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  1.  (9651.21)
    I've been to E3 before, back in 2001 (when I worked game retail. Now I've been working at a publisher for 5 years). This year I'm going because there are games I want to see, and devs and possibly some members of the press that I want to say 'hey' to. And I'm not going to work at the company booth, so my time will be my own and I can leave once I've seen what I came to see.
    • CommentAuthorEmperor
    • CommentTimeMar 17th 2011
     (9651.22)
    I am going to Bristol this year (popped down the day before but really need to do the whole weekend this year) and was going to go to Birmingham but it is off so will probably go to the Leeds Thoughtbubble at the end of the year.
  2.  (9651.23)
    Naka-Kon - An anime convention out of Kansas City, MO. Not by choice, mind you. I am not that big on anime, but my fiancée is a die-hard fan, which means I get to tag along for three days of large crowds and fandom discussions that make me go blank and stare off into space after a few moments. Considering she has gone to this for the past like four or five years, I have no doubt I will be tagging along next year, too.

    This is my first year in Kansas, so I really don't know what conventions are held around here. But it seems Seantaclaus does, so I have a list of cons that I can check into. I used to live in Florida and I know there are a few there that I could have gone to, but I tried my very best to stay as far away from Orlando as possible.
  3.  (9651.24)
    @DazedRambler - Much of it comes down to what you want to do. KC fandom itself is actually fairly fractured/secular in it's nature. While there may be some crossover, it often tends to be peripheral at best.

    Naka-Kon is pretty much the largest con in KC, but as you've seen, it's strictly anime, and often strict-interpretation of anime, at that. I'm not sure what the current numbers are, but I know when it was in it's 3rd year or so, it had already hit 3000 (don't know if that was uniques, but I would guess so). Much (most?) of those attendees are under 21, from what I understand, as it tends to be a big family-draw event. I don't recall the name of the club that puts it on, but chances are that you probably got that info when you went.

    ConQuest is a Sci-Fi/Fantasy Literary Convention. While they have a handful of other things going on, they're often shoved off to the side, and the focus on the con remains primary on literature/authors and to a secondary degree, artists. They generally tend to have a fairly well-run art show, with a variety of artists. My understanding from someone involved with gaming is that it will have a bit more drive behind it this year, but that can be bolstered or culled substantially from year to year, depending on who chairing/co-chairing. The chair/co-chair factor also heavily determines whether they're trying to grow or not-- someone want to grow the con, others have no interest in attendance average going above the 400-500 person mark. ConQuest itself is put on by KaCSFFS (Kansas City Science Fiction Fantasy Society), which is the driving force behind it having the literary focus. They meet monthly, though I don't know what their membership/attendance is like, and while some are open to new ideas, some long-term members can come across as a bit stand-offish/resistant to potential new blood and ideas (take from that what you will).

    Planet Comicon KC, as stated previously, is more of a glorified trade show. Don't get me wrong, it's still pretty cool if you're into that sort of thing, there's a lot of costuming, worthwhile guests, and some really talented comic industry folks. Just don't go there expecting it to be like a con-- it's got a lot of the same people, but it's a trade show atmosphere with a handful of panels at this point. Chris, the guy who runs it, is working on changing that, but for the moment it's pretty much limited to exhibit hall hours on the 2 days it's open. Kevin Mellon, one of the resident WC member artists (go check out the monthly artist's threads here if you're not immediately familiar with his work), will have a table there, and I wouldn't be surprised if others do as well. If nothing else, maybe someone will try to do a Whitechapel meetup there. Unfortunately, I'm temporarily stuck elsewhere, and doubt I'll be able to make it this year-- it's the weekend after this one.

    There's at least one gaming convention in the area as well, though at the moment the name escapes me. If I run across it, I'll post it in this thread.

    Conventions aside, there are are numerous groups there which hold semi-regular meetings. One I'd recommend, if you're into horror at all, is Kansas City Horror Club (you'll need to be logged into Facebook to see that). I know a couple of the officers, they're all pretty down to earth people, no drama, and you'll meet a number of people who are into other fandoms that are part of that group as well. Plus, they tend to do regular outings to movie sneak previews with free entry due to being a club and having the right connections. I can't speak for the other officers, as I don't really know them, but Curtis and Mia are both really solid people-- if you go and you meet them, tell them Seantaclaus referred the club to you.

    Hopefully that at least gives you a bit better lay of the land in the immediate KC vicinity, so to speak. If you want a list of cons further out, let me know.
    • CommentAuthorBevis
    • CommentTimeMar 18th 2011
     (9651.25)
    I'm always at Bristol without fail. It's the first con I ever went to and I love it for all it's faults and is, if nothing else, a great social occasion.

    Leeds is very much recommended too. Last year was absolutely brilliant, both socially and in terms of the comics and events. This year they're expanding to two days and the organisers are brilliant. It's got the potential to beat Bristol even.

    Birmingham never did it for me, but it's not on this year so that's a moot point...

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