I once had a teacher in grade school who told me that she loved to read my essays because she could tell that I was enthusiastic about learning and the subjects I would choose to write about. There was just one problem though. If everything I wrote about was “the absolute worst” or the “absolute best” that wasn’t going to give me a lot of space or freedom to really make careful and thoughtful comparisons. So why is this little anecdote important to my recap of LadiesCon 2017? Because I’m about to throw that advice out the window and use superlatives like crazy. Wanna know why? Because LadiesCon 2017 was THE. ABSOLUTE. BEST.
For those of you familiar with our event last year, the first LadiesCon was essentially a testing ground to see if our vision of an inclusive Con would even be something that the community wanted to see. In a donated office space, we managed to catch lightning in a bottle and learned just how dedicated the Boston comics community was to making an event that was for everyone.
This year, we took that to a whole new level. We tripled the number of panels and doubled our space, guests, and vendors. We reached out to artists and creators who were making things that were original, beautiful, and even a little terrifying. The response from the community was once again warm and enthusiastic, and together we created a colorful and vibrant Con.
I had mixed feelings when I discovered that I would be the one scheduled to post after our inaugural LadiesCon. There is just so much to say, so many lessons learned, so many wonderful people, and so much magic that organizing my thoughts seems like an almost impossible task. Do I give a blow-by-blow of the day? Do I just do the highlights? How could I possibly thank everyone we want to thank? Well, if I learned anything this weekend, it’s that you need to move forward and at least try your best if you are going to get anything done. So in that spirit, let’s give this a shot.
The Con Itself
Those of you who were able to join us this weekend learned exactly what we meant when we kept saying that our con would be “small and intimate.” The unique space donated by Canopy City was fresh and inviting. It also provided some exciting and unexpected extras like an additional screen for the Boston Roller Derby ladies to show off their games, a central desk in the middle of the action to use as our own Mission Control center, and a layout that I couldn’t help calling the “Gauntlet of Awesome.”
We wanted to keep the focus on local and unique talent and we were able to do just that. I know that we have already featured a bunch of our vendors on our Facebook Page, but we have also updated our Con Info page to include a full list of our vendors who participated.. This way if you regret any items left behind, you will have a second chance to get it.
Here’s a little slide show of the calm before the storm:
The VIP Lunch and After Party
In addition to our Con Floor, we also offered two additional LadiesCon events. The first was our “Lunch with the Ladies.” This event got you early access to our vendors and guests (as well as their commission spots), a tasty lunch, and a nice swag bag to carry your goodies around in. It was a great and relaxed way to start the day.
A quick search on social media regarding the con and you are probably going to see pictures of our after party. Guys…. THIS. PARTY. Envisioned as a social experiment to see what would happen if you gathered a bunch of creative people together with a choice of several fun activities, this event went off the rails in the best possible way. Matt (Co-Founder and Managing Director at Canopy City), not only gave our guests the freedom to cover one of his dry erase walls with art, but he was so pleased with the results that he told everyone to keep on going!
The result is inspiring and just a gorgeous tribute to the event and the community spirit. Those of us on the LadiesCon staff have been using the word “magical” a lot to describe this event. But really, I don’t think there is a better word for it. Thanks to Bill Imbrogna for the photos below. If you want to see more, check out his facebook page:
The Ladies have been trying over and over again to properly thank everyone who made our dream possible. At this point it’s almost overwhelming to try to express how we feel about our supporters and friends. Instead, once again, I will say a simple thank you. Thank you to our hosts, guests, vendors, panelists, and volunteers. Without you, this simply would not have been possible. And to all of you who joined us for our first ever LadiesCon, thank you for proving that there’s a place and a desire in the Boston area for a con like this one. We are a mighty city indeed.
I wanted to end this post answering a question we received several times on Saturday – Will there be a LadiesCon 2017? YES and we have so much more planned. So please, stick around and see what we come up with next!
Did you attend LadiesCon 2016? If so, share your experience below.
After a great experience with a 2-day pass last year, I (and The Goog and The Red Menace) decided to attend all 3 days of Boston Comic Con 2014. Armed with Ladies SWAG and excited to see friends, cosplayers, and creators, we embarked on our 3-day Con Saga.
Thanks to the movie franchise, most people can pick Marvel’s Thor out of a line-up.
But Thor isn’t the only hammer-wielder in the Marvel universe. I would argue he isn’t even the most interesting. In this lady’s opinion that honor goes to Beta Ray Bill! (With a close second to Throg- but that’s another post)
Yes, his name is a little goofy, but don’t let that stop you from learning more about Bill. Note: This write-up will contain spoilers for the comics listed.
When Cartoon Sara, The Red Menace, and Smalerie started sharing their origin stories I began filing the proper paperwork with a certain shadowy government agency. Well, the approval has finally come though, so at the start of this new year, it’s time for my not-so-secret origin.
Much like The Red Menace, I found my way to comics in my early to mid teens. While my friends would skateboard, I would wander into Newbury Comics (yeah, they used to sell more comics) and pick up some books. Yes it was mostly 90’s X-Men, yes I had a crush on Gambit, yes I was obsessed with what it would be like to live in the X-mansion.
Stereotypical, sure, but as opposed to what the “fake geek girl” set would have you believe, these books were a gateway into what would become a defining interest. Now I read lots of stuff and interestingly, no X-Men titles. Though I am a little obsessed with what it would be like the live in the Avengers mansion or work for S.H.I.E.L.D. Do you think the mansion has a pool?
The second in our cosplay mini profiles, we change gears from comics to gaming. In fact, one of my very favorite games!
Molly Shore as Elizabeth from BioShock Infinte
As soon as I saw Molly, I knew we had to feature her. Not only did she make her entire costume, but she told me it was just something that she threw together last minute!
Cosplay Origins: Molly had always loved both sewing and comics, but it wasn’t until she attended her first Comicon that she realized that she could combine them both. She still feels like that first year she attended was a missed opportunity, but from the looks of things, I would say that she is more than making up for lost time.
Cosplay Pride: Molly is a serious seamstress and creates her own patterns for her pieces. She has really refined her skills over the years, so much that she has even made costumes for others. In fact, she is most proud when she can make what seems impossible possible.
So, anyone else out there inspired yet? I don’t know about anyone else out there, but all this cosplay research has certainly given me the bug. In fact, who else out there is already working on their next costumes for either an upcoming Comicon or Halloween? *raises her hand
I bring you the second in what we hope is a series on Kickass Fictional Ladies. You may remember when The Red Menace brought you the first post about Princess Eilonwy, from the Chronicles of Prydain. Well, it’s time to share another lady who we see as a strong female character.
Warning: this post contains minor spoilers for the Firefly television series and the Serenity movie……
Those of you who know me in real life may be surprised that I didn’t pick Buffy Summers (the Vampire Slayer) for my first foray into this feature. I still like Buffy, and much as Buffy kicks ass, and as important a character as she was to me in my teens and 20’s, I find that now that I’ve reached Ladyhood, it’s Zoe who’s caught my attention.
Have you ever had one of those perfect days? Everything goes right…and for once in a very long while, the whole world seems to exceed your expectations. That’s right, perfect. Well, we Ladies of Comicazi have a name for that, and we call it Blurgles Day.
Many years ago, before the ladies had forged their bond of friendship, Tiny Doom and I (the sisterly duo) lived in a small apartment at the end of Oxford Street. The place was nice enough, and with all its problems, it was mostly what one would expect for a first apartment – break ins, demon possessed toilets, delightfully wacky neighbors. It was here that the dream of Blurgles Day began –
Smal: Ugh, my job is making me crazy.
TD: Seriously, you don’t know nothing about crazy till you’ve worked where I do.
Smal: It’s just that no one can make up their mind. It’s like on Monday, do this. No wait, do it on Thursday, but I mean last Thursday. Then on Blurgles Day, I want you to…
TD: What the #&*! is a Blurgles Day?
Smal: *stares blankly*
And that was the moment, in a fit of hysterical laughter, that TD and I decided to claim Blurgles Day as our own official holiday. We created an entire story around it, including The Blurg and the The Blurgles Day Dog, who would visit you in the night to leave a gift of funnel cakes and prescription pain relievers to all good (but extremely overworked) souls. This all sounded great in theory, but as much as we tried to CREATE something special, we realized that it was something that couldn’t be forced. And besides, who wants the trouble of having to make your own funnel cakes in case that damn Blurg punks out?
Over the years, TD and I have shared our dream of what Blurgles Day could be – a great day. A day that is untouchable. A day when all that other nagging nonsense gets forcibly pushed to the back of the line. And then it happened, Blurgles Day just happened. We took a day off from work together to relax and everything went right, from the perfect parking spot to finding a place that had real Hawaiian shaved ice! Blurgles Day wasn’t something that we could control, it was something to aspire to, to seek out, and celebrate.
So now we open ourselves up to Blurgles Day. We plan something fun, invite our friends, and go after that damn Blurg and his dog as if they were made of funnel cakes themselves. At the end of the day, we all huddle together to make the call. Was it Blurgles Day?
And since we would love to find a way for more people to celebrate Blurgles Day or even make up their own holidays, I have put together this handy FAQ for those interested in inviting Blurgles Day into their lives.
When is Blurgles Day?
There is no set day. In fact, it can happen several times a year. You just need to find a day to go out into the world and claim it. It’s a perfect mixture of putting yourself out there and pure luck.
How do I know when I am approaching Blurgles Day fulfillment requirements?
There are several ways to do this. You could develop a point system for each awesome thing. Find a Sci-Fi themed pizza place? +20 Blurgle points. Get a the Park Ranger to let you into a closed building so you can get an extra stamp for your National Parks Passport? +50 points. When you reach a certain number, you’re there. Honestly though, our method is a lot less precise. Usually, as the day draws to a close, someone asks to call it. There have been times when everyone has cheered and shouted “YES” together. Other times require more thought and debate…over drinks. Tasty, tasty drinks.
How can I increase my chances of having a Blurgles Day?
It doesn’t hurt to want it. And it doesn’t hurt to share your enthusiasm with others. If you are doing a tour or a class, ask questions. When people are really passionate about something, it is amazing what they will share. Recently, when we asked a visitor’s center volunteer which attractions he recommended, he split the brochures into two piles. “These are historical,” he said as he pointed to one pile. Then he pointed to the other pile – “These are hysterical.”
What happens when you can’t call it?
Well, it’s almost better this way because now you have a chance to plan something fun to look for it again. Last week TD and I took a day off together to enjoy some of our favorite things: the ocean, history, and commerce. Everything was going quite well until we discovered that one of our favorite shops was gone and we struck out at most of the clothing stores. Oh, and don’t even mention the traffic on on way home. Point is that we still had an awesome time regardless, even if it wasn’t BD. You need high standards for Blurgles Day to keep it special. Another time, Cartoon Sara and I were on a trip together in Atlanta. We had an amazing day interacting with whales and going to the Center for Puppetry Arts. Then we watched half of The Princess and the Frog before heading out to dinner. When we came back, the station was showing the movie again and it was pretty much at the same point where we left it. Bam! Blurgles Day!
Can something be so awesome that you have instant Blurgles Day?
YES! Like when the Ladies present you with this.
Have you ever Googled the word “blurgle?”
*sigh* Stupid Urban Dictionary. *grumble* On a more positive note, there is also this definition.
Ever experience a Blurgles Day of your own? Thinking about hunting down the Blurg for yourself?
Tell us about it below!