Saturday is always the biggest and busiest day of the convention. In the morning we have the Annual Dragon Con Parade, at night we have the biggest parties and during the whole day we have the biggest turn out of people attending the convention. I simply had to plan ahead.
I got up later than I’m used to, but still early enough to stick to my plan which was:
- Have a big breakfast that would last me until 3:00 PM.
- Get to the staging area of the Dragon*Con Parade early enough so could snap as much behind the scenes phots as I could.
- Get out of there before the beginning of the parade.
I arrived around 8:30 AM to the Hardy Ivy Park, which was the beginning of the staging area that extended a few blocks down the street. The parade was scheduled to start at 10:00 AM so I started to cover as much ground as I could and take as much pictures as time could allow. Once this event started the wall of people on both sides of the street wouldn’t let me take a decent photo of the marching cosplayers. I took a fair amount of photos and while I was walking around the area I bumped with a lot of old friends like Rick Strafford, Freya Fólkvangr, Angel E. Martinez, Damaris Degen, Nate and Janet Osburn, Brittany Lunsford and Dean Newbury.
It was barely a few minutes before 10:00 AM, time for me to get out of there. The streets were blocked so that nobody could walk across them during the parade. The Hyatt was on the opposite side of the street from where I was. Then I realized that I was on the side where I could walk to the AmericasMart building, the place where they located all the convention dealers. I got there just in time to catch them opening their doors for the beginning of their business day so I was part of that first batch of morning clients. I was very lucky; it was just like walking into my local shopping center very early in the morning.
My not planned shopping day was quite productive. I met author Kevin J. Anderson a bought an on the spot signed copy of his novel THE LAST DAYS OF KRYPTON, met for the second time that world famous cosplayer called Yaya Han and bought her 2015 calendar also signed. And bought a lot comic books back issues at bargain prices.
By the time I was done shopping it was around 12:30 PM. Time to head to the hotels where I took more photos of cosplayers, took a selfie with comic book artist George Perez, took behind the scenes photos at three photo-shoots, one was “DC Comics Heroes vs The Legion of Doom”, another one had a “League of Legends” theme and the other was “Game of Thrones”. I also saw and talk with cosplayer Margie Cox also for a second time (and she remembered me from last year!), also met and talked with cosplayer Heather Kelly.
Around 3:30 PM I headed back to my hotel to get some rest in order to have enough energy for that night’s festivities that included a party at the Georgia Aquarium and a Star Trek Party at the Hilton Regency.
Before the Georgia Aquarium I remember one time as a child that my father took the family to a local aquarium in Puerto Rico so this was my second time in one and it quite an experience. I had a lot of fun, took a lot of photos and had the chance of hanging out with Rick Strafford, Freya Fólkvangr and professional photographer Troy Nelson. After a couple of hours I took a shuttle to the Hilton to get to the Dilithium Crystals Party where I took more photos. I stayed there no more than an hour. Afterwards I went to the Marriott, took more photos and hanged out for a while with Hailey Hatcher, Norman and Janet Osburn, called it a night around 11:00 PM and headed back to my hotel to catch some sleep.