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Calthine's Fan Faire Tips

Maximize your Fan Faire experience with these tips from veterans!

Have you registered for Fan Faire yet?  It's less than a month away and registration closes in two weeks. That means it's time for my annual Fan Faire Tips!  This is stuff I and other Fan Faire veterans have learned attending past Fan Faires and other conventions.  All this may mean nothing if you're the type who can toss a change of undies in a bag and be good for a week, but me, I need to plan a bit.

Getting there: If you're flying, be sure to check the current FAA regulations on what you can and cannot carry. There are, for example, some odd rules about extra laptop batteries. Check your departing airport's website for how early you need to be there: if you miss the window you might arrive without your luggage. Once in Vegas, plan on a couple of hours to get from the plane to your hotel. I recommend you catch a shuttle to the hotel. It doesn't matter which one - they all cost about the same, $15 or so. Buy a round trip-ticket, because it's cheaper that way and all you'll have to do is call the night before you leave to schedule a pickup.

Lodging: It may be cheaper to stay in a smaller hotel than the one hosting the convention, but if you can afford it stay at Bally's. Fan Faire goes just about all night and all day, and if you really get into it you won't have a minute to spare!  It's also nice when your swag bag has gotten really heavy to have a hotel room five minutes away.

Where's the Con?: As you are facing the Bally's registration desk, turn 90 degrees to your right. Walk that way, past the Flamingo Road exit and past the North Tower elevator. Keep going down that hall. It will take you there. There are some great hotel maps on the official Fan Faire forum.

What Happens in Vegas Ends Up on the Internet: There's a sign outside the Fan Faire area warning that by walking in you consent to having your image used. Hence Ke'la linking that picture of me being thrown in the pool at FF '07 over and over again. Although it seems names are rarely attached to Fan Faire pics, if you're very privacy conscious wear a costume!

The Devs are Nice People: After Fan Faire 2009 a dev asked me to pass this on: "If you see me standing at a booth or demo all by myself, please come talk to me!  I'm probably bored!"  The developers and other SOE staff are great people who love what they do and love to talk about it. Don't be shy!  On the other hand, they are working, so if they have to run off don't take it personally.

Sign Up Early: Some activities have limited space.  Sign up early to save yourself a spot! 

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Another Battery Idea
# Jul 16 2010 at 7:52 PM Rating: Decent
5 posts
Another thing you might want to think about is a camera that can run on both rechargable batteries and standard ones, just in case. Remember if you are recording the panels thats usually 3-4 hours straite of recording, if you only go to the afternoon ones. Also if you can't afford to check or buy a Tri-pod, you can get a Mono-pod fairly cheaply and that works almost as good at keeping your arms from getting tired.

Oh, and Calthine, I don't link that picture everywhere anymore, cause I now have a video.



Edited, Jul 16th 2010 9:52pm by KelaRavenwood
Cosplay
# Jul 14 2010 at 12:03 PM Rating: Decent
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151 posts
If you're going to cosplay, please do a few dress rehearsals, for your own sake. You're going to be spending many hours in that costume. Also if it is a very "involved" costume, bring extra water, even above what you would normally expect. You are going to sweat a lot.
watch your stuff
# Jul 13 2010 at 11:53 PM Rating: Decent
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1,553 posts
even in the main room. I had a brand new $300 camcorder stolen of the table 3 inches from my left elbow smack in the middle of a room full of people. Someone spoke over my right shoulder. I turned my head to answer, when I turned back the camera was gone. that fast.

It does not matter that is it is supposed to be all "us" there. This is Vegas. Don't forget it.
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Tripod
# Jul 09 2010 at 7:05 PM Rating: Decent
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One thing I learned last year... if you are serious about recording panels, bring a tripod -- otherwise your arm is going to get really tired holding the camera up!
Camera Batteries!
# Jul 09 2010 at 3:06 PM Rating: Excellent
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2,350 posts
Don't forget an extra battery for your camera. And make sure that the extra battery is not a dead battery (yup, that was my "oops!" last year).
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