This weekend, in Elizabeth, New Jersey, Teen Wolf convention Howler Con is holding their fourth and final event. Regrettably, I was unable to go. However, I’ve been following them for a few years now, and have admired the effort they’ve put into each event. While they initially intended to have only one event in 2014, their first convention was so successful, they’ve decided to hold three more conventions since then. The best part? This event is completely fan- and volunteer-run.
Sure, big events like Comic-Con may seem like a lot more fun to you. But, no matter what fandom you’re in (or even if you aren’t part of any fandoms), you should be able to appreciate the hard work that goes into smaller events like these. It takes lots of money, up to a year of planning, and many people to create a successful convention. It’s obviously much harder to do so if you’re starting one from scratch.
At these smaller conventions, you’re able to do a lot of the same things that you can do at large conventions. You can attend Q&A panels, meet other fans, meet your favorite celebrities, get pictures taken, and collect autographs. What’s different, however, is that at small conventions, there are typically less people attending, giving the opportunity for a more personal experience with the stars.
At this year’s Howler Con, the organizers put up more tickets to sell, inviting more people to attend.
They also invited 11 celebrities from Teen Wolf to appear. With three days to hold panels, meet and greets, photo ops, and autograph sessions for all of these people, the schedule had to be pretty tight. Fortunately, they were able to create it so everyone could do everything they wanted, and not miss anything.
Should anyone reading this ever attend a fan-run convention, I hope they will be respectful during it. A lot of effort is put in for you to attend this event, and it would be upsetting to see it ruined. Be kind to the staff, fellow attendees, and celebrities there. If this convention is held at a hotel, make sure you respect the property, and obey by their rules, as well as those at the convention. If you don’t, you could be asked to leave.
If you ever think about starting your own convention, go for it, if you’re able to! I would love to see more fan-run events occur around the world.