It’s based on data I found on a Dragon Con wiki, which explains that its data was collected from snapshots of the Dragon Con website as preserved on the Internet Archives. I also used numbers from the Wikipedia article on Dragon Con to fill in the graph. Attendance figures for some years differ from those listed in the history section of the current version of the Dragon Con website, but I believe these numbers are close enough to deliver a good approximation of the growth this convention has experienced over the past 31 years. Continue reading Dragon Con Turns 31 – Is It Too Big Now?
Today one of the people in my circle of friends became infamous for the systematic theft of hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of Star Wars collectibles. I cannot believe that it was his goal to become reviled by the fans of one of his most beloved fictional universes or to be publicly castigated on Twitter by the actor who played Luke Skywalker.
Steve Sansweet, who many of us early Star Wars fans looked up to for guidance when he began publishing an annual Star Wars collectibles price guide, confessed that his sense of trust had been badly damaged after discovering numerous thefts of rare items from Continue reading The Betrayal of Steve Sansweet
Three years ago I made a post to my blog called “Is Dragon*Con Broken?” and it elicited a TON of reactions from people, which meant that me and my friends weren’t the only people who felt that way. To their credit the people who run the convention had that same realization and have made some great strides in making the convention fun again.
For those of you who’ve been reading me here (and elsewhere) you know that I’ve rather become a fan of science fiction conventions and the people who attend them. I love that there exists a safe harbor in this world for the myriad nerds and social misfits who communicate their innermost feelings via witty T-shirts and long rambling tirades regarding the inefficiency of Model 7 dilithium articulation frames. I celebrate the fact that there’s a place where nobody cares if you look (and often smell) funny… a place where sexy actresses are paid to Continue reading Dragon Hoarders
Updated Sept 5th, 2010 at 7:02pm – thanks to all of you who have contributed to the discussion!
It’s the Sunday morning of Dragon*Con 2010 and I’m spending my morning recuperating from having walked 5 or 6 miles around the East Coast’s fan-driven answer to Comic-Con yesterday. I woke up thinking about how much my beloved nerdfest has changed over the past five years and thought that I’d jot down some notes for later discussions with my friends who are also attending this year.
Truth is, I suppose the old girl has been changing ever since I first started going in the late 1980s, but lately it’s becoming hard to see what first made me fall in love with Dragon*Con. During a stopover at Trader Vic’s I participated in an impromptu panel called “Dragon*Con Might Just Suck” regarding how this year’s convention has been particularly lackluster. My fellow panelists Carl, Joseph and Timmy made some very good points and I’m distilling that conversation into the following five points:
I understand that my pals The Cardboard Troopers had a wild time this past weekend. They arrived in Atlanta for the 2009 edition of Dragon*Con, but they couldn’t actually seem to find a trace of the convention and the hotel people kept looking at them funny. I sure hope that they come back for the 10:00am parade on Saturday, they always seem to enjoy that.
Which reminds me that last month the Fall issue of the Georgia Tech Alumni Magazine hit the stands and I was simultaneously delighted (97%) and mortified (3%) to read the article about me that staff writer Van Jensen composed after we met prior to my surgery this summer. Entitled “How Did That NERD on the Left Become That PIRATE on the Right?“, the article does a really nice job of catching people up with the kid who won the Batman contest back in the 80s… and the second page features a certain cardboard trooper standing in front of a line of “real” troopers at Dragon*Con.
Last week our friend Bob announced that he was going to sell a few old Star Wars toys he had laying around his house. This of course piqued my interest, as I’m one of those millions of children who were imprinted with the plans for the Death Star back in the summer of 1977. Like many of those kids, my formative years were spent poring over pre-production illustrations by Ralph McQuarrie and building my own models of the ships out of balsa wood and styrene. Looking back, I thought that I had a pretty great collection of lovingly-used Continue reading VaderPainter’s Big August 2009 Sale