Bizarre Brunette’s Convention Survival Guide

I remember attending my first con in the summer of 2013 and feeling that I belong there. Convergence holds a special place in my heart for introducing me to conventions. While I love attending conventions, they can also be exhausting. Convergence is a four-day convention, but even three-day conventions are tiring. I wanted to come up with a list of tips on having a good time and taking care of yourself along the way.

[Photo of two people. One is in a skirt and a crop top, the other in baggy brown slacks with a floppy brown hat. The characters are Robin on the left and the Scarecrow
Robin and Scarecrow at Convergence 2016

Drink Water

Being dehydrated is the worst feeling. I know when I’m dehydrated because I get these horrible headaches. I find it most helpful to bring a backpack with a holder for a water bottle.

Have a Backpack

The first year I went to a con, I only brought my purse. This was a rookie mistake because I bought stuff and had nowhere to put it. I could run out to my friend’s car to drop stuff off, but that’s just a hassle. I usually bring a string backpack because it’s lightweight, but holds all my gear.

Protein Bars/Protein Snacks

Snacking is absolutely necessary to have the energy to last all day and possibly all night. I find that if I eat more protein, it keeps me more full. I always pack cashews or protein bars for every con.

[Image shows a Dalek with a British Flag pattern. The Dalek is a robot with a plunger sticking out of it.]
Console Room 2015, Doctor Who Convention.

Don’t Spend Your Money Right Away

My rule when spending money at a convention is to walk around and see all the booths and artists. In the back of my mind, I’ll keep track of things that I may want to purchase later. Nothing is worse than seeing something you want to buy and having no money because you spent it all already. Additionally, I’d also recommend coming up with a budget. I like to pull out cash and after it’s gone, then that’s it.

Visiting Artists Alley

I love walking through the art area of a convention. I prioritize spending my money at the artist’s table or purchase comics written by someone based in Minnesota. I find that when I spend money this way, it’s more meaningful since I had an actual conversation with that creator over their art and/or comics.

[Image is a selfie. I'm smiliing in the photo. In the background, there's an evil snowman smiling in an evil way]
Doctor Who Convention May 2015.

Take Lots of Pictures

I am so glad I took pictures from my prior conventions because sometimes I take a day and browse through them all. There is so much to see at a convention and pictures are saved memories. Bring your phone fully charged or a digital camera.

Conventions are one of my favorite events to attend in the geek community. I feel so at home at a convention and I’m already counting down the days till my con next week. My goal is to make it to either C2E2 or Planet City Comic Con in Kansas City.

13 thoughts on “Bizarre Brunette’s Convention Survival Guide

  1. Do you live in Minnesota then? I’m up in Duluth. One of these years I plant to attend Convergence! I’ve got a group of friends that normally attends but it hasn’t aligned with my schedule the past couple years. I hear it’s one of the better “not just high school kids” cons in MN.

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