This is my third Comic-con in a row being from Austin and a party blogger for SXSW, you could consider me an expert at parties off-site from the conventions. I was disappointed to find out the Wired CAFE would not be returning for their 3-day bash and had to find something. Thankfully I was able to find an event at the luxurious Fluxx night club in San Diego. Xlevelent hosted a 3-day party from Wednesday to Friday night each day had its own theme.

The club itself was set up each night to represent the theme for each event. My first night there I was thrust into the world of ready player one. The second (my favorite) I was transported to the upside-down. And for the final third night, we were treated to the awesome mixer that was themed after Marvel and the guardians of the galaxy. What set this event apart was the sheer star power that these events were able to obtain. Each night there was a red carpet for special guests such as RJ Word, Dan Fogler and King of Rap, Darryl “DMC” Mcdaniels. An even better surprise was the Celebrities that came to the party with the Vip crowd. From the cast of Agents of Shield to the Workaholics Crew.

Everyone wanted to show up to these parties during ComicCon. Of course, the best part was not needing a badge to attend just a ticket purchase. The music was top-notch several different Dj’s, the 80’s cover band the Flux capacitors, Dan Fogler and Darryl “DMC” all performed for us. We can’t wait to see what they will do next year. Hopefully, they will think about coming to my neck of the woods and doing an event for SXSW but not sure if they’re ready for 14 days of madness…or are they?

Photos by Terry Flemings

This year Amazon decided to up the madness by not having just one or two activations but three all in one giant area. I was invited to a special press preview on Wednesday to see the madness first hand and without all the lines. The installations for this year consisted of The Expanse, returning for another season, and two brand new shows, The Boys and Carnival Row. Upon entering you are greeted by the extra friendly staff who give out tokens that could be used for a variety of snacks, such as kettle corn, fruit cups, pretzel bites, and my favorite Churros.

And an extra special treat for the media folks was the free Carls Jr burgers and fries. I was in heaven and even tried the new beyond burger because let’s face it at Comicon this would be my only healthy meal.

The first Activation was based on their hit show the Expanse. We were loaded into what looks like a spacecraft after a briefing from our commanders we exited and were transported to an alien world as un peacekeepers to find out what’s going on with the “belters” who were accused of attacking settlers. After some conversations with prisoners, we heard loud inhuman noise and quickly had to leave. Once over we received this lovely show branded mugs. After that, I went to The Boys installation. A brand new show coming out this week based on the Comic book by the same name (top comic in my list). We went inside to a full setup electronic store where a car had crashed through. We were briefed that we were to help the boys hide the crime of defeating a superhero. Once over we got a nice branded pin.

Unfortunately, I was not able to complete carnival Row due to prior engagements but I hear it was the best one. Smack dab in the middle of the area was the large glass pyramid structure where we were treated to special acts based on the three shows. If the shows are even half as good as the activation Amazon prime will be a force to reckon with when it comes to streaming televison.

Photos by Terry Flemings

Here’s the RSVPS we have been waiting for hope to see you all there.

IGN’s Official SDCC Party featuring The Expanse: Belter Party
What: Dedicated to our fellow humans born on the Asteroid Belt, this party will feature cosmic cocktails and delicious eats that are out of this world. Attendees will dance the night away with select cast members of The Expanse.
When: Thursday, July 18 Time TBD
Where: The Amazon Prime Video Experience at Comic-Con, MLK and 1st, San Diego, CA 92101
Important Info: For our parties, 21+ to attend, ID required.

The Boys: World Premiere Fan Screening and Party
What: Cast & creators of The Boys will join fans for an exclusive 2-episode sneak preview ahead of the series premiere.
When: Friday, July 19 from 7 p.m. – 11:30 p.m. PT
Where: The Amazon Prime Video Experience at Comic-Con, MLK and 1st, San Diego, CA 92101
Important Info: For our parties, 21+ to attend, ID required.
The series is rated MA.
PUBLIC / GENERAL ADMISSION RSVP: https://rsvptheboys.eventbrite.com

Carnival Row: Come As You Are Party
What: Come as you are! Whoever you choose to be, your individuality will be celebrated at this closing celebration of the 50th Annual San Diego Comic-Con. As you enjoy a drink or a few, be on the lookout for characters from Carnival Row, enjoy a sneak peek of the upcoming series, and dance to live DJ performance.
When: Saturday, July 20 from 7 p.m. – 11:30 p.m. PT
Where: The Amazon Prime Video Experience at Comic-Con, MLK and 1st, San Diego, CA 92101
Important Info: For our parties, 21+ to attend formal ID required.
PUBLIC / GENERAL ADMISSION RSVP: https://rsvpcarnivalrow.eventbrite.com

Fans will be Transported into the Worlds of the Amazon Original Series The Boys, The Expanse and Carnival Row through an Immersive Activation Designed to Captivate Customers with Live Performances and Experiences Inspired by the Shows

The Amazon Prime Video Experience will also Host Exclusive Parties and The Official Fan Premiere of The Boys
Amazon Prime Video’s Panel Line-up Includes Cast & Creators from New and Returning Series, Including Orlando Bloom and Cara Delevingne from Carnival Row, Karl Urban and Jack Quaid from The Boys, the stars of The expanse, Undone, The Man in The High Castle and More.


THE AMAZON PRIME VIDEO EXPERIENCE
The Amazon Prime Video Experience will celebrate the new Amazon Original series The Boys and Carnival
Row, as well as the upcoming fourth season of The Expanse, with an immersive 60,000 square-foot activation
located across from the San Diego Convention Center. The Amazon Prime Video Experience will be open from
Thursday, July 18 through Sunday, July 21, with a special preview day open, to press on Wednesday, July 17.
Located on the corner of MLK and 1st, fanboys and fangirls will be drawn into the Amazon Prime Video
An experience by the sight of a 40-foot tower adorned with giant LED screens that will be playing scenes from The
Boys, Carnival Row, and The Expanse. Comic-Con attendees will also be treated to live, show-specific
performances taking place atop the multi-level tower.

Once inside, attendees will receive collectible gold and silver coins which they can use to further explore the activation. Fans can begin their day covering up the crime scene of a superhero kidnapping at the Audio Visual shop where Hughie works on The Boys. On the opposite end of the space, a Rocinante spaceship is positioned that will take adventure-seekers on a United Nations peacekeeping mission to a newly colonized planet seen in The Expanse. Guests can also discover the Carnival Row universe in which humans and exotic creatures coexist before entering The Forbidden Lounge, a neo-Victorian decorated hideaway venue, to enjoy a special performance. Amazon Prime Video collaborated with LG within the series activations to provide a premiere viewing experience for attendees.

After exploring the shows, guests can escape the summer heat and relax under a tented awning with refreshing beverages and a selection of mouthwatering bites, including Carl’s Jr., which will provide burgers on-site for press and fans as part of The Boys campaign. Cosplayers can even find a Cosplay Photography
Corner within the walls of the Amazon Prime Video Experience, where a lifestyle photographer will be onsite to take professional portraits as digital takeaways.

images provided by Prime Video

   

FB: /AmazonPrimeVideo
IG: AmazonPrimeVideo
TW: @PrimeVideo

The third and final day. I must admit that I am very sad to see this epic party come to a close. Day 3 at the WIRED Café included celebrity guests Holland Taylor (Mr. Mercedes), David Harbour and Matthew Modine (Stranger Things), Michael Rooker (Guardians of the Galaxy), Graham McTavish (Preacher), Ricky Whittle (American Gods) and more! DJ Artistic helped bring the house down by starting an amazing dance party worthy of any good con. I’ve been to countless parties for SXSW with some of the biggest brands sponsoring them and Wired is king among them. Thank you for having us out a our first comic and showing us Texans a great time.

What a day we had at the Wired Cafe, costume dance-off and cake, what more could you ask for? Day 2 at the WIRED Café included a special celebration where Jamie Chung (The
Gifted) and Nicholas Thompson (WIRED Editor-in-Chief) cut the 10th Anniversary cake
to the tunes of happy birthday while guests cheered with a champagne toast.

Other celebrity guests in attendance included, Jimmi Simpson (Westworld), Caleb
McLaughlin and Finn Wolfhard (Stranger Things), Tim Roth (Twin Peaks), James Van Der
Beek (What Would Diplo Do?) and more!

He still knew nothing

Lady Deadpool Dance Champ

Jamie Chung (The Gifted) and Nicholas Thompson (WIRED Editor-in-Chief)

Delicious Ice cream

11 has turned into a 20

Best hatpin at the Con

People just cant get enough

 

*photo credit by Terry Flemings

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We started our day off right with some delicious bites and cold drinks at the annual Wired Cafe. The opening day of WIRED Café included celebrity guests, Justin Theroux (Lego Ninjago), Dave Franco (Lego Ninjago), Katheryn Winnick (Vikings),the Teen Wolf (Tyler Posey) and Timeless (Abigail Spencer) casts and more! We’ve been to a lot of events and parties through out the years but Wired Cafe has really out done themselves. We cant wait to see what or most importantly, who day two will bring.

 

 

*photo credit to Terry Flemings.

Come see Originator Studios and celebrate the opening of Austin’s first VR Arcade!
Get your virtual swords ready…for this free one night only event, they want you to take a slice at FRUIT NINJA VR!

All ages are welcome to join, and they will have a free Austin East Cider for the adults.
They will be tracking high scores throughout the night. Who knows, you may even take home a prize!

Tomorrow at 6 PM – 10 PM

If you would like information on booking a session at the VR Arcade, please visit http://www.originatorstudios.com/vr-arcade or email them at innfo@originatorstudios.com

Originator VR Arcade
718 Northwestern Ave
Austin, TX 78702

        This past month on 4/20, I was lucky enough to be invited to attend the 1st annual 4/20 on the block celebration in Denver, Colorado. A one day celebration of Denver’s thriving cannabis community that took place at 6 different music venues in downtown Denver. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect other than a bunch of stoners hanging around downtown. However I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of hard work, talent and dedication I observed while enjoying some great music and meeting cannabis entrepreneurs. The festival kicked off at (what other time could it be?) 4:20 pm, I then spent most of my time in a two story venue called City Hall.

Inside, there were about 25-30 different vendors representing many different facades of the growing cannabis industry. From clothing designers to travel guides and accountants to candy makers , I was quite impressed with the number of cannabis related occupations that have come about since the state legalized.

 

 

 

 

Later in the evening began the music portion of the festival with headliners such as Blockhead, Cut Chemist and Del the funky homosapien. The way the acts where scheduled reminded me of sxsw where multiple venues in same block where host of the acts. There where 6 venues on the block and between each venue where consumption buses, a legal place to consume and smoke cannabis products. Public consumption is still a no no under their new law, however that just made way for a new industry, the consumption bus. It’s legal to consume cannabis inside private, for-hire vehicles (as long as you’re not the driver). Colorado’s “open container” rules for marijuana, enacted last year, track those for alcohol. Both make exceptions for motor homes and for “the passenger area of a motor vehicle designed, maintained, or used primarily for the transportation of persons for compensation.”

There where also visual artist and comediennes at one of the venues. Perhaps my only complaint was that it was a little much just for one day and would have been better suited as a two day festival. 420 on the Block was defiantly a postive eye opener into the growing cannabis industry, most importantly it was a ballin event.

This weekend we found ourselves fortunate to be invited to AIM fest aka the Austin instrumental music fest. A one day long musical showcase at the Empire control room with 2 stages and 20 acts. In its third year it has grown from a mere less than 100 in attendance to over 500. The ticket price was $25 and let me tell you, you got your money’s worth.

I didn’t really know what to expect from the music but was blown away by what I heard. From a bit of classical to jazz to heavy metal and some fantastic 8bit music I was not disappointed. My only regret was having to run errands and getting there late. My personal favorite band of the night had to be Bitforce. A power-trio with superhuman abilities that fights the evil of the universe with their tasty nerdcore groove as self-described on their facebook but I agree.

I hope that this fest continues to grow each year, it’s definitely underrated and underappreciated. This is the type of festival that makes Austin such a cool place to keep living in. We at Ballin most certainly cannot wait till next year.