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MCB does Halloween in New Orleans

MCB's own DC in Detroit will, for one week, be DC in NOLA, as I trek down south to do dual duty -- or maybe even triple -- for the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry's 2011 CSI Conference in New Orleans.

If you recognize even one or two of the people from that video, you know that I'm in for a scientific/skeptical/smartypants weekend of epic proportions. And if you recognize more than a couple of them, you're probably already going to the conference.

That's right, some of the biggest names in rational skepticism have decided to spend Halloween, the "spookiest" time of year, in New Orleans, the "spookiest" city in the US. There will be talks on magical thinking, pseudoscience, paranormal, and how it all plays out against the backdrop of reality. We'll even be participating in CSI's annual Houdini seance on Devil's night. He hasn't shown up yet, but if Houdini was going to appear to anyone, I'd believe Joe Nickell before anyone else.

If that all isn't enough, there will be a Halloween costume parade through the French Quarter, complete with jazz band, on Saturday night. Skeptics in costume: be prepared for a lot of visual puns.

I was warned by a friend to take care in New Orleans for that week because "the veil is very thin during this time." Bah, forget the sage, I'll take The Amazing Randi.

Reports and photos to come!

They say "New Orleans lingers on the threshold between the Old World and the New, between history and legend."

Actually the convention bureau says that.

Separating history from legend is one of the things skeptics love best—right up there with sifting science from pseudoscience and combing brilliance from bull.

At CSICon you can do all that, and more—on the boundary of the bayou. It's a conference like no other, uniting the romance of New Orleans and the shiver of Halloween weekend.

But there will be more than voodoo and spirits in the air. Join us for four days of fun, mystery, and take-no-prisoners skeptical inquiry in the heart of the famous New Orleans French Quarter.

And who knows, maybe you'll see the ghost of Jean Lafitte (but we're skeptical).

Register today at