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Thread: Star Wars: Celebration Orlando 2017 Feedback

  1. #31
    I will preface my comments by stating that I go to conventions for the Panels and walk the floor. We did SWC in Anaheim and got in line at 1am for TFA panel/trailer and got wristbands for main LIVE stage.

    • It almost seemed like ReedPOP had never done a Celebration before with the way this one was run.

    Our plane landed on WEDNESDAY at 4:30pm and during the cab ride to our hotel (DaysInn) we saw on the various Celebration Facebook groups that the line outside the convention had grown very LONG. so we dumped out luggage, repacked our backpacks with chairs that fit inside of them and walked over to the OCCC and were in line at 6:30pm. So at 8am when the line SLOWLY started to move into OCCC. Serious WTF was up with security. I have never seen bag checks like that - going through every pocket of the backpack. Having to remove stuff so they can seen the bottom, then walk through the metal detector and then wanded. I walked by the person with the hand counter clicker to see that I was #1396 at 9:30pm (So it took 90 minutes to get inside). We got into the queue and unpacked our chairs and relaxed. I saw people were freacking out outside. So I started posting wristband screen updates to all 3 Celebration groups I belong to. I walked back to the "clicker counter person" and took photos of where the "number" was and posted them for those not inside yet. At 9:50PM it was #1706 and #2388 at 10:38. Mary Franklin took over as "Clicker person" and I tried to get a photo of the number but she would not let me me take a photo. She called it at 10:58pm that the Galaxy line was closed and started the line for the Streaming/Celebration stage. I kept updating the wristband availability all night and answering everyones questions on Facebook groups. Got to met Ray Park when he came into the hall and took selfies and did a lightsaber show for us. I didn't even sleep that night. I continued posting updates for those lined up outside of the wristbands screen status. So we waited 19 hours to get into the Live 40th Anniversary panel.

    - We got LIVE Galaxy wristbands in the morning and then got Dave Filoni wristbands too and got back in the queue line. I then went and got in the Hasbro line and got a ticket when they started handing them out at 8am. The 40th Anniversary panel was amazeballs with George Lucas and everyone went CRAZY when Harrison Ford came on Stage. Then as they were talking about Carrie, the left stage curtain dropped to John Williams and the Philharmonic playing The Princess Theme song and tears started rolling down my face. Was super surprised when the gave out Leia posters. We walked the floor, got some shirts at the Store (not the ones we wanted). I bought the Hasbro Luke X-wing Figures. I was super annoyed with security when they told us that we had to line up outside AGAIN for TLJ sleepover which was crap cause the queue hall was EMPTY. So I had to do that all again. Once again - security was ******** but not as in depth as Thursday. Continued to post updates of the wristband status and answer questions on FB. Was too awesome that Rain Johnson spent 3-4 hours talking photos and signing. I didn't sleep at all. It was freezing that night and my teeth were chattering. We waited 17 hours in line to get into the LIVE TLJ panel.

    FRIDAY - We got our LIVE wristbands for TLJ panel in the Galaxy stage and then got LIVE Mark's Tribute wristbands. TLJ panel was amazing and we also got posters. Cried at Mark's Carrie Tribute. The saw the Screenings of Rogue One and A New Hope which was awesome. Great THX sound system - you could feel it in your chest. We walked back to out hotel room afterwards and finally got to sleep in a bed. I was up for 67 hours straight.

    Saturday - We entered through one of the new entrances they opened up - so it was way better and got wristbands for the Rebels Season 4 panel. And then got Battlefront wristband. Then got in the for the Hall queue. Jammed over and was finally able to get the shirts we wanted. We did the Cosplay and Screening of ESB, ROTJ & TFA too.

    Sunday - We slept in a bit as we were exhausted and were fine with Streaming for Mark's panel. And did the panel with the ANH rebel pilots. WEDGE!!!!! We walked the floor again for a couple hours. Ran into my buddy Kyle (JediRainman) from this forum before leaving for the day and heading for the airport.We had a 7:30pm flight.

    The Celebration store was a joke but we eventually got what we wanted but had to go twice. Line management was also crap and clueless. Most of the staff/volunteers had no idea what was going on - and when you spoke with them - they always said no one told us anything on what to do. I felt sorry for the Medical people as there was almost no lines for them. Security must have thought ReedPOP told them to check bags not badges. Guess they thought they were TSA. In Anaheim, all they cared about was "peace bonding". Never had any issues in Anaheim of just getting inside the building. I don't know what the hell was wrong with ReedPOP, but they were LOST like they had never done a convention before. I filled out my survey and turned it in with my thoughts and feedback. The preorder of THJ shirt was perfect - why can't we do something like that - so we are not wasting precious time in line for the store. Put limits on stuff if you have to.

    So my major complaints - Getting into the damn building and the Celebration Store.
    RIP - Master Replicas 2002-2007

  2. #32
    So while in the big queue hall, I started thinking of when we were in LA for Celebration.

    Why didn't they just use the big queue hall for the LIVE panels themselves? Just set up chairs and halfway from the front, have massive screens like they did in LA. I'm taking a quick guess, but we were easily over 5k in the queue hall and very spread out. I would think with chairs you could probably fit over 7k or even more! No one should have to be sleeping overnight to be able to hopefully get a seat in the LIVE stage IMO.
    TK/TB/CC/ST-5400 - Feedback
    Facebook Page: Deathstar's Random - YouTube Channel: Deathstar's Random
    Join the Anime thread!

  3. #33
    Hmm...this was my twelfth Celebration. I've been involved in the past as a staff member, exhibitor, and volunteer in the autograph section. This year I had an exhibitor badge, VIP, medical sticker and experience laced with assertiveness. Easily this was one of the worst Celebrations I went to. The treatment my wife and I got at Topps left her in tears and vowing to never come back to another celebration. Others have already mentioned the specifics but as Bruce stated this all came down to two things, common sense and money.

    They needed to double their staffing contingent. Line control is easy when you give your control people 2-3 simple operations max. Second, you have to educate your staff. Each staff member should know exactly how their area works, and who they can call in a moments notice for clarification. That education starts prior to the show. You need leaders who can lead, and not simply keep asking up the chain of command to people who are less and less accessible. These people need to have critical thinking ability, and the authority to use it. Each night should be followed with a staff debriefing of the day, if even by e-mail to all staff. More and better signage. I'm not going to go on about common sense (see 4 metal detectors for 70k people).

    Security was a joke, they made Hamill look young for the most part and each time I saw one I quickly glanced around to note the nearest AED machine in case they needed it.

    Inconsistencies, inconsistencies, inconsistencies. So much was simply inexcusable. Not to defend Mary, but in the past she has lamented at her struggle to get proper staffing and signage. Many volunteers were no shows as well.

    Topps was an all but utter failure. They reached out to OPIX before the event for advice (good call) but utilized none of it (bad call). It showed. I saw some of their staff was very good but stymied by incompetent leadership.

    This will be a Celebration quickly forgotten for me, and I only experienced a fraction of the issues most did all weekend.
    I seek Yoda. Collect him I must. Sell to me your production and preproduction Yoda items you will. Vintage it is, yes yes. Mmm hehehe.

  4. #34
    Don't know if this has been said already, but the some of the people working at Topps weren't Topps employees. They work for the convention center. I asked a lady working the line and she said that she didn't work for Topps. She said that she works cons all the time (her favorite being Mega Con) but this was her worst experience.
    TK/TB/CC/ST-5400 - Feedback
    Facebook Page: Deathstar's Random - YouTube Channel: Deathstar's Random
    Join the Anime thread!

  5. #35
    Sent off my survey as well yesterday.

  6. #36
    Didn't get a survey email. Either they dont like me for blasting them about the lottery mess or my email just gets lost in their system. Gonna have to change my email for the next Celebration.
    1993 1999 2013 GO NOLES!!

  7. #37
    I read all the post listed above.
    I did not attend CVIII Orlando.
    My 6th sense told me to pass on that one. I must say, I've only attended CV-CVII.
    I enjoyed both visits in Orlando and my first visit to Anaheim.
    If I'm not mistaken, I do believe this is the last time it will be in Orlando. (According to some fans. cough/gag!)
    But I don't think so.
    Either way, I hope those powers that be put on better Celebrations and finally listen to its fans.
    " . . . it is you, whom I seek, to bring balance to the force."

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