For many of us, DragonCon in Atlanta is a much, much bigger deal than Christmas or any other holiday. That includes the thousands of volunteers. I have been one of those staff volunteers for over 17 years now and so when I tell you that there is unlikely to be another experience in the world like DragonCon, you can believe it is true.
Not only that, but well over 35,000 people from around the world also agree and converge unpon Atlanta for the Con every year. Even spread out over 5 hotels (the Hyatt Regency, Hilton Atlanta, Sheraton Atlanta, Westin Peachtree Plaza, and Marriott Marquis, all within walking distance of each other) that is a lot of people!
What that means is that if you don't already have a room, you are extremely unlikely to get one downtown. You can stay further out and take MARTA in or you can check the DragonCon Rooms Facebook page for people wanting to share rooms or give rooms up (or looking for rooms if you want to post there.) That is how we got our room at the Sheraton this year, although we did it several months ago. (Note: this page is not sponsored by DragonCon.)
Why is it worth your while to come out into all that crowd? Well, to start with, there's the guests. There are 400 of them. This year, they include Patrick Stewart, Colin Baker, and Adam Baldwin among the actors, and Larry Niven, Terry Gilliam, Sherrilyn Kenyon, and Kevin J. Anderson among the authors. Then there are TV personalities like Steve Gonsalves from Ghost Hunters and Grant Imahara from Mythbusters and performers like The Cruxshadows, The Brogdingnagian Bards, and Voltaire.
Then there's the massive dealer room. And the artists. And the costumes, many, many unbelievable costumes.
Saturday, there's a free parade that winds through midtown. It's huge and it's free so if you can't come to the Con, come to the parade. But get there EARLY Saturday morning because otherwise you won't be able to see a thing!
So maybe you get a bit of an idea of why so many people are so excited about DragonCon!
Come on out and party with thousands of your closest friends, and come see me! I'll be working in the Science Fiction Literature track !