Lilac City Comicon 2017 Sat, Jun 3

by John Welker published 2017/06/14 12:00:00 GMT-7, last modified 2022-11-12T09:26:21-07:00
A review

Normally I work conventions. I run games, game demoes, and some time the entire game room. Occasionally I do panels. For this convention I was going to be strictly a guest and brought my adult son and daughter.

Bit of advice to people driving to a convention. Get there early if you want a parking space. The DoubleTree parking which normally costs $10 for the day was full by the time we got there. I ended up paying over $17 to park across the street. The farther you are willing to walk the lower the price will be.  

This year due to concerns about violence that had happened at other conventions throughout the country Lilac City Comicon added increased security. This started with new rules banning any weapon that was not obviously fake from a distance, capable of causing damage with a medium swing or capable of launching any projectile. While I did not notice security personnel other than convention staff stationed to keep guest from wandering into excluded areas there was a security check point at the front door. This check point included a couple of gentlemen inspecting and peace bonding prop weapons and metal detectors to pass through. The metal detectors where a bit of an issue for people in wheel chairs as they had to be hand scanned. Of course the metal in the chairs caused the wands to go off anyways. Fortunately I did not see any TSA style pat downs, but it was ironic to see weapons for sale once you got inside.  

Once you were past the security point you were also past the elevators. The elevator is located in a standalone pillar just inside the front entrance and is plain to see if you have not just passed through a security check point and are now behind it. I sign indicating that the elevator was behind the pillar would have been beneficial to people for which the stairs or escalator were not an option.

On the topic of accessibility: The layout of the convention floor was adequate for foot and wheelchair traffic. The main stage for panels was outside of the merchant hall with the food court. This was a noise crowded place. There were no accommodations for the deaf or hard of hearing. While I know that translators are cost prohibitive for most small conventions, I wonder if something resembling a teleprompter might have technically speaking been possible.

There was not a “quiet room” available for people who might react poorly to the sensory overload that comes with the normal noises and crowds of a convention. Fortunately if you go just down the hall beyond the room set aside for panels it was fairly quiet and the benches where comfortable.

Food at the convention was of course prohibitively expensive.

The cos-play was the highlight of the convention but there was not an awful lot to “do”. There were not a lot of panels and most of the ones I was interested in were on Sunday. Of course you could talk to the guests at their tables and get autographs, there was a free photo booth and you could pay to take your picture with or in the Batmobile. I had heard that on Sunday they put it behind a curtain to prevent people of just taking pics. I did not see any performers, or artists’ demonstrations. I did not see any classes, or workshops. There were no parties or dances that I was aware of.  For me this convention was mostly about the vendors.

There was no organized gaming or tournaments. Uncle’s Games did have demoes.  I would like for Spokane Area Gaming Alliance (SAGA) to organize with the convention to have a game room with all kinds of tabletop gaming. I would like to see a super hero themed LARP. I would like to see a boffer or nerf tournament. I would like to panels on RPG and Geek therapy. I would like to see more panels on comics / movies/ games and social issues and accessibility.

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