Trying to shake off the feelings of impending disappointment, I got up earlier in the morning to take a shower and prepare for the first day of Kumoricon 2016. It took a while to get everyone else up, but we eventually managed to have everyone present for our first morning excursion together.
Recently, it feels like I have been to the same few cities for conventions. It is usually either just the one here in Vancouver in August or down in Seattle. However, a Twitter conversation led to a convention a bit off the radar. Since one of the crew lives in Portland, there were a few idea thrown around to head to Kumoricon 2016. This was the first year it moved to the Convention Center in Downtown Portland. Let’s just say it would be one heck of a weekend.
Friday or Day 1 of a convention is fairly quiet since most of the attendees still have either school or work to contend with. Luckily, I had the weekend off to take a breather away from work. Starting the weekend off right is essential for most con experiences. It really does set the tone for the weekend and you have to be sure you’re prepared for just about anything. Breakfast is always a good plan since you’ll likely be having meals at odd times.
Day 1 or Friday for most conventions is usually the quietest of the three days. Some people still have work and/or school on the Friday and it seems to get busier as the day goes by. To make the most out of the convention, I got up at around 8AM in the morning to get some work done. At about 9AM, I went down to Burrard Station to pick up our final member Puddi, and brought him back to our hotel room. He was a bit tired and really hungry, so the next thing we did was go out and get some breakfast. If there’s one thing you have to do going out to a convention, it’s to make sure you’re well hydrated and well fed. It’s going to be a long week and you want to be able to enjoy it without feeling sick or hungry throughout.
Ah, the swimsuit contest. This event was quickly at max capacity as many people wanted to watch this 18+ event. I tried to get in last year, but coming a bit late to even try to lineup meant you wouldn’t be able to make it inside. The room was bigger this year and it still managed to hit max capacity. When we got in, people were still getting settled and the judges were starting to sit down as well.
Just like I said before, the room was packed fairly quickly and people were denied entry once maximum capacity was reached due to fire and safety regulations. On the bright side, there was a healthy mix of people here and it wasn’t as much of a one-sided afair as I thought it would be. People got seated and were fairly quiet for the most part except when asked to cheer or clap.
Where should I even start? I mean this was probably my most hectic weekend in a long time. I actually just came back from a camping trip the previous week and even that wasn’t as tiring as this weekend convention was. One thing I’ve come to realize after going to many conventions is how important getting sleep early on the Thursday is and how one should have a larger than normal breakfast. Chances are the first night’s sleep is really going to be the only large amount of sleep you’ll get and when you get to the con, you will have to make your lunch/dinner times very flexible.
You would think after coming here last year, I wouldn’t be surprised by this long lineup, but I still am. The line actually goes all the way outside and has two parts to the line just like the previous day. The convention center was packed in the morning as people were trying to grab their passes and file into the main convention area. Personally, I had arrived a little early to make sure we could get good seats into the events we wanted to head to. I was here early in the morning with my friend Mike and puddi and went toward the opening ceremony. Just for clarification, puddi also had a press pass just like me and that would become important later on during the week.