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Convention season has started! Once upon a time, it wasn’t until late spring or early summer that the various hobby- and geek-centric expos opened. There are so many now that they run nearly all year. One here in the immediate local area, Lakeland Comic Con, snuck up on us and is happening right now. It is a relatively new convention but is growing although its marketing outreach remains limited (otherwise we would have mentioned it before now). The Saturday portion of the show obviously has passed but, as long as you are reading this early enough, Sunday remains available for a visit.

Then right around the corner on February 15 is SyFy Bartow. This is a fun (and free!) little daylong convention taking place mostly outside on the streets of historic downtown Bartow. Loads of vendors, several media guests from comics and voiceovers, costumes and a really cool car show. It definitely is worth checking out.

Sometime in March (most likely) will be the City of Auburndale’s second annual Renfest. A representative from the city contacted us just yesterday and asked us to help spread the word. they also are looking for additional period-appropriate cosplayers and LARPers! Their previous single-day event drew about 1,000 people to the grounds of the city library. We’ll have a post regarding this on our Facebook page and will update as more information is released.

A little bit afterward, in April, we have a convention doubleheader. First up, MegaCon takes its regular home in the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando from April 16 through April 19. This is a huge show packed with all manner of pop culture content. Scores of media guests, tons of costumes, several hundred vendors, dozens of artists and an active gaming panel. Often very crowded and more than a little chaotic, it remains the standard for the modern multi-media convention experience.

April’s second event is one that is near and dear to LRPG’s heart. Recon 2020, hosted by our friends with HMGS-South, will be running from April 23 through April 26. A number of LRPG Members will be making the trip to Kissimmee for this terrific gaming convention. Focusing on historical miniature war games, there also will be a many non-historical games as well as a full panel of RPGs hosted by our friends with the Tampa chapter of the Pathfinder & Starfinder Societies. We’ve been a part of the HMGS-South shows since 2002 and always have a great time.

Many more shows, expos and conventions are coming later in the year and further afield than our local area. We’ll do another brief rundown of these very soon. In the meantime, don’t forget that we do a huge amount of our own gaming right here at home. Our next Guild Game Night is coming up on Friday January 24 followed by our next Guild Social Night on Friday January 31. We hope to see you all at these gatherings … and bring a friend!

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