Emily S. Whitten: Dragon Con, Here I Come
Happy upcoming Labor Day Weekend, everyone! I hope you’re all celebrating with a nice break from your usual labors.
Of course, for convention-goers, Labor Day Weekend also means celebrating with Dragon Con a.k.a. (unofficially) the Mardi Gras of fandom cons. There’s a lot to love about Dragon Con. One of those things is the variety of fandom experiences it offers – including the robust schedule of panels featuring everyone from celebrities to fans, the Walk of Fame where you can stroll around and say hello to guests (and purchase photos or autographs if desired), the excellent and varied Dealers Room, the Artist Alley and Art Show, the stellar costume contest and parade, the workshops, the music, and more.
Another thing to love is definitely the vibe of the Con, which I’d describe as a 24-hour hang-out/party with organized events. One contributor to the vibe is that it’s set up as a hotel con, which gives it a convivial, “let’s all hang out during after hours” feel (as opposed to a convention center con where people all wander off in different directions after the exhibit hall and main events close). Another thing is that it’s able to stay a hotel convention despite its size (with over 57,000 attendees in recent years) due to spreading out over five main hotels, three of which are so close they are connected by walkways. And, of course, its reputation as a big con for costumers, and as a place where some of the costumers’ creations literally rival the real thing, means the backdrop of the individual con experience has a continual festival-like air. Add to that the room parties and late-night congregation around centrally-located hotel bars (which also make it easier to catch up with more friends in a short period of time), and Dragon Con TV for when you’re in need of some down-time but still want your con experience to be going on in the background, and Dragon Con really is a 24-hour fandom Mardi Gras.
That’s why it’s one of my favorite cons, and why I’m so hyper-excited right now, as I look forward to all the great panels, guests, and friends I plan to see. It’s also a con that takes significant prep (especially if you plan to do three…wait, scratch that, five costumes over the course of the con), and so that’s why I must leave you all now to attempt the monumental task of figuring out my schedule and packing everything without exceeding flight weight limits. (Eep!)
So until next time, enjoy your long weekend, say hi if you see me at Dragon Con, and Servo Lectio!