Science and Séance in SF on Halloween 2015

Dear Wonderfest friend,

Do the similar-sounding words science and séance have similar origins? No such luck (for séance). Both words come from Latin verbs: science from scire, to know; séance from sedere, to sit! Wonderfest, the Bay Area Beacon of Science, promotes knowing. And, personally, as much as I do enjoy a good sit, knowing is better.

Wonderfest joins the Bay Area Science Festival, Bay Area Skeptics, and the Pan-Pacific International Exhibition in presenting The Official Houdini Séance 2015 at San Francisco’s Brava Theater on the anniversary of Houdini’s death, Halloween! That word “Official” is not hollow; we are backed by the estate of magician Sid Radner, friend and protégé of Houdini’s brother, Hardeen.


The 2015 Official Houdini Séance will be a spectacular presentation of science, skepticism, history, escapes, and magic. Speakers include Michael Shermer, Skeptics Society Founder, and Melina Uncapher, UCSF neuroscientist. To learn more and to purchase tickets, please visit our Kickstarter page(All the links in this newsletter point to the Kickstarter page, so you might as well give in!)

The most controversial figure at our Houdini event is sure to be self-described “psychic medium” Terrie Huberman. Terrie will lead the Earnest Séance, the first of two séances to take place that evening. Magician/Mentalist Paul Draper will lead the second, the Magical Séance, where remarkable things are sure to happen!

Please do learn more about our undertaking (*ahem*) by watching magician Robert Strong’s sparkling 2-minute video that introduces the Kickstarter campaign. Robert, pictured below, is a member of Wonderfest’s Board of Directors, and he has risen (*ugh*) to this wonderful séance production challenge. Robert has put his head and his heart — not to mention his remarkable network of magical associates — into producing a Halloween event not to be missed.


But even if you can’t attend The Official Houdini Séance 2015, you can still contribute to the cause of science popularization by making a tax-deductible donation to Wonderfest. Just click on the very first Kickstarter “reward” option — supporting science/knowledge even when séancing/sitting somewhere else!

Wondrous regards,

Tucker Hiatt
Founding Executive Director