I don’t have a good excuse for being late with the posting. Other than the holidays and illness. Not an excuse, per se, so much as a reason. I hate to admit it, but I can’t write when I’m sick. Well, I can write, just not well. I do love those NyQuil dreams though. MMMMmmmmmmmmmm….NyQuil Dreams. The best part of being sick.
Andrea as Ciel with an Undertaker and a Grell
The other bad part about being late is that it makes the con seem like it was so. Long. Ago. And really, it has only been two weeks. But it feels like the most wonderful distant memory at this point. Allow me to relive the amazingness that was DaishoCon, because I’m not kidding when I say it was the best con we’ve been to.*
As always, a bevy of Homestuck cosplayers
Where to begin? Let’s start with the obvious:
The highlight of this con going in was getting the opportunity to meet J. Michael Tatum, who is Andrea’s favorite voice actor. He did not disappoint. His panels were hysterical, as he shared great stories. In a lot of ways, he reminded me of one of my dear friends from college. I don’t know if Steve would be flattered that Tatum reminded me of him, but Tatum should totally be flattered that he reminded me of Steve, because Steve is made of awesome. They both had that same sense of snarky humor and way of telling stories that is beyond the pale.
Andrea with her idol. She said her heart was just pounding.
Added bonus, Tatum was sincerely a super nice guy. Andrea’s thing for these cons is that she will draw a picture of her favorite character that the actor voices and have them sign her drawing. When she presented her drawing for him to sign, he was super supportive and gushing about her talent. Which was really nice, because we are always encouraging her to keep drawing, but when one of your idols tells you you have talent? And should keep at it? Yeah, pretty sure that sticks a lot better than when mom and dad say it.
Her artwork after he signed it. She likes the little hearts he added.
I did go ahead with the gift bag idea (thanks for the affirmation, my zillas!) and they were a huge hit! I wish I had the forethought to take a picture of said baskets, but I didn’t. I filled the baskets full of random Dollar Tree items, like socks, and dinosaur toys, and candies and snacks, and Hello Kitty word find puzzle books, and whatever else I found that struck my fancy. I included a note that explained why they were receiving such a random assortment of crap, and they were super happy to receive them. When I handed the bag to Tatum, he started looking through it and grabbed the socks and with an evil snicker said, “Oh my god, you are such a stalker!” He said it in a good and funny way, but now I’m wondering if he has some propensity for fuzzy socks that I was not aware of before.
Cheramie loved her basket so much, SHE asked ME for a hug! That’s kind of unheard of; usually it’s the other way around at these things, so I was thrilled that she enjoyed her gift. Turns out she’s also a fan of dinosaurs, so she immediately put on the Zilla hat and posed for me.
Cheramie Leigh gives me her best RAWR!
I asked all three of the celebrities to give me their best Godzilla pose. Here’s Tatum’s.
He’s a good sport.
And here’s Nathan Barnatt. I felt kinda bad, because I didn’t have a gift bag for him. He was cool about it. I honestly didn’t know who he was before the con, but after seeing a panel where he and the other celebrity guests did improve, I’m definitely following his YouTube channel.
Super funny guy! And a good sport to boot. He said he wasn’t good at dino faces, but he did a lizard for me instead.
The gaming options at this con were particularly epic. The video gaming room took up half of a ballroom! They had just about every device imaginable, and an entire library of games to choose from. Most cons have the gaming space confined to one or two suite rooms. We literally gasped when we first walked in, we were so amazed at the sheer size of it.
I tried to include a pic of the epic game room, but my shitty phone ate it. Instead, I give you a cosplaying Belle and Gaston.
The other fun part was the tabletop room, which we always love and have a fun time with, but we learned a new game this time around. It’s called Werewolf, and if you haven’t played it, it is an amazing party game! Each person in the group gets a card, and you are basically a town with villagers.
One group of villagers, hearing which cards are in play for this particular round.
Amongst your village are werewolves and at night they hunt and kill off members of your village. The goal of the game is for the villagers to figure out who the werewolves are before they kill everyone. Some villagers have special abilities. The Seer can point to a villager each evening and the moderator will then tell them if they are a human or a werewolf. The Priest can heal someone who’s been targeted for death. The Leprechan can change the death target to someone on the right or left of the person the werewolves picked. Lots of options to help the villagers figure it out. And each night before nightfall, the village has to decide on one person to lynch. If they’re lucky (or smart at deduction) they’ll lynch a werewolf. If they’re not lucky (or succumb to mob mentality), they’ll kill one of their own and the werewolves are one villager closer to winning. It’s super fun, and really makes you work at both your deduction and deception skills.
My sneaky little Rainbow Dash here almost devoured an entire village.
During one game, Andrea was the last surviving werewolf and would have won if I hadn’t been the Seer and asked if she was one of them.
As previously mentioned, the con was at the Kalahari Hotel and Water Park at the Wisconsin Dells. We’ve actually been to the Kalahari before because we went for Christmas vacation many moons ago when Andrea was in kindergarten.
Long ago- our first visit to Kalahari in 2004. Hard to believe it’s been almost ten years!
Just for comparison. Sometimes it freaks me out how fast she’s grown up.
Since we were staying at the hotel, the water park passes were included. I worried that as busy as the con gets, we wouldn’t have any time to enjoy the water park. We made time. And it was awesome. Although let me be clear- we did NOT go down the Screaming Hyena slide.
That’s one of those ones where you climb in and they have an almost 90 degree drop, so the floor goes out from under you. Eff. That. Noise. I’ll just stick with the wave pool and the water roller coaster and call it a day. Although the indoor/outdoor hot tub was pretty sweet. That weekend was one of the first really cold weekends we’ve had this winter, so there was all this crazy steam rising from the tub. Like you could barely see to find a spot, it was so foggy. But it was nice to go back and forth between freezing and then sliding down into the super hot water. Soothing!
There’s more stories to tell, but this is getting a little long so I’ll save the rest for another post. Sorry again for the delays. The only bad thing about this party was I ended up with what appears to be a severe case of Con Crud. Over two weeks and a full ten days of antibiotics later, and I’m still sounding like I’ve spent the last three years gulping whiskey in a smoke-filled bar. At least I still have the NyQuil dreams to keep me warm.
*Disclaimer: the best con Andrea and I have been to. I’m still going to default to Celebration as my personal best con, because truthfully it still ranks up there with one of the best weekends of my whole freaking life. It’ll be pretty hard to top that one. But as far as anime/fan cons go? Daisho was heads and shoulders above the others.