Sunday, October 11, 2015

Louisiana Comic Con coming to Lafayette Oct. 17-18

            Louisiana Comic Con is coming to Lafayette this weekend (Oct. 17-18), a two-day blast of writers, actors, vendors and fan groups at the Cajundome Convention Center. Sean Gunn from “Guardians of the Galaxy” and “Gilmore Girls” will be there as well as Lew Temple from “The Walking Dead,” Sean Patrick Flanery and David Della Rocco from “Boondock Saints” and comics professionals Joe Rubinstein, Mike Huddleston, Andy Kuhn and Roland Paris. Rob Guillory, award-winning author of “Chew” and Kody Chamberlain, author of “Punks” and “Sweets,” are both artists from Lafayette. The family friendly events will be from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $15 per day or $25 for the weekend, children eight and under $5 per day. Tickets are available only through Ticketmaster or the Cajundome Box Office. For more information, visit

Think you can spell better than the person to your right? Give those brain cells a workout and compete for a good cause. The fifth annual Spell-a-bration! Fundraiser, a spelling bee with a game show approach, will be Nov. 19 at the Lafayette Science Museum, with funds benefitting the Lafayette Library Foundation. Proceeds from previous Spell-a-bration! events helped underwrite the design concept, creation and installation for the children’s entrance at the newly renovated Main Library. The proceeds of this year’s event benefits Lafayette Reads Together, a community-wide reading event for Lafayette. For tickets and more information, visit

New releases
            John Kennedy Toole’s Pulitzer Prize–winning novel “A Confederacy of Dunces” introduced the world to the eccentric and food-loving character Ignatius J. Reilly. In addition to the character’s job stint pushing Lucky Dogs through the quarter, the book offers a few gastronomical looks into the Crescent City. Now, LSU Press, who published the novel in the 1970s, and author Cynthia LeJeune Noble offer us “A Confederacy of Dunces Cookbook: Recipes from Ignatius J. Reilly’s New Orleans” with 200 recipes and narrative inspired by the novel. Dishes include Ignatius’s favorites, such as macaroons and “toothsome” steak, as well as recipes based on supporting characters. For instance, there’s Officer Mancuso’s Pork and Beans and Dr. Talc’s Bloody Marys, as well as a guide to the D. H. Holmes Department Store’s legendary chicken salad and the likely offerings of the fictitious German’s Bakery. Nobles, who lives in Baton Rouge, is also the author of “The Delta Queen Cookbook,” is a series editor for The Southern Table, food columnist for the Advocate and a member of the Newcomb College Culinary History Writers Group. She will be signing “A Confederacy of Dunces Cookbook” at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Garden District Book Shop in New Orleans and Lucky Dog owner Jerry Strahan will be on hand with a Lucky Dog Cart.

Patio Party
A couple of weeks ago I mentioned Johnette Downing’s lovely new children’s book, “Louisiana, the Jewel of the Deep South.” As part of her book launch, there will be a “Patio Party” for young children and their families from noon to 2 p.m. today at the Old State Capitol in Baton Rouge. Educator Claire Coco and animals from BREC’s Bluebonnet Swamp will also be on hand for the event held in conjunction with the museum’s exhibition, “Patios, Pools and the Invention of the American Backyard,” visiting from The Smithsonian Institution until Nov. 28.  The free program is open to the general public.

Book events
            I’ll be signing copies of my book of Acadiana ghost tales, “Haunted Lafayette, Louisiana,” and “Forest Hill, Louisiana: A Bloom Town History” from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Oct. 17, at 1921 Jackson Street coffeeshop in Alexandria.
            An Evening with Authors Neal Shirley and Saralee Stafford begins at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 13, at the Mid-City Library of New Orleans. The duo are authors of “Dixie Be Damned: 300 Years of Insurrection in the American South.”
Joshua Clegg Caffery will discuss his new book of poetry, “In the Creole Twilight: Poems and Songs from Louisiana Folklore,” from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 13, at Lafayette Parish Main Library’s meeting room. The lecture is part of the Bayou State Book Talks.
The Jeanerette Museum will host “Indian Mounds Along Bayou Teche” by Mark Rees, an archaeologist and director of the Louisiana Public Archaeology Lab and Nalley Board of Regents Support Fund Professor of Social Sciences at UL Lafayette, at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 14. Rees is the author of “Archaeology of Louisiana” and the lecture is in conjunction with Archaeology Month. This free program is suitable for adults, and seating may be limited. Contact the Jeanerette Museum at (337) 276-4408 or for more information.
On Wednesday, Oct. 14, Robert S. Brantley, author of “Henry Howard: Louisiana’s Architect” (The Historic New Orleans Collection and Princeton Architectural Press), will visit the West Baton Rouge Museum to discuss the area courthouses and other properties designed by Howard (1818-1884). The presentation, which is free and open to the public, will take place at noon and a book signing will follow. 

John Pope launches his collection of newspaper obituaries from The Times-Picayune, titled “Getting Off at Elysian Fields” at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 15, at Octavia Books of New Orleans.
Lafayette Author Constance Monies will sign her books “A House For Eliza” and “Never Say Goodbye” from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Friday at Teche Drugs Pharmacy, 509 Jefferson St. in downtown Lafayette. Books will be available in the store.
            Alice J. Voorhies will sign copies of her latest book, “Once Upon a Time in New Iberia” from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 17, at Books Along the Teche in New Iberia, in conjunction with the city’s Artwalk.