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bert425

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Everything posted by bert425

  1. Invadr is incredible.. especially in the back - and at night. absolutely worth a wait for a night ride.
  2. the amount of people in a line that would cause it to be 2 hours is MINISCULE compared to to the overall people in the park. most of whom are not in line for the coasters, but are seeing shows, eating, and just enjoying the atmosphere. "blogs" are run by enthusiasts. . not the families that go to enjoy the atmosphere, food, and shows. The "blogs" complaining, don't mean shit. you don't have to agree with me, but whatever. . .
  3. Id say there's less than 5% chance this ride ever reopens. but we shall see. . my condolences to the family (who I'm sure is going to sue the crap out of the park and likely win, and force them into bankruptcy or worse
  4. Why? why do they need to do anything with it other than operate it when they feel like operating it? it's not affecting their crowds (like much at all), since majority of the crowd tends to be less "thrill ride" oriented and more "show/food" oriented. once some enthusiasts think that it's a "huge black eye" - and it's not even all. For example, weather or not LR is working, won't change my plans for when I finally get to go to the park, and it doesn't change my opinion of the park at all. it's a THEME park, not a thrill park. seriously, this would be like me bitching that my one time (so far) at Tokyo DisneySea was ruined because Journey was down on my visit. There's SO much other stuff to do and experience in the park, that one ride - even the star attraction in the park - not being avail doesn't change that. tho I'd bet if Dollywood changed the recipe for Cinnamon Bread, or stopped carrying it? THAT would be a "huge black eye" to many of the guests.
  5. too funny.. I've spent at least 7 full days at Cedar Point. . and have never even SEEN Motion Ocean. . I guess cause I only came in the front gates ONE time (for Coastermania! entrance) I have ridden the Carousel on the main midway tho (of course) and the smaller one in the kiddie area near Melt!
  6. Finally got to the SFOG day in my Trip Report: https://themeparkreview.com/forum/topic/47367-photo-trip-report-atlanta-labor-day-week-dragoncon-2021-six-flags-over-georgia/?tab=comments#comment-1904943 yeah. . sometimes I make REALLY bad decisions:
  7. SFOG continued. . . after my ride on Justice League, I decided I'd head over towards Pandemonium. . as noted, the paths around Carousel Hill really are quite lovely: (I see you, and will get to you later!) but what's this? Blue Hawk/Ninja has no line. . like at all? sigh.. ok, might as well, it's not the worst coaster in the park. how the park is handling Covid restrictions. . tho this wasn't consistent across all coasters. But here in the Blue Hawk station, the plexiglass really cuts the airflow, and made it a bit stifling. it's actually riding better than I remembered, and not too much head bang. Still 1 and done tho. leaving the queue tho, I saw that GASM was truly a walk on. I KNOW better. . but sometimes I make really bad decisions. . . Even in the front row, it jackhammered the hell out of me.. not a pleasant experience (and there was crying from kids on the train in the brake run. . so yeah. . hands down still the worst coaster in the park). oh. . but while on GASM, I noticed that Blue Hawk had gotten stuck on the lift hill. . . really moments after I had just ridden! It was like this for a good 15 minutes. Continuing my treck around this part of the park to Pandemonium. . it really is lovely back here, but I miss the Skybuckets bypassed Skyscreamer since just wasn't in the mood for it.. besides, I was headed to the giant swing. hmmm. . I don't seem to have taken any pics of it other than the sign tho. . LOL. . but it was a 1 cycle wait (so yeah. . the park was still dead) see? note that Thunder River was closed as well.. so both water rides (the flume was closed too) were closed on Labor Day. It's the last "daily" operating day of summer.. so not surprised, but it seemed to have more to do with staffing - as many food places were shuttered too. But for the most part, all the "big" rides were open today, which was a nice surprise. since no skybuckets to save my feet/calves, I headed up the long winding walkway, intending to grab something to eat as i was hungry. as mentioned, many food places were closed, but Macho Nacho was open - with the line out the door.. . . so nope, kept walking and peeked around into the Goliath queue: Station wait. yup. .this is Exactly why I typically blow off last day of Con to do Six Flags: Interesting view of the Monster Mansion show building from the Goliath exit ramp. I had planned to buy water, to keep from getting dehydrated, but the Cashier in the exit gift shop warned me the coolers weren't working (and hadn't been all summer, so the water was warm). Six Flags hint, by the way. . if you buy water/soda in a shop, you can usually get a 2 for $ price that is cheaper from the machines. but I wasn't gonna get from the machine no matter how thirsty I was. . so instead headed over to Gotham expecting to get something to eat/drink. passing by DareDevil Dive. . which had a short-ish line, but as I'm not a fan, I decided to skip this today. Still snapped some pics of it tho: and then it was down into the New Gotham area. . advertised all over the park as new for 2021.. I was excited to check it out. if you're not familiar with this park, the Gotham area is down a steep hill, under the train tracks, then in it's own area - with basically one way in/one way out. the area has 7 rides (2 coasters, 5 flats), and one food stand (Birds of Prey Cafe) - that had a fairly long line, that I waited in, only to be told at the counter there's no way to order from the counter, you MUST use the Mobile App - which *of course* wouldn't work for me while in Gotham area. . . yeah, I was hungry and annoyed at this point - and made sure to comment on this when they sent me the survey to see how my day went. at least ONE window at the only food stand in Gotham should have walk up to order option. . sheesh. but I'm getting a head of myself. back to the pics, going into Gotham: ah.. HERE were the crowds today. (makes sense.. they are advertising it all over the park - even over the urinals in the Men's rooms): and it's a cul-de-sac area. . so once in, traffic flow can get cramped. let's check out the 7 rides here: Closed: Closed (AND they renamed it from the *brilliant* Crime Wave to Supervillains Swing?) closed (tho it had soft opened for rehearsals the day before, and is open now, I understand) one of the new rides, so was pulling a line, as I'd expect. . especially since 3 of the 4 rides passed already were closed. Closed (you gotta be f-ing kidding me) the other new ride.. and one of only two flats (and one coaster, Batman - running 1 train - open in this section of the park). by far, longest line I waited in all day. . . .about 35 minutes for Catwoman. (and it didnt' help that line jumping was RAMPANT - a group of 4, turned into a group of 7, then a group of 11. .and staffing did nothing to stop it, despite seeing the teenagers climbing the queue to join their friends in line. but I love these rides, so waited for it, and it was great as usual: and you get REALLY close to the Batman track while in the Catwoman queue (which has no awnings. . I guess to keep the sightlines open.. . glad it wasn't too sunny of a day) actually, you would get pretty close to Mindbender track in the Harley Quinn queue, had that been open: getting dehydrated, but as I said, I love these rides, and it runs a pretty decent cycle. . . so thumbs up on this, even if the park should be ASHAMED to have 4 of the 7 rides here closed, when this section is being promoted all over the park. realizing I really needed some water, I went to the Batman giftshop (which is currently also the entrance to the ride, apparently) to get some water (along the way snapping a better pic of the new Poison Ivy scrambler, that was running a great cycle): and while cooling down, noticed the Mindbender train was sitting on the break run. Since I was sitting drinking my water on the Mindbender Photo Counter (closed up), I was right near the exit. . and when one of the park's "Safety" guys came by to check the area (I guess?). .I asked him would it be ok if I went up the exit ramp towards the station to take some pics of the new trains. so with permission. . here's the new Mindbender trains: by now it was after 2pm, and I *really* needed to eat something. . so I headed back to Macho Nacho (which would have been my choice in the park anyways, even if it wasnt' one of the food venues that were actually open today). . and found a very short line. . off lunch hours now. . and easily a nice place to sit and enjoy my Taco Salad (which had maybe 5 pieces of lettuce in it. .but so much other good stuff. . it was wonderful) didnt' think to take a pic before I ate most of it. . LOL Sadly, no train today. .but at least the photo op had no line: and yeah. .this park is hilly: so having finally eaten something. . do I let the food settle? while Goliath is still kinda a walk on, and I'm right near Monster Mansion? You crazy? sad little one skybucket pole left in the center of the park, over the Monster Mansion roof.. . not sure why they left one. Maybe planning on using it for lights for Holiday in the Park? I'd held it off long enough tho - and had made my way almost completely around the park in a full loop.. . but it was (finally) time for Carousel hill. yes.. I always make myself wait for the enjoyment of the Carousel. .. .to be concluded. . .
  8. Busy weekend & work week, but finally getting back to this to post my Labor Day at SFOG. I got up pretty early, as the park opened (I think, at 10:30) so I wanted to be there by 9:45 at the latest. See, most years I blow off the Monday of Con to hit up Six Flags Over Georgia . . started doing that about 10 years ago. . since there's really not that much going on panel wise, and I end up just hanging out in the Dealer's room and spending money on Mondays. This year in particular, I wasn't keen to hang around the crowds. and I knew that 9 times out of 10, Labor Day itself at SFOG is pretty dead. I had been convinced to download the LYFT app by my friends (who gave me a coupon code to save me some $$) after using Cabs in past years to get there - or going with a friend who drove there and back. Lyft is way cheaper than the cab (which always cost ~$35 each way from the Hyatt to the park), although I can't really say it was more convenient overall - since getting back was so frustrating I needed a decompression shower before going to dinner with friends. But all in all, I enjoyed using Lyft and have even made use of it here in Austin the other night too. anyways. . on to the pics: I'm here. . it's early. .wow, the new colors on Scorcher look GREAT Wait. . what's this? the front gate is now no longer the front gate? Yup. it was all blocked off - like permanently blocked off, and only being used to exit the park. thanks to Covid, the new entrance was on the Left, next to Scorcher/Goliath. . where you're fed thru what looked like it used to be a temperature area.. but now just looks like a deserted barn. it was kinda sad to see all the shuttered ticket booths, with really no way to access them at all now. (someone told me all tickets are handled at this gate on the right these days). granted, it was still ~30 minutes until they open the gates (and an hour+ until rope drop). . but yeah, not much crowd, so expected it to be typical dead. I was ready in my Star Wars Roller-Coaster shirt tho: and we're allowed in: most headed over towards Daredevil Dive area.. I took the right to Twisted Cyclone, hoping it would open up earlier than the park, as it often starts prior to Rope Drop. but nope. . no signs of life over here at all. not even testing. tho Goliath started to: out of curiosity, I peeked into Flash Pass to see they were asking ~$120 today for it. I figured based on the crowd thus far, I wouldn't need it - and I was for the most part correct, a pretty dead day. but wanted the info on cost just in case. people were starting to line up in front of Twisted Cyclone, and even tho I had been in the area prior to open? the MBFs lined up and created a queue before the queue opened. it still hadn't tested at this point yet, and it would be after rope drop when park officially opened before they ran the trains for 1st runs. they opened up the queue and I headed to the back row (where I was behind a father/son duo). they loaded up the 1st train. . . and couldn't get green light. They locked and unlocked. . walked a few people.. . locked and unlocked.. and the ride was down for maintenance to show up (the issue appeared to be car 2 of the Red train). they made all the riders vacate the train, and made the announcement the ride was down (I decided to wait it out). maintenance showed up within 10 minutes. . played around with it, and cycled the trains.. then let folks get in the train again - and SAME issue. they called maintenance back while most everyone in the queue deserted and moved off into the park main. and of course what did Maintenance do when they came back? why blocked off row two of the red train.. cycled, and the ride opened. not sure why they didn't just do that in the 1st place (and Twisted Cyclone was the rare coaster running more than 1 train today). . but oh well.. got my 1st ride of the day in the back row on what turned out to be the first train of the day with riders. the troublemaker: the girl's faces here just crack me up..and that Dad doesn't even notice? Hysterical. the line was still short, so went back and walked onto a middle train ride, before moving past the closed Acrophobia and into the main park. the day started out rough..but quickly got better. Walk on to the Mine Train, walk on to Joker Funhouse Coaster, walk on to Monster Mansion (twice) Halloween theming at the exit of Mine Train. - love the plaque referencing the family entertainment is in front of a "burn at the stake" scene. .LOL ah.. in my happy place: Kissie Kissie! 'tis a flasher! SUCH a brilliant effect. . . don't go in the swamp!!! Hyouuuuu-MANS! the line was so non-existant..I went back around to ride again! seriously. . these are crowd levels ~1 1/2 hours after open. so I figured I'd head over to Superman, if it was running.. and see what the line situation was over there. this really is a gorgeous park in places, in particular the paths around and thru Carousel hill. So i cut thru the DC Superfriends section to get on the paths, and noticed the old sign promoting the Screampunk District from when they added Pandemonium a few years ago. . . um. . not near Pandemonium. LOL. . very Six Flags (it was instead blocking what would have been the entry to the park's old Chute the Chute ride. .which has been sitting decommissioned and rotting for several years now. . .yeah.. just lovely) but the paths really are lovely. . if you don't look over to the right at all. . LOL I spy. . an eyesore: but coming around the path, and across the train tracks (Train sadly down today too), I see Superman is operating - only 1 train - but no line at all outside in the queue. so really a walk on. . directly into the station, where I joined a group of 3 and got on the train as I walked in. day was going MUCH better than it appeared to be at 1st. 2nd train wasn't really NEEDED today, but since Supes is one of the slowest loading coasters in the park, it was a shame to see the 2nd train just parked on the other side of hte station. and yeah, no need for Flash Pass today. Justice League was such a walk on, I mistakenly went in the flash pass queue at first.. but then doubled back for regular queue so I could get some pictures. for all the crap this park gets sometimes (and yeah, the attitude of some of the staff is a bit. . . lackluster, or can be). .they are really giving the rides some TLC. ALL the effects in Justice League Battle for Metropolis were working. . as were ALL the effects in Monster Mansion. I was very impressed and pleased. and the crowd levels were remaining perfect for my day. it was barely noon, I think, and was really having a great time: . . . to be continued.
  9. ^ as someone who also tends to type only in lowercase (unless a proper name is being used) - that's kinda a childish attack here, Mike. (and I have an English minor, so it's just an aesthetic choice) otherwise, your point is dead on about why CF won't give a crap about what SF does. (and again, IR is so short, no way will it *ever* operate with 3 trains. clearly the 3rd train is so there will always be 2 train operations while one is having refurb (lemme tell you, one train ops on IR for two summers in a row SUCKED).
  10. ^ that is one of my all time favorite tracks. . . EVER and now you've made me go listen to it as well (love the video too)
  11. the design is just as impressive as I hoped it would be. And the food all looks fantastic. . thanks for sharing a great report. question time tho: about how long was the experience for you? (from entry until back out after eating). did it feel at all claustrophobic, with no windows there? or did the effects of the "space windows" work to counteract that feeling? I'm wondering as I think I'd have a very tough time getting my claustrophobic Spouse to try this, as I think the "space elevators" might put him off. . but the restaurant itself seems very roomy and open.
  12. they are/were at Dragon*con almost every year (typically saw them in the Dealer's Room at their table, but they also performed). haven't seen them there in a while tho
  13. 1st time at SWSA since they installed ANY coasters the other night. the only coaster operating for the event I attended was Steel Eel. . but got a new Coaster under my belt. both front Row, and Back row rides. . . I preferred the back with that insane airtime, but the front was pretty good too.
  14. oh, and they gave me some of my favorite Swag at the event too.. love it:
  15. ThemePark Review got invited to SeaWorld San Antonio's kick-off event for Howl-O-Scream last night (the event starts in full tonight at the park), and i was able to attend to report back on the scares and fun they are offering up this year! This year marks the 20th Anniversary of Howl-O-Scream and SeaWorld San Antonio has gone all out for this year - making it the biggest Halloween event in Texas - and also the scariest. This year the Event features 5 Houses (1 new), 7 Terror-Tories (3 new), and 5 bars (that serve along with lots of options, some specialty drinks for Howl-O-Scream). The event is certainly geared towards those who are older, and the bars do offer non-alcoholic versions of the frozen drinks. . but as it doesn't take place until the evenings, there's still plenty for families to do at the park thruout the day! The area that hosts Howl-O-Scream proper is just beyond Sesame Street Bay of Play - you pass thru the Howl-O-Scream pillars, and you can follow the path all around the lagoon - with the houses, Terror-Tories (scarezones), and Bars spread along the way. Making this a really large, and pretty immersive event. Before you get to the main Howl-O-Scream entrance tho, there are some fun kid-friendly options to enjoy in the Sesame Street area, including some "not so scary" displays: and this *amazing* Cornfield Hay Maze SWSA has created just for the Howl-O-Scream event. Perfect for the kiddos: But once you pass thru the "gates" into the main Howl-O-scream area? the frights get a bit more extreme: the New Terror-Tories scare zones include Prey-Ground & SINdustry District, as well as the Swamp at Blackwater Bayou. -- but for this kickoff event, SWSA was shining the spotlight only on the new for this year Swamp at Blackwater Bayou Terror-Tory that features the brand new House: the Swamp at Blackwater Bayou, as well as a large bar/entertainment option, and Steel Eel. let's pass thru the gates and have some fun: they rolled out the "Black Carpet" for us: Trying to put on an "Imma not gonna be skared" face. . . . but yes, some of the things in this section just terrified me. the least of which was the Live Snake (on the tree) you could touch and take pictures with (part of Seaworld's Conservation and Teaching policies). . but nope. . I just took the picture They had some really great Cajun food options out for us (and the humidity made it a perfect match for the Swamp theme) - I was really impressed by this stunning Ice Sculpture: and I got to meet/say hello to Ray from SeaWorld San Antonio (who is also a member here at TPR) who filled me in on the event happenings and how excited he was for Howl-O-Scream to be kicking off today: The scare actors were out in full force, and staying in character. As the sun began to set, it got creepier and they got me to jump a few times as they snuck up on me here and there during the event: The Lone Star Lakeside Bar has been remade into: Liquid Voodoo Bar: and here's a sampling of the Howl-O-Scream special menu (note: both frozen drinks can be served without the alcohol for those under 21 if they wish to partake) The new house didn't open until 8pm: but this really fun option opened right at 7: Yes, during Howl-O-Scream, you get to ride the Coaster (s) with Monsters! this sounded amazing, so headed there to try it out (after sampling the special drinks and a nibble or two of the Cajun snacks) it really makes for some great pictures! (in the full event, I believe every coaster will have the option to ride with monsters) it was nice and dark by this point, so after an announcement, some voodoo curses, and fireworks? the Swamp at Blackwater Bayou opened for us: Not gonna post any pics from inside the House, because you should experience it yourself, but I must say that it's very well done: not only are there trees/swamp, and voodoo witchdoctors inside, but there's also a decaying/decrepit mansion that houses all kinds of ghouls and monsters - who may (or may not) jump out at you from (well) hidden spaces. It's a great effort and a fine addition to the Howl-O-Scream houses. and it's incredible that the houses are all free with admission (although there is an option that one could purchase a "skip the line" pass for the houses if one so chooses, I was told). back out into the main walkway, and more of the Monsters had come out and about as it got darker: this young lady was an attendee who was there with her uncle and was having a great time! All in All, this is a great event, and I plan on going back to enjoy the full Howl-O-Scream event in the next couple of weeks - it runs Fri/Sat/Sun (with one Mon tossed in) from 9/17-10/31 So Scary, So Freaky, and So Much Fun. SeaWorld San Antonio has really knocked it out of the park with this event. Recommended.
  16. Rode it last night for the 1st time. . . LOVED it. SO much airtime, especially in the back car. tho I think it would be even better if those seats had a little cushion (overheard from the row in front of me on one of the airtime hills "this is gonna hurt when we land"). . .LOL
  17. this puts the Landry's Downtown Houston Aquarium to Shame! (yes, even with the Houston one having White Tigers). I so want to go to this one now too.. . . and why doesn't Kemah Boardwalk have an Aquarium???? (maybe too close to the Houston one or the competition from Moody Gardens one in Galveston. . . but still. . the Boardwalk should have an aquarium). great report!
  18. oh, and I guess I really should explain "FedEx Jon" and the "Cult of Jon". . . basically, FedEx put up a lifesize standee of a driver named Jon near a drop box (no longer there) just before Dragon*con 2019 well. . the congoers found ways to "fix" the standee thruout the con. starting at first with just adding Googly eyes. As con is over a holiday weekend, who knows what FedEx thought of these improvements. but then on Sunday of Dragon*con 2019, Jon suddenly disappeared! Folks thought the Con or the Company had pulled Jon. . but it turned out he was STOLEN! (and started appearing in places around the country in pics). but that's when the memorial started popping up.. that Sun/Mon. since Con 2020 was cancelled. . folks had 2 years to get the Cult of Jon in full swing. here's the story in pictures from Bored Panda https://www.boredpanda.com/adventures-of-fedex-guy-dragon-con/?utm_source=google&utm_medium=organic&utm_campaign=organic
  19. Sunday. . so. .this is really the "big" day at Con. .it's the last night one can "party" really late, and still have Monday (Labor Day) to recover. . so this is where the majority of the costume pics ended up, even tho I didn't really take ALL that many this year. (but hey, it worked out, as noted earlier. . negative PCR test): Marce and Neal had to get up really early to go get their Covid test - since they were flying back to Canada on Tues, they had to show a negative test prior to being allowed to board. so they went off for their test, and were back by 9am. I woke up when they got back and we discussed what to do for this day. . . it's the day of Masquerade, which by tradition we watch with the group in Digi. . but was there anything we wanted to actually do today? Looking at the Schedule, Neal headed off to try and catch a Batttlestar Galactica Panel, and Marce and I headed . . somewhere (can't really remember, but I have no pics of it, so I think it was maybe another ribbon exchange?). After that was done tho, she suggested we try to go into the "started 20 minutes ago" Christopher Eccleston panel. I figured it would be completely full - it was his first time ever at Dragon*con - but to my surprise, the badge checker told us there were still a few seats in the very back. Marce wasn't being as uber-cautious since she'd now been tested (so wasn't worried about getting back home now). .so we went into the back of a PACKED ballroom: he was quite interesting, and funny, and although most of the questions were about him starring in the 2005 revival of Dr. Who as the 9th Doctor (of course. .I mean it's a con)..he actually lit up when a question came about his performances of McBeth in England. but hey, TWO panels this year. as mentioned, since Marce had now gotten her test done, she was finally ready for the Dealer's hall. I'd been a couple of times already, but really had nothing on my agenda as "must do", so decided to go with her to roam the dealers rooms again. . but first? yup. .we hadn't had our coffee yet. we were able to walk right into the dealers hall today - tho we only stayed for an hour or so, and the line to get in *had* formed by the time we left. .but it was still great to spend more time with Marce (since I only get to see her & Neal in Atlanta every year and last year had been cancelled. . LOL. . so yes, even tho rooming with them? wanted to spend more time). and picked up this great pin from the folks behind the Axanar Star Trek fan film: (I ordered it here, since he was sold out, but it arrived yesterday): we didn't spend too long in Dealers room tho, and decided we really needed to eat. And we hadn't yet eaten at one of her fave (my 1st time tho) - Aviva by Kameel. Kameel is a well known Chef (Mediterranean food) in Atlanta, and is so well known partially because of how much he gives back to the community thru food banks - not to mention the quality of the food. we got in the decently long line, and while waiting met up with several of my friends (passing by) whom I hadn't seen this year yet - makes sense as I was in Digi so much instead of out and about - and got to say hello to at least 3 friends and chat briefly while in line. oh, and Kameel was actually in the kitchen in the restaurant boisterously yelling out to everyone "HELLO! SO GLAD TO HAVE YOU ALL BACK! LOVE YOU BRO!". . LOL not sure why I didn't take a pic of the food (which we brought back up to the room to eat, instead of eating in the crowded food court), but I did take a pic while in line in front of some of the awards the restaurant has won. The food was really good too. after eating, I think Marce wanted to take a nap (they had gotten up so early), so i decided I'd head downstairs to one of the smaller ballrooms in the Hyatt to check out a panel featuring Omid Abtahi (who plays Salim/Cab Driver) on "American Gods" - a show I love, as well as in many other shows (including Mandalorian). But honestly, wouldnt' have bothered with the panel if it hadn't been just downstairs in the hotel I was already in. the room wasn't super full, so easily got in - but then got a surprise in that the panel had morphed into an "Ameican Gods" panel, also featuring the other AG guest - Ricky Whittle (ShadowMoon - the main character). . who is funny as hell. So yeah, the room did start to fill up a bit, tho where i was sitting was fairly close. so THREE panels this year. .go figure: best part of the whole thing was when Omid got asked about the famous sex scene in season 1 (which was absolutely groundbreaking LGBTQ television so of course it got asked about). . . Ricky slyly facetimed with Mousa Kraish (who played the Djinn) so while Omid was talking about the specifics of the sex scene with the Djinn. . . the actor was sitting there watching him on facetime. LOL it really was funny, and great. Pleased with myself that I actually saw THREE panels this year, just kinda wandered a bit people watching until it was time for Today's Queerios meet up in the Marriott (which is where I finally got to meet up and say hello to IntaminLove, and we talked about my plan to go to SFOG the next day). no pics from that, but here are some pics from walking around: the false idol worship from those trying to perpetuate the Cult of Jon (the hotels kept cleaning up the memorial each night, so a more interesting one would pop up the next day) and then it was getting close to time for Masquerade in Digisuite. . so I went back up the room to change for the evening, and then headed over to Digi to watch/do running commentary with the group - during Masquerade (which they broadcast thru the host hotels on Dragon*con TV) yes.. I am a little lit at this point. . . LOL (pics I sent to spouse to show him the crowd I was hanging with - same folks been around most of con) Alan had his son with him tonight: and I showed off to them that I had run into Cult of Jon on the way to Digisuite: so hung out and visited (and drank) and had a wonderful time, and eventually Masquerade started, so here's the gathering of infamy at the cantina in this pic: clockwise on sofa LtR: Kayli (Mike/Lisa's daughter), Mike, Marce, Josh, John, Bri, Neal, Sarah, me, Lily (Josh/Sara's daughter). .then behind the lamp is John, Cynthia, Nate, and Jason Masquerade was fun - as usual. . but then it was time to roam and try to finally get some costume pics. So taking Cynthia and her hubby Gary with, we headed to the Marriott: Ummm ..nice tan line. but I'm not a "stalker". .I ASK to take pics. . and the funniest thing. .their wives (who were dressed as Han Solo, I think), stepped in and took their masks off so it would be a better picture. yeah. . look at those smirks. they know exactly why I wanted this pic.. LOL what's this? a dance party in the middle of the Marriott mid level? Yup! (and darn it. . got some Loki in my photo!) the Weasel! More Loki photbomb . . . Daft Troopers Sunday's Klinger: Jason, just calmly stalking the Crowd in the Marriott NOT the same guy from last night. Another Gender-flipped "White Queen" Sarah and Josh had put Lily to bed, and had found their way down to the Marriott Pulse bar area too. yeah..I'm a mess. . LOL. . but it's Dragon*con! Cynthia with an Anime cosplayer. . no idea who, but she looked great! another Loki. . sheesh! I think he told me he's something from My Little Pony? no idea, but he encouraged me to write something filthy on him. (perhaps was flirting? but if so, I completely missed it). Think I wrote something about Horsey-Horny. . . Anime? From "Good Omens". .they looked great! Yeah, I gave in and INTENTIONALLY took a Loki pic: Loki Thor. . the LED lights in the outfit were great. . so took a pic or two. BWAAA-HAAA-HAAAA. .they were cleaning/disinfecting products! very well done Jaffar. Gary & Cynthia at the Jo memorial. on my way back to the room to go pass out (since I was getting up early to go to Six Flags Over Georgia). . met these two Vendors. . .stopped to talk to them because I admired the skirt (turned out she had made it). to be concluded in the next few days with a full day at SFOG!
  20. Saturday - this was gonna be the big question mark at the con - they were NOT going to be selling one day passes this year, to help control the crowd (set at ~50% capacity, around 42K people). Saturday is usually THE most packed day of the con, as its the day of the Parade (this year only badge members were allowed to observe it, but it was being broadcast on local television so the folks in Atlanta who typically would head to Con could still watch it). we got up and grabbed a light breakfast (and Caribou coffee) and went back to the room to eat, and watch the parade from our balcony. Honestly, not something I ever spend much time doing, and I dont seem to have taken any pictures of it. my friend JP had pinged me and asked what I was up to, and told him I was thinking about going to the Art Show (since it's held in the lower levels of the Hyatt, away from the main convention center). . so I headed down there and he met me there. we wandered the art show, which was MUCH smaller than usual. . a lot of the regular artisans who set up there, but really none of the "amateur" art, that makes the art show so fun to wander thru. I guess with the skip year last year, they simply hadn't put out a call for submissions? Hope it's back to full amateurs/Pros next year, as the Art Show really is one of the fun things to wander thru (usually lots of pics of dragons and cats doing cutesy things from the Amateur artists) tho I did like this piece: the area was so dead without the Saturday sales (I figured most had gone to the Dealer's room, or were still out at the parade) I decided that I wanted to check out the Dragon*con store that's in the Marriott (as I hadn't seen them in the dealer's room the prior day) so we headed thru the habitrails to the Marriott. . but first. .anyone who knows me knows I can't pass a photo op: in the Marriott, we saw one of the Spiritual Leaders of the Cult of Jon - who was blessing folks with the Googly Eyes so of course: a quick stop at the Dragon*con store, showed that they were already almost completely sold out of most things (I guess they had ordered light). . but I was able to pick up a Dragon*con 2021 shirt with very short wait. No reason to register for 2022 actually AT con, since it's all done thru GrowTix now, and the price was the same until 9/20 (so I waited until I got home to buy for 2022). . but I was curious about some of the other shirts they had already sold out of in adult sizes. . so I suggested to JP that we head to the Sheraton where there's a big Dragon*con store at Registration. (and I could say hello to my friend at Registration, since I'd seen him so briefly at Badge retrieval, and if was slow could actually visit). but since we were right here at the lower level of Marriott - which happens to be where the "Walk of Fame" is. . curiosity got the better of us, and we wandered thru to see just how they were handling the Covid restrictions for autographs/pics, since many of the guests had shown up. I must say, well done. . even if it looked like the celebrities were behind glass at the meat counter (note: my pics are of booths were the celebs currently weren't there, so I wouldn't get in trouble for taking a picture without permission.. since most of them make $$ this way, selling autographs and selfies to fans): saw some good costumes in here while walking thru tho, and stopped to snag a couple of pics: this was clever: Beloved old Marriott Carpet pattern Spider-Man/Spider-Gwen we walked thru, headed over to the Sheraton, where I visited my friend and JP rested from the walk over. He got a text wanting to meet for lunch, and since I wasn't hungry, he headed off and I walked up the street to the Westin - a hotel I hadn't been in yet this year, but typically one I spend some time in since the Horror Track tends to have it's conference rooms there. I also wanted to try to catch the tail end of a swag & seek meet up, that some of the queerios folks were attending and they had made some "minecraft" heart magnets similar to the one on my badge (and I got lucky and they were still there, so I now have a Leather Hearts, and a Bear Hearts magnet to wear next year) but while I was over here, I figured I'd check out the rooms and see what was going on, and it turned out the Walking Dead cast panel had just started about 10 minutes prior, so peeked my head in to see if there was space. to my surprise, the room was 3/4ths empty. . so feeling REALLY safe, I sat down and went to my first panel at Con. that's LtR the actors who play: Father Gabriel, Aaron, Magna, and Jerry! not a huge turnout for a pretty big draw panel like this one on a Sat. . so yeah, the no Sat. sales really kept the crowd down. view of the seats behind me in the room. . I was in maybe row 8? since I was right there, I wandered into Merchandise Mart to see how they were handling the Gaming this year at con (something I NEVER do - the tabletop gaming). . looked like they did a pretty good job spacing out all the tables, even tho it was petty busy in here: I was so close to the dealer's room, i went back in (no wait this time) and headed to a booth I had seen the day before. . where I ordered these 3 prints that should be here this week (shhhhh. .don't tell my spouse. . .LOL) I was starting to poop out, and it was close to 2pm, so I decided I'd head to digi for a little bit (nice to see folks again in the daytime), and then back to our room for a nap. The Queerios meetup was in the Hilton tonite, and that was at 5, with the big Spectrum party starting at 10pm - this year in the Hyatt Regency Ballroom. So I figured the perfect time to grab a 2 hour nap. . . alas, was not to be, as when I got back to my room, there were 3 people in there hanging out (friend and some kids), shortly joined by another friend and another kid.. . so not much nap going on, since by the time I shooed them out? spouse was calling me, as I had told him 2 hours earlier I was going to lay down for a nap. oh well.. . con. what ya gonna do? eventually I showered and changed, and headed to the Queerios meetup (they really are a lot of fun, and it's different folks showing up each meetup, so that's why it tried to go to multiple): and it was fun hanging with these folks talking and drinking. . but eventually it broke up and it was way too early to line up for Spectrum party at 9pm. . so what to do, what to do? Digi to drink and visit, of course: on the way to Digi, I ended up in front of Gypsy in the Habitrails. You're NOT supposed to take pictures in the habitrails.. can really mess up the flow of traffic. But I was walking and didn't stop, so technically didn't break any DCon rules: Hanging out, killing time, until time to go down to the Spectrum Party. Cynthia (sitting next to me with the Red Hair) came with me to wait in line to get in and go to the party for a bit. . really one of the most fun parties at Dragon*con leaving Digi to head down..what happens when Drunk Bert meets Drunk Alan on his way INTO Digi? why: and then we were in line to get in. Yeah. . because of reduced capacity, once they hit the 2/3rds (or whatever they were doing) it became 1 out- 1 in. . so we had to wait: but while waiting in line (with my strong drink in hand, of course), I got called out by Beefsquatch. . . which was my friend JP in costume for the night. . LOL he had mask under his mask, and I was buzzed. . so my mask came off for the pic Eventually, Cynthia and i made it into the party. for the most part, mask compliance was really good: the "theme" was Toga.. but most came wearing whatever they wanted. Some costumes from the party: DJ Neon the Glo-Go-Bear (yes, that's what he goes by professionally) and one of my favorites - if you look close? his mask has the beard/mouth printed on it.. so it looks amazing! Comics accurate Hercules I actually shut this party down (it was fun and I danced). . staying until ~2:15 when they turned on the lights and made us leave: Rocky Horror was going on in the Centennial Ballrooms across the lobby, so I wandered over and stuck my head in - the film was at the point that Riff had just poked Rocky with the candles and had forced him to break his chains and run. BUT. . the ballroom was packed to the gills. (because Lips Down On Dixie, the local RHPS troupe was performing in front of the screen as they usually do). I really, really wanted to stay, but I felt really, really unsafe.. . full room, with people shouting at the screen? yeah, so 1st time ever, I didnt' sit thru RHPS at Dragon*con and instead headed up to the room, showered, and passed out. all in all? a successful Saturday. .and I even went to a pretty fun panel. to be continued.
  21. that was a great trip report. really makes me want to go to Indiana Beach at some point, as there were several moments when I thought "I wanna ride that"
  22. ^ yeah, saw her. . but at the end of the day? it's just another Loki don't get me wrong. . it's good cosplay (and somewhat clever - tho I saw multiple "Delta Variants" this year) - but I tend not to take pics of non-unique cosplays. by non-unique, I mean: Harley, Deadpool, FedEx Jo, Loki (new to list this year), and maybe one or two more I'm not thinking of right now - so it's rare for me to have any pics of those characters (tho they often DO appear in a background, since you can't get away from them. . . LOL). at a larger con? there will be LOTs of these characters. Tho this year, I only saw one or two "fat Thor" - that there were DOZENS of last Dragon*con (2019)
  23. Interrupting this Trip Report to show that the science works. . .as does Masking up and taking the damn Vaccine. around 42K people for ~6 days, and negative PCR result. yay science!
  24. so.. Friday. Really short update (tho I DO promise some more costume pics coming!) Marce woke me up fairly early to see if I would go with her to a Ribbon Exchange (like I mentioned above, some are very into it) and since it was in the Hilton, decided to go with her as there was a panel on DC Animated universe - and I try to go to at least 1 panel every year (mainly to prove that I didn't spend the WHOLE con just drinking and partying). She had success getting lots of ribbons, and I interacted a little bit - tho the only ribbons I handed out are ones that Marce gave me and I handed out for her. then we peeked our head into the Animated Universe panel, and it seemed to be a very bored moderator just reading (flatly) off the back of the DVD packages, while they flashed the cover art on the projection screen. Marce and I took a look at each other, and decided.. nope. Not worth the risk to go sit in a room full of people (even tho it was only 1/2 full) for that. . so we explored a bit on the lower level of the Hilton and found a deserted seating area with back entrance into Trader Vics (noted for next year). Tho the Hilton was decorated for Stranger Things? Trader Vics seemed to still have some of the Jurrasic Park stuff up from 2019 back here: we decided it was time for some coffee, so we headed to Caribou to get our morning cuppa, and then Marce went to go meet some friends and I decided to take a look at the dealers room / rooms. yeah. . this was the line to get in - the convention center houses the Dragon*con dealers rooms on 4 full floors (tho the top floor tends to be Comic specific/artists alley guests rather than all vendors). Despite the line, it only took ~25 minutes to get in - and close to the entrance I saw Eddie coming the other way to the end of the line, and grabbed him to cut in with me. we didn't hang together long, but long enough to confirm a trip to Vortex later meeting at 5:30 at Hyatt lobby. the Dealer's room was crowded, even with the restrictions on capacity, and how spread out it was - and I ended up spending ~4 hours total in there on this day. I really regretted it too, as I felt a bit unsafe being inside for THAT long. . and really what I should have done is 1st floor, step outside for 20 minutes, 2nd floor, step outside, 3rd floor, etc. But I didn't do that, and beat myself up about it quite a bit for the rest of the day. (as I said, the con felt "weird" for the 1st few days). I had promised my spouse: No T-shirts (Dcon shirt being the exception) and no Wall Art - and I managed to stick to that. . tho I did buy a few things - mainly gifts for people - and a bunch of hardcover Trade Paperbacks for myself since there were a LOT of comic dealers this year with a lot of great deals. by then it was close to 4pm, and I wanted to go to the Queerios meetup at the Hyatt bar, hoping to bump into my friend Jennifer who helps run the group (no luck meeting up with her, she was being super covid safe all con mainly staying in her room watching panels on Dragon*con TV, but I did see her long enough on Sunday for a quick hug hello). one of the Queerios members had decided to Cosplay as Klinger all weekend - with a different outfit for each day! I thought this was brilliant, but only thought to get pics of him on 2 days, tho I saw him a few times. (he was handing out Klinger dog-tags too, if you took his pic). I visited with the Queerios until ~5, then popped back up to the room to drop off what I had bought and to say hello to Lisa (who was gonna crash with us for this one night). She didn't have any plans, so I invited her along with us to Vortex, and then realized I should invite David along and he also agreed to come. I learned them the way of MARTA (every year when I go with the dealer's group that includes Eddie and Rick, we Uber it, but I told them with only 3 of us (before I had invited David and Lisa) it was way cheaper just to take MARTA at $2.50 each way). I think I created a monster for next year tho, as now they know how to easily get to Vortex from the con. but it's not Vortex unless you rub the phallus. --> and the best part of this pic is the judgement on the guy behind me (the one who looks like Frasier). .which I didn't notice until looking at the pic later and zoomed in on him. Hysterical. info on the shrine - tho I didn't get a pic of the sign on the other side that tells you to rub it: even my very straight friend David got in on the fun (and he'd be THRILLED that I posted this. . bwaaa-haaa-haaaaa) I seriously LOVE the Vortex. .the decor: and the burgers: this one is the Four Horsemen: A blackened patty topped with horseradish sauce, grilled onions, sautéed mushrooms & jack cheese. with loaded potato salad as my side. (and of course, an Acid Trip cocktail) (tho Hell's Fury is better in my opinion) my friends this evening: LtR: David, Lisa, Eddie, Rick, me after eating way too much, we made it back and I headed up to digi to visit and hang with folks for a few hours, until deciding to go take a stroll to see if I can get some costume pics ~midnight. I walked over to the Hilton 1st, to get some pics of the Atrium cosplaing as Starcourt mall from "Stranger Things" - with one of the creatures on the lower level: On the way back thru the marriott, I saw Oogie and Sally and this guy. . who I know is Anime (rule of thumb at con. . if you don't recognize a costume? it's from Anime). a Digi friend told me later its from an anime done by the husband of the lady that made Sailor Moon. regardless, his balancing skills are impressive and a WHOLE lot of Loki, Harley Quinn, Deadpool, and FedEx Jo. .that I didnt' bother taking pics with. I had a good buzz and went up to Digi just in time for Jason to say that a band that had been playing over the speakers earlier (and I liked) was gonna be playing shortly, so a group of us headed down to the Hyatt Centennial Ballroom to catch Mayhayley's Grave unfortunately, the band playing before them - Raspberry Sorbet or something, was running way way over. . . and they were pretty terrible (they sounded like a Wedding Band on a Carnival Cruise ship). they played additional songs, including an 8 minute plus song they announced they were playing after saying that MG were backstage and waiting for them to get off. . sheesh. anyways, the crowd was pretty non-existant: but the band I wanted to see DID eventually come on ~2am: they're really good too, and I recommend them. . it's like a New Orleans Funeral band crossed with Oingo Boingo: I made it thru about 5 songs.. but by ~2:35 we pretty much called it and those I was with called it and headed back to rooms to crash. it still felt very weird. . but was starting to feel a bit more normal. . even with everyone wearing masks. to be continued.
  25. really well done design work in several locations. very impressed with what they've done this year!
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