October overloaded with activities


Maybe it’s the cooler weather.

Whatever it is, October is filled with more sports and regional events than I’ve seen in a long time. There are so many things to see and do that it’s creating scheduling conflicts across my calendar and probably yours as well.

The biggest conflicts came last weekend as I had to juggle my timing to cover the Astros in their divisional playoff against Tampa Bay and the Sugar Land Skeeters in their Atlantic League Championship Series against the Long Island Ducks. Along with that, Oct. 5 was the Come and Take It celebration in Gonzales. Although that’s not a local event, it is one of the major re-enactments I go to as a volunteer in the Texas Army. Sunday brought with it the Houston Texans game against Atlanta, followed by Game 5 of the Skeeters-Ducks championship series.

Losing out was a chance to see Neal McCoy at the Fort Bend County Fair. He was there Friday night and I really wanted to see him. Alas, when it comes to choices, sometimes you have to make sacrifices, especially in a time crunch.

The weekend of Oct. 11-13 is not as hectic but has potential conflicts. The priority will be coverage of the Austin County Fair. There are four key events I really want to cover. They include the parade, the rodeo, the Urban Cowboy Reunion concert with Mickey Gilley and Johnny Lee, and John Michael Montgomery’s concert. Covering those, however, will likely mean I don’t cover the American League Championship Series, assuming the Astros make it.

The following weekend of Oct. 18-20 brings the Fandemic Tour Comic Con to Houston, along with the Wings Over Houston airshow. I’m really excited about both of these. Airshows are always a big thrill and Wings Over Houston is one of the biggest and best in the nation. I very rarely miss this one.

Fandemic is a new comic con in only its second year. I love going to comic cons and this one promises to deliver some very cool celebrity guests. I recently had an opportunity to visit with Fandemic CEO John Macaluso, who said the show at NRG Center is going to be fantastic.

Celebrity guests include Sebastian Stan (Captain America: Civil War, Avengers: infinity War, Gossip Girl), Milo Ventimiglia (This Is Us, Gilmore Girls, Heroes), the Phelps Twins (James and Oliver Phelps – the Harry Potter series), Sean Astin (Lord of the Rings, Rudy, Stranger Things), Jon Bernthal (Punisher, The Walking Dead), Summer Glau (Firefly, Terminator: The Sarah Conner Chronicles), Emmy Raver-Lampman (The Umbrella Academy), Tom Hopper (The Umbrella Academy, Merlin, Game of Thrones), Houston’s own Jason David Frank (Power Rangers), Houston native Sean Patrick Flanery (The Boondock Saints, Dexter), Ray Park (Star Wars, X-Men), Charles Martinet (Nintendo voice actor), Cooper Andrews (The Walking Dead, Shazam), Pollyanna McIntosh (The Walking Dead), Kevin Sorbo (Hercules, Andromeda), and a reunion of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer cast, including Amber Benson, Juliet Landau, James Masters, Emma Caulfield, Clare Kramer and James Leary.

Although called a tour, Houston is the show’s only stop. Macaluso said the show may eventually tour, but for now Houston is big enough.

“There are 9.3 million people and only one other show,” he said in reference to Comicpalooza. “People are excited we’re coming back.”

With a comic con being just a couple weeks before Halloween, Macaluso said it’s a perfect time for cosplayers can casual fans to give their costumes a test run.

“We highly recommend people come in costume,” he said.

I was not able to make last year’s event but plan to this year. I will have to split time with Wings Over Houston, which this year features the Air Force Thunderbirds, the Canadian Forces Snowbirds, Team Oracle with stunt pilots Sean Tucker and Jessy Panzer, and the popular Tora! Tora! Tora! Pearl Harbor re-enactment with pyrotechnics. That weekend is going to be a thrilling adventure!

The Tuesday after that is the start of the World Series, which will very likely be a match-up between the Astros and Dodgers.

Oct. 26 is Texian Market Days at George Ranch Historical Park in Richmond. I will once again be there with other members of the Texas Army doing demonstrations and am also on call to work the booth for the Fort Bend County Historical Commission, of which I am a member. The next day I’ll be back at NRG Stadium for the Texans as they host the Raiders.

If all of that were not enough, we are already into the 45th season of the Texas Renaissance Festival. My son Luke is working there for this third season. My wife Sandy is making plans for us to go several times, but I don’t know where on the calendar I can squeeze it in this month. Maybe this Sunday? Definitely in November.

Now, I know some of you have caught on that most of these events are regional and not local to Austin County. Don’t worry, we’ve got that covered, too. The Sealy News is again holding Bras for a Cause at Saddleback Saloon on Oct. 26, and Boo Bash downtown on Halloween. And peeking ahead into November, San Felipe de Austin State Historic Site and Museum is holding the annual Father of Texas celebration.

The fun never ends, and I encourage you to get out and have some fun now that the weather has cooled off a bit.

(Faith, Family & Fun is a personal column by Joe Southern. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of The Sealy News, its staff or advertisers.)


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