LoneStar Con 3: Dedication and True Fandom in San Antonio

Lone star con (web)

Photo Credit: Jackie Calvert

The Henry B. Gonzales Center was abuzz this weekend with costumes and fans from all over the world at the 71st annual World Science Fiction Convention.

The convention ran from Thursday, Aug. 29 to Monday, Sept. 2 and featured over 400 writers, artists, musicians, scientists, speakers, panelists and performers. Oh, and die-hard fans. Fans who can dress up and feel right at home during this unique event.

Going into LoneStarCon, one would expect something similar to ComicCon from earlier this year. Hardly. Worldcon is geared more towards science fiction stories and novels than say the more popular comic books or television shows.

There were also interviews with astronauts as well as discussions on space and scientific issues. The con did have features such as The Iron Throne from the hit series “Game of Thrones” and TARDIS from “Doctor Who.” However, the props seemed more like gimmicks to reach a wider audience than what the con is truly about.

Worldcon is an intimate event that features far more than a typical genre convention. Besides television and popular comic books, the con holds intelligent discussion panels as well as live science experiments, pushing intelligence and learning beyond that of fiction.

Most of the crowd seemed to be regulars at the convention who travel to a different city around the world each year. The price to even attend the convention gives off an air of exclusivity ($75 day pass for Saturday and Sunday), however for a true, die-hard fan, it’s worth it.

One of the staff members proclaimed that buying the tickets to Worldcon at least two years in advance would be far cheaper. A few volunteers were overheard stating, “Wow, there are a lot of newbies here this year.”

Although the con is full of tenured members, it still wants to be a place for everyone.

Kara Mardy, an attendee and an “unofficial shop minion” at the con, feels most at home whenever she has the opportunity to attend.

“It’s like coming home. Sharing the fact that you are so enthusiastic about something, anything with other people who are enthusiastic. Out there, in the regular world, people are so apathetic. They think you’re weird or childlike, but you’re not. You’re just living life to the fullest because you love things so much.”