Rising Star 25th

Rising Star is celebrating their twenty-fifth year at the Othello Harris-Jefferson Student Center of Bluefield State College in Bluefield Friday October 21st 6pm to 11pm and Saturday October 22nd 9am to 11pm.  They are also celebrating the forty anniversary of conventions in the region.

This year’s guests are “Golgotha’ series author R.S. Belcher, comic creator Dan Delby, “Cemetary Dreams” author N.R. Allen, game designers Pure Steam, “Mr. Lazarus and Other Tales” author Paul Dellinger, prop maker & make-up artist Chris DeHart, comic author Chris Ward, filker White Plectrum, “Dragon’s Dove Chronicles” author Kim Headlee, furry artist Ashley Holohan, alt movie music maker Consortium 499, Bluefield State College Robotics Team, and paranormal investigators Black Diamond Paranormal Society.

Events for this year include discussion panels, Costume Call, music concert, electronic and board gaming, Artemis Spaceship Bridge Simulator, art show, vendors, film festival, anime screenings, a LARP with Strange Aeons, robosumo, and collectables auction for the Jonathan D. Miller and Daniel E. Craig Memorial Scholarships.

Admission is only $5 for both days.  BSC students, faculty, and staff get in free with a campus ID.  A snack bar will be available on site.

A small convention with lots of people with stories to tell you.

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International Games Day @ Your Library

International Games Day @ Your Library is an initiative to reconnect communities through libraries around games brought together with the American Library Association and other library systems from around the world.  Over a thousand libraries around the world will take part in this program.  This year’s IGD is on Saturday November 21st.

Companies donating kits to libraries this year are Konami with the Yu-Gi-Oh! trading card game demo, USAopoly with Reverse Charades, YummyYummyYummy with Nommons: Math Universe and Calcuquest, Steve Jackson Games with Trophy Buck and Munchkin Treasure Hunt, Looney Labs with Choose One and EcoFluxx, and Paizo with the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game.  Now your library may not have gotten any of these kits.  Feel free to bring your favorite games to share with all.  Dryden Press is offering a free introductory copy of their Big Damn Dryden RPG to all who take part in IGD.

There will also be the International Minecraft Hunger Games set up by the Ann Arbor District Library.  Your library might be one of the districts for this tournament against other libraries.  BallyHoo Games is giving promo codes to their new iPad/iPhone game Zombie Heat to 25 libraries.

Check your local library to see if they are taking part in this event, or if they might be doing their game day early.  Libraries that I found on the IGD map include Kanawha county libraries, New Martinsville, Morgantown, Martinsburg, Craft Memorial Library in Bluefield, Vienna, Fayette County, Summersville, and Clarksburg.

If you have some time this Saturday, stop by to check out the gaming and be part of your community.

American Library Association
The American Library Association is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with more than 55,000 members. Its mission is to promote the highest quality library and information services and public access to information.

 

Press Release: Rising Star Science Fiction Convention 2015

West Virginia State University Artist-in-Residence Daniel Boyd will be the featured presenter at the Rising Star Science Fiction Convention, October 23 and 24 at the Harris – Jefferson Student Center of Bluefield State College. Boyd will be discussing “Next–to–No-Budget Filmmaking in West Virginia” on Friday night. The talk will be a discussion of how he produced three low-budget films during the 1980s in a state not well known for its film industry. This will be followed by a twenty-fifth anniversary showing of his SF adventure, “Strangest Dreams: Invasion of the Space Preachers.”
On Saturday afternoon, he will be taking part in a discussion of independent comics. His third graphic novel, “Carbon” was released earlier this year. It’s sequel, “Salt” is currently in the planning stages.

Other creative talents from web and print comics include local artist/writer Dan Delby, Jason Pell, Glen Richardson, Chris Impink and Barb Fischer. Author guests include Kim Headlee, S. C. Houff, and Paul Dellinger. Artists attending include Jenn DePaola and Ashley Holohan.

A tentpole of the event is the annual appearance of the award-winning Bluefield State College Robotics Team. Well known and well-respected in the college robotics field, the team demonstrate their latest projects and innovations in the field of autonomous mechanisms.

Other items of interest include tradition tabletop, card and electronic games, anime, workshops, a vendors area and much more. The centerpiece of the event is a collectibles auction which raises funds toward the endowment of scholarships in the names of Jonathan David Miller and David Eugene Craig, founding members of the Bluefield State College Science Fiction Club. All proceeds from the auction go toward the goal of raising $10,000.00 to endow a $500.00 annual scholarship in the name of the honorees. A portion of any net profits from the convention itself will also be applied to this goal.

Doors open at 6:00 p.m. Friday evening, with programming starting at 7:00 p.m. and going on until roughly midnight. The doors reopen Saturday morning at 9:00 a.m. and are open until the end of the Saturday evening entertainment, which includes a concert by musical comedy group White Plectrum. Admission at the door for attendees six and up is $5.00 to the public. Students of Bluefield State College, as well as faculty and staff get in free.

 

Rising Star 23

West Virginia’s oldest convention, Rising Star, returns for another year.  October Friday 24th and Saturday 25th at the Bluefield State College (BSC) in Bluefield.  This will be Rising Star 23 and the theme for the year is Kaiju and celebrating the birthday of Godzilla.

Guests at the con are Beck Seashols (art of cute and LucasArts artist), R.S. Rob Belcher (author of Six gun Tarot), Chris DeHart (zombie make-up artist and props), Ashley Holohan (anthropomorphic artist), Kim Headlee (author of Dawnflight), Nicholas Anderson (blogger of WV Fandoms Blog), K.R. Thompson (author of The Keeper Saga), Andrew and Tiffany Ragland (FASA Corporation Game Reps), S. C. Houff (author of Spring Blessings: From the Files of the Department of the Arcane), Laura Lin (local paranormal author), Dan Delby (comic book author), Consortium 499 (filmmaker and alternate soundtracks), Paul Delinger (author of Dr. Lazarus & Other Stories), White Plectrum (filker and comedy), Studio Unseen (webcomic creators), plus Mark and Amanda Davis (local artists).

Groups attending include Strange Aeons (LARP), Pure Steam (steampunk gaming), Black Diamond Paranormal Society, Abingdon Historical Combat (renaissance-era combat instructors, BSC Robotics (award-winning robotics team), and the Rebel Legion’s Freedom Base (Star Wars costuming group).

Programming will include game demos, discussion panels, board gaming, anime viewing room, video gaming, dealers and artists, photo ops, costume contest, concert, charity auction, concessions, brony meet up, Werewolf games, workshops, and just generally hanging out with some of the old guard.  I will be running a game show on Saturday, so come check out Geek On to see who the biggest nerd is.  The charity auction on Saturday will raise money to establish the Johnny Miller and David Craig Memorial Scholarships.

A pass is only $5 at the door for both days.  BSC students, faculty, and staff get in free though.

Fans who like small events and many different fandoms will want to come check this out.

 

Rising Star 22

Rising Star is a sci-fi convention held on the campus of Bluefield State College in Bluefield.  It is a small and very relaxed style convention that covers many different fandoms.  This year’s event is on October 25th through the 26th.

Guests at this year’s con are Kim Headlee (Arthurian author), Ashley Holohan (furry artist), Mark and Amanda Davis (artists), Seth Banner (artist), Chris Impink and Barb Fischer (webcomic), Laura Lin (paranormal author), Dan Delby (comics), Paul Dellinger (UFO writer), Consortium 499 (musician), Pure Steam (steampunk gaming), the Bluefield State College Robotics Team, Strange AEON LARP, Black Diamond Paranormal Society, Sisters of Salem (paranormal group), Chris Dehart (make up artist), White Plectrum (filker), Abingdom Historical Combat, and the biggest start of all (read: full of flaming gas) myself.

Things to do and see at the con include an art show and auction, makeup demos, table top gaming, tournaments by Rare Hunters, dealers, art demos, video game tourneys by Game Stop, charity auction, dance party, fighting demos, LARPing, My Little Pony meetup, film fest, anime room, costume call, photo ops, music concerts, and various panels.  I will be holding a panel on “Nerd Music” and joining the panel on Doctor Who.    Food will be available on site for purchase.

Passes to the con are only $5. Students and staff of Bluefield State College get in free with a BSC ID.  This is something for fans who like small events and are more into events with substance instead of flashing events.

Nerdapalooza Night Review

Last Friday I drove down to Bluefield for the Nerdapalozza art show.

The show was held at a building known as the Dog House.  Inside is the vintage video game store Pixelnation Retro Game Store, Pinhead Tattoo parlor, and a little flea market with several comic book long boxes.  Old brick building that was a small warehouse, but has been mostly cleaned up very nicely.  The art exhibit was held in lounge area that had been cleaned up.  Overall a nice place for the event and look forward what else they do with the place for future events.

The artists at the event had created several different pieces with various styles.  They were reasonably priced as well, but I did not end up picking anything up.  Work with pixels, oils, crafts, comic inspired art, and several other nerdy inspired projects to check out.  Sam Franz, one artist I got to talk with, did several things about obsolete technology.  One thing he did was to take old tech (VHS tapes, cassettes, NES cartridges, a cell phone that looks just like the one I use) and make ceramics of them like they had been fossilized.  Pinhead Tattoos did a few tattoos during the show and people could watch it being done.

Razor Sharp studios was there selling several of their movies and did a screening of Porkchop 3D.  I ended up talking with friends for a long time and missed the showing, plus I am not a big horror movie fan.  Though watching a horror film in the back, dark, and dingy part of a warehouse (which they did) must have been the perfect atmosphere.

Jonah Knight‘s performed a number of songs at the show.  Unfortunately, the acoustics were not the best.  He played in the warehouse part, with brick walls all around, and it made it a little hard to hear especially when he talked between songs.  Even worse were people hanging around at the other end of room having their own conversations which was just rude and distracting.  But I still felt it was a good show and he was able to show off his skill and various songs he does.

The show was intimate and personal.  Everyone was friendly, meet new people, saw some old ones, and generally had a good time looking at the art.  The had some food and drinks set out to snack on which was tasty. I headed home around 10PM as things started to wind down and several other people were leaving.  Good to time and waiting to hear about the horror themed event they are working on next.

Nerdapalooza

Nerdapalooza is night of art inspired by comic books, video games, and general nerdiness.  Not to be confused with the nerd music festival in Florida of the same name.  It is June 7th at 6:30 PM at the The DogHouse in Bluefield (1217 Bluefield Ave).

Photo

The show will feature artwork from Mark Davis, Kevin Morris, Amanda Davis, Jacob Bigg Bailey who will be tattooing during the show, Sam Franz, Sean Osborne, Rob  Boone, Holly Boone, Corey Drake, Claw Hammerfark and Loren Morris.

There will also be a musical performance from Jonah Knight. Jonah is known for a range of songs from paranormal folk, supernatural steampunk, and creepy Christmas songs and one of my personal faves.

The Razor Sharp studios will be bringing some of their films for viewing.  Razor Sharp is a Charleston based film production company specializing in horror/comedy. Their feature films include “Catholic Ghoulgirls,” “Vampire Whores from Outer Space,” “Porkchop,” “Porkchops,” “Zombie Babies,” and “Porkchopp3D.”

Looks to be a good time to see some cool art, hear some cool music, and meet some nerdy people.