2012: The Year of the Con

It’s no secret I love conventions.  I think there is no better way to meet my fellow geeks and just have a great time than at a convention.  I would spend every weekend at a con if I could.  Okay, I realize that sentiment may fade after a few months, but darn it I’m willing to test the theory!  Like most people I’ve done the cake-in-the-sky (thanks, Patton Oswalt) dreaming about what I’d do if I won the lottery.  And a lot of what I’d do is go to cons.

Thinking about it today, I’ve decided that since the lottery probably isn’t coming into play anytime soon I’d have to take matters into my own hands.  To that end, I am declaring 2012 my own personal Year of the Con.  I have decided that in that year I will attend as many conventions as is physically and financially possible.  I want to get out there and celebrate geekdom with my people, and by Cthulhu this seems like the way to do it!

I’ve settled on the following 2012 conventions for my initial “Must Attend” list.  Going forward, the list will include only those conventions happening outside of Edmonton.  (Edmonton conventions take note: as long as you don’t conflict with an out-of-town con I am attending, I will be in you!)  The purpose of this list is to help me set goals and expand my geek horizons.  I also want to expand the scope of Renaissance Dork, and if I can use this con-going schedule to develop new contacts and find people to interview, all the better!

2012 Year of the Con Appearance List

Futurecon (December 30-January 1) – Organized by my pal Liana K., Futercon will not only be my first con of the year, but the first con of the year; it takes place over the New Year’s weekend.  I can’t think of a better way to ring in the new year than with a con full of nerds.  I’ve already committed to being there and running some games (a little Kobolds Ate My Baby!, anyone?), and I fully expect to have a great time.  Other cons beware; Futurecon will have set the bar pretty damn high for me.

Emerald City Comicon (March 30-31, April 1) – Though I do read a few comics I am not a huge comic guy, so including a comic convention on my list may seem strange.  But ECCC is on here for a few reasons.  The primary one, I’ll get to attend with some friends of mine who are also making the trip from Edmonton.  I like travelling with people who’s company I enjoy, and it should make for an interesting trip.  But another reason is, looking at the vendor and guest lists for ECCC, there are tons of webcomic artists I want to meet, buy a sketch from and thank.  That alone will take up a good chunk of my weekend, and the con hasn’t even posted an event list yet.  So I think this will be a good first “out-of-country” convention.

Calgary Expo (April 27-29) – A little closer to home this time, my desire to attend (already high) will go up as they add more guests to their list.  They just announced Robert Englund as their Horror GoH, so they already have my attention!  And I have to say it is really cool to have a media heavy con so close to home; when you are planning to spend $40-$75 a pop to get photos and/or items signed, it helps to not have just dropped a bundle on travel.  Also, it will give me a chance to hang out with my Calgary pals, which I don’t get to do often enough.

PaizoCon (Dates tba) – Nothing has been set for 2012 yet, but PaizoCon usually runs in June.  I have tried to get to this con for the last two years without success, but no more!  I WILL get to PaizoCon in 2012, I have decreed it!  I mean, really, an entire weekend of Pathfinder run by Paizo employees and volunteers?  Yes please!  And I’ll get my second taste of Seattle, which will be interesting to me.  I may try to pad an extra day on the front and/or back of my trip to explore the city.

Gen Con (August 16-19) – The Cadillac of gaming conventions, it is time for me to get back behind the wheel!  I am tempted to go back as a VIG (Very Important Gamer), but I am equally tempted to volunteer with Paizo to run Pathfinder for most of the weekend.  Both have their perks, so we’ll see what happens down the line.  But if you are a gamer you should get to Gen Con at least once; it will be the best gaming experience of your life.  And Indianapolis is a lovely city, even if it was bawls-hawt when I was last there.  But even if it is 40 degrees C outside, it is a pleasant AC-degrees inside the convention hall, so that won’t stop me!

So that is my list so far!  Add in local events like Pure Spec, Edmonton Collectible Toy and Comic Show and Animethon, and I’m having a busy year.  But I am excited by this plan, and looking forward to the coming year.  As my plans progress I’ll keep you posted, and I’ll set up a page soon that will keep a running list of my 2012 con appearances.  You can also expect some posts with tips for planning and executing your own con-going, which I will field test for you over the coming year.

Okay, geeks, have a great weekend!  Roll some dice, watch a movie, or get out of the house and do something geeky.  See you back here Monday for more nerdery!

Any nerd cons you plan to attend in the coming year? Talk them up in the Comments section and maybe I’ll go, too!

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