There are tons of conventions around the country each weekend which is a far cry from when I first started attending conventions in 2003. Now, deciding on what cons to attend really becomes a weighing of pros and cons. Friends typically wins out for me so instead of attending a local convention this past weekend I hightailed it up the coast to spend a bit of time with some friends in Virginia Beach, Virginia for Tidewater Comic Con.
The first thing on my mind when driving up to the convention center was how breathtakingly beautiful it was. Such a stunning location! My second thought was how crowded the convention was. I did not know what to expect by the con as it has only been around a few years, but, wow! I was quite impressed by the number of attendees, the quality of programming, and the friendly atmosphere.
On Saturday I was able to join Jamie of BlackGirlNerds (read her Tidewater post here!), Tai, and Lori for the WGNT panel called Live-Tweeting: Entertainment in the Digital World. Since I typically do diversity panels, it was great to talk about such a fun topic. I love working with BGN.
On Sunday I ran my Diversity in Geek Media panel with my wonderful friends Maurice, Tiffron and Cerise. It is always a pleasure to put this panel on especially to a wide audience of different types of people. We discussed our feelings on diversity within our community to a captivated audience who prompted questions such as if we felt Marvel or DC showed more diversity within their comics. These panels are a passion of mine. Prior to this convention I was considering not running panels any longer. But as I looked around that room to see not only black faces, but white faces…mixed faces…I just knew that I was hooked on carrying this message to many different conventions. NYCC perhaps?
I am pretty sure I have said this before, but sprinkling in a small con during the year is a great thing to do. Sure, braving the crowds, waiting in lengthy lines, battling for exclusives and stumbling across celebrities is a great part of conventions, but sometimes just being relaxed at a convention is great too. Conventions are a grand experience especially at bigger conventions so if you actually want to see the show, balancing out your year with a smaller event will give you that opportunity. Tidewater Comic Con was a perfect sized event to give me a good convention experience while also being comfortable.