Wednesday, December 6, 2017

A Look at The Christmas Expo

By Gemma Cleanslate

The Relay’s Christmas is open for shopping, fun , building snowmen and riding through the sims on the sweetest horses. There are more than forty merchants displaying their wares. Some are in old New York shops along the avenues. Some have elected  large shops. As you wind down the various streets in and snow laden roads in the four sims there is a lot to see. Breedables occupy one region. A huge skating pond occupies the center of the four sims.  

Look for the Build a Snowman contest. It is a fun contest that takes place every year . That is S.I.D. waiting for snowmen.

”  Pick your spot in the snowman building area and start rolling that snow.  Simple, fancy, classic, wild… it is up to you what you do with your 30 prims. You have from Dec 1 – 5 to build your snowman, voting is held December 6 – 9  and winners are announced during a special Snowman Party  Sunday, Dec 9, 2017.  There are 2 categories –  Judges Picks and the Popular Vote, which is determined by donations to the Relay For Life Kiosk beside your snowman. 100% proceeds goes to Relay For Life of Second Life.”    

Be creative!!! Here is the place for that fun.

Santa will be roaming around and will be happy to hear your requests for gifts and to take  a picture with you . You might run into me . I am an elf also roaming and greeting .

The Christmas tree lot has so many gorgeous trees that were created just for the Expo. Get one or more. There are three !! This year the Breedables are having a silent auction all week but a live auction on the 10th of December. Gotyas are available too.

Expect parties and live perfomers too. It is a great week and the  sl Relay for Life will hopefully  earn money for cancer research and help for those experiencing the trauma in this season of giving. This is the entrance on the skating pond at one of the sims. Check the map so you don’t miss any areas.

Gemma Cleanslate

Friday, November 10, 2017

New Toulouse Ghost Hunt

By Gemma Cleanslate

The following is posted in on the home page of New Toulouse website.

“Following a sharp rise in reports of local hauntings, a fresh survey of ghostly activity is taking place in New Toulouse Parish.

The Spectral Activity Survey will continue through December 5, so be on the lookout for any haunts, spooks, wraiths, phantoms, specters, poltergeists, or other apparitions. Citizens who register 20 ghosts with the Beacon Spiritualist Institute will gain access to gifts organized by the Taloo Boosters Society.

“The ghosts of this parish, among them the oldest inhabitants of the area, have for too long been without a voice,” said Richard Mains, a recently deceased candidate for New Toulouse mayor. “Since many ghosts are housebound, we call upon the living to find us and tell our stories.”

The most recent survey of this type was undertaken in November 1914, when 2,720 spirits were reported in this parish.”

The parish has been fairly quiet since the hippopotamus scare (  ), but perhaps this is where all the ghosts and ghouls went after Halloween Night. 

I am always so happy when New Toulouse has a special “hunt" event. There is a story at every step that is so interesting . This time there are ghosts of past residents of the parish that will not or cannot leave their homes, perhaps out of love of the place, or just can’t get out. Some still have some contact in the sim, some are just completely lost.

I started by getting my Hud that will keep track of all the ghosts I do find. Each stop will introduce you to a new ghost that you really have to look for in some of the places. It took me a while in a few of the stops to find him or her.There is always so much to see in New Toulouse that is interesting in itself it is easy to get distracted. 

In the Chapel I got so interested in playing the organ and admiring it I got off track. I almost gave up because that was a hard spirit to find  but ran into Kenny (kennymcdee.korobase) and Janie (janie.broome) and we worked together on a couple of stops and helped each other. As Janie mentioned the voice dot sometimes gets in the way of recognizing the ghost! It really helps locate the ghost to use the region windlight. To take pictures I usually change so you can see the venues.

Each venue I visited I was able to find the ghost after a short time. There were a few that took longer because of the size of the venue and the many hiding places. Look up look down, climb stairs, open doors, you will find them and learn their fate. There are fun gifts after you finish the ghosts and are guided back to the Spiritualist institute to find the boxes. Little did I know that one of our reporters , Klaus, is involved in this region til I visited his shop looking for a spirit.

This region has so many fascinating artifacts scattered around it is a wonderful place to visit even when not much more than everyday living is going on. Every time I go I see shops and buildings I have not explored before. I always stop at the cemetery before I leave and get that News Orleans feeling. It is always a pleasure to visit . Have a great hunt. Ah, it is a good idea to take off the hud once in a while to save the ghosts and remember to use the Windlight of the region.

Gemma Cleanslate  

Saturday, November 4, 2017

More on Halloween 2017

By Bixyl Shuftan

Second Life can get wild at times. With the ability to look more or less like whatever you like, many take advantage of it. But there's just something about Halloween that encourages people to be wilder, those who otherwise wouldn't deciding to let their virtual hair down, and those whom already weren't afraid to act a little crazy are even less so. There were no shortage of Halloween-themed events and places in Second Life, only a fraction we could mention. And before we say goodbye to the spookiness, one more look.

Saturday October 28 had a number of events. One was the Pirate Gala at RFL Making Strides, raising cash for the cancer charity.

The MSABC Honor Gala continues with Maximillion Kleene taking the stage at 3pm.
Attire- pirate/ wenches/ old-world or just come as you are! Raffles, live auction and more!

Maximillion himself came as a ghost. He certainly put a lot of spirit in his music.

Furry Fashion had a special Halloween area, which we wrote about earlier. On Saturday and Sunday, they moved their parties from their lounge to there. I managed to make their "Dark Parade."

Do you have any plans to see a parade today? Come be a part of one! Dress up for the Dark Parade that's happening now, or come listen to the music!

Nightmares and demons - the Furry Fashion Lounge has protection against their arise. Halftime is here, and it almost time to depart! Come join the Dark Parade, suit up in your darkest attire and enlist at this event now for the L$1,000 prize! It's a special commemoration in a special lounge! Get your new landmark to the halloween-themed lounge and let the parade continue through tonight! With DJ Bengt's music, we'll carry on!

Also on October 28, there was a "War of the Worlds" concert to help raise funds for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer. The event was high above the Rajasthan sim. The musical was based on the radio drama broadcasted in 1938, which created a panic as it sounded like an actual newscast.

Jeff Wayne's musical version of the scary classic story will be "performed" by the RingSlingers, with all donations going to Making Strides Against Breast Cancer and the American Cancer Society. Remember, "the chances of anything coming from Mars is a million to one, he said"...the chances of being diagnosed with breast cancer is 8 to 1!

The Gotham Island event at Creations for Parkinson's, which had been going on all month, was in full swing. There were some acts on stage going on Saturday, "All aboard the Crazy Train!"

There were a number in the audience, including Barbie Alchemi, the owner of Creations (as the minimap shows, this screenshot was taking in an intermission between acts).

On October 30, there was a Halloween parade in the Enchanted Adventured sim, named the "Parade of Nightmares."

The fires are lit, the cauldrons are bubbling. Crypt doors are creaking and tombstones are quaking. That must mean only one thing, it's Halloween season! Join us today at 2 PM on Mean Street for the ghoulish delights of Parade of Nightmares. Don't be one of those poor unfortunate souls that misses a delightfully devilish good time!

There were a number of Disney villains, some static, some played by avatars. The one doing the part of Cruella noticed me, "How do you like my coat. It's made from, fox." Boo-hiss!

Jack Sparrow also waved to the audience.

Oogie Boogie, the antagonist in "The Nightmare Before Christmas," invited me to spin his roulette wheel (in the movie, he ties Santa Claus to it). With Oogie Boogie's connection to insects, I asked, "Is it bugged?" Oggie answered, "No more than usual."

Club Cutlass has no Tuesday events, so the club had it's Halloween party on Tuesday, with the place all decked out in ghosts and spiderwebs and the floor covered in a spooky fog. Shockwave Yareach was the DJ that night, spinning a number of Halloween tunes and a couple of his music parodies.

Sunday Oct 29 had the Temple Burn. While not exactly a Halloween event, it was the main event that day.

 At the Happy Vixen, DJ Scratch did a "bewitching" performance at the Early Halloween party.

And DJ Squeaks (Brandi Streusel) did a "Dark" event, those invited to the dark side being offered cookies.

Halloween had the Creepy Crawl, organized by Xiola Linden. I missed most of it due to real life, but did catch the "Pumpkin Fight."

Taking place in the Pumpkin Fight Arena, Linden Lab didn't try to hide, much, that the game was the snowball fight given a Halloween look, the guns doing the same things.

 Normal players had a choice of pistols and rifles, pistols launching someone into the air when scoring a hit. Premium players had a rifle which would temporarily trap someone. I caught this screenshot at 3PM, when the fireworks went off.

The whole place had an erie look, a perpetual dusk with dim orange skies and shady ground.

After the Pumpkin fight, Safra Nitely, a friend of the Newser, had a party for her Darkwing group and friends. Bony arms reached up, as if trying to grab someone, or perhaps wanting someone to pull them up to join the party.

 "No, you're not getting my pizza!"

There were outfits of a number of kinds, this girl having on a simple mask. My friend ShadowRene Ivanova won the prize up for grabs.

There would be a number of places having Halloween parties that night, Furry Fashion had a big bash. But the whopper was the six hour marathon event held at the Happy Vixen's Haunted Woods.

Come one, come all to the Final Halloween Event of the Year at Happy Vixen! We're rocking the night away with not one, not two but 3 rocking Dj's spanning 6 hours of Halloween mayhem. We have DJ Naughty Nydia, DJ Squeaks and a rare treat for one and all. DJ Jasmine Hornycorn. If this lineup isn't enough to wet your musically inclined sweet tooth, we're throwing down a massive 5000L prize to be sliced down the middle for all the creeps and deadies. Shall be a night to die for! Need a date? Borrow a shovel and dig one up! Creep, crawl, slither, flap or just appear like a spook and help us rock the night away at Happy Vixen Haunted Woods on Halloween night!

Actually, it was eight hours of music, with a separate "Black and Red" event at the start with DJ Geerkil, appearing as an anthro dracolich, along with JB Racoon, of which he shared some playful banter with at times.

Then at 6PM, Brandi took over the DJ booth for two hours, followed at 8PM by her partner Nydia Tungsten, the owner of the Happy Vixen.

Nydia and Brandi were both in darkfur that night, which doesn't happen often.

 The last two hours of the event were handled by Jasmine Dawn, who built the Haunted Woods.

Initially, the prize was going to be 7000 Lindens, split into 3500 each for a separate male and female board. But some in the audience kept adding to it. In the end, the prize was a whopping 20,000 Lindens, or about $80 USD. Kanhk Windstorm won the top prize for the men, while Salurielle Shinigami (ShadowRenee Ivanova), and Mato (Matoazma Kazyanenko) split the women's prize.

Jasmine had DJed a few years ago in the past, so this was a one of a kind event with her, "And that my friends is the first and last time you shall see me dj here in this wonderful venue here at Happy Vixen. ... The music may end but you all have made me some wonderful memories." Nydia appreciated her music, and especially the haunted forest, "Jas, on behalf of 'White Vixen Enterprises' I would like to thank you for all you have done for this year's Halloween event."

The Haunted Woods had been scheduled to go down after Halloween. But people asked that it stay up a little longer.

 So the woods got a reprieve, staying up a little longer.

 But not forever. After the 7-9PM event on Sunday night, the woods fades back into the virtual mists from whence they came.

 After that, these few pictures are what will remain to remind others of Jasmine's handiwork.

And so, we say goodbye to Halloween 2017 in Second Life. It had it's share of tricks, with the lag and real life butting in. But it had plenty of treats.

Addition: Originally I had Nydia starting up the big party at the Happy Vixen, followed by Brandi. This has been corrected.

Bixyl Shuftan

Monday, October 30, 2017

Burn2: Getting The Burning Man Alight

By Klaus Bereznyak

Saturday 28 October at 1600hrs the traditional Man Burn ceremony started on the Burn2 playa with the lamplighters turning out to dance to eclectic ethnic beats provided by Dj Cuga Rajal.  Each year, the festival reaches its climax and conclusion as the landmark Man and Temple are set on fire and burned to the ground in separate ceremonies. To give organizers the best chance of success at the Man Burn, scheduled for 1700hrs, the Black Rock sim was closed to all but the Man Builders and Burn2 Rangers. Spectators gathered at strategic vantage points on the edges of adjoining sims where a good view could be had of the flammable wooden Man in its surrounding 'Temple of the Golden Spike'.

However, after the lamplighters had walked off the area, leaving it to the Man Team to start the fire, crews ran into technical difficulties with scripts on the sim. A lively camaraderie settled on the crowd, waiting in the certainty that it was going to be an "awesome burn". Calls went out for builders on Black Rock to temporarily turn off scripts on their builds, AVs shed their Animation Overrides to minimize lag, and spectators were requested not to try camming in and touching the Man while the team was working on it.

To pass the time, refreshments and other free stuff was shared among the punters, and helpful suggestions about rubbing sticks together or throwing a zippo out to the team were made. Someone was even picking a banjo. Generally everyone stayed upbeat and, as one AV commented, "I'm content sitting here in the glow of radical inclusion." Down on the ground, over in Black Rock, the Man Team worked steadily in the dark at the base of the Man, who continued to defy their efforts to set it alight.

At 1738hrs, nearly 40 minutes after schedule, iSkye finally announced, "BURN IS READY!". The crowd primed their cameras and, moments later, a series of explosions went off around the Man, followed by the red flicker of a flame. The whole structure was quickly engulfed in flames and began to break apart as ground crew hurried out of the way of falling debris and the crowd whooped with delight. It was over in a few minutes; the remains of the man lay smoldering on the desert floor and everyone agreed it was a great "burn!"

The Temple Burn was scheduled for Sunday, beginning with a lamplighter's procession at 1000hrs. The Temple burns at (approximately) 11:00am and this was preceded by a public readout of all the messages that had been posted in the Temple Censer during the week. For those missing the first event, there was the chance to see that again at 1600hrs, with the Temple being ignited at 1700hrs. The best view of these was from Black Rock, along the sim edge.

Although the events schedule concluded on Sunday, all the builds are staying up through to the 4th November for visitors to admire and enjoy, and 'Skin Burn', a reprise of the Man Burn, will take place on Saturday the 4th at 1100hrs and 1700hrs.

The Temple SLURL:
The Man SLURL:
Main Entrance SLURL:
Events Program:
Flickr Group:

Klaus Bereznyak

* * * * *

Addition: Bixyl Shuftan contributed a few pictures.

 The crowd just before the burning of "The Man."

"The Man" just before the burn. "Should we save The Man from being burned?" the crowd was asked, "Or do we let him burn?" The crowd of course wanted fire, "Burn him!" "Let him Burn!" One person spoke, "Yes, let him burn, but burn him with *love.*"

 The first few lights.

And "The Man" becomes aflame.

 The fire quickly spreads.

And it isn't long before "The Man" is in pieces, sooner than in most previous burns Yours truly remembers.

The supporting structure continues to burn.

Marianne McCann and Pygar Bu watch the fire from next to the plunger, which they apparently pressed to start the fire.

 Those nearby are invited to go up and enter the fire.

"Anyone up for a game of pickup sticks?"