DragonCon 2019 Pseudo-Meetup
posted August 3, 2019 1:13 PM   RSS | iCal | +googleCal

Thu August 29 at 8:00 PM, Atlanta Marriott Marquis
265 Peachtree Center Ave NE, Atlanta, GA, USA (Map & Directions)
Labor Day Weekend is fast approaching in Atlanta which means time again for Nerdi Gras, or as it's more properly known, DragonCon! A general "everything" fandom convention run mainly on volunteer labor, in contrast to conventions that are driven by the marketing departments of major mass media outlets, it's 5 days of fun spread across several city-block sized convention hotels. Going by past year's IRL posts, there's usually roughly a dozen or so MeFites on average who on any given year. That's out of a crowd of 80,000+ attendees, so chances are we'll never run into each other. But the central host hotel also was once The Capitol District's Tribute Training Center a few years ago, so May The Odds Be Ever In Your Favor.
Of course, should anyone want to be bold enough to try to organize a formal MeFi meetup during Con, go ahead and give it a shot!

Otherwise, this thread will be open for general roll call, cosplay discussion, DragonCon Moible App friend code exchange, posting of what panels you plan to see, reports of where that one guy who hands out free magic wands is, ratings of Bar2D2's microbrews this year, and anything else con related.

Of note this year: as of the time of the creation of this IRL Post, the status of one of the five Host Hotels, The Sheraton Atlanta (AKA: The one not connected to the Habitrails way off in the corner that everyone has to go to anyway at least once, because that's where badge pickup is), is very much up in the air right now. At the end of July, the Georgia Department of Public Health had reported 11 lab-confirmed cases of Legionnaire's Disease traceable back to the Sheraton, with another 55 probable cases.

Fortunately Legionnaire's Disease, the OG Grandpappy of all Con Cruds, is not spread person to person, but by contaminated water, typically in pools, hot tubs or air conditioning cooling towers. Unfortunately, this has the Sheraton shutdown until at least August 11th while they test their water systems trying to isolate the source. Very unfortunately, reports say they may remain closed several weeks longer than that as they locate and remediate the source of the legionella.

DragonCon Officials have announced that they are being kept in the loop by Sheraton management on the status of their efforts, and have contingency plans in place in case of the worst. Still, a DragonCon with only 4/5ths of its Host Hotels would potentially result in a lot of displaced congoers, so if your reservation is there, you may want to have a backup plan at the ready.

(In past years, the Sheraton was used as the Event Marker, but this year, I'm using the Marriott, just in case.)
posted by radwolf76 to Etc (25 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

I'm trying to avoid cosplay this year if I can, though with the rest of my household going as Crowley and Aziraphale, from Good Omens they're trying to talk me into being Shadwell. Jury's still out on that. I may end up trying to do a Blockbuster Video clerk cosplay, depending.

As usual, my family has gotten a late start on the whole convention process, though this year, we're blaming my wife's chemo. Going for the full 5 days for the first time in the last 4 years will be a celebration of her last treatment, and a bit of a break for her before she has to deal with more medical "fun" later in September.
posted by radwolf76 at 1:26 PM on August 3, 2019 [2 favorites]

Thanks for the news of the hotel radwolf76, yikes. Every time in the past I've tried to arrange a meetup at DragonCon it's never worked out so I've given up trying (it doesn't help that I don't do alcohol or parties personally), but it'd be nice to encounter other Metafilter members there someday. (I've met a grand total of *one*, and I don't think he's even on the site anymore.)

Our staying arrangements haven't even been done this year yet, the person handling that has never been to DragonCon before but saw a bunch of AirBnBs available as of a week ago, so he hasn't been listening to my dire warnings about everyplace filling up. ARGH, kids.
posted by JHarris at 3:05 AM on August 4, 2019

I’m the science track director, which in the past has meant I had almost no time for anything else. But I’ve got more free time this year, and am foolish enough to try to pull together a short meetup if folks are interested.
posted by sgranade at 5:25 AM on August 4, 2019 [3 favorites]

When will everyone be there? We are likely coming in Wednesday afternoon, and will leave on Monday.

Not sure what the costume plan is this year - work’s been insane, and wow, how is it already August??
posted by needlegrrl at 5:56 AM on August 4, 2019

I think our plan is to arrive Wednesday and leave Monday as well. Maybe something before the convention formally begins, then? The timing of that might get in the way though. Thursday night might be more certain.
posted by JHarris at 10:34 AM on August 4, 2019

I'll be there after lunch on Thursday, and don't leave until Tuesday.
posted by sgranade at 12:36 PM on August 4, 2019

My household should be arriving late Thursday night, probably after Thursday badge pickup has closed for the night, I'm afraid, so that means braving the Friday morning rush. We're booked through Monday at a hotel just behind the Westin.
posted by radwolf76 at 5:12 AM on August 5, 2019

I live here now so Wednesday night arrivals are welcome to come hang out at my place if you want! :D I'm near MARTA.

Also, if anyone plans to see the PDX Broadsides at the con I will be watching them at some point too (friends from PDX). I have no other plans other than to go down there for a day and shop or something.
posted by litlnemo at 4:24 PM on August 5, 2019

litlnemo: By the way, the PDX Broadsides are performing as part of the Solve for X science variety show Saturday night, if you want another opportunity to see them!
posted by sgranade at 8:15 AM on August 6, 2019 [1 favorite]

We get in late on Thursday, and leave Monday afternoon. I'd be down for meeting up.
posted by zoetrope at 8:20 AM on August 6, 2019

I'm having to potentially find a space to stay for the convention as the friends I was going with are likely to drop out. Does anyone have space a poor MeFite could stay in during the convention, and how much would they want for it?
posted by JHarris at 1:34 PM on August 6, 2019

Sheraton Legionnaire's Outbreak Update

As of Tuesday 6 August, the count of lab confirmed cases has risen to 12, probable cases to 61, and there has been one fatality, 49-year-old Cameo Garrett, who died from coronary artery atherosclerosis aggravated by Legionella pneumonia.

The Sheraton hasn't yet received the results of the testing they performed last week, but has already moved ahead with precautionary remedial actions.

In the original post, I called Legionnaire's "the OG grandpappy of all Con Cruds". The 1976 American Legion convention that gave the disease and the bacterium its name had 2,000+ attendees. There were 183 who got sick, and out of those, 29 fatalities.
posted by radwolf76 at 12:39 AM on August 7, 2019

On a happier note, things are solidifying on the Blockbuster Clerk cosplay front. While I still haven't been able to find my original uniform shirt in storage, I bought the bullet and ordered one in my size from an etsy seller in Pennsylvania. And from ebay, an older style pinback name tag from when the company still had "video" in its name. Except that it's a "Manager" tag, so I've gotten the promotion that I never got when I was working there.
posted by radwolf76 at 7:17 AM on August 7, 2019 [2 favorites]

There's nothing to stop you from calling yourself a manager now.
posted by JHarris at 10:55 AM on August 7, 2019

As long as I stay out of Bend, Oregon, anyway.

(Though the real aficionados, will point out that there are also the stores in Florence, Italy that seem to be operating under some kind of rogue agreement with a now-defunct Blockbuster affiliate.)
posted by radwolf76 at 12:28 PM on August 7, 2019 [1 favorite]

Sheraton Update - Once again this is rumor control.

Previously, the Sheraton Atlanta had announced it would remain closed until at least Sunday, August 11th.

The closure will now extend through Wednesday, August 14th. This will bring their closure to a full month, as they first shutdown on July 14th. The number of probable cases based on reported symptoms is reported to be at 63 now.

A thorough cleaning of the hotel’s entire water distribution system has been completed as a precautionary measure, including cleaning, scrubbing and chlorination of all water features.

posted by radwolf76 at 5:37 PM on August 9, 2019

"By the way, the PDX Broadsides are performing as part of the Solve for X science variety show Saturday night"

Yeah, I was gonna see them up close and personal at a house concert in my very own house, but they are doing so much at the con they had to cancel. :/

BTW, those of you who haven't seen them -- GO SEE THEM! :D
posted by litlnemo at 10:37 PM on August 9, 2019

I'm starting to reconsider DragonCon. I know of no friends who are going so I'd be on my own again, my best option for staying is $300 for the length of the con in exchange for a spot for my air mattress, and money, as always, is tight.
posted by JHarris at 1:35 AM on August 12, 2019

AND I just found out the air mattress is kaput, multiple holes, crumbling in places, and the motor won't hold a charge. Sigh.
posted by JHarris at 7:55 PM on August 12, 2019

Moving off the topic of disease on to more weighty matters, the Atlanta Hyatt too has logged an entry on the pre-convention fatality list. A man, on the run from hotel security after allegedly exposing himself to one of the housekeeping staff, attempted to get away by jumping the atrium balconies, only to fall 10 stories to his death.
posted by radwolf76 at 12:10 PM on August 20, 2019

Oh, yikes. Why do people do things like that?
posted by JHarris at 11:23 PM on August 20, 2019

Hi, gang - I totally forgot to check for an IRL DragonCon thread until just now.

This will be my 10th year in a row attending, so, I know the unlikelihood of actually IRL-ing, but, if anyone wants to exchange friend codes on the DragonCon app, mefi-mail me, maybe we will find ourselves in the same room at some point. I will be flying in Thursday morning, leaving Monday night, staying in the Hilton. I don't know what panels I'll be trying for (though odds are good I'll be at anything attending pro Rob Levy is moderating, since he's my con roomie.)

I'm really hoping that I spot this guy again he was hilarious when I saw him the first time in 2017, and I was so happy to spot him again last year when I was doing my last circuit of the hotels Sunday night to take photos.
posted by oh yeah! at 9:06 PM on August 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

Wish I could have been there. I caught my con-crud in advance, the day before the con. Spent most of the weekend in bed. I hope everyone had fun!
posted by litlnemo at 3:32 AM on September 16, 2019

No one's mentioned how the meetup went? Did it go off as planned? What happened?
posted by JHarris at 8:28 PM on September 16, 2019

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