Nerd Con: FanExpo Dallas 2018 Overview

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Overall Con Experience

I have been fortunate to attend Dallas FanExpo at least seven times and have covered it as press four times. As a fan, it quickly became one of my favorite conventions to attend. The Dallas FanExpo team does a great job of bringing in a variety of talent, vendors, and artists. This year was no exception, and we had an influx of new vendors and artists. 

On a personal note, it was great to have the entire NC team covering the convention. It was a first for Jams, Jen, and Rach. It’s safe to say they really enjoyed their con experience. So let’s jump right into our recap!

Vendors

Tribble Totes

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Roni
There were so many vendors and artists that were attending Dallas FanExpo for the first time. This was dangerous for my wallet. My personal favorite artist was The Art of Megan Withey. Megan and her hubby made the drive from Florida. While Jaime and Jenine were covering The Walking Dead panel, Rach and I found Megan’s table and just had to buy a Flynn print for all the gals. We made sure to bring the whole NC team back to the table to surprise them with the print which was a great success. Of course, everyone started getting many other prints. I personally loved this table so much, I went back the last day and purchased 4 more. Make sure to visit all of Megan’s social medias and check out all her Disnerd art.  

Jenine
Being a first timer to FanExpo Dallas, I was particularly excited to meet Truffle Cottage. I’ve only heard of Truffle Cottage thanks to Roni’s previous excursions to FXD. When we caught up with Roni and Rach on the show floor after the Walking Dead panel (yes, I know this is very ironic. I’m super glad they didn’t show any clips from the show!) the first stop was to Truffle Cottage. Not going to lie, I was in foodie heaven. I HAD to take photos of every product they had on display. Of course, we also had to get our hands on these goodies. Not even 2 hours at the convention and we were done. We tried their Sherlock inspired lemon truffle, oh man, this is to die for!!! It’s that tart and sweet combo that is just the perfect balance and makes you fall in love with the flavour combination. They have chocolates for fandoms across the verse, but the one thing I find impressive is their surprise chocolate eggs. When you crack the shell open, more chocolatey treasures are inside the egg! Check The Truffle Cottage out and follow them on all the social medias. If they are ever at a convention near you, stop by the table to say hi! They are just absolutely fantastic to chat with (shout out to Jennie and Blair)! I’m just going to sit right here in this corner and keep munching on my chocolates…

The Truffle Cottage

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Rach
The vendor game was indeed strong at FanExpo Dallas. We had only walked onto the show floor and Roni I were in trouble three booths in. As per usual at any given con, the art talent was insanity (if it weren’t for the fact I was travelling with my backpack, I would have bought way too many prints). That being said, I did however bring home some goodies in the form of bling and bobbles (SHINY!). We walked away with gorgeous sparkly key-chains (Geeky Girl Stitches) and fantastical earrings (The Artistic Dabbler), to commemorate our first con together as official press.

Jams

One of the first vendors that caught my eye was STL Ocarina. A whole table laid out with ocarinas ranging from the traditional Zelda style, to ocarinas fashioned after different fandoms. There was even a Sailor Moon ocarina! One of my goals on this trip was to find some beautiful art of my favorite Disney Princess, Belle. I was not disappointed! Before the trip I had Googled watercolor images of Belle and had found one in an Etsy shop that I loved. When the girls grabbed my hand and brought me over the Megan Withey’s table I knew it was destiny! She was the artist whose Etsy page I had gone gaga over! On the second day I vowed not to spend any money but when I saw Robby Cook‘s table I knew immediately I had to break my own non-spending rule. So needless to say I got my fair share of beautiful Belle artwork (along with Flynn!) on this trip. Another vendor I know we all loved was Tribble Totes!  There was a hand sewn tote for just about any fandom!

Check out all the fun swag we walked home with!

The Artistic Dabbler

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Photo-Ops

We’re just going to casually leave this photo of us and the elusive girrafemantis right here 🙂

Roni
Sometimes when you go to a convention, you don’t plan to have an emotional experience. Jodi Benson is known to all Disnerds.  Ariel is a legend, but I didn’t expect her panel to be such an emotionally nostalgic moment. Watch this epic-ness. You can relive the panel on our Twitter and our live tweets. I’m not really sure what one thing triggered me, but it was a mixture of hearing her voice, getting her personal stories, seeing her family in the audience, and seeing her interaction with fellow Disnerds first hand. The moment a fan requested her sing Ariel’s aria for her birthday was particularly moving.

After attending her panel, our photo-op with her was favorite. It really meant a lot, and she was nice enough to record a message for our dear Chelle (NerdyGras), who was unable to attend. Ariel is her Disney princess, and the message meant a lot to her.

Jenine
All of the photo-ops we had were great experiences. From Jeff Goldblum quietly serenading us to meeting all the Disney Princesses (they seriously should have had a group photo-op and panel), the one that nudged it just a little further was meeting Princess Jasmine (aka. Linda Larkin). Y’all, Linda’s natural voice IS Jasmine. And as you know, Jas is my girl. Strong, loyal, curious and fiercely independent. Which is pretty much like Mulan (my other favourite, strong female character) who isn’t a princess technically but a hero in her own right. But I’m sidetracking. If you’ve followed our cosplay journey, you’d know that I always cosplay as Princess Jasmine. To say that Jasmine is my favourite Disney Princess is an understatement. She is very approachable, genuinely kind and caring, and a pleasure to talk. I’m just happy I was coherent and made sense when I spoke to her. Thank you, Linda!

Rach
While meeting the Disney princesses was a magical experience, my favourite had to have been Susan Egan. She was everything I imagined she would be, funny, charming, sassy, and lovely. While waiting for our moment with Meg, I mean, Susan, we watched as she fawned over a Megara music box that a fan had brought for her to sign. Her reaction was just precious. And then being to tell Susan how much we adored her and having her call me “Sweetness”, it’s a moment I will cherish forever.

Jams

Meeting Paige O’Hara was a dream come true! Even when we were waiting in Linda Larkin’s line and I could see Paige my eyes began to well up. She was such a sweetheart (as were the rest of the Princesses), when I told her Belle has always been my favorite princess she gave me a big hug. I held onto my tears of joy until after we walked away. I will never forget meeting one of the most influential voices from my childhood.

Final Thoughts

We wholeheartedly recommend you attend. As a fan, you will have many memorable experiences. FanExpo has always been organized and friendly for press, though we wish there were more interview opportunities for smaller blogs like us. Volunteers were friendly and well informed, the only discrepancy was with what group press should enter. Some volunteers said press entered with general admission, while others said with the premium group. It would be more efficient to include this in the press instructions to alieviate any confusion. There is always room to improve, and this is a smallest detail.

Tell us below if you are planning to attend Dallas FanExpo next year. We are very excited for it.

Nerd On!
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