ConQuesT (http://www.kcsciencefiction.org/conquest/conquest.htm), the annual Memorial Day SF/F convention in Kansas City, MOO (their spelling, not mine) was last weekend and had several members of the Omaha Sci-Fi community were in attendance.
ConQuesT played host to regional tournaments for Yu-Gi-Oh and World of Warcraft CCG; brought together about four WorldCon chairpersons, three small press publishers (“Buy My Books”, the war cry of Selina Rosen, editor of Yard Dog Press, rang through the halls of the Airport Hilton all weekend), several area authors and artists; and a demonstrations by The Liftport Group, the Space Elevator Company and KANAR, a D&D style LARP.
ConQuesT is a literary style of SF/F convention, which is why they have so many authors, editors, book publishers and dealer’s in attendance. Programming, while it will follow that tract (“Believable Characters”, and “Writing For Small Press”), flows through many avenues of fandom. They talked about gaming, television shows and movies, being an artist, conrunning, and fannish themes like “Robots and Ethics”. Panel wise, they had something for everyone.
ConQuesT is probably most noted for its controlled hall parties. They isolate the eleventh (top) floor of the hotel and control access to only convention members. This allows those hosting the various parties from their hotel rooms to know what to expect from attendees. Anchored by the convention “Con Suite”, each party can then take on their own flavor. The ICON party was promoting the return of the 31 year old convention started by Joe Haldeman in Iowa City. Australia in 2010 and Kansas City in 2009 both had parties to encourage people to vote for their respective bids for the World SF conventions. SoonerCon 2007 hosted an event with the various concoctions created over the years by Selina Rosen. New Orleans even had a gumbo party.
I had fun at ConQuesT, I always do. And that is probably the main reason I am trying to return SF/F conventions to the Metro area. So bookmark this blog and keep hanging around as I bring you updates on what is happening towards the Omaha Science Fiction and Fantasy Festival next July 11-13.