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Scientology watchers, start making your plans for HowdyCon 2019 in Los Angeles!

Happy New Year, Bunkerites. Here we are at the beginning of another year of Scientology watching — but we want you to think ahead to the summer solstice and consider joining us for our annual meet-up!

In 2016, we held our first “HowdyCon” meeting, and this June we’ll be going for convention number four where it all began for us — Los Angeles!

But let’s back up, for those not sure what we’re talking about. At some point during our book tour for The Unbreakable Miss Lovely in the summer of 2015, one of our readers said she was surprised how many cities we were visiting. We joked that it was the only way we’d figure out where to have our first convention. Readers then ran with the idea, and decided to hold a vote about where such an the event should be held. Cleveland won out, and that was the last time we let readers make that decision. Ha!

In the meantime, the question of naming the thing came up, and we then suggested that it might honor Captain Howdy, a/k/a Steven L. Cox, a singular commenter who used the cover of L. Ron Hubbard’s book The Creation of Human Ability as his avatar, and whose passing we noted in 2015. We suggested that the meeting be called HowdyCon, and now it had a name. (We also dedicated our meet-up to another beloved commenter we lost in 2016, Sugarplumfairy, a/k/a Mary Marinelli.)

Our expert illustrator, Observer, came up with a fun poster for the first HowdyCon as well as 2017’s HowdyCon 2017 in Denver and last year’s confab in Chicago. And now we’re starting out 2019 with Observer’s new poster for this year’s gathering in Tinsel Town.



And this year’s event is such a monumental one, Observer had to make two posters, because Saturday night’s main event is even more special. It will take place in Riverside at Bent Corydon’s historic former Scientology mission, and as a joint function with Janis Gillham Grady’s annual reunion picnic, this year dedicated to former Scientology Executive Director International, Bill Franks!


We couldn’t put on HowdyCon without a lot of help — TexasBroad leaped into the breach for our first convention,Kim O’Brien did an amazing job for us in Denver, and Chee Chalker was our amazing helper last year in Chicago. This year we’re getting a lot of help from multiple people, and so we’re hoping to do some really special things.

Please start thinking about coming to Los Angeles in June. By then, the Church of Scientology is going to be in all kinds of trouble, and we want to talk about it with you over drinks!


Scientology’s celebrities, ‘Ideal Orgs,’ and more!

[The Big Three: Tom Cruise, John Travolta, and Kirstie Alley]

We’ve been building landing pages about David Miscavige’s favorite playthings, including celebrities and ‘Ideal Orgs,’ and we’re hoping you’ll join in and help us gather as much information as we can about them. Head on over and help us with links and photos and comments.

Scientology’s celebrities, from A to Z! Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Scientology’s ‘Ideal Orgs,’ from one end of the planet to the other! Help us build up pages about each these worldwide locations!

Scientology’s sneaky front groups, spreading the good news about L. Ron Hubbard while pretending to benefit society!


Now on sale: Twice the Miss Lovely!

Our new book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology: Exposing L. Ron Hubbard’s dangerous ‘religion’ is now on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. What a pleasure it is for us to work with her on this after we wrote about her ordeal as a victim of Scientology’s “Fair Game” campaigns in our 2015 book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, which is also on sale in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions.



[ONE year ago] Scientology watchers, start making your plans for HowdyCon 2018 in the Windy City!
[TWO years ago] Five years later: Debbie Cook’s indictment of Scientology under David Miscavige, annotated
[THREE years ago] We’re kicking off the new year by revealing the poster for HowdyCon 2016
[FOUR years ago] A Scientology untold history special report: ‘My lunch with Quentin Hubbard’
[FIVE years ago] BUNKER SPECIAL: David Touretzky on L. Ron Hubbard, Mark Twain, and Mary Baker Eddy
[SIX years ago] Another Indie Goes All the Way: Simi Valley Ditches Scientology For Good


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley has not seen his daughter Stephanie in 5,316 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 1,447 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 1,949 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 1,429 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 492 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 380 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 3,687 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 1,555 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,329 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,103 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 2,449 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,015 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 6,935 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,102 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 2,683 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 2,943 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 1,983 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 1,695 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,221 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,310 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 2,450 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 2,770 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 7,626 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 2,745 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,101 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 5,403 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 1,509 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 1,912 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 1,783 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,366 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 1,861 days.
Mary Jane Sterne has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,115 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,224 days.


3D-UnbreakablePosted by Tony Ortega on January 1, 2019 at 00:00

E-mail tips and story ideas to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2017 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2017), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…

BLOGGING DIANETICS: We read Scientology’s founding text cover to cover with the help of L.A. attorney and former church member Vance Woodward
UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists
GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice
SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts

Other links: Shelly Miscavige, ten years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Watch our short videos that explain Scientology’s controversies in three minutes or less…

Check your whale level at our dedicated page for status updates

Join us at the Underground Bunker’s Facebook discussion group for more frivolity.

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news


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