Paracon took place October 6, 7, and 8, 2016 at Shooting Star Casino in Mahnomen, MN. I have never attended this event before and this was the 6th year the event was held at the casino. They did a really great job at bringing in top names from television on a broad range of topics in the paranormal. There were experts on anything form ghost hunting to UFO's and big foot. It was a great opportunity to get face time with these experts and fans were able to pick their brains during panel discussions.
The panels were reason enough to attend this fan convention. Any parageek would have learned something new. What put this event over the top was the chance to meet the stars and talk with them. They were all very appreciating and even with long lines, made sure to give every fan some time.
It was fun to see these celebrities interact with each other. Throughout the event we learned how many of them had been friends before the TV shows even started. It was fun watching them give each other a hard time and have fun with the event.
I went to the event specifically to meet Grant Wilson and Josh Gates. I had pretty high expectations and they did not disappoint. Grant and I talked about our graphic design work for a few minutes and found out we had both been lucky enough to do work for Lucas Films. He had also seen my Girl's Life cover redo that went viral last month. I was really looking forward to talking with a fellow renaissance soul. He has a diverse range of interests, paranormal, gaming, playing piano, TV shows, graphic design, and more. He made a real effort to connect with me which was greatly appreciated. He even tweeted me before the event.
I couldn't wait to see Josh Gates. He is a real life Indiana Jones and proof that following your true passion can lead you to places you never expected. I had really high expectations for him and he did not disappoint. I saw him in the casino Friday night before his appearance at the convention and decided to not bother him... that was a mistake. His line was the longest one the next day! But the hour and a half wait was well worth it. He took time to have a real conversation and was even kinda silly and got up on his chair and took a picture of how long the line was.
I had high expectations for his panel Q&A session and he did not disappoint. His stories were extremely visual and laugh out loud hilarious. His story about cancelling last minute at a previous year's Paracon was truly epic. And I loved how he responded to a question about him and Indiana Jones romanticizing anthropology. He said he was proud of his part and I thought that was the perfect answer. Learning about our past is important, and even though not all jobs in the field will be as glamorous as his, he inspires people to dig into history everyday.
And my last note... then I will get off of my Josh Gates soap box...
He gave out this thank you postcard. I have never seen anyone/any celebrity give out something like this. What a class act.
Here is the haul I got from the convention. I chose to spend my money on books. I didn't pay extra money for any autographs. Any autographs I got were free and the selfie photos were free too.
I highly recommend this event. It has a great vibe, it is pretty low key, and will be fun for all. The price point is pretty low for an event of this caliber and you will have a chance to meet everyone unlike other fan conventions around the country with higher attendance. There were even some very interesting vendors...
PS- Josh Gates I hope someone got you lunch.