By: Meg Humphrey and Terra Clarke Olsen
VikingCon was pretty amazing! The students and staff at Western Washington University were dedicated to putting on a quality one day show. They had interesting and educational panels like “Young Justice: How Heroes Affect Children” and “The Boogeyman’s Journey: Shifting Roles of Monsters in Fantasy.” Panelists were treated very well, having a hospitality room for them to refresh between panels, and staff members checked in to see how talks went and if they were having a good time. The exhibitor’s area was also nice. There was plenty of room for people to walk around and the 25(ish) booths had plenty of personal space and hosted a wide variety of wares and organizations. Our booth was actually right next to the stage so we had a front row seat of the Cosplay Contest, which had some great entries!
What I found to be the best experience was just talking to everyone we had met that day. Everyone was a cutie! Excitement, compliments, and discussion flowed freely from vendors and attendees alike. Even the shyest people smiled back when you said hello. The atmosphere was excellent and for a convention veteran like me, a welcoming vibe is worth as much as a celebrity guest. I hope VikingCon will continue with its leadership – the first year under a new administration is always a little shaky – and that it will iron out it’s logistic kinks with experience. I’m looking forward to seeing what they have in store for 2015!
I first learned about VikingCon when WWU students reached out to me, asking if I would be a panelist on their comics panel. Never being one to give up the opportunity to geek out on comics with fellow nerds, I said yes. It was only VikingCon’s second year, so I wasn’t expecting a lot. Conventions are hard to run (as Meg and I know from experience) and take a while to master. But from the moment we got there, I was pleasantly surprised by how well everything went. The staff went out of their way to ensure that the panels went well and that people had what they need. Setting up our booth was a cinch. Simply put, things were made easy for us. But the ease of VikingCon was really just a bonus. More importantly, the whole experience was a lot of fun and reminded me why I love smaller conventions.
Every person at VikingCon, panelists, attendees, and the staff, was just so darn happy. People were there because they wanted to be there. Now, you might think that would be true for all conventions, but it’s not the case. People put so much pressure on themselves when it comes to larger conventions, thinking they have to go because everyone else will be there and they might miss out on something. I’m guilty of that, and I always regret it. But at smaller conventions, you actually have the time to look at everything and talk to people! While Meg and I were sitting at our booth, we looked out onto the small exhibitor hall and reflected on how everyone was being so nice and polite to one another. No shoving, no glares, no judgment, but just a bunch of geeks (of all ages, I should add) having fun together. It was a thing of beauty, and I can’t wait to attend in 2015.
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