Exactly one week ago, in downtown Atlanta, the annual Dragon-Con took place. Thousands of fans from across the globe, including multiple international countries, came to Atlanta to celebrate and attend the event. It became a monumental moment of the Labor Day weekend with fans uniting together to both celebrate and cherish the arts. And courtesy of Dragon-Con Media Relations, I was allowed to cover the event as an official member of the press. And what I experienced over that Labor Day weekend was nothing short of spectacular. From the daunting scale of the event to the intriguing and heartfelt panels to the spectacular Dragon-Con 2018 parade, this year’s Dragon-Con was a marvelous experience that may not stand toe-to-toe with other conventions in terms of scale and popularity, but easily ranks as one of the most energetic and lively in the bunch.
From the moment I entered the Hyatt Regency, one of the four buildings that were taking part in the convention, I was immediately struck by the sheer scale and daunting aspects of the convention. When going in, I expected a moderately sized convention that only barely filled up one hotel. However, that expectation was completely blown out of the water, as I wandered aimlessly, exploring the floors with an endless glee. The same feeling could be felt throughout the rest of the buildings. However, while the architectural designs of the building may have created a fascinating illusion, there were certainly apparent issues in terms of travel between buildings and hotels. There were no clear signs that labelled directions as to where each building was. This created a disjoint and led to several frustrating instances of backtracking. In addition, while the actual idea is nothing short of brilliant, the SkyBridge that connected the hotels were often cramped due to the bridge’s physical capacities being squandered by the sheer number of attendees. It led to travel times north of twenty minutes between buildings even though the greatest distance between them was only a block.