The convention is wrapping up today, and has been a relatively successful event. We didn’t have quite the numbers we’d like, but everyone who went has said that they had a good time. This bodes well for doing another one. I’ll elaborate further below.
The technical “end” of the convention is at 4 (it being 3:45 now), but I don’t think we’re actually shutting down and packing up quite yet… you see, the staff and a number of the guests are stuck here for an extra day, due to the blizzard currently shutting down the eastern seaboard. Mickey and I were supposed to head down to DC this evening, but it’s not looking too likely at this point (in fact, we’ve already reserved our room for another night). We’re attributing the relatively low attendance count at the convention to people being leary of the storm… this isn’t far from the truth, as we’ve had several cancellations from people who were afraid of the storm. MOST of the attendees fled yesterday, so we’ve really only got maybe 50-100 people left, plus staff. We consolidated down to just a few rooms to make it easier on everyone.
We did a LOT of work in the final week before the convention… Mickey and I came down to the General Manager’s place on Monday, and spent the next two days on the phone arranging site licenses with the various software manufacturers, as well as arranging anime for the screening room (a screening room we didn’t know we had available until the week before the convention). I doubt it’ll pop up on anyone’s radar, but I’d like to give a big thank you to Bandai Entertainment for expediting the processing for getting public screening rights for their anime.
Speaking of “thanks”, I’d also like to thank the folks over at Penny Arcade and Megatokyo for talking about us on their site, and the people of Something Positive, Sluggy Freelance, Goats, and Partially Clips for coming to the convention and participating in the webcomics panel. I think it went really well, and hope they all had fun with it and the rest of the con. They all talked about us on their websites, which really helped attract their viewers to our convention. I didn’t get a chance to talk with Mr Costikyan, which I’m a little disappointed about, but I did speak briefly with Mr. Foglio and Mr. Jackson, both of whom were delightful individuals.
When I wasn’t busy babysitting the console room and/or screening room, I did manage to get a LITTLE gaming/events in… such as the webcomics panel, and the second Get Nifty demonstration. Get Nifty is a new card game being developed by Pete Abrams of Sluggy and Rob Balder of Partially Clips, based on the Sluggy Freelance comic strip. It is hilarious and quite fun (though I’m sure part of that was getting to play against Pete himself, who was full of little side comments as he explained how to play). I even won, winning myself two of the little BunBun game pieces. (I’m sure it was just because Pete got distracted at a key point by a phone call. He tried challenging my weirdness but failed to notice that I had a card of infinite weirdness in play.)
Enough “official” sounding stuff, I’ll do a real press release type notice sometime later, to send to all the folks that have been so helpful. Suffice it to say, the con was a really good time, and we’re GOING to do another one. We’re in active discussion concerning Seattle.
Currently, the lan room is pretty full, the vendor room is closing up shop, roleplaying is in the lobby space in front of the ballrooms, and the ballrooms are housing console, lan, and miniatures, which each have reasonable activity. My brother dug out his guitar, and has been tooling around in one of the rooms with various other folks. Good times had by all. I’m pretty impressed with how well everyone has taken to getting snowed in… I think it helps that we’ve been having some brave folks make grocery store runs for food for any con staff or attendee, at a “contribute to the food bill if you can” cost. (GOOD PR, and just plain the right thing to do.)
I feel like I’ve forgotten to say something, but I’ll just post a new entry if I remember.