It has officially begun! And far too late, I might add!
That's right folks, today i've kicked off the Phoenix Republic sub-site for DragonCon 2016 preparation. We will begin crowd-sourcing funding for DragonCon because this year we plan to do MANY things, not just Phoenix Republic related, but also to support Shroud of the Avatar as a whole, Avatars Radio, and a whole plethora of different groups within the game!
So lets start with the basics. I am sure many are asking a few basic questions... so we will answer the big ones people may have right off the bat.
What is DragonCon? And why should I care?
Fantastic question! DragonCon is a HUGE geek culture convention taking place in Atlanta Georgia at the beginning of September every year. It is one of the few major conventions to make it to the SouthEast that are related to gaming - and it is also one of the biggest conventions of its type anywhere in the country!
Shroud of the Avatar has maintained a constant presence at DragonCon and Richard Garriott himself has attended almost every one since it's inception. Last year, we had Malakas fly out and join Eclipse Maiden, Thursiaz Sheol, and Murphy as well as Jenny and Myself who were all local to the area and we had an absolutely amazing time! We managed to even go out to dinner with Richard Garriott himself.
Simply put: You want to care because we want to make an even more unbelievable experience this year! We are planning to host a fan table, we are planning to rent a cabin which will act as a vacation spot and base of operations for Republic and SotA related activities outside of the conference itself... and we cant do any of this without your help!
This event occurs Friday September 2nd - Monday September 5th. We are hoping to have a cabin that we will be able to rent for at least a few days before/after for extra events for all!
What do you plan to use the money and volunteers for?
Well, the simple answer for this is: A LOT! At least we hope so. So, to break this down for you... An event like this requires immense amounts of planning and funding. I do not have any easy answers right up front which is why I want to start opening the discussion for this now.
For the basics let us consider a few things we want to get funding AND planning help for in a list of priorities:
- Cabin or house rental somewhere in Atlanta area.
- This is our first priority, to get a place for everyone to go back to as a "home base' for the event.
- Those who did not stay in a hotel or live locally would be able to stay and sleep here meaning that it would
- This would also give us a place to host maybe a cookout, or movie nights, game nights, etc - anything we might want to do in addition to our traditional stuff we'd want to do at the conference. This would expand the traditional DragonCon experience to allow us to have a Shroud of the Avatar convention on top of it!
- Fan table, Artwork, people to man the table, and all the associated costs for that table and the handouts/materials we bring to it. (It gets expensive)
- Food and drink for those who will be staying in the cabin.
- Help with travel arrangements, MARTA costs, etc for those staying in the cabin (We take care of our own!)
- Paying for printing of table materials, handouts, and other things.
- Additional food, drinks and supplies for additional individuals coming to visit or for SotA / Republic community stuff we may plan during the week/weekend (Think of these as stretch goals!)
- Other stuff may come up! This is why i need your help in hashins this all out! :)
What do I get out of it?
Well, we are HOPING what you will get out of it will be an amazing time!
That said, we will try to prioritize arrangements in the cabin are taken care of based on need first (IE couples may get prioritized for a double bed if we have rooms with double beds). While donating does not specifically net anyone any additional benefits than the next guy, the more we raise collectively the more we will be able to have better accomodations for a better time for all of us.
To me personally, I am getting the chance to represent the Shroud of the Avatar community and the wonderful family that is the Phoenix Republic which I have found along the way.
NOTE: If you have special requirements, sleeping arrangements etc you need but contact me ahead of time and we will try to work it out! We want everyone to have the best possible experience here.
What else do you need help with?
This is the REAL kicker, isnt it?! The truth is this is not something I can plan all on my own and I am going to need help in a great many things both leading up to and during DragonCon.
The list of people we will need include:
- Real estate scouting to help us identify the right place to stay
- Event coordinators and planners for extra curricular activities
- Secretary to help with funding allocation and planning
- Artist & Writer for handouts, pamphlets, posters for the table etc
- DragonCon liaison to work with convention planners, have our table meet all rules and requirements, and to schedule things around Portalarium's schedule.
And that's just to start! I'm sure there will be more as we get further along in the discussions!
Do you have to be a member of the Phoenix Republic to be involved? Do I have to donate?
Absolutely NOT! Although the Republic is taking the reigns of a planning effort for a big SotA gathering/showing at DragonCon this year (due in part to the final wipe announcements!) it is absolutely NOT a Republic only event. In fact, we are coordinating with members of Avatars Radio and even have Woftam himself flying all the way from AUSTRAILIA to take part! We will also likely be working with members of Order of Vengeance and other guilds as we learn who is definately going and who is not.
Also, you do not have to donate to get involved! You do not have to stay in the cabin if you would prefer your own hotel room either... but you're still welcome to come hang out with us there! Just as in New Britannia, we welcome all!
More news, answers to questions, and information will be posted here in the days to follow. For now, at least, I thought i'd give that intro to kick this thing off before we start opening up the first discussion threads. Until then, we welcome you to join us in the DragonCon Discussion Forums to help get involved with the effort!
To The Republic!