking stunts while Apollo juggles and balances his way into our hearts. Aphrodite flirts with the audience, does amazing ribbon work, and shows off her archery skills as well. If you’ve never been to TRF, add Cirque Olympus to the top of your list of shows to see when you visit!

Aphrodite spins gracefully (but with plenty of power).

A cool addition to the festival this year was the Pirate Museum. Featuring actual artifacts from sunken ships, this museum was a welcome surprise. Not only was it educational, it was awesome to see a number of items such as blunderbusses, dubloons, and cannons.

Yours truly, yo-ho-hoing!

This was the first year that I tried a gyro, a Greek dish that’s not to be missed! I tried one from the Greek Agora where the Gypsy Dance Theatre and Cirque Olympus shows take place. It was delicious!

My “gyro!”

There were also a ton of wonderful shops and plenty of other performers to check out. I visited the Museum of Cruelty again and also took two strolls through the Magic Garden.

Museum of Cruelty.

If you happen to be visiting the Houston or Conroe area in October or November next year, be sure to check out the Texas Renaissance Festival. It has become an annual treat for myself and my family. There are still three weekends left this season, but be sure to purchase your tickets ahead of time. Also, if you can’t make it this year, keep an eye on the festival’s social media outlets for the date of the Sale of the Century, a sale in which they slash ticket prices for one day only. I highly recommend taking advantage of the deep discount offered!

TRF valiantly fought the plague this year!

Thanks for reading my post. If you’ve ever been to TRF, let me know what you thought about it in the comments section. Also, feel free to tell me about your favorite shows, performers, and food as well!

Just one of the many displays in the pirate museum.