Convention report: MarCon 99

Webmaster’s note 10/14/2018: This is an old convention report from the previous version of the site, which we’re bringing in as a post so that it’ll be searchable in the reviews categories with newer content. We’re pretty sure this actually refers to the Marcon in 1999.

by Rod Smith

A fair con, but the usual problems with the elevators and escalators were worse this year. You know there’s something wrong when on Sunday Harry Stubbs carries his luggage down the stairs from the 9th floor to the third, then takes the (now repaired) escalators the rest of the way to the parking garage. (I mentioned this to a concom member, and she was aghast. “We told him we have people standing by to help him move out of his room when he’s ready!”)

Air quality in Columbus was unusually bad this year, with a number of people – myself included – having bronchitis or even asthma symptoms. (While waiting in the photo area for the Masquerade to start I reached into my camera bag for my inhaler and pulled out a can of pressurized lens cleaner. Fortunately I knew even from the feel that this was the wrong can. :-{) Not the convention’s fault, of course. It was also unusually cold in many of the public areas and rooms much of the time.

I didn’t attend many panels, and one of the few I did go to wound up with an audience and no panel. Argh. I didn’t do any gaming, either. However, I did negotiate for a commissioned painting of one of my characters from a very good artist. And I did some fair drawing myself, in quiet moments.

I also attended the farewell ceremony for Buck Coulson; or rather, the first half hour or so. It ran for about 4 hours. A heartfelt celebration of a fine man’s life.

This year the Masquerade was held in the main ballroom, out in the convention center. This provided much more room than the small ballroom used for several previous years. While waiting for the Masquerade to start I entertained a couple of the other photographers (including Dr. Stubbs) with stories from Liftoff!, which neither of them had heard of. The Masquerade itself was pretty good, with several WorldCon-class costumes.

All-in-all not the best con I ever attended (not even the best MarCon) but enjoyable.