Fan Days Questions from a First Timer

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Hey all, I am a long time reader but have never signed up. At the risk of sounding noobish (but I am) my family and I are looking at going to the Star Wars Fan Days III but we had a few questions before making the ticket purchases.

First: Do the Special guests usually charge for signatures over and beyond the price of admission?

Second: To get the general admission tickets, are the lines long in mornings. We have never been to a convention like this and are a bit nervous about spendinf all day in lines and not get to check out anything else.

I know I am forgetting something... hum...

Oh well, thank you in advance for any pointers and advice. Like I already stated this is out first conventions and I would like my family to enjoy it. Thank you again!!!!
 
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You are looking at between 20-25 dollars a signature for a star wars guest (20 probably on your own item). Big names like Hamill and Fisher will charge more. As for the rest of your questions...I will leave that for someone who has been there.
 
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I'll try to give you a feel for what it is like. The Star Wars Fan Days back in '07 was my first event to attend. That year they had the breakfast with Jeremy Bulloch. He came around to each table and actually sat down, autographed any of your items and conversed. I thought to myself, Wow..It can't get better than this. I figured that inside the autograph room, we would say "hello" "make it to David, please" and "thank you." Basicly, I thought I would be rushed to let the person behind me get their autograph. That was not the case. All of the special guests I have met have been so nice. They actually take the time to let you ask questions and grab a photo op.
As stated above, most of the guests charge 20 bucks. Prowse was 30.
Since I was at the breakfast the first year, I don't know about the lines. But last year, there seemed to be a pretty good line most of the morning. I did hear that it seemed to move rather quickly though.
You also have special collecting panels and guest q&a's throughout the day.
I suggest you come and bring the family. It is something you won't forget.
One more fyi. I like to stay both days, but I've noticed Sundays are usually not as crowded in the autograph room.

Sorry for the long post, but hope it helps you and others to decide to come.
 
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Wow thank you both for the fast feedback and help. My family is very excited to go and we have been looking at places to stay in the area.

What tickets would you suggest? Should I get one VIP and the rest of the family general admission? Or would you suggest at least getting everyone Speed Passes?

We will be staying for both days , thanks for that suggestion.
 
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I don't know. It depends on what autographs you are looking for and what panels you want to go to. If you are only going for a day and just want to experience it then I would probably say get one Speedpass and the rest standard day rates. The reason I say this is that for each Speedpass you get priority seating and 2 autographs from Dave Filoni. Unless you need 8 autographs from Dave Filoni and plan on going to all the panels I think that you can use the extra money on other things. The speedpass would enable you to get speedpass access to autograph guests but unless your whole family is purchasing autographs from the same person it seems like it would be overkill. However, that is my own humble opinion. My wife and I are going for the first time as well and I will probably buy 2 speedpasses.
 
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keep in mind general admission is only sold at the door, so you'd have to stand in line each day to get the GA tickets.

I would go with 1 VIP, unless you want more than one card set, and the rest either speedpass or GA.
 
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I guess you should ask yourself are you going as a family event, are you going for an experience, are you going for autographs or artist sketches? When you answer these you can probably figure out what ticket option is the best for you.

I have not been to this event yet but can anyone tell me if it has ever sold out or if people were turned away from panels?
 
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I was stuck manning my FanForce table almost all of Saturday, and missed Sunday due to being sick (thanks to the hotel room - stay away from the local Red Roof if possible), so I don't know about being turned away from rooms - that said, I know ticket sales last year were fierce, we had members from my group that were waiting nearly two hours to get in the door. Speedpass never sells out, and I want to say they didn't sell out the VIP last year. They might this year since they're selling them early.
 
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Great thank you all for helping. I think we are about decided on what tickets to get. I am really only after a few autographs, but mostly a fun time with the family.

Do the specail guest bring their own photos? Or do I need to get some of these on advance? Also I was reading the autograh thread and was wondering if I need to bring my own pen?

Once again thank you for being kind to a first time convention goer
 

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Most guests bring some of their own photos as well as the 8x10's provided by Official Pix. If you are looking to get something larger than an 8x10 signed, you will more than likely need to purchase it in advance and bring it with you. If you have a certain color of choice or a specific brand preference, you might also want to bring your own pen. All guests are provided with multiple pen colors though.
 
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JGordon24 said:
If you have a certain color of choice or a specific brand preference, you might also want to bring your own pen. All guests are provided with multiple pen colors though.
It sounds so trivial, but this is an excellent point. My wife and I always make sure we bring an assortment of different colored Sharpie markers (Fine point) with us to a convention. I usually like to have "Sith actors" sign my pics with a red Sharpie.

The last thing you want to run into is a situation where a celeb/artist has to sign a dark pic with a black marker. Or they have to sign in an area of the pic where it is light and will be written over an actor's face or something.

I agree with Chris 100% - definitely bring an assortment of Sharpie markers with you just to be safe.
 
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JediJustin said:
JGordon24 said:
If you have a certain color of choice or a specific brand preference, you might also want to bring your own pen. All guests are provided with multiple pen colors though.
It sounds so trivial, but this is an excellent point. My wife and I always make sure we bring an assortment of different colored Sharpie markers (Fine point) with us to a convention. I usually like to have "Sith actors" sign my pics with a red Sharpie.

The last thing you want to run into is a situation where a celeb/artist has to sign a dark pic with a black marker. Or they have to sign in an area of the pic where it is light and will be written over an actor's face or something.

I agree with Chris 100% - definitely bring an assortment of Sharpie markers with you just to be safe.
They had blue and silver sharpies last year, I brough Gold and Silver deco just to be safe. I bout the VIP last year, but I think the Speed Pass is good unless you want the card set.
 
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Great. I can not say thank you enough to everyone for the help and tips! I appreciate it and we can not wait to go...
 
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Just want to pass along another tip that I find extremely useful:

Be sure to bring along a portfolio and messenger bag to safely store your signed photos in.

That way you do not have to worry about your photos getting creased or bent as your walk throughout the convention, or during your trip back home.
 
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JediJustin said:
Just want to pass along another tip that I find extremely useful:

Be sure to bring along a portfolio and messenger bag to safely store your signed photos in.

That way you do not have to worry about your photos getting creased or bent as your walk throughout the convention, or during your trip back home.
Great tip Justin, a messenger bag, backpack or something like that is a must for any event like this, especially if you are autograph hunting.
 
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Murray1134 said:
JediJustin said:
Just want to pass along another tip that I find extremely useful:

Be sure to bring along a portfolio and messenger bag to safely store your signed photos in.

That way you do not have to worry about your photos getting creased or bent as your walk throughout the convention, or during your trip back home.
Great tip Justin, a messenger bag, backpack or something like that is a must for any event like this, especially if you are autograph hunting.
I highly recommend this one.


 
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Are you really hunting at a convention??? Isn't more like a gaming preserve or a zoo?
 
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So will the Official Pix area sell binders as well as photos like they did at Celebration IV? The messenger bag idea is a good one, but I went the binder route (and put that in a backpack) at CIV, and that worked out very well.
 

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bring a poster tube for all the free posters they have laid out on the freebie table when you come in!
 

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MasterRawas said:
Dustin said:
bring a poster tube for all the free posters they have laid out on the freebie table when you come in!
Free posters? Are these the ones that VIP pass holders get?
no, there's a freebie table that has a bunch of promo posters on it for upcoming movies and multimedia projects, some are huge, some are smaller in size. Sometimes they have pins, hats, shirts too.
 
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Dustin said:
MasterRawas said:
Dustin said:
bring a poster tube for all the free posters they have laid out on the freebie table when you come in!
Free posters? Are these the ones that VIP pass holders get?
no, there's a freebie table that has a bunch of promo posters on it for upcoming movies and multimedia projects, some are huge, some are smaller in size. Sometimes they have pins, hats, shirts too.
If it's free, and it's Star Wars, I'll take it. And chances are if it's free and not-Star Wars, I'll still take it.
 
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lol me too.
I usually take all the freebies I can get and then sort them out at the hotel/at home. lol
 
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MasterRawas said:
So will the Official Pix area sell binders as well as photos like they did at Celebration IV? The messenger bag idea is a good one, but I went the binder route (and put that in a backpack) at CIV, and that worked out very well.
If you are looking for a portfolio, many like the Itoya Original Art Portfolio . If you have a Blick Art Materials shop near you, you can pick one up there; otherwise, you can buy online. There are many sizes available.
 
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dfmaverick said:
MasterRawas said:
So will the Official Pix area sell binders as well as photos like they did at Celebration IV? The messenger bag idea is a good one, but I went the binder route (and put that in a backpack) at CIV, and that worked out very well.
If you are looking for a portfolio, many like the Itoya Original Art Portfolio . If you have a Blick Art Materials shop near you, you can pick one up there; otherwise, you can buy online. There are many sizes available.
That sounds good, but will there be binders for sale AT the actual convention? I don't want to bring them with me if I can easily get them there.
 

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MasterRawas said:
dfmaverick said:
MasterRawas said:
So will the Official Pix area sell binders as well as photos like they did at Celebration IV? The messenger bag idea is a good one, but I went the binder route (and put that in a backpack) at CIV, and that worked out very well.
If you are looking for a portfolio, many like the Itoya Original Art Portfolio . If you have a Blick Art Materials shop near you, you can pick one up there; otherwise, you can buy online. There are many sizes available.
That sounds good, but will there be binders for sale AT the actual convention? I don't want to bring them with me if I can easily get them there.

Eric, they do not do a special binder for these shows. I recall Ben had some older ones he was selling last time, but once they were gone they were gone. I'd bring something.
 
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Dustin said:
MasterRawas said:
dfmaverick said:
MasterRawas said:
So will the Official Pix area sell binders as well as photos like they did at Celebration IV? The messenger bag idea is a good one, but I went the binder route (and put that in a backpack) at CIV, and that worked out very well.
If you are looking for a portfolio, many like the Itoya Original Art Portfolio . If you have a Blick Art Materials shop near you, you can pick one up there; otherwise, you can buy online. There are many sizes available.
That sounds good, but will there be binders for sale AT the actual convention? I don't want to bring them with me if I can easily get them there.

Eric, they do not do a special binder for these shows. I recall Ben had some older ones he was selling last time, but once they were gone they were gone. I'd bring something.
Ah, okay. Thanks for the information.
 
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Will shipping services (USPS) be provided on site? It was really appealing to be able to ship items to your home right from the convention at CIV. I know this event is not as big, but just wondering.
 
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The last two years there were no shipping services at the convention itself, at least not that I saw, but according to MapQuest, there are four Post Offices in the area, each less than four miles from the convention center.
 
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GoneSolo said:
Will shipping services (USPS) be provided on site? It was really appealing to be able to ship items to your home right from the convention at CIV. I know this event is not as big, but just wondering.
It really seems like this convention is growing, so this might be something you should ask Ben about doing. Maybe he can get a Post Office Worker, UPS guy (a hot one in uniform
) or FedEx person to come man a little booth.

If not, when it starts getting closer to time, let me know and I'll bring some boxes of different sizes. And I'll get them mailed for you. I live in TX so it's no problem for me.
 
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I wanted to take a second to chime in on the "bring your own sharpie" idea. This was a very hard lesson learned for me a few years back at SDCC. I met CF and she signed my ANH style-A that i have been working on for a few years. Her black sharpie was just about dry and the sig looks pretty bad. She then tried to cover over the areas that had skipped and it just kept getting worse and worse but what could i say. She was really cool about it and gave me a free auto on a pic she had on the table. Now I always bring multiple sharpies (black, blue and silver) and a small post it pad. I make sure the sharpie is ready by writing on the post it pad before its my turn. When im to the guest i always thank them coming and I hand them my pen and poster. I never ask for the sharpie back, I usually just leave it there and equate it into the cost of the signature. My ANH poster has a good storie to go with what is a very messy CF signature.

I am very excited to go to FD. Is it Oct yet?
 
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That's a cool story and a really good signing strategy. I'm still debating whether or not I should bring my own Sharpies. I don't have enough to leave them with the guests, but stories about poorly-placed sigs in poorly-chosen colors have me worried. I think I'll bring one or two of each color and just hope for the best.
 
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MasterRawas said:
That's a cool story and a really good signing strategy. I'm still debating whether or not I should bring my own Sharpies. I don't have enough to leave them with the guests, but stories about poorly-placed sigs in poorly-chosen colors have me worried. I think I'll bring one or two of each color and just hope for the best.
You're already buying hotel, flight info.. I think you can afford the $7 for a pack of Sharpies
 
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As a fellow newbie who will be attending Fan Days III as my first convention experience, I really appreciate all the great advice I've picked up from this thread. I honestly would've never thought to bring a messenger bag or backpack to carry the pictures, autograph items, etc. in. I can't wait to get there and to meet some awesome fellow fans in person!
 
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</font><blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font>
I have not been to this event yet but can anyone tell me if it has ever sold out or if people were turned away from panels?

[/QUOTE]

I scrolled through and I don't think anyone really answered your question... I've been going to this convention since 2005 (yes, for those that didn't know, there was a con with Carrie Fisher that year) and I don't know of any panel that actually sold out. Even without priority seating you can still move up close and are able to see and hear everything. Personally, I love Ben's conventions, they are on the smaller scale, but it's so much more personal and you get a lot more interaction.;)

Also, depending on where you stay you could be going down to the pool for a swim, or out to your car and be in the elevator with Darth Vader himself!
That's always a treat, David Prowse is such a sweet man.
 

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JediMasterScully said:
Personally, I love Ben's conventions, they are on the smaller scale, but it's so much more personal and you get a lot more interaction.;)

I agree JMS! These shows are a BLAST because of that smaller element....
 

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amdevil said:
I wanted to take a second to chime in on the "bring your own sharpie" idea. This was a very hard lesson learned for me a few years back at SDCC. I met CF and she signed my ANH style-A that i have been working on for a few years. Her black sharpie was just about dry and the sig looks pretty bad. She then tried to cover over the areas that had skipped and it just kept getting worse and worse but what could i say. She was really cool about it and gave me a free auto on a pic she had on the table. Now I always bring multiple sharpies (black, blue and silver) and a small post it pad. I make sure the sharpie is ready by writing on the post it pad before its my turn. When im to the guest i always thank them coming and I hand them my pen and poster. I never ask for the sharpie back, I usually just leave it there and equate it into the cost of the signature. My ANH poster has a good storie to go with what is a very messy CF signature.

I am very excited to go to FD. Is it Oct yet?

Awesome Carrie story. When I first met Peter Mayhew I asked him to sign it to Jaina for my daughter, I handed over the cash, he handed me the sig, I had it done up on a POTJ Chewie carded fig. I shook hands left with my 3 year old in tow ( this was back in like 1997 ) Once I got away from the madness I looked at it to admire what I had gotten my daughter only to be a little bit dissapointed to see it read, to jana, chewbacca. That's IT! No Peter Mayhew sig at all. I laughed and chalked it up to an interesting interaction with the man. I've since gotten the proper signage from other times I've worked with him and OPX :)

But back to Sharpies, man ALWAYS bring an extra sharpie or two, because you never know who you will bump into!!!
 
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