StarFest went down April 19th-21st and if you didn’t go, you missed out. After having a horrible weekend the weekend before, StarFest is what I needed to relax and help mend a broken heart. There were so many things to do at StarFest and I was busy the entire time.
I arrived Thursday since it is easier to unload and unpack and get ready for the convention then to wait till Friday to do it. We were lucky enough to get a balcony view so we were able to decorate our balcony. Our theme was Pokémon! Those of you who were there probably saw it. My friends painted Mew and Rattata and the Pokéball while I painted the cute Charmander and the posing Squirtle. The funny part is having drunk people come knocking at our door while we’re sleeping, to tell us how much they loved our balcony.
The rest of the weekend was an awesome blur that went from wondering around looking at all the people and their awesome costumes to relaxing by the bar having drinks with new and old friends to spending hours looking at all the things in the Dealer’s Room to meeting the awesome guests. Everything was so much fun and I enjoyed every minute of it!
MediaFest was Friday morning and believe me, it was an early morning. But seeing everyone getting excited for the convention definitely got me excited. Fox 31 was there to film their anticipation for the con to finally start. From there the festivities began. The Dealers Room opened and the panels started. Also, the drinking started. I don’t’ know how many con friends I ran into throughout the entire con, but there were a lot of them. I also got to meet Deep Roy with Michelle, Smurf and John. He was all sorts of awesome. You can see Michelle’s interview with him here on Girls of Geek.
Saturday was the same crazy hyped up vibe from all the people still on a high from the con finally being here. I got my picture taken with Seth Gabel who plays The Count in Arrow with my best friend Shae and spend my day walking around the convention looking at all the amazing costumes. I also spent the day dressed up in my gender bender 10th Doctor costume. It was a blast. The Federation Ball was that night and I danced my little booty off. Somewhere in there speed dating happened and all I know is that I am thankful to my friend Sabrina and her flask full of rum.
Sunday I got to meet Melissa McBride and also got an autograph from her. We talked about the weather. I was shy, it happens! I also got my Seth Gabel autograph that morning. We discussed Arrow. It was awesome. Oh my goodness it was awesome. I’m still geeking out about it today. I bought large a large hunting knife and a sword from a vendor and it was a fantastic day. Minus the being too exhausted I can hardly move part.
All in all, Starfest was a blast. I had so much fun and got an autograph from Carol and The Count! I drank with friends, made new ones and caught up with old ones. It was all just a very fun time and I can’t wait till next year.
Pictures from the weekend! Starfest was completely awesome, like always, and here are a few of the shots that the Girls of Geek team got over the weekend.
Starfest is one of my favorite times of the year, it is the first geek convention that I attended in Colorado and every year it is a weekend I look forward to. This year was no exception as there was a TON of amazing stuff that I wanted to squeeze into the weekend. I always kick off Starfest the right way, at 6am on Friday morning at MediaFest. MediaFest is a unique event that I haven't seen at another convention and even though it is early (free doughnuts) it is an absolute blast and what's a better way to wake up then by dancing to some live music with other really awesome geeks in costume and getting to be on TV? This year I also got to sit down with the amazingly talented Deep Roy for a quick chat. He was someone that I really wanted to meet so I was honored that he took the time to answer a few questions for me! You'll be able to catch that interview on the Beyond the Stars tab very soon!
Starfest is like friendship, I always describe it as like a family BBQ. There are so many amazing people that attend Starfest and every year more people come and this "Starfest family" just keeps growing. It was so much fun to people watch on Friday as friends who might only see each other at a convention once or twice a year were reunited. A lot of balconies go up on Friday morning as well, so it is always awesome to see what people have come up with for balcony designs. Of course everyone was ready to get the weekend started, and lines were soon forming to pick up Stafest passes and merchandise. Not to mention the vendor room line! There were some amazing finds in the vendor room this year, and it is awesome to see people find that one thing they needed to complete the collection, or the look on the kids faces as their parents walk them into the vendor room. Even though there was a line, I didn't hear complaints as everyone was just too happy to finally be at Starfest!
The weekend flew by as we attended panels, caught up with some amazing friends, explored all 3 hotels (yes Starfest really does need 3 hotels because that is how much amazing they put into this weekend for you) and interviewed some of the guests. One of my highlights is the costume contest, I love a good costume so to sit in the packed main events hall and watch some really amazing costumes come on stage is always a blast! There was the cutest little baby Yoda, I had seen him a few times throughout the weekend and he was just the happiest little kid with a light saber that I have ever seen! Then of course the party doesn't have to end after the costume contest, as when you get out from that there is music playing in the atrium for the Federation Ball! If you're lucky enough to get a balcony room on that side of the hotel you can get an amazing birds eye view of everyone dancing and having a great time! To watch a really well cosplayed PSY lead the crowd during "Oppa Gangnam Style" click on the Beyond the Stars tab at the top of this page, it was very awesome to witness and I'm really hoping it made that guys weekend that is how epic it is.
When Sunday comes along everyone is filled with love and with sadness. Of course nobody wants Starfest to end, and I'm sure if we could all live there and make Starfest happen everyday the hotel would be full in a heartbeat. It's so awesome because you've just got to spend the whole weekend with other geeks, catch up with old friends, make new ones that you really are just filled with a sense of belonging. It is always sad to see Starfest end, but we all know that we 've only got 1 more year before we will be there again. So my friends, who wants to start planning now?
It was more than an anxious energy, it was a scene of excitement as Starfest got underway on Friday. More than a con to most in attendance, a reunion to some, a chance for love to others, a wedding date or anniversary to a select few, for sure a different meaning to so many. It happens when you have been around for 36 years and they have all ticked by in a mere blink of an eye.
Friday was early as the Girls of Geek team made its way to media morning with a start time of 6am. What better way to let the town at large know about the annual festival of geek about to set underway once again, than to highlight some of the colorful costumes on TV. The hall was filled with music from the band that had set up on center stage, the lights supplied by the media in attendance and the action was filled in by the eager dancing costumed fans supporting what they love the most….Starfest.
Even if you don’t have a costume, if you ever get the chance you should show up for this one of a kind moment. There was this little kid who was in a Jedi costume that was out there dancing the whole time, camera on or not…just out there wiggling his butt having the best time ever; the start of some great memories to come for him I’m sure. Our morning didn’t end with this however..In fact it was just the start as we got to sit down with Deep Roy for a one on one interview (check it out in Beyond the Stars section soon). He was fantastic to meet and I loved his answer about wanting to play a villain in a Bond movie, both JB and I are already writing the plot for that story as the evil kingpin behind the last three movies….AWESOME.
Truth is, Friday is just the pregame; the retailers start to set up, tables get arranged and covered for guest, people get checked into the rooms, balconies overlooking the atrium are transformed, and the buildup for what the next two days have in store begins.
Saturday, another early morning, not as early as the day before but when you’re sitting at the bar till 1am and still have to be home to write when you get in, can make for some long hours. Starfest in full motion and I have to say I loved the added attention to the atrium area with the added music and exhibitors filling in the space. The 501st set with the Hoth diorama is still one of my favorites and the battle droid set to the side looks great. One year, if they had the space I would love to see them do Jabas palace with life size foam Jaba in the background…alright that might be a bit much. The area was set to overflowing but I have to say I didn’t mind it as I watched costume after costume walk by with the occasional picture being taking or action pose being struck.
All that hard work so well thought out and planned almost gets you a little weepy. As much fun as the costumes are it’s the guests that Starfest have been better known for, come to think of it I have seen and met almost every character from Star Trek here. Now I can start adding other shows to the list as Ben Browder was the highlight for me this year. To listen to his stories and friendships with other actors (Nathan Fillion in particular) was great. It’s a huge plus to Starfest, to be that close, to be able to talk directly to them and have an answer to your question is mind blowing in some ways. It’s like being invited to a small private concert with your favorite band and then get to chat them up after the show; It’s never disappointing.
As tempting as it is to stay in the main events room all day there is so much more to see and do that you have to pick and chose who you will see and when. You don’t want to miss anyone but you also don’t want to miss the other rooms and panels going on. Of course I speak of the dealer room, and this year I got off easy, however I should find out if Josh picked up that Unicron Transformer I passed on. After a few laps around the room we made our way to Comic Fest, figured the air would be good to clear our collector frenzy. In truth I think it only sharpened our appetite as I picked up a number of prints and met this prodigy of an artist. The style of her work and flow is stunning and I have to recommend you visit her site after reading this. www.aldanadigitalarts.com
for a 13 year old to be this talented is inspiring and we look forward to having her speak with Girls of Geek in the months to come. I also got to sit down with my buddy Mike Grell and talk about the future of Arrow in the show and in the comic. With the show about to go on break the comic will be as well since they work off one another for the story and character development. I did ask him if we would be seeing him back on Green Lantern with Johns leaving the book, he did say “No, but that maybe something I should look into”. With my budget spent and my stomach empty it was time to step away for a moment, to get a break in before the true party began. The costume contest and Federation Ball.
Now if you have never been to the Federation Ball, you're missing out. There is nothing quite like it and if you want to party geek style, this is the place to do it. For us at Girls of Geek, we decided it would be better to take a moment and get a look at this party from a bird's eye view so we snuck our way into one of the balcony rooms to check the celebration out while sipping on some homemade Bloodwine and what a sight it was.
It was sea of geekiness below us, with everybody shaking their money maker. In fact for a minute there, it looked like Christmas with all of the holiday colored lights and costumes, but that's how Saturday night at StarFest always looks. Had it not been so late, believe me I would have been right in the middle of it dancing, but there was work to be done and a full Sunday schedule ahead of me so we left the party behind.
Sunday came quickly and with it arrived some tasty breakfast, followed by a second breakfast of course. The only way to work off that much bacon is to get moving and GameFest was the place to do it. If you think sitting in a chair is a bad way to burn calories, than you missed out on my fingers flying as I completely dominated playing Injustice: Gods Among Us.
Believe me, it's a workout and I wasn't the only one working hard at GameFest, on my way out I saw someone completely passed out in his chair and I'm pretty sure JB has a picture of it somewhere. But it was back to StarFest after that exhausting gaming session where I just had to check out DigiFest. If you're not sure what that is, it's somewhat new to the con but it's a great way for budding filmmakers to learn how to get their movie made and they definitely did a great job with it.
But all good things must come to an end, and StarFest is no different. The tables were coming down, everyone was checking out and that meant it was time for tear filled hugs goodbye from friends before we capped off the evening with cocktails and dinner and laughs over at Garcia's.
It's a shame that this weekend didn't last longer, but it was another great year and I'm looking forward to the next one.
Written by: John Edward Betancourt
Truth be told, I don't like Sundays at conventions. It is not because there is less items on my agenda for the day, quite the contrary. Sunday is in a way, worse when it comes to working a checklist since you often have until five or six o' clock to get everything done.
No the fact of the matter is, I don't want the convention to end. But not for the obvious reasons. No this weekend I learned a valuable lesson as to why I feel the need for StarFest to keep going. Because truly, StarFest holds a greater meaning.
Now we here at Girls of Geek did the usual on Sunday, we spent wads of cash in the vendor room, we checked out all the panels we could, watched the big names at Main Events, and like everyone else does late in the day, just hung out. We took the opportunity during the downtime to record an interview as one of the last pieces we need for the upcoming season finale of Beyond the Stars and during that interview with a fan, a word came up that caught me off guard; friendship.
Now that may sound silly and sappy, but the gentleman we interviewed, Carl, let us know he comes to StarFest year after year because he wants to see his friends, many of whom he has met over the years at StarFest. Pretty simple I know, but Girls of Geek has now covered two StarFests consecutively, and I realized after that interview, just how many new friends I have because of this convention. Carl is a great example. I met him last year and had breakfast with him and we agreed to make that first meal of the day tradition. We held ourselves to that, having bacon and eggs this year after MediaFest on Friday.
But it doesn't end with Carl. I spent so much time this weekend saying hello to so many people that I had not seen in some time, all because of this convention. Now I get why I don't like the end of a convention, because all of these awesome people who share in the endless amounts of joy this celebration brings will go home and I don't get to see all of them on a regular basis.
That's what StarFest is about, an endless joy that we all share with one another, and one that we share with the world when we walk out of those doors for the final time. A joy that fades just a little bit, until we realize we need to recharge it and when that moment arrives, we are thankful because it's time to reunite once again.
Until next year my friends. I'll miss you all dearly until then.
Written by: John Edward Betancourt
Saturday at StarFest, always the busiest day of the weekend. Even at nine a.m. when the Girls of Geek team stepped through the doors the floor was packed with people in costume heading to their pre planned destination. Already long lines were forming at the autograph tables, with Avery Brooks' table seeing people patiently wait in a line heading around the corner.
For us, it meant one thing, time for a cup of coffee, then time to see the sights. We started our day over at GameFest to see just how much it had grown this year and it did not disappoint. Rows of televisions lined the video gaming room and all the seats were full as everyone took part in two player action. We honestly didn't spend much time in the board game room, simply because we all felt like stepping in to observe might be rude or potentially distracting to these folks since they were so focused on their games.
Instead we opted to head over to ComicFest next. For Daniel and Scotty this was heaven for them, with both bloggers dropping down some hard earned cash to own some incredible artwork. There were some talented artists at this event, including a young lady who is only thirteen years old. I make mention of her because what she had on her table looked like the work of someone three times her age. But with our adventure to the outer reaches of the hotels complete it was time to head back to StarFest where the amount of people on the floor had nearly doubled in size. The vendor room was utter madness, the atrium was near shoulder to shoulder, it was an incredible sight to see. But after all the panels, and screenings and guests on the main stage we were ready for one thing, the costume contest and as always, it was awesome.
There were some amazing costumes on stage Saturday night, and I have to say the junior category blew me away this year. Between the baby Yoda who did an incredible job wielding a lightsaber and the fully functional Transformer I knew we were in for a treat, since this was the opening category. After that we saw it all, zombies, hobbits and even wacky waving inflatable arm flailing tube men.
Our night came to an end as we headed toward the doors but not before taking a moment to stop and watch the entire dance floor of the Federation Ball work it to "Gangnam Style". Not gonna lie, it was pretty epic, since the crowd was being led in the dance by an excellent cosplay of PSY himself. All in all, Day Two was a blast, but as I rest my weary head down for the night, I knew the end of StarFest was near.
Written by: Mattie
I cannot tell you how excited I am to be at StarFest. After having a horribly crappy week I am actually excited for StarFest. This is the convention that I actually love to stay at the hotel because it’s just a lot more fun that way.
I am definitely excited for the guests this year. Actress Melissa McBride who plays Carol in The Walking Dead is going to be there. Carol is one of the characters who has been on the show from the very beginning who hasn’t actually died yet. I would love to hear about her thoughts on the show that I have recently become addicted to. I am also excited for the actor Seth Gable who plays The Count on my favorite show Arrow. I’m interested to see if he will be returning in later episodes.
I am also excited for the dealer’s room, even though my wallet is starting to cry. I get the coolest things from the dealer’s room and also pick up future birthday gifts for my friends and family from there. Either way, they always have something awesome there that I fall in love with and have to have. Yay for stimulating the economy!
What I most love about StarFest is that it’s the place where all my con friends gather to drink, geek out and be merry. One of my favorite con friends who is commonly known throughout several conventions as Drunk Vader, will be there. He will probably have a Sam Adams in his hands and his new Darth Vader costume on. At StarFest, it’s just a lot of fun to hang around the bar and talk and drink with friends or make new ones. Also, they give money to the guests to hang out at the bar. So maybe you’ll be able to have drink with one of them.
Either way, after a crap-tabular week I’m so glad StarFest is finally here! The wait from last year this to this year was excruciating! However I am totally excited for StarFest and hopefully you are too! Can’t wait to see everyone today! Also can't wait to see all the costumes!
Starfest 2013 is finally here! We've waited and waited and finally, at 6am we strolled into the Marriot with glee. Today was a great kickoff day for Starfest and even now as this article goes up the atrium is hopping and there are tons of great costumes wandering around. Friday at Starfest is very unique because it all starts at 6am with the very cool MediaFest. You see some amazing costumes because Fox 31 news shows up and the best of the best have a chance to be interviewed! Plus you can't go wrong with dancing, ever, even 6am and they have doughnuts!
Many balcony's were already decorated as we walked in this morning and it's always a blast to see all of that creativity. A great thing about Starfest is that a lot of people make it a 4-5 day event and get to the hotel as early as Wednesday morning to score the balcony room of their dreams! So even at 6am there are plenty of people around having breakfast and getting excited! When the registration line finally opened there were crazy amounts of people waiting to get their passes and at 5 when the doors to the vendor room opened, wow, it is so great to see so many loyal Starfestians out to show their love!
There were plenty of panels to attend tonight as well including one very packed Doctor Who panel presented by www.jonja.net! Some of the other panel highlights of the evening were "Strong Women in Fiction" and "Digital Steampunk Fairy Tales" oh and you can never go wrong with "Faster Than Light Speed Dating" which Mattie was taken to, so be sure to listen to The Geek Alert to hear the scoop on that! Not only were they dozens of panels to pick from and 3 hotels full of things for you to do , tonight also offered autographs from Ben Browder, Deep Roy, Seth Gabel and Julie Caitlin Brown. If getting something signed wasn't enough though, or you wanted to meet more than one, Friday night also hosts the Meet and Greet, where you get a chance to sit at a small table with a few other fans and rotate through the celebrity guests. Meaning you get to ask questions and here some amazing stories.
Don't forget that you have way more to do than just Starfest at the Marriott! The new and expanded Gamefest is right next foor at The Hilton Inn and your favorite comic book characters can be found at The Hyatt. Don't worry though, there is a shuttle that leaves from the back doors (over by the elevators to The Summit Tower) and will take you to either hotel. Also, in the hallway across from the main events stage is Horrorfest where you can meet some really amazing people! Including two of my personal favorites, Jonathan Tiersten (actor and musician) and Jeffrey Reddick (writer and creator of the Final Destination series).
Tomorrow is the longest day of the convention and you're going to have a hard time deciding everything that you want to do! To help you though Starfest is using the Guidebook App. To download the Starfest app, go to your smartphone's app store and search for Guidebook. Once that is downloaded search for "Starfest" in that app and you'll find it! It lets you pick items from the main schedule and put it into your own personal schedule and you can even set reminders for yourself! Tomorrow also starts the Q&A sessions with your favorite stars & the costume contest! Until tomorrow enjoy the pictures that we have for you from today and we will see you tomorrow!
Written By: Felicia
Hello readers! So I though since we are about two weeks away from Starfest I would write about one of my favorite memories. Let me tell you, there are a million things I could talk about from Starfest. I have been going since I was 8 years old. Where do I even begin to talk about some of my favorite moments? Do I talk about my favorite characters coming to life? Do I talk about getting stuck in an elevator with not one, but TWO Darth Vaders and being terrified (me only being about 9 at the time)? But no fear! I was able to narrow it down to an event that happened last year.
When you get to con, the people that are your best friends turn into your worst enemies when they see the Brig. For those you that don’t know what the Brig is, you should! And I encourage you to try it out, even though my story might not be too encouraging for you! Anyway, the Brig is described as such on www.starland.com
“You think up the crime, they’ll do the time! Arrest your friends, spouse, children or all of the above. Make faces at them as they sit in The Brig. Make them parade around the Con wearing obnoxious costumes (other tortures also available). And all the while you will be helping the Denver Zoo in its mission to make a better world for animals through human understanding.”
Sounds about right! I have been put in the Bring almost every year that I have been going. I must have some wonderful family members and friends to do this to me every year. J (Don’t worry, they get theirs as well.) Well last year was way more fun than normal for some reason! My wonderful sister Shannah first got in the Bring because her friend stuck her in there, then she put me and Aaron in, THEN Ian decided he wanted to torture me as well so I stuck him in the Bring as well while he was putting me in there. There came to a total of five of us that were in that Bring together. Our challenge was as follows, dig this through this huge box full of costume stuff, and put on the most ridiculous costume that you can imagine to impress the judges. I think we had 5 minutes to do this in. Well here are the final results in that…
From left to right: Aaron Clark, Felicia Carter, Shannah Carter, Ian Mitchel and Shannah’s friend of whom I am not sure is… But he gets credit
Look at all of us! Looking like absolute fools! I love it. I honestly think Aaron should have won that. A demon mask with wings, and an apron? Come on now. The judges brought it down to me and Shannah. Shannah won because of that darn cow hat! I’ll get you this year! Mark my words! So the rest of us got stuck back in the Brig for a little bit. Aaron and Shannah’s friend got out, but Ian and I had a war to settle. What war I am not sure, but it needed to be settled and could only be settle by the Brig. He gave me three tortures! Three of them! First one was I was attacked by silly string (there is video of that floating around somewhere), next was me pretending I was Steve Irwin and was attacked again by a snake flying out of nowhere (there is also a video of that), and last but not least was getting psychoanalyzed. Ha! I have this in the bag! I am a psychology major. …Not. Money wins all. Ian paid his way out while I was stuck in there getting analyzed. Was a great time though! I almost got out, but not be means of appropriateness. ;-)
This whole process of shenanigans is one of my favorite memories of Starfest because it was nothing but fun the whole time. I had a blast doing everything. They may say it is torture, but it’s more like tickling. Sure it might be more fun for the other person, but you laugh just as hard with them. :-)
Written By: Daniel
I have always had a fondness for Jules Verns writing and what he envisioned the future to look like. Mixed with a Victorian style and flair you now have everything you need for a very successful Anomaly Con this past weekend. I love the detail people put into their hero costumes but Steam Punk takes it to an all new level. To build and create something truly unique and how you would envision yourself to look if the world had progressed in a Jules Vern fashion shows the creative side of those in costume. Anyone can copy a hero costume, face it there is a ton of source material, but to build off your own imagination is inspiring. Rather it be an explorer, an adventurer or a simple bar maid or mechanic with a flair for finding mischief every detail well placed limited only by your own vision...and maybe budget.
Some of the leather work involved in the costumes was tremendous with the detail of cogs and metal work added giving it an almost alternate reality futuristic feel. The world regrettably did not turn out that way but this weekend gave a glimpse as to what it could have been like. There were moments in the atrium where everyone had gathered to listen to someone read aloud a few Steampunk stories, and it fit so well because I doubt there would be a whole lot of TV in a future of brass, steam and moving parts. The attitudes of everyone in attendance were light and fun soaking in the jovial atmosphere, it was a playful feel and much more stress free than most cons and well, life for that matter. For a moment, if you closed your eyes you could almost hear a steam engine hard at work. Even the T.A.RD.I.S. made an appearance among the dealer and information tables, seeming right at home. Like most Cons it went by in a blink, ending far too early. Regrettably going back to the real less flamboyant style of life. Till next year.