With 58 days until the big event, I thought I should start a thread with all the important details for one of the biggest and most fun conventions around. which I know is being attended by a few Senators. Since this will be my fourth trip to Hotlanta, I?m going to add in my own editorial comments, and anyone else who has been should feel free to do the same. Also, any questions that you may have, I?d be glad to answer, or try to answer, or try to find out an answer. Most of my info comes from the main site, which is found at: dragoncon.org DragonCon goes from August 29th thru September 1, 2003. Why, you may ask yourself, should I go? If you like Sci fi, media, books, comics, anime, gaming, goths or geeks, then this is the place for you. There?s an entire Star Wars programming track, and if that bores you, check out Buffy, LOTR, The Wheel of Time, Anne McCaffrey, Xena, comics, books?.. you get the idea. There?s in the neighborhood of 20,000+ attendees. There?s a masquerade, a Dawn Look A Like Contest, Short films, movies, filking, concerts. And the guests! Ray Park, John Rhys-Davies, Bill Mumy, George Takei, Ray Bradbury, Kevin Anderson, Luke Perry (?), the Cruxshadows? and there?s sure to be more added. It?s well worth it ? only if you like crowds, because it is very crowded. DragonCon is at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta and the Atlanta Marriot Marquis. Most programming is in the Hyatt, while the dealers and art show are in the Marriot. Staying in either of these hotels guarantees you?re close to the action. They are connected by a big tube, so if you try real hard, you can spend the entire weekend indoors. (I'd advise against that - at least go to the pool deck) Being close has it?s price. Both hotels run $148 a night, can be chaotic and loud, and may well be sold out at this point. Never fear! The website has a list of alternate hotels, many with a convention rate, and most within walking distance. My first year, I stayed at the Holiday Inn and it was just fine, only a few blocks away. You shouldn?t have trouble getting a room at a nearby hotel even close to the date ? though if you think you might go, make your reservations now. You can always cancel. (I did hear rumors that the Marriot was charging people?s credit cards way in advance last year, I don?t know if this is true or not.) The other big expense is registering for the convention. At the door, memberships are $75. If you preregister by July 15, the price of admission is $60. I cannot emphasize this enough ? if you know you are going to attend, preregister. Let me say it again. Preregister. The line to pick up your badge is bad enough on Friday when you?ve pre-reg?d. I cannot even imagine how long it will take if you don?t. Do not count on one day passes. They will only sell them if they have not sold out the convention. With 20,000+ people in attendance, don?t count on them. That?s all for now. Later on, I?ll post directions to the cheap ?beverage? store where you can buy beverages (water, soda, etc) and a cheapo styrofoam cooler. I?ll also look for links to a convention survival guide I?ve seen floating around, which has handy tips.