September 5-7 once again brought to Ohio the green convention Midoricon! The convention was held at Maumee Bay Lodge and Conference Center in Oregon, OH. This year, as with any convention, there were both good and bad points. Over all, Midoricon pulled off a great weekend! This is the first part of my convention coverage, with my second part I will interview with Midoricon’s guests, take a look at the amazing Slender Man web-series and speak with the Marble Hornets!
Friday brought about the first round of problems. First, a storm was moving into the area, causing many of the outdoor events to be postponed. Postponing these events, caused some nasty rumors to spread among con-goers that the events had been cancelled. Of course, this was not the case. When the events were finally held on Saturday and Sunday, the cancellation rumors led only a small number of people attending the events. On Saturday, I went to the Anime Beach Party event, and I only saw between 15-20 people at most. I can’t say for sure though if this was caused by the rumors, or attendees simply going to other events.
Friday night brought about a separate issue with the convention’s guests, Marble Hornets. Originally, the guests were supposed to arrive Friday afternoon; however, due to some complications, they were rescheduled to arrive late Friday evening. Due to airplane mechanical problems, the guests ended up not arriving until around 1:30 AM on Saturday morning. Being the nice fans we are, a group called The Hoody Hub and yours truly bought pizza for them. We guessed they did not have a chance to eat yet.
Saturday afternoon and evening, con-goers were in for an surprise. The lodge had double-booked the area for not only the convention but also a wedding!
Surprisingly, both the wedding attendees and the con-goers were respectful of one another. Many con-goers even went out of their way to avoid the areas the wedding party was using to avoid disturbing them. Of course, there were some people on both sides who were disrespectful to the other, but nothing that was too major or anything that would really derail either event.
The convention itself also had problems with the lodge concerning a few events, notably the Slender Man Hike. The convention was supposed to host a scary hike on one of the park’s trails. However, they were informed by the park rangers merely hours before the Hike was to take place that, in fact, they were not actually allowed to host the event. The convention didn’t have certain permits from the park. An official statement from the convention can be found here.
I suppose the only other problems I had with the convention was the slow, nearly non-existent Wi-Fi and the nearly non-existent cell service.
First thing’s first, the venue this year was absolutely beautiful. The lodge was beautiful. The park was beautiful. The lodge sits right on Lake Erie. Being able to look outside and see boats and everything was great!
Even though I talked about the wedding on Saturday as a problem, there was some good in it. Both the wedding party and the con-goers were respectful of one another. The people participating in the Foam Fighting Pit also provided some unique entertainment for the wedding party!
Friday also brought a great experience for me personally. I was finally able to meet some online friends. I had been chatting online with them in a Marble Hornets group for about 8 months or better. This convention brought Marble Hornets to Ohio, and it also brought these guys to Ohio.
My Suggestions for Midoricon
Considering the problems this year, I have a few suggestions that could possibly make things a lot easier for future conventions. First thing would be paper schedules. In order to stay green, the convention did not print any paper schedules for the con-goers to take with them. Instead, the convention opted to use a big board with a schedule on it, and also an online schedule on their website. This required that con-goers either take a photo of the big board or basically go without a schedule due to the lack of a decent internet connection. Last year I suggested Midoricon print paper schedules, and I suggest the same thing this year.
The conventions needs better communication. They should have made it better known that the events that were postponed were NOT cancelled. They could have let people know through their social media pages, and also made it known at the registration desk what was going on with these events. I might have missed the memo, but I got zero notice about what was going on with the events. I simply did not go to any except the beach party. They could possibly have even set up some type of text-alert system to text con-goers what was going on in case attendees couldn’t connect to any social media.
Over all I really enjoyed myself at this convention, and the good outweighed the bad. I hope the con-chairs read my few suggestions and take note of them for next year’s convention.
As usual I can’t wait for next year’s Midoricon! Be sure to check back here at Japan Powered for Part 2 of my coverage of the con, which features an interview with Marble Hornets!