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For the last three years, I have thoroughly chronicled my experience at Dragon*Con, the southeast's largest Science Fiction, fantasy, and anime convention. And while I have put forth some pretty long-winded descriptions of the event, this year's will be brief. I'll let the pictures do the talking for this incarnation.

For starters, this wasn't the best experience I've ever had at the convention. We arrived about a half hour before the Dragon*Con parade began and took our spots on he side of Peachtree Street as we did last year, but the parade was a bit skimpier than it was at the last 'Con. Perhaps the tragedy just a few states away was keeping things a bit down this year? Perhaps the convention itself would be a little less inhabited than usual? I soon had those questions answered for me.

Registration, which normally takes place in the basement of the Marriot hotel and runs about 20-30 minutes to get through, had been moved (which was not announced beforehand.) We needed to get our badges to get in to the convention, so we had to ask around and follow poorly-placed signs to find our way in. After walking three blocks to the new location at the Hilton we waited approximately two and a half hours to get our badges. By the time we left the line, the mob had grown substantially, and I'm guessing that line times probably peaked at three and a half to four hours. Next year I'm definitely preregistering to save some time, although the folks who did that still had to wait in line for a good half hour or so anyway.

So basically, by the time we left the line just to get in to the convention, we were so drained that all we wanted to do was grab a beer and have a seat. Normally, I've seen everything at the convention by about 2PM and am ready to go home and have a nap, but this year lunch was wrapping up by that time and we were ready to actually begin our convention experience.

The place was packed, of course. Due to my claustrophobic nature, I was content to zip through the dealer rooms and not loiter too long at the potential wallet-busters that line the 'Con, so I guess it wasn't an entirely bad thing. The same thing happened with the "walk of fame"...the Celebrity contingent (which contained such notables as Lou Ferrigno, Michael Berryman, Kevin Sorbo, Richard Hatch, and Erin Grey) was so tightly packed that it wasn't even worth stopping and chatting or taking advantage of a photo op. The Troma booth didn't even have any notable stars this year. No Debbie Rochon, and Lloyd Kaufman was busy sitting on panels all day to drop by.

I didn't even arrive home from the first wave of Convention lunacy until 6:30 or so, so there wasn't enough time to rest up before heading back for the infamous drunken nerd herd. And although I had a lot of fun during phase two of the 'Con, it was too much of a blur to transcribe. I do recall crashing a couple of Klingon parties, however.

Anyway, although he experience was a little less rosy than in previous years, I still had a good enough time to not daunt my desires to return in future years. So enjoy the rest of my 2005 Dragon*Con photo gallery, and We'll see you back here next year!

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