Stan Hyde's Observations on G-Fan's 1997 Convention
(Taken from a posting to alt.movies.monster newsgroup)


I finally arrived home after lengthy travel from G-Fan G-Con and I wanted to thank everyone on the list who was there for the GREAT time I had there.

Everybody else I spoke to felt things had gone fantastically, and frankly by the time of the "Dead Godzilla" party in the Oak Bar on Sunday night the postive atmosphere was such that I don't think you could have found someone who didn't want to come back in '98.)

From my point-of-view, it was great to have the Garage kit model community involved in the show for the first time. Thanks to Larry Brackney who covered the model show for THE MODELER'S RESOURCE, and to others like John Wadden and "Lumraptor" who will be helping out with the model show next year. It's really great to have the larger community of garage kit fans and builders starting to participate.

(And quite frankly, lest anyone mistake intentions, I want to make the G-FAN G-CON model show the DEFINITIVE KAIJU MODEL SHOW - and yes,THERE WILL BE AN ENTRY FEE LIKE EVERY OTHER SHOW IN MODEL FANDOM. Again, this is not a swipe at anybody else's work - I just want my area of organization to be the best there is! We're going to work all year long on building this one into the premiere show in fandom.)

It's gratifying to see how many of the reviews of the two shows printed thus far have talked about enjoying the "presentations." This year G-FAN G-CON made the step toward actually becoming a CONVENTION not just a SHOW. In short, fan input is IMPORTANT. The opportunity to be involved in a presentation, to express your opinions, and to have access to fan-pros like Ed Godziszewski, Mark Cerasini, David Kalat, Bob Eggleton, Don Glut, Stuart Galbraith IV, and others is essential.

BUT ANYBODY WHO ATTENDED SESSIONS by Pat McGrath, Robert Dwyer, Jim Figurski, Barry Kaufman, Don Theobald, Tom Tvrdik, and others also knows the ESSENTIAL PLACE OF PRESENTATIONS BY FANS FOR FANS!!!! Information, friendship, fun - all of it made possible by the people who made the convention the nearest thing possible to A LIVING ISSUE OF G-FAN MAGAZINE.

I have yet to meet anyone who didn't find the presentations a high-point of the show.

Ah face it, it was great to have totally unexpected attendance figures by Friday night - with all 200 of the Toho posters gone. It was also great to have conversations with people you had never met before on the Friday night, about two hours into the convention, telling you WHAT A GREAT POSITIVE ATMOSPHERE THERE WAS.


FAVORITE MOMENTS:

Seeing Bob Eggleton surrounded by youngster's outside the elevators giving commentary on their art. "Hey, this is pretty good. This is a good rendering. You've got perspective happening here . . ."

Sitting at the table doing the Monster Calls at the banquet. (Yes, it looks like there will be a monster vocalization contest next year.) Mark Cerasini does a bitchin' Rodan, Pat and Shannon as the "two heads of Ghidrah", and especially Phil's unbelievable Godzilla...GRONK!!!

All the work by the modellers - Larry Brackney's gigantic GAMERA, John Wadden's Aurora RODAN, Mark Wallace's friggin incredible RODAN VS. GODZILLA, the amazing MECHA-MOTHRA scratchbuilt, Tom Tvrdik's DESTROYAH, Greg Rappan's incredible Kaiyodo BIOLLANTE diorama, Jr. Modeller Marc Dunworth's DR. SERIZAWA AT G-CON scratchbuilt kit, and the incredible BIOLLANTE ATTACKS diorama by fifteen year old modeller Andrew Shields (kinda great to see Titanosaurus muching down on Biollante.) (I could go on for much longer, but I'll stop at this point.

The dealer with the wide-smile on his face who told me on Friday night, "Hey, I guess when people are happy, they buy more stuff."

Sitting with a big audience watching GODZILLA VS. THE THING on Saturday night. (And the DESTROY ALL G-FANS video that warmed us up.)

The GODZILLA GIRLS panel with David Kalat.

Seeing all the fans who showed up for my COMING OUT OF THE CLOSET: WHY WE LOVE MINYA panel. Not only was it great for me to finally get this off my chest, but the mass Confession by fans of why they liked LITTLE GODZILLA, GODZILLA VS. MEGALON, and others was terrific. That's what fandom is all about - public confession of loving something that everyone else things is . . . well . . .

Watching Larry Brackney and John Wadden doing demos - Volks Rodan and M-I Soldier kits being built up. And did everybody get a close look at the equipment John has with him in that carry-all of his. Wow! (Next year we're going to try to set up a WHOLE TABLE of modeling demos.)

er, in short, I had a great time.

It was ABSOLUTELY FAN-FFFING-TABOULOUS to hear JD start talking about "next year's G-Con" already by Friday night. It was even better to hear EVERYONE talking about HOW TO MAKE NEXT YEAR EVEN BETTER throughout the weekend and at the "Dead Godzilla" on Sunday night.

BECAUSE IF FAN EXCITEMENT IS ANY INDICATION - THIS IS GOING TO BE ONE HELL OF A SHOW NEXT YEAR!!!

G-FAN G-CON had the feel of a professional fannish production - the feel of everyone being there together. I can do no more than quote JD on this one - "This year, it felt like we made real friendships." Right on! I came away from this convention with my wallet loaded with names and addresses of my new friends . . . and for all that I have enjoyed past G-Con's, I think it was the arrangement of events at this convention that helped make that possible. It was a place to go to meet people who love Godzilla.

Hey, Our motto: WE LOVE GODZILLA
Our goal: INTERNATIONAL UNDERSTANDING THROUGH GODZILLA

guess it says it all . . .