Monday, October 13, 2014

GeekGirlCon 2014: Crowd Surfing at the Con

(GGC Logo)
It's been three years since I attended my very first GeekGirlCon (GGC).  That year, it was held in the Seattle Center, which was fine, but the activities were spread from one end of the park to the other. 

Shortly after that maiden voyage, GeekGirlCon found a new home at the Washington State Convention Center (WSCC)

Getting to the WSCC parking garage is easy coming off I-5S.  But once I made my way out of the labyrinth, I found the main building practically deserted.  Fortunately, I blundered into another GGC-bound couple wandering around looking for an entry portal.  We felt like muggles trying to find Platform 9 3/4.
But before we sprinted into any walls, we found a Convention Center employee who pointed across the street to the smaller, annex building--the one with the line of people wrapped around it.

Despite losing our urban bearings, we arrived just as the doors were opening (9 AM, or 0900 hours for us military types).  Signing-in was a much smoother and easier process than during my last visit. 

The speedier in-processing allowed attendees to attend the first activities of the day (10 AM/1000 hours).  Having the convention housed in one building helped too.  Events included:  Panel discussions, gaming, and connections (professional, club and educational booths). 

Some of the connection booths had representatives from the following:, and the Girl Scouts, etc.   (Not a complete list, just the ones I noticed).

I didn't do any gaming, because I was more interested in the panel discussions and hoped to do some shopping in between venues.

For those interested in gaming, here's a look at The GGC Gaming Dungeon:

(Looking down into The Gaming Dungeon)

(An overhead view of a role playing game in-progress)

(Down at The Gaming Dungeon Floor)

But it wasn't all Fun & Games.  There was Fun & Science Experiments for kids to participate in: 

(GeekGirlCon's Science Lab)
Before lunch, I attended three panel discussions:

1. Hiring in Gaming.
2. How to Be a Nerd for a Living.
3. If You Can Write You Can Make Games.

By the time the last panel ended I was tired and famished.  The sausage & egg sandwich, with the compressed hashbrown patty I picked up en-route at McDonalds had ceased providing my body with any fuel.  The caffeine from the large coffee I drank wasn't any help either.

So I cancelled whatever panel I was planning to attend and embarked on a quest for lunch.  The line outside the Subway down the street was much worse than this...

(I took this photo about an hour after lunch.  The line was three times as long at one point) I opted for the Wild Rye Café, inside the convention complex. 

The line was much shorter than the one in front of Subway, but everyone remained stationary, as if Medusa was the hostess. 

After about fifteen-to-twenty minutes the line began moving at glacial speed and I got my much-needed food.

My mid-day refueling consisted of a Rueben sandwich with some chips, drink and a double-chocolate brownie.  The sandwich was good, but the crust a tad extra dry and crispy.  But I was hungry enough to chomp through it anyway.

I was surprised that for an event this size, while smaller than the Emerald City Comicon, the convention center didn't establish additional food stands, with ready-made sandwiches. 

Of course, packing a nutrition bar would have helped too.  One of many convention survival guide tips is:  Pack snacks and water, so you don't get hungry or become dehydrated.

Anyway, after lunch I had enough time to get some shopping before the last panel discussion of my time-constrained day:

Ethics in Comics.

I hated leaving early (about 5 PM/1700 hours), especially since there were three additional panels I wanted to attend, plus an after-con concert featuring the following bands:

Sammus, and

But alas--I had a long drive and had to work first thing in the following morning.  But despite cutting my stay short, I had an enjoyable and productive time.  GeekGirlCon 2014 was definitely worth the price of admission, parking and gas.

 This was just an overview of my convention experience.  I have six more GeekGirl-related posts in-the-works; which will cover cosplay, merchandise and the four panel discussions I mentioned earlier.

So stay tuned!

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