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Convention Report: DragonCon 19

Written by Silveran

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First, what is DragonCon? DragonCon is America's largest Mixed Convention, covering gaming, sci-fi/fantasy literature, movies, and film.... and real science; it's held in Atlanta on Labor Day weekend every year. This year DragonCon was held in three hotel/convention centers: Hyatt Regency, Marriott Marquis, and the Hilton.

Second, what was it like?

Well, that's where the "in a way" in the teaser hits.

You see, I am a member of DragonCon staff, so that means I don't have as much time to enjoy the Con as your standard Con Member (attendees). But, because of the department I work in, I get to talk to the Guests in ways most people don't.

So, this year's highlights for me were the following three events:

Talking with famous people
Talking with Con Attendees

So, lets go through these fun things:

Talking with famous people..... who are these people you say?
Well, this year's highlights were Ray Park, Carmen Argenzaino, Jean Loves Jezebel (a band) and Virginia Hey.

I met Ray Park last year, driving him into Atlanta from the Airport. He was by himself, and we talked for about twenty minutes, but apparently I made a good impression on him then. This year he attended with his wife and new child. When I greeted him at the airport this year, he remembered me, and greeted me by name. We chit-chatted on the ride into downtown. At the end of the con, I had a few minutes to see how he liked it. He told me he enjoyed himself and plans on returning again next year.

Carmen Arganzaino was amazingly laid back for a person who deals with annoyingly excited fans wherever he goes. He and I had an enjoyable conversation about the architecture highlights of the Atlanta skyline. He asked me what sites he should visit on his next trip into town, as he was impressed by the city and it's people. Halfway through the con, he tried to get me to go to dinner with him, his treat, but I was on duty and unable to attend.

Gene Loves Jezebel (
was this year's headline band. They were MUCH nicer than last year's headliner Chick Corea (a jazz band leader). I loved their music for years now, and was happy to be able to see them live. Unfortunately, the hotel screwed up their reservation, so we had a bit of trouble with getting them set up. So, I took it upon myself to check in with them (via their sale booth) to see if they were go to go. It appears that Michael (the lead singer) wasn't. He needed make-up, so my wife and I donated ours to him. This gained us two things: an invite backstage, and three free CDs and signed poster. W00T! Free schwag!.

Virginia Hey is one of the very few women on my "Sorry Honey" list. If your married, you will understand this concept. I met her when she was leaving. She's an Aussie, from the same beautiful city as our dear Kaya, Sidney. Apparently, she is taking it easy from the acting business and is concentrating on her reiki pursuits. We (my wife and I) ended up having a good thirty minutes to talk with her, and we found that the woman is as profound as her famous TV character (Zhaan from Farscape). (Quick Plug, go visit her site: Her scents are amazing in both male and female forms.)

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