Choosing the Best Concertina for Beginners

The concertina, a free-reed musical instrument, is celebrated for its distinctive sound and versatility across various musical genres. For beginners, selecting the right concertina can significantly impact the learning experience and overall enjoyment. Understanding the differences between the types and models is crucial in finding the best fit. This guide explores the essential aspects to consider when choosing a concertina for beginners.

     Concertinas come in several types, each with its own distinctive features and playing styles. The three primary types are the Anglo, English, and Duet concertinas. Here’s a brief overview of each:

  1. Anglo Concertina:
  • Layout: Diatonic (different notes on push and pull).
    • Key Systems: Commonly in C/G or G/D.
    • Music Suitability: Ideal for folk music, especially Irish and English traditional music.
    • Learning Curve: Easier for beginners due to its intuitive note layout corresponding with folk music structures.
  1. English Concertina:
  • Layout: Chromatic (same note on push and pull).
    • Key Systems: Standardized across all models.
    • Music Suitability: Versatile, suitable for classical, folk, and other genres.
    • Learning Curve: A bit more complex due to its uniform scale but offers greater musical flexibility.
  1. Duet Concertina:
  • Layout: Chromatic, with separate sides for melody and accompaniment.
    • Key Systems: Various systems (e.g., MacCann, Hayden, Crane).
    • Music Suitability: Best for solo performances where melody and harmony are played simultaneously.
    • Learning Curve: Most complex for beginners but highly rewarding once mastered.

     Several factors should influence the decision when choosing a concertina. Budget is a significant consideration, with entry-level models typically ranging from $300 to $800. It is important to find a balance between quality and affordability. Build quality is another critical factor; look for concertinas made with durable materials and good craftsmanship. Reliable brands for beginners include Hohner, Stagi, and Rochelle. Ease of play is essential, so ensure that the buttons are responsive and the bellows operate smoothly. Testing different models can help find one that feels comfortable and intuitive. Additionally, consider your musical goals; if you are interested in Irish folk music, an Anglo concertina in C/G or G/D would be a suitable choice, while an English concertina offers broader versatility for various musical styles.

     Several models stand out as excellent choices for beginners. The Rochelle Anglo Concertina, priced around $400-$500, features a 30-button C/G system, responsive action, and durable construction. It is affordable and produces good sound quality, making it ideal for folk music. However, it is limited to C/G tuning and is heavier than more expensive models. The Hohner D40 Anglo Concertina, available for around $300-$400, offers a 20-button system in C/G. It is budget-friendly with decent build quality, though its fewer buttons limit its musical range. The Stagi English Concertina, priced around $600-$800, comes with a 30-button chromatic system. It is versatile and suitable for various musical styles, making it a good entry-level English concertina, though it has a higher price point and larger learning curve.

     As a beginner, it’s crucial to have access to quality learning resources. Here are some recommendations:

  1. Instructional Books and DVDs:
  2. Books like “The Concertina Guide” by Mick Bramich for Anglo concertina players.
  3. “The English Concertina: A Tutor” by Frank Butler for English concertina learners.
  1. Online Tutorials:
  2. Websites such as offer forums, tutorials, and sheet music.
  3. YouTube channels dedicated to concertina playing can provide visual and auditory learning aids.
  1. Local Teachers and Workshops:
  2. If possible, find a local teacher who can offer personalized instruction.
  3. Attend workshops and festivals to connect with other concertina players and gain practical experience.

     Proper maintenance is essential to ensure the longevity and performance of a concertina. Regular cleaning involves wiping down the exterior after each use to remove dust and sweat and storing the instrument in a dry, cool place to avoid moisture damage. Periodic servicing by a professional helps maintain optimal performance, and any issues with buttons, reeds, or bellows should be addressed promptly.

     In conclusion, choosing the best concertina for beginners involves considering your budget, musical goals, and the type of music you wish to play. The Rochelle Anglo Concertina and the Stagi English Concertina offer a good balance of quality and affordability, making them excellent starting points. With the right instrument, quality learning resources, and proper care, you will be well on your way to mastering this delightful instrument. Happy playing!

4 True Events That Came Out of Cinema

Major historical events have inspired the cinema for so long. Often, filmmakers, to spice things up, opt to show few details, while omitting another perspective of the story. This does increase the footfall in the cinemas, but doesn’t it stop people from knowing everything there’s needed to know?

With that said, the same cinema industry has bestowed us with so many unbiased historical movies. Our generation, especially, has to come to know about so many historical events via movies that we wouldn’t know otherwise.

We’ve gathered some top-class historical movies for you to watch. You’ll find plenty of movies in this article that may become a source of education for you.

But before moving on, let us clear another hurdle for you. You may be thinking about where to watch them, without any interruption, buffer, or lag, right? Online streaming platforms are all right, but no one wants to compromise on the video quality or worse, spend hours finding it

If you want to skip that part and go for a quick, yet sturdy solution, Mediacom may be your best option. On lista de canales de Mediacom, you can find multiple movie-related channels like MTV Classic, Logo TV, Reelz, and more, that too in HD. Plus, Mediacom offers an on-demand feature too, that lets you watch any movie of your choice. While you enjoy new releases on Medicom’s provided movie channels, you can relish the classic ones with the on-demand feature. Doesn’t that solve our problems?

Without further ado, let’s get started.

1. Dunkirk

2. Downfall

3. Oppenheimer

4. Against the Ice

5. Bottom Line


“When 400,000 men couldn’t get home, home came to them”

Easily one of our favorites when it comes to learning about World War II. World War II continued for almost 6 years, and without a doubt, many historical events took place between the Allied and Axis forces.

One such event was at Dunkirk, where more or less 400,000 British soldiers, along with Belgian and French soldiers faced the wrath of German forces. The annihilation continued for around 6 weeks until reinforcements helped them a way out.

The best thing about the movie?

As the first line depicts, the staunch belief those stranded soldiers had in their country and its people kept them going. An option to lay down arms and surrender was on the table. But, with faith in their counterparts, they kept on battling the mighty Germans with all their might.

Besides the real and unbiased story, Dunkirk portrays the horrors of war and what it really means to lay down one’s life for the country.


Another tale of World War II, Downfall portrays the last few days of Adolf Hitler in the bunker. Heavy losses occurred at the hands of the Allied forces, and the German troops scattered like flies. With a foot on the gas pedal, the Allied forces were quick to dismantle the Axis forces, leaving Adolf Hilter, the supreme commander of Axis forces to go in hiding.

Unable to overcome his fear of failure, Hitler eventually decided to end his life rather than surrender to the Allied forces.

The movie was widely criticized for portraying the human side of an evil mastermind. Nevertheless, it’s a gripping and realistic story of Fuhrer’s last day and his Third Reich.


One may only perceive Christoper Nolan’s movies as mind-boggling, but Oppenheimer showcases his skills in painting historical events.

The Manhattan Project, simply put, was a race against time and the U.S.’s arch-rivals; the Soviets to discover the ultimate weapon.

Providing a detailed outlook on the Manhattan Project, Oppenheimer is perhaps one of the most complete accounts of the historical event.

Oppenheimer’s cast includes Cillian Murphy playing the role of J. Robert Oppenheimer, Florence Pugh as Jean Tatlock, and Robert Downey Jr. as Lewis Strauss. With a glittering cast, supported by a chilling event that would go on to change everything about the world, Oppenheimer stands as one of the best movies ever based on historical events.

Against the Ice:

A true account of events in 1909, a Danish explorer Ejnar Mikkelsen, played by Nicolai Coster-Waldau, embarks on a deadly journey.


Deep into the Arctic region, to find evidence that would disapprove of the U.S.’s claims to Nothern Greenland. On his journey, Ejnar is accompanied by his mechanic, Iversen, brimming with youthful energy.

Abandoned by their crew, while losing their sledge dogs due to hunger and extreme weather, they’re left on their own to survive.

As the story moves on, both men face grave danger in the line of duty. Hiding and surviving from fierce polar bears to keeping themselves alive, all while focusing on their mission, Mikkelsen and Iversen’s story is one to watch.

Bottom Line:

While there’s no lack of entertainment, historical movies are a great source to educate the masses. We’ve picked the 4 best and most authentic movies to learn more about the history. Also, we’re open to suggestions, do let us know if there’s a historical movie we should watch in the comments section.

The Soundtrack to Success: How Hospitality Businesses Use Music to Boost Revenue

Imagine a bustling pub where silence hangs heavy, or a trendy cafe where only the clatter of cutlery fills the air. Somehow, it just doesn’t feel quite right, does it? According to CJ Digital, ‘music is the unseen ingredient that sets the mood, shapes the atmosphere, and even influences how much we spend in hospitality businesses.’ But how do these businesses choose the right tunes to turn up the volume on their bottom line?

We delve into the world of sonic strategy, exploring how 10 innovative hospitality businesses across the UK are harnessing the power of music to create a more engaging and revenue-boosting experience for their customers.

Setting the Scene: The Science Behind Music and Spending

It’s not just a feeling – the link between music and consumer behavior is backed by science. Studies have shown that music can influence everything from how much we eat and drink to how long we linger at a table. Upbeat tempos can encourage faster eating and higher spending, while calmer music can create a more relaxed ambiance, leading to longer stays.

Music also taps into our emotions, creating a sense of familiarity and comfort. The right playlist can transport us to a specific time or place, fostering a positive association with the venue. This emotional connection is a powerful tool that hospitality businesses can leverage to build brand loyalty and encourage repeat visits.

London Calling: Goose Box Catering’s Upbeat Mix

Goose Box Catering, a London-based firm specializing in high-end corporate events, understands the power of a well-curated playlist. “Music is absolutely crucial to setting the tone for an event,” explains Olivia James, Goose Box Catering’s Events Director. “For corporate events, we tend to use upbeat and positive music that fosters a sense of energy and encourages interaction. Think modern pop hits mixed with classic feel-good anthems.”

James highlights the importance of tailoring the music to the specific event. “For a networking lunch, we might opt for something more subtle and background-friendly, while for a product launch party, we’d definitely crank up the energy with a livelier playlist.” Goose Box also embraces the power of audience demographics. “We often work with clients to understand the age range and interests of the attendees, so we can tailor the music selection accordingly.” This attention to detail ensures that Goose Box events leave a lasting positive impression, potentially leading to repeat business and positive word-of-mouth recommendations.

Bucklebury’s Big Beats: Keeping Families Entertained at the Farm

Bucklebury Farm in Reading takes a different approach, using music to create an immersive and engaging experience for its family-oriented clientele. “Music is a vital part of the atmosphere here at Bucklebury Farm,” says Sarah Miller, the farm’s Marketing Manager. “We have a soft play area for younger children, and we use upbeat, playful music to create a fun and stimulating environment.” Bucklebury understands that happy children equal happy (and potentially free-spending) parents.

However, Bucklebury caters to all ages. In the cafe area, the music becomes more relaxed and background-friendly, creating a space for parents to unwind while their children play. “We also have a safari park, and for that area, we use more natural soundscapes with subtle music that complements the environment,” explains Miller. This thoughtful approach ensures that every area of Bucklebury Farm has the right musical backdrop to enhance the visitor experience.

Beyond London: A Symphony of Strategies Across the UK

1. The Loch Ness Bar & Restaurant, Inverness: Nestled in the heart of the Scottish Highlands, this establishment uses traditional Scottish music during the day to create a sense of place, while transitioning to classic rock and pop in the evenings to cater to a more relaxed, pub-style atmosphere.

2. The Botanist, Manchester: This quirky cocktail bar is known for its unique botanical theme. The soundtrack reflects this, with a focus on chilled electronic music and nature-inspired ambient sounds.

3. The Ivy, Cardiff: This restaurant chain exudes elegance and sophistication. The music selection follows suit, with a focus on jazz classics and smooth instrumental music that creates a luxurious and intimate dining experience.

4. The Alchemist, Birmingham: This science-themed cocktail bar embraces the unexpected. The music selection is a playful mix of genres, from electronic and pop to even the occasional quirky scientific soundtrack.

5. The Biscuit Factory, Newcastle: This art gallery and cafe features a rotating selection of local musicians, creating a unique and ever-changing soundscape that complements the artistic vibe of the venue.

6. The Fleece Inn, Cirencester: This historic coaching inn embraces its traditional roots. Folk music and classic rock dominate the playlist, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere for both locals and tourists.

7. The Georgian Hotel, Whitby: This seaside hotel offers a relaxed and luxurious experience. The music reflects this with a focus on downtempo electronic music and calming acoustic melodies that create a sense of serenity and escape.

8. The Edinburgh Beer Experience, Edinburgh: This innovative brewery takes its visitors on a journey through Scotland’s brewing history. The music selection reflects this, with a mix of traditional Scottish folk music and contemporary Scottish bands, creating a truly immersive experience.

9. The Rooftop Bar, Bristol: This bar boasts stunning city views and a vibrant atmosphere. The music selection keeps pace, with a focus on house music, upbeat pop, and live DJ sets on weekends, creating a perfect spot for socializing and enjoying the cityscape.

10. The Old Fire Station, Oxford: This converted fire station houses a restaurant, bar, and co-working space. The music selection caters to this diverse clientele, with upbeat and focus-friendly tunes in the co-working area, transitioning to more relaxed and atmospheric sounds in the restaurant and bar later in the day.

The Final Note: The Power of Music is in the Details

These examples showcase the diverse ways hospitality businesses can leverage music to enhance their offering. The key takeaway? There’s no one-size-fits-all approach. Consider factors like your target audience, the time of day, and the overall atmosphere you want to create.

Investing in a music licensing service or hiring a music consultant can ensure access to a vast library of legal and appropriate music. Additionally, staying up-to-date with music trends and cultural references can help businesses create playlists that resonate with younger generations.

Remember, music is a powerful tool that can be used to subtly influence customer behavior and create a lasting positive impression. So, crank up the volume, choose your soundtrack wisely, and watch your hospitality business hit the right note when it comes to revenue and customer satisfaction.

Book Tells About Iconic Film: The Making Of Slap Shot

That legendary film about the seedy underbelly of minor-league hockey, Slap Shot recently celebrated the 47th anniversary of its release in theaters. 

If you were to bet Vegas online, it’s likely you could’ve got long odds that Hollywood icon Paul Newman, who starred as Reg Dunlop, player-coach of the Charlestown Chiefs of the fictional Federal League, would allow that Slap Shot was among his favorite films. In fact, those closest to Newman suggested that he would acknowledge in private that it was his absolute favorite.

While there’s been no new or updated release of Slap Shot to mark the film’s latest milestone, the cult classic is once more being celebrated via the printed word. Author Jonathan Jackson has released a second edition of his successful book The Making Of Slap Shot: Behind the Scenes of the Greatest Hockey Movie Ever made. 

The book was originally published in 2010. The updated second edition, released by Double J Media, includes several never before seen photos of the making of the film contributed by cast members.

Slap Shot Was Art Imitating Life

The beauty of Slap Shot can be found in its gritty reality. Anyone who’s ever rode the buses with a minor pro hockey team knows that this film was a window into their existence. 

Like Jackson, who was a first-time author when he penned the original Making of Slap Shot, Nancy Dowd, who wrote the book Slap Shot as well as the screenplay for the film, was also a first-timer to the industry. The concept for the story came from spending time with her brother Ned Dowd, who was a player with the Johnstown Jets of the North American Hockey League.

Ned would bring a tape recorder with him everywhere he went with the team – on the bus, in the dressing room – then he’d hand the tapes over to Nancy. She’d use those as unofficial transcripts from which the concept for Slap Shot would be born.

“The movie was all true,” explained Jeff Carlson, who portrayed one of the notorious Hanson brothers in Slap Shot. “They got the ideas from us three clowns and from the team. Going into the stands (to fight opposing fans), the mooning scenes, the race cars (on the road trips). That was minor league hockey, but it’s blown out of proportion to add comedy to the movie.”

Hockey Stars Became Movie Stars

Dave Hanson also wrote a book about his Slap Shot experience.

The original plan for the film was to find actors who could skate. An open casting call was held at an ice rink in Hollywood to audition actors. They first had to prove that they could skate.

“Of course, every agent said that their client could skate,” recalled Ned Dowd. Along with playing the role of arch-villain Ogie Ogilthorpe in the film, Dowd was also given the task of technical director for the film. It was his mission to choreograph all of the hockey scenes in Slap Shot. 

“Once we got them on the ice, it was the most frightening thing I’d ever seen. People were falling on ice, they were being cut by skates.”

Among the actors who auditioned were Peter Strauss and Nick Nolte. It was also known that Al Pacino was interested in the starring role as Reg Dunlop. 

“Eventually, we determined that it would be easier to teach hockey players to act than to teach actors how to skate,” Dowd explained. 

They found enough actors with a hockey background to fill some of the major roles. Michael Ontkean, who played college hockey, was scoring star Ned Braden. Jerry Houser (Killer Carlson) and Allan Nichols (Johnny Upton) were capable skaters. 

For Yvon Barrette, the scene-stealing goalie Denis Lemieux, they used Ron Docken, the real goalie for the Jets, to film his hockey scenes. Once Barrette pulled down his mask, director George Roy Hill would yell cut and Docken would take over. In the film, Docken plays Lebrun, the backup goalie. 

Beyond Jeff and Steve Carlson and Dave Hanson, who portrayed the Hanson brothers, other Jets players also filled roles. Guido Tenesi was Billy Charlebois. Jean-Rosario Tetreault was Bergeron. As well, various pro hockey players including Blake Ball, John Gofton, Connie Madigan and even former NHL coach Bruce Boudreau played parts as opposing players.

“When I point myself out in the movie, my kids don’t believe it’s me because I’ve got hair,” the current follicly-challenged Boudreau said.

Even Newman learned to skate and performed most of his scenes, although on occasion, minor-league star Rod Bloomfield would enter as his stunt double.

Why Paul Newman Loved Slap Shot

Newman and Hill had previously worked together on The Sting and Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid. That was one reason why he was intrigued by the role in Slap Shot. 

Mostly, though, it was because he got the opportunity to play an every man, a role in which Newman thrived as both an actor and a human being.

Dave Hanson remembers their first meeting with the Hollywood legend. 

“It was a Sunday afternoon, the day before shooting was to begin,” Hanson recalled. “There was a knock on our door and it was Paul Newman. There was an IndyCar race on TV and he asked if he could come in and watch it.”

Jackson believes this is why Newman was so enthralled with the outcome of Slap Shot.

“Paul believed that Reggie was closer to his real self than any other character he had ever played,” Jackson explained to “He enjoyed being a regular person as often as he could and, with this film, he got to do exactly that. 

“He got to hang out in Johnstown, PA, play hockey, drink beer, joke around and just be one of the guys. He never had more fun making a movie.”

There was a bond between the hockey players and the Oscar-winning actor. Newman taught them how to play scenes. They taught him how to play hockey.

“He was so into helping Jeff, Dave and myself,” Steve Carlson, who portrayed Steve Hanson, told the Hockey News of Newman. “We weren’t actors, although we had been acting all our lives. Paul would give us tips and we would tell him what a real hockey player would do. 

“He pulled off a cult classic.”

Most Inspiring Sports Movies To Watch On Netflix

Ah, Netflix, the rabbit hole that is a library of binging entertainment. While it is very easy to get lost in an endless stream (excuse the pun) of movies and television series, there is a large selection of great movies that can be used to help inspire aspiring athletes and even weekend warriors to achieve more.

Whether you crave the underdog battling against all odds, the strength of teamwork, or the tale of an individual with an unyielding spirit, Netflix’s library of incredible sports stories will have you cheering, reaching for the Kleenex, and wanting to grab your gym bag with some of the most uplifting stories of human achievement.  You can check more sports news and content in this website.

My All American (2015)

Growing up, Freddie Steinmark dreamed of playing college football, however, his passion and dreams would face a giant obstacle as he was deemed to be too small by most coaches to play past his high school season.

When University of Texas Longhorns head coach Darrell Royal gives Steinmark a chance to play NCAA Division I football, it provides him with a new hope. Unfortunately, Steinmark’s health would take a turn for the worse. Despite yet another obstacle thrown in front of him, the diminutive gridiron hopeful continued to persevere, helping the Longhorns to the 1969 National Championship.

Greater (2016)

Offensive lineman Brandon Burlsworth was not a naturally gifted athlete, but through hard work, determination, and faith, he managed to accomplish his football goals. Although he failed to secure a scholarship to the University of Arkansas, his dream school, Burlsworth joined the team as a walk-on.

Undersized and lacking in strength to play his position at the Division I level, Burlsworth, with the support of his family, continued to prove everyone wrong, eventually earning a scholarship and a starting spot with the Razorbacks. Ultimately, Burlsworth would be drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in the third round of the 1999 NFL Draft, only to have his life tragically come to an end eleven days later.

First Match (2018)

Not only did Monique have to deal with living in the rough Brownsville neighborhood of Brooklyn, but she also had to do so while bouncing around from foster home to foster home and trying to reconnect with her estranged father, a former wrestling champion.

Hoping to grab his attention, Monique joins her high school wrestling team, an all-boys program. While her mission appears to be successful, her father has ulterior motives, using his daughter’s talent to compete for cash in underground fights. Yearning for a relationship with her father, Monique finds success in both worlds through her inner strength and resilience.

Hustle (2022)

Known mainly for his comedy roles, Adam Sandler makes a slam dunk playing the part of Stanley Sugerman, a struggling scout for the Philadelphia 76ers. As the job takes a toll on Sugerman’s family, he soon finds himself converting to becoming a player agent. Connecting with Bo Cruz, a Spanish basketball hopeful, the player and agent find themselves on a journey together.

Through dedication and relentless work ethic, Sugerman and Cruz persevere through adversity as both the agent and player look to prove that they belong in a better place among their peers. Filled with countless NBA and streetball players and coaches, Hustle is not just one of the best inspirational sports movies, but one of the best basketball movies of all time, because of the realness of the story and the on-court action.

Warrior (2011)

Warrior is the story of two troubled brothers united by the world of mixed martial arts. Growing up with an alcoholic father, Tommy and Brendan went their separate ways with Tommy joining the U.S. Marines and Brendan becoming a high school teacher. As both use fighting as an outlet for their personal issues, they find themselves connecting with people from their past, including Tommy asking their father to be his coach and Brendan seeking the guidance of an old family friend.

Motivated by the $5 million grand prize at the MMA tournament Sparta to help change their respective lives, the brothers not only find answers to their strained relationship but eventually find themselves squaring off against each other in the tournament finale.

Rush (2013)

The story of F1 drivers James Hunt and Niki Lauda, two individuals who approach racing from opposite ends of the spectrum is told in this Ron Howard-directed biographical sports film. While Hunt relies on his instinct and dare-devilish driving approach, Lauda counters with a more methodical strategy based on precision and technical mastery.

As the Brit and Austrian battle for supremacy in the rankings, a tragic racing accident, which could have easily been avoided had it not been for Hunt’s competitiveness, puts Lauda on the shelf. Despite doctors’ orders, Lauda returns to the track in search of the 1976 title and the continued battle with his rival as the two drivers push each other to their limits while forging an unbreakable bond.

Nyad (2023)

It is 110 miles to swim from Havana, Cuba to Key West, Florida. There have only been three people on record to successfully complete the journey through the treacherous shark and jellyfish filled waters, the latest being Diana Nyad. Starring Annette Bening as Nyad, the 2023 film details the American swimmer’s multiple attempts at accomplishing the amazing feat.

From 2010 to 2013, Nyad made five different attempts to complete her mission, failing on the first four for a variety of reasons, most due to Mother Nature. At the age of 64, Nyad and her team completed the journey without the assistance of a shark cage. Battling both physical and mental hurdles, Nyad’s tale of grit and resiliency proves that age is nothing but a number and that you are never too old to chase your dreams. 

Tips to Set Up Book Clubs on Campus

Do you love reading and discussing books with others? Setting up a book club on your college campus can be a great way to connect with fellow book lovers, explore new literary works, and engage in thought-provoking discussions. Setting up book clubs on campus can foster a vibrant literary community among students, promoting discussion, collaboration, and lifelong learning, with helpful guidance available for organizing and managing clubs efficiently, ensuring smooth operations and enriching experiences for all members who seek assistance with Do My Paper service. Whether you’re a literature major or simply someone who enjoys reading for pleasure, starting a book club can be a rewarding experience. In this article, we’ll provide you with valuable tips to help you establish a successful book club on your campus.

Identify Your Purpose and Target Audience

Before you begin, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of the purpose of your book club and who you want to attract. Are you interested in exploring a specific genre, such as fiction, non-fiction, or classics? Do you want to focus on books related to a particular academic discipline or theme? Defining your purpose will help you determine your target audience and tailor your approach accordingly.

Spread the Word

Once you’ve identified your purpose and target audience, it’s time to get the word out about your book club. Utilize various channels to reach potential members, such as:

1. Campus bulletin boards and flyers

2. Social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram)

3. Campus email lists or newsletters

4. Class announcements (with permission from professors)

5. Student organizations and clubs

Be creative and utilize multiple platforms to maximize your reach and attract a diverse group of members.

Choose a Meeting Location and Time

Establishing book clubs on campus can cultivate a culture of reading, critical thinking, and camaraderie among students, with valuable insights and recommendations for effective organization and management available at, ensuring successful and enjoyable club experiences for all participants.

Finding a suitable meeting location and time is crucial for the success of your book club. Consider the following factors:

1. Accessibility: Choose a location that is easily accessible and convenient for most members.

2. Availability: Check the availability of the chosen location to ensure it can accommodate your desired meeting times.

3. Ambiance: Look for a quiet, comfortable space that promotes focused discussions.

4. Size: Consider the potential size of your book club and choose a location that can accommodate the group comfortably.

Establish Meeting Frequency and Structure

Decide on how often you want to meet and establish a consistent schedule. Weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly meetings are common options. Additionally, determine a structure for your meetings to ensure productive and engaging discussions. Here’s a suggested structure:

1. Welcome and introductions (for new members)

2. Brief summary of the book (by a designated member or rotating among members)

3. Open discussion (guided by discussion questions or prompts)

4. Announcements and selection of the next book

Foster an Inclusive and Welcoming Environment

Creating an inclusive and welcoming environment is essential for the success of your book club. Encourage diverse perspectives and ensure that everyone feels comfortable sharing their thoughts and opinions. Here are some tips:

1. Set ground rules for respectful and constructive discussions.

2. Encourage active listening and open-mindedness.

3. Avoid dominating the conversation and allow equal opportunities for all members to contribute.

4. Address any instances of disrespect or intolerance promptly and firmly.

Select Book Titles Democratically

To maintain engagement and ensure that everyone’s interests are represented, involve all members in the selection of book titles. Consider implementing a democratic process, such as:

1. Taking suggestions from members and voting on a shortlist.

2. Rotating the responsibility of selecting the next book among members.

3. Assigning different members to suggest titles within a specific genre or theme.

Encourage Diverse Perspectives

One of the greatest benefits of a book club is the opportunity to explore diverse perspectives and gain new insights. Encourage members to share their unique perspectives and experiences related to the book. This can lead to thought-provoking discussions and a deeper understanding of the text.

Incorporate Supplementary Materials

To enhance the reading experience and facilitate more engaging discussions, consider incorporating supplementary materials. These could include:

1. Author interviews or biographies

2. Literary critiques or reviews

3. Relevant historical or cultural context

4. Multimedia resources (e.g., film adaptations, documentaries)

Organize Social Activities

While the primary focus of your book club should be on reading and discussing books, incorporating social activities can help strengthen the bonds among members and create a more enjoyable experience. Consider organizing:

1. Book-themed potlucks or picnics

2. Movie nights (for film adaptations of books)

3. Author talks or literary events on campus

4. Field trips related to the book’s setting or themes

Encourage Member Participation and Engagement

The success of your book club relies on the active participation and engagement of its members. Encourage members to take on various roles and responsibilities, such as:

1. Leading discussions

2. Researching and presenting supplementary materials

3. Organizing social activities

4. Managing the book club’s online presence (e.g., social media, website)

By involving members in different aspects of the book club, you foster a sense of ownership and commitment, ensuring the club’s longevity and vitality.

Partner with Campus Resources

Partnering with campus resources can provide valuable support and opportunities for your book club. Consider collaborating with:

1. Campus libraries: They may offer meeting spaces, book recommendations, or even discounts on book purchases.

2. Academic departments: Professors or department heads may be interested in collaborating on book selections or guest lectures related to their fields of study.

3. Student organizations: Partnering with other student organizations can help cross-promote events and attract a diverse membership.

4. Campus bookstores: They may offer discounts on book purchases for book club members or host author events.

Celebrate Milestones and Achievements

Celebrating milestones and achievements can help maintain momentum and motivate members. Consider recognizing:

1. New members joining the club

2. Members who have consistently attended meetings or contributed to discussions

3. Reaching a certain number of books read or discussions held

4. Successful collaborations or events organized by the book club

These celebrations can be as simple as acknowledging accomplishments during meetings or organizing small gatherings or book-themed parties.

Evaluate and Adapt

Regularly evaluate the book club’s progress and gather feedback from members. This will help you identify areas for improvement and adapt your approach as needed. Consider conducting:

1. Anonymous surveys or feedback forms

2. Open discussions during meetings

3. One-on-one conversations with members

Be open to constructive criticism and willing to make changes to ensure the book club continues to meet the needs and interests of its members.

In conclusion, setting up a book club on campus can be a rewarding and enriching experience. By following these tips, you can create a vibrant and engaging community of book lovers. Remember, the key to a successful book club is fostering an inclusive and welcoming environment, encouraging diverse perspectives, and maintaining a commitment to continuous improvement. With dedication and passion, your book club can become a thriving hub for literary exploration and intellectual growth on your campus.

The Evolution Of Concert Programs: From Print To Digital

Concert programs have traditionally served as a bridge between performers and their audiences, offering insights into the musical journey ahead. As we move deeper into the digital age, these cherished paper booklets increasingly make way for digital formats. This transformation mirrors broader trends in technology and brings a fresh set of advantages and challenges to concertgoers and those who manage these events, and here’s how.

The Traditional Role Of Print Programs In Live Events

Print programs have long been a foundational element of live events, offering a tactile connection to the concert-going experience. These programs, often filled with artist biographies, song lists, and detailed performance notes, help deepen your connection to the event. They serve as guides and cherished keepsakes that evoke nostalgia and represent a historical archive of cultural experiences.

Maintaining the value of these traditional elements in a digital era can be achieved by creating digital versions that mimic the look and feel of classic print programs. Offering PDFs replicating the traditional print layout allows you to enjoy the familiarity of print while benefiting from digital convenience. Additionally, producing a limited run of commemorative print editions can satisfy collectors and those who value the tactile experience, thus preserving the enduring appeal of print in a transforming digital landscape. Ensuring the transition to digital complements rather than replaces the cherished aspects of print programs preserves their historical and emotional significance.

Driving Forces Behind The Shift To Digital

Technological advancements and evolving consumer expectations propel the move from print to digital programs. Digital programs provide the flexibility to be updated swiftly and shared instantly, reducing printing costs and environmental footprints.

If you want to make the most of these benefits, consider using content management systems for quick updates to program details, ensuring you always have the latest information, which can help to enhance the attendee’s experience. Moreover, digital programs can be enriched with interactive elements like links to artist interviews or performance videos. These additions enrich your pre-event anticipation and deepen your engagement with the content, making every interaction more memorable and informative.

Advantages Of Digital Concert Programs

Digital concert programs offer numerous benefits that significantly enhance engagement with live events. These digital solutions often include interactive features such as clickable links, embedded audio, and video clips, all designed to create a more immersive experience.

Explore platforms that support the integration of these multimedia elements along with real-time updates to make the most of digital programs. This ensures that the content is engaging but also timely and relevant. Additional features like live chat or interactive voting mechanisms further enhance this interaction, allowing you to engage directly with performances and connect with other attendees, thereby enriching your overall event experience.

Challenges And Considerations In Adopting Digital Programs

Transitioning to digital concert programs introduces several challenges that must be navigated carefully to ensure all attendees can fully engage with the digital content. One significant challenge is providing reliable Wi-Fi at venues, which is essential for accessing digital programs. Additionally, creating apps compatible with various devices and operating systems is crucial to accommodate every attendee’s technology.

Effective mitigation of these challenges requires thorough testing of digital solutions in real-world settings to identify and address potential issues before they impact the attendee experience. Clear, straightforward instructions on accessing and navigating digital programs should be readily available. Ensuring that digital content is accessible through features like screen readers and high-contrast options is vital. These steps will help make your digital programs more inclusive and user-friendly, enhancing the experience for all attendees.

Optimizing Digital Programs For Easy Sharing And Editing

Embracing digital concert programs allows for remarkable flexibility, particularly in sharing and editing content. Converting your concert programs from PDFs to Word documents simplifies making updates and customizations for different venues or tour dates. This ensures the information remains current and relevant, enhancing your overall experience.

One way to leverage this flexibility is to use cloud-based platforms that allow multiple team members to edit documents in real-time. This ensures that any last-minute changes or updates to the program are reflected immediately, without the need for extensive reprints or manual distributions. Sharing these updated versions with attendees via email or event apps can keep everyone informed and engaged.

Enhancing User Engagement Through Digital Tools

Digital concert programs offer vast opportunities to enhance user engagement, making your experience more dynamic and interactive. Integrating tools such as live updates, social sharing options, and audience interaction features can transform how you participate in live events. Visualize the possibility of voting for the next song on a concert setlist or sharing your favorite concert moments directly from the digital program to social media platforms.

Selecting platforms that seamlessly incorporate these interactive elements into their interfaces is crucial for optimal engagement. Implementing live polls to gauge audience reactions during performances can significantly enhance the interactive experience. Additionally, providing links within the program that encourage further exploration of the artists and their music can deepen your engagement and enrich your overall event experience. Active participation in these digital interactions fosters a more connected and vibrant concert atmosphere, elevating the collective experience for all attendees.

The Impact Of Digital Programs On Audience Dynamics

Introducing digital programs can significantly alter how you interact with performances and fellow attendees. These digital interfaces can serve as conduits for forming connections and enhancing the collective experience of a concert. Incorporating features into digital programs that allow you to engage in real-time discussions, these tools foster a sense of community among concertgoers.

You might consider using platforms that enable the creation of interest-based groups or fan chats during the event. This facilitates interaction and allows you to share your experiences and opinions

about different aspects of the performance. Moreover, employing digital programs that offer itinerary planning tools and real-time notifications can help you manage your time effectively at the event. Bookmarking your must-see performances helps ensure you don’t miss your favorite acts, while having notifications on means you are kept updated on any schedule changes or upcoming special segments.

Future Trends In Digital Concert Programs

Looking ahead, digital concert programs are anticipated to evolve dramatically, integrating cutting-edge technologies like augmented reality (AR) and AI-driven personalization. These innovations are set to transform how you engage with live events. Imagine augmented reality enabling you to view enhanced visual effects that sync with live performances, creating a uniquely immersive experience. Simultaneously, AI can adapt program content to align with your preferences and previous interactions, offering a highly personalized experience.

Stay informed about these technologies and consider how their integration into digital programs might further enrich your concert-going experience. Engage with platforms pioneering these technologies to understand how they could enhance future event experiences. As augmented reality and artificial intelligence become more sophisticated, they hold the potential to make live performances more engaging, interactive, and personalized than ever before. This continual evolution promises to enhance enjoyment and deepen your connection to the music and performers.

As we continue to embrace digital advancements, the evolution of concert programs from print to digital is inevitable. This shift offers numerous benefits that enhance engagement and enjoyment of live events. Adopting digital solutions helps you ensure that concert programs persist as cherished elements of the concert experience and evolve to meet modern expectations. Let’s embrace these changes and continue to enhance our cultural experiences through innovative digital solutions.

5 Amazing Boxing Movies Outside the Rocky Franchise

It’s impossible to talk about great boxing movies without mentioning the Rocky series. Both the original Rocky movies with Sylvester Stallone and the recent Creed movies with Michael B. Jordan are considered classics among both boxing fans and movie lovers. But there are more great movies about boxing that fall outside of that franchise. Even if we concede that the Rocky movies are the best of all time, let’s explore five amazing boxing movies outside of the franchise that deserve our attention as well.


Despite having to compete alongside “Creed” at the box office, Southpaw still managed to establish itself as a noteworthy boxing film. The story revolves around Billy Hope (played by Jake Gyllenhaal), who, after announcing his retirement and facing tragic circumstances, must fight not only for custody of his daughter but also to resurrect his career and reclaim control of his life. This boxing drama embraces the familiar tropes of the genre, focusing on characters like Billy who are driven by a quest for redemption. Gyllenhaal delivers a powerful performance, infusing the character with depth and emotional resonance as he navigates through personal challenges.

The Hurricane

The Hurricane is based on the true story of Rubin “The Hurricane” Carter. Denzel Washington takes on the role of Carter, a boxer unjustly accused and convicted of murders he did not commit. Washington’s performance in the film stands out as one of his finest, earning him his fourth Oscar nomination. While the film deviates from its source material in several aspects, it remains entertaining, showcasing Washington’s talent in any project he undertakes. For those interested in comparing page-to-screen adaptations, there are two books available on the historic case: “The 16th Round” by Rubin Carter and “Lazarus and the Hurricane” by Sam Chaiton and Terry Swinton. But the movie on its own is also an amazing piece of work.

Million Dollar Baby

This Oscar-winning Best Picture is the foundational female boxing film that showcases the resilience and determination of a tough woman in a grueling sport. Hilary Swank takes on the role of Maggie, a waitress with a dream to become a champion boxer, who persuades veteran trainer Frankie (portrayed by Clint Eastwood) to coach her. Featuring Morgan Freeman as both the film’s narrator and a supporting character, Million Dollar Baby landed four wins out of its seven Oscar nominations. It serves as a powerful reminder to audiences that boxing is not for the faint of heart. This woman-led boxing drama stands tall among its iconic counterparts, particularly shining in its ability to inspire with its compelling narrative.

Raging Bull

Raging Bull stands as one of the most iconic boxing films of all time thanks to captivating performances of Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci, not to mention Martin Scorsese’s directorial prowess. De Niro embodies real-life middleweight champion Jake La Motta, a fierce and volatile presence in the ring whose life spirals into chaos outside of it. The movie is adapted from La Motta’s autobiography, “Raging Bull: My Story,” and is visually stunning, capturing the raw intensity of the sport. With eight Oscar nominations and two wins, Raging Bull solidified its status as a cinematic masterpiece, transcending the sports genre to become one of the greatest films of all time.

It’s the kind of movie that turns people into boxing fans. After watching Raging Bull, you’ll want to start watching boxing and perhaps even bet on boxing. The latter is actually more accessible than ever with several prominent sportsbooks offering betting markets in the sport.

The Fighter

Featuring a stellar cast, The Fighter is an Oscar-winning portrayal of the boxing journey of Micky Ward. Struggling to emerge from the shadow of his troubled brother Dicky (played by Christian Bale), Micky (portrayed by Mark Wahlberg) seeks his own path to boxing glory. However, he must navigate through family drama on top of traversing the challenging world of boxing. The film captures the essence of a fighter’s spirit and the resilience needed to overcome challenges, even when they originate from within the family circle. Wahlberg and Bale deliver captivating performances that elevate the film, solidifying its status as a memorable addition to the boxing genre.

Panic Film Fest 2024 Rankings

Every year I try to watch as many films as I can at Panic Fest. It’s impossible to get to all of them in the brief week-and-a-half, but I get better at it every year. I managed to watch more films this year than last year, catching around 80% of the film’s offered in-person and virtually at the 2024 iteration. I haven’t done this in the past, but decided to do it this year because I don’t get the opportunity to write something on everything I see. I really don’t have the time or willpower to churn out 37 reviews. I figured the best way to encapsulate the films at Panic Fest is to write a blurb about each film and rank them compared to one another. So, without further ado, below is a ranking of this year’s films, so you can keep an eye out for them as they travel at other festivals around the country or hit theaters.

#37: Haunted Ulster: Live
-Not for me. I’m not sure how you define a film like “Haunted Ulster: Live.” It reminds me a lot of “WNUF: Halloween Special.” I appreciate the nostalgic nature of local live TV events, but “Haunted Ulster: Live” feels more like an inside joke than a found TV footage film.

#36: Young Blondes, Stalked and Murdered
-Sometimes the title is the film. It worked in the 80s with films like “Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-O-Rama,” but for “Young Blondes, Stalked and Murdered,” not so much. It’s a promising film, but by the end, you wonder if it would have been better served as a short.


-You’ve heard of a microbudget, right? Well, “NOCLIP” is a nanobudget. While I didn’t like it, I commend the creators for their couch cushion change budget approach to a film about two stoners wandering around a mall parking lot in search of the creepypasta “Backrooms.”

#34: The Buildout
-I heard a lot of buzz about this during Panic Fest, but unfortunately all that buzz did not resonate with me. “The Buildout” is about two friends in the desert who have to come face-to-face with their emotional and spiritual issues, but by the time it happens I quit caring.

#33: The Hyperborean
-”The Hyperborean” is a comedy. I think. I didn’t laugh, but I found some of it amusing. It’s almost like “The Royal Tenenbaums” with mummies, aliens (once again, I think) and general family chaos. The only thing it’s missing was likability.

#32: Carnage Radio
-”Carnage Radio” reminded me a lot of “Below the Fold.” Both seem to take place in a small town community, both have an unsolved mystery at the beginning, and both are competently shot and acted. There’s just no meat on the bones.

#31: Killington
-Sometimes you watch a film that makes you think about your own years of making a movie or someone else’s. Maybe it was with friends on a phone or maybe for a college class. “Killington” feels like one of those movies, which means every positive is outweighed by the negative.

#30: Hippo
-I’m not going to pretend to know what “Hippo” is about. Multiple people have asked me what it’s about and I tell every one of those individuals that the title character is an obnoxious incel version of Napoleon Dynamite. That to me either makes or breaks your viewing experience.

#29: All Alone Together
-What happens when a filmmaker’s visions turn into real nightmares? “All Alone Together” attempts to answer that question in a very entertaining 15-20 minutes, but the longer it goes, the more you question the necessity of it being a feature length film.

#28: The Activated Man
-What does a creepy pale nightmare man with a black hat have to do with the spiritual war between good and evil? I’m not sure, but “The Activated Man” will either hit you right in your feelings or will leave you wondering what exactly you’re missing out on.

#27: Worlds
-Worlds uses other people’s Ring doorbell footage, along with cops and others, to create a mystery about its title character, a man in a white shirt that says “WORLDS”. The film ends up creating a mystery longer than its runtime, leaving viewers unsatisfied.

#26: All You Need is Death
-What happens when two people recording old folk music record a song they shouldn’t? Good question, because “All You Need is Death” may have been lost in translation. While some elements of the film are universal, others may need to be explained to my American mind.

#25: Kryptic
-A woman with no knowledge of who she is goes on a journey involving cryptids, cults and unsavory characters. The journey in “Kryptic” is fascinating at first, but it becomes clear as the film goes that the filmmaker should have worked a bit longer on a point.

#24: Psychosis
-Technically speaking, I enjoyed this film a lot. It felt very much like an early-90s student film delving into insanity. However, the script just doesn’t match the overall tone. Instead of exploring its themes, it just kind of presents them and hopes that’s enough.

#23: Hostile Dimensions

-What if existence is an endless stream of realities where each individual choice and thought spurs an entire next reality? That’s what “Hostile Dimensions” posits, but only uses that theory to spin a more personal story. It runs out of ideas, despite the notion of infinite possibilities.

#22: Spookt
-In small town Pennsylvania, an abandoned haunted house serves as the source for all rumors and evil. So it’s up to two Youtubers, a skeptic and a believer in the paranormal, to find out if something is indeed in the house. You’ll eventually find out the obvious answer, but you have an incredibly confusing plot to get through first.

#21: The Ceremony is About to Begin
-I find myself being indifferent towards “The Ceremony is About to Begin.” While starting off like a PBS documentary about a drug-fueled cult, and very few aren’t it seems like, the film evolves into something else as the director goes searching for the truth. The truth is apparent, but thankfully for the audience, the director is ignorant.

#20: Purgatory Jack
-”Purgatory Jack” is about what happens to our souls after suicide. It sounds like a dark premise, but it’s actually quite fun. Named like a western, shot like a bright noir mystery and acted like the insane idea it is, “Purgatory Jack” is entertaining even if it’s not great. It’s a comfort food for some and sometimes that’s really all you need.

#19: Blind Cop 2
-I actually thought “Blind Cop 2” would be the best comedy at Panic Fest, but it’s not. A film like “Wolf Cop” (a Panic Fest alum) understands what it is and never does more. “Blind Cop 2” understands it’s a parody of 80s action films, but it attempts to parody too much. While funny, it makes you wonder if the filmmakers were confident in the core material to begin with.

#18: Don’t Die
-It’s hard to write about “Don’t Die” because I keep thinking about how it’s “Get Out” without a Hollywood budget. The stories aren’t beat-for-beat the same, but the themes are very similar. That being said, it’s not a bad thing. “Don’t Die” still has its own story on race and classism, and was a passable watch at this year’s Panic Fest.

#17: Couples to Hell
-”Couples to Hell” is an anthology movie where the four stories are written and directed by the same director. The idea in this anthology is that it’s all about couples, even though it really isn’t. Anthology films are difficult to pull off for a variety of reasons, but this one at least has four interesting tales, even if there’s no connective tissue, wraparound story or sense of purpose.

#16: Jeffrey’s Hell
-Aaron Irons, who wrote, directed, acted, and probably did everything else, highlights the evil that can be found in the Appalachian Mountains through “Jeffrey’s Hell.” It’s a found footage film that doesn’t follow the rules of found footage. We’re not upset by this rule breaking because something paranormal is telling us, there are no rules.

#15: Never Hike Alone 2
-The “Never Hike Alone” fan franchise is built off the “Friday the 13th” studio franchise, probably one of the only successful cases of this happening. Successful meaning, on-par if not better than the source material. The latest entry not only has Jason being the stocky mass killing machine he is, but builds upon Jason’s mythology and its own fan mythology in the process.

#14: What You Wish For
-What’s Nick Stahl been up to? Not sure, but his latest film, “What You Wish For,” shows he’s still a talent for whomever rolls the dice on him. “What You Wish For” is thrilling and surprising enough to recommend, however, there are moments where it feels like someone watched “The Menu,” and wanted to make their own small budget version.

#13: Heiresses
-Oddly enough, this was my final watch for Panic Fest 2024 and I almost turned it off because I felt like it was going nowhere. The dialogue-heavy film takes a dramatic exit to shocking violence and ends up becoming an interesting metaphor on grief and our inability to deal with it. I’ll be honest though, if the third act never arrived, this wouldn’t be nearly as high on the list.

#12: Sheryl
-We all got stories about our own quest to find love, only to fail. Finding love is hard enough, but imagine finding the right one while finding out you have a new passion, murder. “Sheryl” is never what you expect. Even though I knew going in that the title character would be handling a break-up with a serial killer that introduced her to murder, I didn’t expect all that came after.

#11: Mother Father Brother Sister Frank

-It seems like every year, there’s a dark comedy at Panic Fest. What kind of genre festival would be complete without one? “Mother Father Brother Sister Frank” is about family and the parts of that family that you wish you weren’t blood related to. This tight winter comedy focuses on how a family deals with Uncle Frank, who isn’t bringing tidings and good cheer. The family isn’t dysfunctional, they just need some bonding time over what to do with Uncle Frank.

#10: New Life
-For those who experienced COVID-19, the pandemic will never not be a thought during film’s like “New Life.” On paper, it’s a movie that’s about two women. Both are battling with the idea of mortality, but only one is looking to put a stop to the potential apocalypse. “New Life” shows us that dramas can have horror, tangible and fictional, sprinkled throughout. Our two leads elevate “New Life” to levels that wouldn’t be possible on the script alone.

#9: Sting
-Two spider movies? At least this one didn’t scare the hell out of me. “Sting” is the kind of spider film that people with intense arachnophobia might be able to handle, much like “Eight Legged Freaks.” The scares aren’t as serious as the peril our characters find themselves in, but “Sting” is a 21st century B-movie creature feature. It is what it is and you’re either going to have a great time, nitpick it to death or avoid it at all costs.

#8: Off-Ramp
A road-trip movie with its tongue planted firmly in its cheek, “Off-Ramp” was one of the films I was looking forward to immediately based on its premise and didn’t disappoint. Two stoner juggalos find trouble and some unexpected new family members on a journey to the “Gathering of the Juggalos.” When the film isn’t having fun or throwing us into the middle of chaos, it’s showing how the juggalo lifestyle isn’t as maligned as you might think.

#7: Ghost Game
-Combine social media challenges, a potentially haunted house, and a cast of characters more ludicrous (in a good way) than the next and you’ve got “Ghost Game.” The film handles multiple themes and threads seamlessly during its brief runtime. Panic Fest has become the premiere festival for various Kansas City voices over the years. With a breathtaking pace, fun characters and a wicked story, “Ghost Game” might just be the biggest premiere of them all.

#6: Sleep
-What would you do if your partner was a potential threat to your newborn? Intentionally or not, “Sleep” not only examines that question, but flips all your preconceived notions during the first hour on its head during a creepy second half. “Sleep” is the best foreign language film to hit Panic Fest 2024. “Sleep” is the kind of film that would have newlyweds and other couples reconsidering the prospect of bringing a new life into the world.

#5: Livescreamers
-Video games that kill you while you play aren’t the most successful of horror genres. “Livescreamers” might be the first successful film in this niche genre. While still a low-budget and small scale film, “Livescreamers” utilizes a unique camera set-up and the Unreal Engine to craft a timely film about how society hasn’t fully learned its lesson since #MeToo. It’s also an insider look and discussion about how damaging internet culture has become, even when it’s all fun and games.

#4: Azrael
-If “Azrael” never sees the light of day, I’ll consider myself fortunate for watching one of the more unique genre films of the past decade. Without uttering a single word (I lied, maybe several in an obscure language), “Azrael” winds its way through a post-Apocalyptic wasteland inspired by “Revelations” and “Left Behind.” Samara Weaving nails her performance and once again has a knack for finding diamonds in the rough scripts to exercise her acting skills. This is a film I’m hoping to watch again, if the studio doesn’t leave it on the shelf.

#3: Oddity
-Something supernatural is afoot in “Oddity,” a tense thriller about a murdered wife and her sister who is attempting to find her real killer. “Oddity” utilizes shadows, a digital camera, a wooden mannequin, and other innocuous inanimate objects to elicit terror. As the mystery unravels, the supernatural forces at work begin to reveal themselves in menacing fashion. While the premise didn’t seem all that promising, it only took a few minutes into “Oddity” for it to unsettle me and keep me on the edge of my seat for the rest of its runtime.

#2: Cannibal Mukbang
-Little did I know the first great romance film of 2024 would be “Cannibal Mukbang.” I was just expecting some fun and gore, but I got way more than that. This genre roller coaster is at times, cute and rom-comish, while at other times is brutally horny and dementedly gory. From the script to the acting to the practical effects, “Cannibal Mukbang” is unforgettable. The director, Aimee Kuge, who worked on several episodes of “The Last Drive-In” with Joe Bob Briggs, has made one of the more mainstream exploitation films I’ve ever seen.

#1: Infested
-It was very difficult to pick a favorite film at this year’s Panic Fest and I feel like I could make a case for the top four on this list, but after much consideration, it has to go to “Infested.” This isn’t only the best film at Panic Fest 2024, but may be on its way to one of the best of 2024. This is a movie that will crawl under your skin at a frightening pace. At one point during the film I felt like something was on me and freaked out. Even well after the film, I was avoiding dark corners and anywhere spiders are lurking. This film is a must-see for horror fans.

Grapefruit: Season I & Season II Book Review

Grapefruit: Season II – The Wrath of Chaos & Confusion recently came out, which is a continuation of the previous story from Grapefruit: Season I – The Wrath of Love. In Grapefruit: Season I, the hero character Virtuous takes on a handful of tasks in order to win over the respect of King Vincent, who is the King of Milford Sound. Virtuous wanted to do it because if she performed well, she would be able to be in a romantic relationship with his son, Prince Victor. She was doing well with all the past challenges, such as fighting the evil witch Immoral’s minions, Dark Fiends, an evil troll, and a bunch of other demonic forces while achieving confidence and figuring out how enchanted she really is. Apparently, the magical grapefruit that Immoral gave Virtuous regenerated the hero character’s body and made her youthful again.

As the story progresses, Virtuous realizes that she is enchanted and has special abilities. Everything seemed to go well while she was performing all the challenges that King Vincent requested until she got to the final challenge, also known as the Vessel of Vindication. During her journey to the vessel, she had to battle the gigantic monstrous

beetles. Unfortunately, when she finally makes it into the Vessel of Vindication, she is swallowed alive by the talking serpent.

The story picks up in Grapefruit: Season II and the author of this series, Tyrone Evans Clark (also known as Tyy Renaiⓢⓢance), gives the readers a shocking revelation. Prince Victor was tricked by his godmother Cassandra, who is close friends with his father, King Vincent. Vincent was also part of this conspiracy. Cassandra and Vincent discover that no one survives the Vessel of Vindication. They were hoping that the serpent destroyed Virtuous and Victor would have no other choice, but to marry Princess Sarah. Later in the story, Virtuous survives the wrath of a serpent, but she finds out that she is invisible and nobody can see her. The hero character is also pushed into the spiritual plane’s dimension. Victor takes constant trips to the vessel, hoping that Virtuous will emerge or even come out alive, but unfortunately she never shows up.

As we continue in the story of Grapefruit: Season II, Victor is placed under a spell that Sarah conjures up. At this point, Victor had no other choice but to marry the princess. On the wedding day, the spell breaks and the prince declines to marry Sarah. This upsets the princess and forces her to show her true form as the demented Snail Princess. Everyone was so disappointed with Sarah because it was very clear at this point that they were all tricked and manipulated by her. The Prince runs out of the wedding ceremony and heads to South Auckland by horse to find his true love Virtuous. Overall, Grapefruit: Season I and Season II are both good reads. You can tell from how part two ended that there will be a part 3 for sure. I’m looking forward to getting more details about these complex characters. I hope King Vincent and his son Prince Victor’s relationship improves because everyone deserves love. You can’t help it when it comes down to where your heart belongs. Hopefully, Victor and Virtuous can finally get their happy ending that all of us hope for.

The Best Poker Scenes in Movie History and What They Teach Us

Poker scenes in movies captivate audiences with their intense blend of tension, skill, and the game’s inherent unpredictability. These cinematic moments transcend the mere thrill of gambling, unveiling the characters’ depth, strategic acumen, and occasionally, the harsh realities of life’s odds. Spanning from time-honored classics to contemporary blockbusters, poker scenes have consistently been a cinematic mainstay, providing a rich tapestry of entertainment intertwined with valuable life lessons. This discussion delves into the most memorable poker scenes across a variety of films, exploring their insights into poker tactics, psychological warfare, and human nature. It aims to shed light on how these scenes reflect the complexities of decision-making, the psychological dynamics of competition, and the profound impact of chance on human endeavors, making it a must-read for enthusiasts seeking to understand the intricate dance between fate and free will in the realm of poker and beyond.

Rounders (1998) – Reading Your Opponent

In “Rounders,” Mike McDermott (played by Matt Damon) faces off against Teddy KGB (played by John Malkovich) in a high-stakes poker game that feels like a battle of wits and strategy. The scene where Mike finally beats Teddy is a masterclass in the psychological aspect of poker. The scene demonstrates the importance of reading your opponent and the value of patience and observation. Mike’s ability to recall Teddy’s tell (the way he handles his Oreo cookies) under extreme pressure is what turns the tide in his favor. For anyone interested in poker, this scene is a stark reminder that knowing how to read people can be as critical as the cards you’re dealt.

Casino Royale (2006) – Managing Risks and Bluffs

In the heart of a tension-filled, high-stakes poker match in “Casino Royale,” Daniel Craig’s James Bond showcases not just his prowess at the table but also a masterclass in psychological warfare and risk management. This scene is more than a cinematic spectacle; it serves as an educational blueprint on the intricacies of bluffing and emotional resilience in poker. Bond’s unruffled demeanor, even in the face of potential ruin, underlines a critical lesson for poker enthusiasts: the power of composure. This moment is a testament to the strategic depth of poker, teaching players about the delicate balance between risk and reward, and the crucial role of mental fortitude in navigating the unpredictable currents of high-stakes gambling.

The Cincinnati Kid (1965) – The Element of Luck

“The Cincinnati Kid” features an iconic poker game between the Kid, played by Steve McQueen, and Lancey Howard, played by Edward G. Robinson, known as the Man. The climactic moment, where the Kid seemingly secures victory until the Man unveils a superior straight flush, strikingly underlines the undeniable role of luck in poker. This dramatic turn of events serves as a stark reminder that, despite the utmost skill and strategies, the cards one is dealt significantly influence the game’s outcome. This scene adeptly teaches players that while mastering the game’s mechanics and strategies is crucial, the unpredictable nature of luck remains an ever-present factor in poker. It eloquently highlights that poker, much like life, is a blend of skill, strategy, and the whims of chance, reinforcing the lesson that success in poker requires not only expertise but also an understanding and acceptance of uncertainty.

Maverick (1994) – The Art of Deception

“Maverick,” with its blend of humor and suspense, brings to the forefront the art of deception in poker. Bret Maverick’s journey to becoming the best poker player, culminating in a triumphant royal flush, is more than just entertainment. It underscores the psychological aspect of poker – the game within the game. This scene teaches players that deception, when wielded with precision and confidence, can be as potent a tool as any in the poker player’s arsenal. It emphasizes the importance of reading the room, crafting a persona, and the strategic use of misinformation to gain the upper hand.

The Sting (1973) – The Long Con

In “The Sting,” two con artists, played by Paul Newman and Robert Redford, set out to pull off a long con against a gangster. The movie features a poker game where one of the characters uses a marked deck of cards to cheat his opponent. This scene highlights the importance of patience and the long game in poker. It shows that sometimes, it’s not about winning individual hands, but about setting up a bigger win in the future. The movie teaches players that while quick wins can be satisfying, the most significant rewards come from playing the long con.

Each film presents a unique aspect of poker, teaching both seasoned players and novices about the depth of the game. Whether it’s the psychological battle depicted in “Rounders,” the risk management shown in “Casino Royale,” the acknowledgment of luck’s role in “The Cincinnati Kid,” or the art of deception seen in “Maverick,” these scenes illustrate that success in poker goes beyond just having the right cards. It’s about how you play them, how well you understand your opponents, and sometimes, how the cards decide to fall

Panic Fest 2024 Review

Panic Fest, like any great idea, has gone from being that great weekend of horror in Kansas City to a national audience wanting to learn more because they saw it on social media or on someone’s T-shirt at the airport the Monday after the main events. Last year I noted that Panic Fest was beginning to become a recognizable gem in the Midwest, but this year felt like it’s now a recognizable gem from coast to coast, and amongst the right group of friends overseas. To quote what I said last year, and other years prior, if 2024 was any indication, Panic Fest continues to boldly grow without losing its indie charm.

Thursday could have been a harbinger of things to come. For nearly a month, Panic Fest had hyped up the return of Joe Bob Briggs and Darcy the Mail Girl with a presentation of “Night of the Comet.” On April Fool’s Day, just days before the start, word came down that Joe Bob Briggs was sick. As to not soil night one, Joe Lynch, Director/Panic Fest Ambassador/Honorary Kansas Citian, stepped up to take Joe Bob Briggs role introducing the movie. Joe Bob Briggs was kind enough to send a snarky, yet comedic slapdown of Joe Lynch for the crowd and even gave his iconic drive-in totals over the course of 14 glorious, digital minutes. After the 80s pajama party movie, it was time for the 21st century B-horror, “Sting.” Night one is something I’ve never felt in bigger cities on bigger stages, a feeling of “Panic Fest” and Screenland Armour doing things on their own terms despite the immense pressure for perfection.

On Friday, I started off my day with the Nick Stahl culinary thriller “What You Wish For,” followed by “Hippo,” a film where the title character can only be described as an obnoxious incel version of Napoleon Dynamite. “Livescreamers,” which was attended by the director, who also wrote, produced, and did damn near everything outside of acting in the film, was a blast, made even better by the creative ways in which it was filmed. Even a filmmaking newbie could see how much time and effort went into creating “Livescreamers” world. The finale of Friday was a film I hope you get to see even though you may never, according to the writer. The post-apocalyptic Christian, but not really Christian, muddy demon horror film “Azrael” is easy to describe, but impossible to fully explain.

Per usual, Saturday serves as a big night for special guests. First up was the premiere of “Ghost Game,” a social media challenge mixed with a haunted house that will have you guessing about what’s going on until the final few minutes. Next was the 4K restoration, and 40th anniversary of “A Nightmare on Elm Street,” with horror royalty Heather Langenkamp in attendance. It was clear in the following Q&A how much she still adores the movie and the journey that it started her on. But the Q&A of the weekend, and maybe for all of Panic Fest’s history, was not Langenkamp. Instead, it followed the 25th anniversary screening of “The Blair Witch Project.” Having not seen the film since renting it at Blockbuster in 2000, I watched the film with a fresh pair of eyes and ears, appreciating the do-it-yourself with nothing to lose tactics this revolutionary film implemented. I could probably listen to co-director Eduardo Sanchez and Mike “I kicked that fucker into the creek!” Williams talk about the filmmaking process for “Blair Witch” for hours. The night ended with “Mother Father Sister Brother Frank” about an adorable family who hilariously deal with their shithead uncle Frank through deadly means.

The hangover cure for many on Sunday was “New Life,” a film that feels all too real even as we get farther and farther away from the COVID-19 pandemic. For newcomers, the hefty drama is a reminder that Panic Fest is more than blood and guts. “New Life” was followed up with the spiritual horror about good versus evil, and dealing with the loss of a four-legged companion, “The Activated Man.” It was hard to keep a dry eye during the film, much less during the director Q&A. The evening ended with the Irish folk horror, “All You Need is Death” and the juggalo road trip to the promised land (the Gathering of Juggalos) film “Off Ramp.” I can fully and happily report that Faygos and laughs were had as Sunday came to a close.

Like every year, the weekend feels like a blur. For me, it was the films. There’s nothing like experiencing cinema with like minded strangers. While everyone felt that it wasn’t the ultimate experience, like mine. For others, it was the connections in the lobby over mixed drinks and beers. For some, it was the mutual love of a local podcast and meeting a fresh face, or new fan. So, while my experience feels like the highlight of 2024, for some, it’s the highlight of a lifetime. That’s the beauty of Panic Fest, it’s great no matter which way you enjoy it.

The Innovation of Blockchain in Entertainment Media

In this digital age, the entertainment industry has seen a significant shift in content delivery methods. With physical entertainment mediums becoming increasingly obsolete, there’s a growing interest in the potential of digital solutions like blockchain and Bitcoin to revolutionize the industry. One platform,, is making strides in showcasing this potential.

Bitcoin and Blockchain 101: A Quick Primer

Before delving into the nitty-gritty, one needs to understand the basics of Bitcoin and blockchain. Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency, a form of digital money that operates without the control of any centralized authority. Instead, it uses blockchain, a decentralized network of computers, also known as nodes. These nodes validate the transactions across the network keeping it secure and the data intact.

The Leap to Entertainment Media

Unlike traditional currencies where the transactional data can be altered or erased, every Bitcoin transaction is recorded onto the blockchain, creating a transparent ledger accessible by all in the network. This level of secure transparency provides tremendous benefits to the entertainment industry.

Unalterable and Immutable Records

In an industry where intellectual property rights and royalties are of paramount importance, blockchain could be the game-changer. With blockchain, content creators can retain rights to their work and receive their deserved royalties without fear of data tampering.

Enhanced Fan Interactions

Blockchain can also foster a new level of fan interaction. Think trading virtual goods, or rewarding viewer loyalty with cryptocurrency. This increased interaction can create a more immersive user experience that truly puts the audience in the driving seat.

Bitcoin in the Eyes of the Entertainment Industry

An expert analyst from explains that Bitcoin is gaining recognition in the entertainment industry. As more industries embrace the potential of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, the entertainment industry is not far behind. The decentralized model of Bitcoin provides a new approach to the distribution and monetization of entertainment media. Moreover, Bitcoin restores privacy to the user. Unlike traditional payment models which may require significant personal information, Bitcoin transactions can occur semi-anonymously. This could be attractive for users wishing to maintain their privacy online.

The Journey Ahead

There’s no doubt that Bitcoin and blockchain have immense potential in the entertainment industry. Some naysayers may voice concerns over its unstable value and regulatory uncertainties. However, it is imperative to remember that any innovation comes with its set of challenges. The important thing is to keep the conversation open, encouraging healthy debate and research into these concerns. This will not only help in refining and improving Bitcoin’s use in the industry but also contribute to paving the way forward in this digital revolution.


Cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies are undeniably making their mark across various industries – and the entertainment industry is no exception. By enabling fair profit-sharing, enhancing fan interactions, and facilitating secure digital transactions, these promising innovations are poised to revolutionize how we produce, distribute and consume entertainment media. The role of platforms like will be crucial in fostering understanding and adoption of these technologies.

Unlock the Premier League’s Top Odds: How to Bet Soccer Like a Pro!

What are the most popular odds types in Premier League betting?

Dive into Premier League Betting Mastery

In the electrifying realm of soccer betting, Premier League matches stand out as some of the most fiercely contested and passionately followed events worldwide. With millions of fans tuning in to witness the drama unfold on the pitch, it’s no surprise that Premier League betting has become a staple for enthusiasts looking to add an extra layer of excitement to their viewing experience.

Premier League Match Odds

One of the most straightforward and popular forms of betting in the Premier League is predicting the outcome of individual matches. Here, bettors have three options: backing the home team to win, supporting the away team, or betting on a draw. 

Each option comes with its own set of odds, reflecting the perceived likelihood of that outcome occurring. Match odds are often influenced by various factors such as team form, injuries, and head-to-head records, making them a fascinating aspect of Premier League betting to explore and learn how to bet soccer.

Premier League Title Odds

For those with a long-term perspective, Premier League title odds offer an opportunity to predict the eventual champion of the league. At the start of the season, bookmakers assess each team’s chances based on squad strength, managerial prowess, and previous performances. 

As the season progresses, these odds fluctuate in response to team performances, injuries, and other relevant factors. Successfully predicting the title winner can lead to substantial payouts, making it an enticing prospect for astute bettors.

Premier League Top Scorer Odds

Scoring goals is the essence of soccer, and the Premier League boasts some of the world’s most prolific goal-scorers. Betting on the league’s top scorer adds an extra dimension of excitement to the season, as punters attempt to predict which player will finish with the most goals. Factors such as playing style, injury history, and team tactics all influence a player’s chances of claiming the coveted Golden Boot. 

Top scorer odds provide bettors with a chance to learn how to bet on soccer, showcasing their knowledge of player form and trends, and potentially reaping handsome rewards in the process.

Premier League Over/Under Odds

Over/under betting is a popular choice for those seeking a more nuanced approach to Premier League wagering. Instead of predicting the outcome of a match, bettors focus on the total number of goals scored by both teams. 

Bookmakers set a benchmark figure, and punters must decide whether the actual total will be over or under that number. This form of betting adds excitement to even the most one-sided of matches, as every goal can impact the outcome for bettors.

Premier League Handicap Odds

In matches where one team is heavily favored over the other, handicap betting levels the playing field by giving the perceived weaker team a virtual head start. Punters can choose to back either team with a handicap applied, meaning they must win by a certain margin for the bet to pay out. 

Handicap odds offer an intriguing alternative for bettors seeking value in matches where the outcome seems predictable, providing opportunities for higher returns on investment.

Premier League Correct Score Odds

Predicting the exact scoreline of a Premier League match requires a blend of skill, intuition, and luck. Correct score betting offers generous odds for those who can accurately forecast the final result, making it an appealing option for risk-tolerant bettors. 

Whether it’s a tightly contested affair or a goal-laden thriller, correctly predicting the scoreline can result in substantial winnings, adding an extra layer of excitement to the viewing experience.

Premier League Half-Time/Full-Time Odds

For those who enjoy analyzing the ebb and flow of matches, half-time/full-time betting presents an intriguing proposition. Punters must predict both the result at half-time and the final outcome at full-time, offering multiple avenues for potential winnings. 

This form of betting rewards those who can anticipate momentum shifts and tactical adjustments, making it a favorite among experienced bettors looking to capitalize on their insights.

Master Premier League Betting: Your Winning Strategy Unveiled

As the final whistle blows and the dust settles on another thrilling Premier League season, mastering the art of soccer betting remains an ongoing pursuit for enthusiasts worldwide. By delving into the diverse range of odds types available and honing their analytical skills, bettors can elevate their game to new heights and enjoy sustained success in the dynamic world of Premier League betting.

Power Picks: UEFA Champions League Favorites & Winning Strategies | Bet Smarter Now!

Which teams are favored to win in the upcoming UEFA Champions League fixtures?

The Thrilling Pursuit of UEFA Champions League Glory Begins Here

In the electrifying realm of UEFA Champions League football, anticipation mounts as teams prepare to clash on the grandest stage of European competition. Fans and punters alike eagerly await to unravel the mysteries of the upcoming fixtures. Let’s delve into the captivating world of UEFA Champions League favorites and unleash winning strategies for sports betting aficionados.

UEFA Champions League Favorites 

Predicting the champions requires analyzing team form, player dynamics, and tactical prowess. Here are some key factors to consider:

Reigning Champions’ Resurgence: As the defending champions, Manchester City naturally commands respect. Analyze their performance, key signings like Jude Bellingham, and Pep Guardiola’s strategies to assess their title defense potential.

Dominant Domestic Performances: Teams excelling in their domestic leagues often translate that momentum into Europe. Consider Arsenal, currently leading the Premier League, and their consistent performances to gauge their Champions League prospects.

Star-Studded Lineups: Teams boasting a constellation of stars have the potential to dominate. Explore the impact of marquee signings like Kylian Mbappé’s transfer to Real Madrid and their injury updates to refine your predictions.

Winning Strategies for Sports Betting 

Navigating the realm of sports betting, especially when it comes to UEFA Champions League fixtures, demands astute strategies and meticulous analysis. Elevate your betting game with expert tactics on how to bet on sports, specifically tailored for these high-stakes encounters.

Statistical Analysis: Deep dive into data like Manchester City‘s unbeaten group stage record and Real Madrid‘s head-to-head dominance against Inter Milan. Identify patterns to make informed decisions and capitalize on favorable odds.

Tactical Insights: Evaluate teams’ playing styles and formations. For example, will Arsenal’s attacking approach outmaneuver Bayern Munich‘s possession-based strategy? Factor in these matchups to refine your betting strategy.

Risk Management: Mitigate risks by diversifying bets and setting realistic expectations. Prioritize long-term profitability by avoiding impulsive bets and adhering to a disciplined bankroll management strategy.

Unveiling the Thrilling Spectacle 

As the UEFA Champions League spectacle unfolds, the stage is set for exhilarating encounters, unforeseen upsets, and memorable moments. Embrace the excitement, immerse yourself in the action, and elevate your betting prowess to new heights.

Embracing the Drama: Witness underdogs like Atalanta defy the odds against established giants like Barcelona. Immerse yourself in the drama and savor the unpredictable nature of the competition.

Community and Camaraderie: Connect with fellow football enthusiasts, share insights, and discuss matches. Foster camaraderie within the betting community and celebrate collective victories.

Lifelong Memories: Cherish the iconic performances and unforgettable moments that become Champions League legends. From Lionel Messi‘s last dance to a stunning comeback by RB Leipzig, embrace the magic of football and create lasting memories.

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