Category Archives: Fund Raiser

Celebrity ChariD20 – Next Sunday

I wrote this article that was originally published on Multiverse — it is republished here with permission.

I had the honor to interview my friend and fellow Multiverse writer, Satine Phoenix, about her upcoming event – Celebrity ChariD20 (CCD20).

What is CCD20?: celebrates Storytellers by Fundraising for the Childrens literacty charity: Reach out and Read!

How did all this start?:
I started Celebrity ChariD20 back in 2010 at Meltdown Comics. I was running the Hollywood Table-top Gaming Group #DnDMeltdown out of the store and wanted to throw Charity events along with the other fun events. (Sunday games, Battle Royale & Pancake Breakfast potlucks). I’ve been playing Dungeons and Dragons since 1995 and like other Entertainment Professionals, I was having a hard time finding other players as an adult so naturally, I created a place for us all to get together. Men & Women of all ages and backgrounds. It’s easy for us to sit by ourselves and play video games but there’s something incredibly bonding and exciting about playing tabletop role playing games. You can’t go alone. You have to cooperate with others to get the goal accomplished. Tabletop roleplaying games remind you about this both at the table and in life. I am a better human because of Dungeons and Dragons.

Why have it as both an in-person and live video stream?:
Back in 2010 the internet didn’t have live-streamed gaming events, at least not on the small DIY scale we were trying to run. It was a wild new idea that Meltdown Comics and I had. It was a way for us in Hollywood to fund raise with people in other cities, states… countries. Since then the internet has evolved and now Live streaming is just another everyday item we have access to on the internet. Which is great. It was really complicated trying to invent the format of CCD20. We tried running 4 simultaneous streams at once. Too much bandwidth. Then we evolved to a few shorter games back to back which ended up making the event WAY less chaotic. The event is very complex to run and I’ve been directing it by myself with the help of a few friends. It was easier to have it run on a closed set at Meltdown with people watching from home. I hate limiting the people involved in these kind of events so this was my way of including everyone! Now that my business partner Ruty is helping me throw events we now have the capability of getting people to both donate online from anywhere in the world AND come to the store to play games and party while we run the live stream. Making it a REALLY BIG PARTY!

What are your future plans with this event?:
I’d love to throw a giant event where hundreds of people can come out and game at tables all day and raise money. One day I’ll have enough volunteers to help organize that kind of event. In the meantime Ruty & I can manage a handful of 2 hour tables. We asked our celebrity friends to come out and share the event with their fans so we can do our very best to raise money for this charity. Because that is what it’s all about. Raising money for the Children’s Literacy group, Reach Out and Read.

What can we do to help?:
If you would like to participate, impact the game play of the different tables/celebrities, enter into a raffle for some cool items just go to and donate! You can start today! If you want to come down to Meltdown and game with us and donate cash or books, please do! We will be running other games all day long! If you want to mail books to Meltdown to be donated to Reach Out and Read, please do! More than anything, please tell all your friends to go and donate!!
323.851.7223 (STORE)
323.435.4411 (SMS HELP)
WED: 10AM – 10PM celebrates Storytellers by Fundraising for the Children’s literacy charity: Reach out and Read!

August 28th from 10 am – 8 pm!
5 games, 2 hours each, back to back for a whole day of Tabletop Gaming with over 30 Celebrity Guests.

LIVE STREAM Hosted by Satine Phoenix on XSN at Meltdown Comics and Collectibles in Hollywood California. Dungeon Masters: Keith Baker & Ruty Rutenberg
Donate TODAY and UNLOCK exciting Stretch goals that effect the Players and their games!
Donate at

All donations automatically entered to win **SPECIAL RAFFLE PRIZES** from our sponsors: Wizards of the Coast, Nerdist, Geek & Sundry, Hero Forge, Comikaze and Many MORE! Signed Books, Games, Toys, Tickets, posters & other fun Nerdstuffs signed by our celebrities!
Wanna donate big but don’t want disadvantage on your raffle roll? Never fear! Each donation increment of $10 is another entry! Donate TODAY for the first Raffle Drawing at 10 am AUGUST 28th!

DO YOU WANT TO PLAY?!?! Come down to Meltdown Comics! We’ve got tables for you and your friends to play Board Games & other Tabletop Roleplaying games. Join in the fun, Rally the troops and be a part of the Festivities!!!

Check out the PLAYER LIST on

D&D Documentary Number 3 – Rebuilding Trust

While at Gary Con, I attended a session titled, D&D Documentary Teaser and Q&A. Pat Kilbane is working on a D&D documentary. It is a third documentary totally unrelated to the other two documentaries now tied up in litigation*.  There is enough about this documentary to impress me, that I decided on the spot to write up a separate article to give it the focus it deserves. In short, I will do what I can to promote it.

My new friend, +Satine Phoenix, is one of the interviewees in the three clips we were shown, and she happened to join in, as she was early for Frank Mentzer’s D&D game in the same room, following this 1 hour session.

I wish I had the foresight to record this. It was a good discussion, and my notes were only on the high points. As more comes along, I will mention it here on my blog.

Satine & Pat after the presentation.
Satine & Pat after the presentation.

The three interviews in the sneak peak were with:

So far, shooting for those on the West coast has been done. Next, while at Gary Con, he is interviewing all the old guard from the beginning to get their perspective. He filmed a session by Tim Kask on the first five years of TSR. I had the honor of asking the last question.

Rather than have yet another Kickstarter for a D&D documentary, when the previous two are tied up in litigation, Pat wants to focus on building trust with the intended audience. His idea is to do small two minute pieces as part of a Patreon to create a track record of delivering smaller bits, until there is enough trust to do some form of fundraiser, such as Kickstarter.

An example of the short videos he envisions is the Gary Con Two-Minute History video, featuring Luke Gygax explaining what Gary Con is.

You can follow Pat’s efforts on the Facebook page, Dorks of Yore.

*Full disclosure, I am in for and most likely out $50 for the second documentary’s Kickstarter, The Great Kingdom. The first film that Kickstarted is Dungeons & Dragons: A Documentary, which I missed the Kickstarter altogether. You can find details of the trials and tribulations of these two films with your google-fu. I want to stay positive and show what Pat is doing. As with most of us, I think we just want any film, that is well done, to come out while the old guard is still available.

Follow Up On Jeff Perren’s GoFundMe Campaign

I wrote about Jeff Perren’s daughter having a campaign [link broken:] for a stair lift to move him out of assisted living and into her home back on January 31st.

In less than a week it met and exceeded the $6,000 goal.

There are still donations trickling in. I am sure with taxes, they will need at least 30% beyond the goal, unless they baked that into their estimate.

Good job gang!

Child’s Play Charity

I learned about Child’s Play when I stumbled on the mention of the BrigadeCon for the weekend of November 15 & 16, 2014.

BrigadeCon is billed as a Benefit. I found that the Benefit is Child’s play, but the link {now broken:] to an explanation of what Child’s Play is was not obvious to find. For something billed as a charity event, it should be more obvious on the BrigadeCon website that it is a charity event, what the event is, and a simple donate button. From checking out the link to the explanation and donate button, it looks like only two people have donated. The donate button did list the website of Child’s Play. From the About page on the Child’s Play website: “Since 2003, we’ve set up and organized Child’s Play, a game industry charity dedicated to improving the lives of children with toys and games in our network of over 70 hospitals worldwide.”

There is a link to the official Child’s Play events, and that link does a better job of explaining things: “BrigadeCon 2014 is an online tabletop gaming convention hosted by the RPG Brigade, a collective of tabletop roleplaying enthusiasts. Events include live games of D&D and other RPGs, and live panels on game-mastering, world-building, and adventure creation. Donations will be accepted for Child’s Play during the entirety of the convention.” The homepage of BrigadeCon leaves out the last sentence about donations for Child’s Play. The link for Child’s Play at the top of the page is misleading, it that a link for kid’s games?

I think it should be more obvious that not only is this a fund raiser, but what the cause is. No one likes to go to an event and not know that the collection plate will be passed, or that there is an expectation of a donation.

I am all in favor of having an event that is fun, to raise funds for those in need. More clarity is needed.

I may not be able to participate in the games at this online con, but I can give a few dollars to help out.

Gaming Convention Clearinghouse

I was thinking of attending the online AetherCon game convention. Easy, free, and I don’t have to go anywhere. It is November 14-16, 2014.

I then found out about UCon, a convention in Ypsilanti, MI about 90 minutes from where I live, near Kalamazoo, MI. It is also November 14-16, 2014.

Because I get my basic itch to play scratched in a Wednesday night online AD&D/OSRIC campaign, I am still wanting in person play time, so I signed up for Saturday the 15th. This does not preclude me from also taking part in Aethercon.

Today, while searching for something else (instead of working on my novel for NaNoWriMo 2014), I learned of another online convention for the same weekend, BrigadeCon. It is billed as a Benefit.

I then turned to Google for online gaming conventions, and discovered the helpful website Game Convention Central. It has an option for showing all online game conventions, like the above mentioned AetherCon, and ConTessa, both of which I had already heard of, and many I had not. I noticed that BrigadeCon is not on the list at Game Convention Central, and it is in less than two weeks.

What I like about Game Convention Central is that it is divided into regions so one can find a physical convention near them. The regions are USA, Australia/NZ, Canada, Europe, UK/Ireland, and World. Each of these regions is further subdivided into regions, so one can easily find conventions closer to where they live. It also has a link to Submit A Con, for any not on the list. There is also a Google+ page.

What I find really useful is a list of resources to help one find games and players “in between conventions”. There are a lot of such resources that I did not know about. I will have to check those out later.

The only thing that I would like to see handled differently is to have a calendar that one can search. For example, I would like to see a calendar that will show me all the conventions in the USA and the online conventions. This way I can say, plan my vacation to go to a con I didn’t know about in an area of the country I always wanted to visit.

I find this site to be so helpful, that I am adding a link to it on the front page of my website.

I also suggest that if you know about a gaming convention that is not on this site, to submit it.