I just spent the weekend with my 13 year old Whovian god daughter at the San Diego Who Con. We had a great time.
Coming from the monster that is SDCC and the rarified Whovian air of Gallifrey One, I didn’t have high expectations for Who Con. There had not been much publicity that I saw and I feared 50 die-hard Whovianswould spend the weekend re-hashing favorite moments, which Doc is the best, Donna vs Amy-you know the drill.
To my surprise, over 400 people attended the event. Stars from the 1996 Doctor Who: The Movie Eric Roberts ( The Master), Eliza Roberts (Miranda), and Daphne Ashbrook (Grace), were in attendance, making themselves available for chats, autographs and photos throughout the weekend. Mostly, as is always the case when Whovians (how had I forgotten?), everyone was just happy to be there together.
It was the intimacy and free-flowing character of the Con I enjoyed so much. With only 400 people, I ran into the same people over and over, which made “getting to know you” conversations almost too easy.
My god daughter was the only teen in attendance and she seemed to delight everyone with her enthusiasm and (I have to say) insightful questions.
Weekend highlights included:
A diverse dealers room (nice mixture of hand-made and mass produced merch)
Two costume parades (one with a six piece Bagpipes brigade!)
Kick-ass dance party with the live band, Velveteen Underground
Alively Times-Wimey High Tea (raising money for the non-profit Pegasus Rising)
Lots of excellent cos-play, including a visit from a resplendent Queen Elizabeth 1 (on loan from the Escondido Renaissance Fair)
And finally, three days full of 78 degree, gorgeous San Diego sunshine.
While the weekend get super mellow for those of us in the front of the house, I know it was pretty chaotic. Whims the scenes. It is my understanding that some of the highly experienced Gally folks made the journey down to lend a hand, so big shout-out and thank you to Gallifrey One.
The programing took an interesting approach by having cos-players run panels in character. I even got in on the act when the psychology panel cancelled at the last moment. I offered to fill-in, and they accepted! About 20 of us spent a fun hour taking a look at the aspects of the show and the character of the Doctor which compels such passion and loyalty from fans.
Unfortunately, the Town and Country Convention Center left much to be desired-mostly in the A/V department. It all started working well just about the time we wrapped up on Sunday.
All in all, I would call it a resounding success and I hope that the organizers decide to give it another go.
I’ll post an announcement here if there is going to be another San Diego Who Con. If you missed this year, but want to encourage the organizers to offer a second Con, you can reach them at http://www.SanDiegoWhoCon.org.