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Author Topic: Considering going to an MLP con  (Read 1023 times)

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Offline nightmare muffin

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Considering going to an MLP con
« on: August 02, 2018, 05:32:38 PM »
Probably sometime next year. It'll be my first, and I'm loosely debating on trying cosplay as g4 Inky Rose. (which is probably a bad choice, since she's a tall and slim pegasus pony, and I'm short and stocky)
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Is there anything I need to know, in general about cons and cosplay that I should be prepared for? Around what ballpark should I have saved for admission, and merch splurging?
« Last Edit: August 02, 2018, 06:26:50 PM by nightmare muffin »

Offline flutterscotch

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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2018, 05:51:44 PM »
Choose comfort and practicality over making it complicated.  Work up to complicated, or you will not have a fun time.

And also know that people will assume you're cosplaying even if it's not super accurate.  I went to Bronycon once, just wearing a yellow/orange dress that I had had for years with cowboy boots and I got a million compliments about my "cute Applejack cosplay".

It was literally an outfit I just wore once a week.

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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2018, 06:00:22 PM »
Bronycon-er for the past 4 years! I've done a few anime conventions here and there as well.
Admission tends to be around $50-80 dollars for the full weekend, sometimes a bit higher depending. If you can buy your tickets in advance, I'd strongly advise to do so, as prices are upped a bit at the door. Sometimes, if you know you can only go for one day, you can buy single-day tickets online that are reduced price. Make sure you bring ID just in case they check if you register online.
For merch splerging, depends, again. If you want to buy art prints, they tend to be from $10-20. Buttons are oftentimes two for $5. Plushies are $50-500 depending on complexity of the plush. If you buy official merch (assuming MLP con), that tends to be about market price. I've spent from $100-300 in a con. At Bronycon 2018, the most expensive thing that I bought was an Applebloom plush for $60-80 dollars, while I got a microfiber cloth for $3 at the Bobdude table. I'd suggest that you bring some in cash, and bring your card if you have one, as many tables are taking card more often for large purchases.
Bring a backpack, or have a friend with a backpack at the con itself. Know your physical limits, and think of it almost like a day at Disney if you can. You will be on your feet a good amount, especially if you attend panels with little sitting room. I know I can't go for more than a few hours without water, so I always bring a bottle of water or iced tea in my backpack. At least one of the people in your party should have a phone charger, and don't forget pain meds if you are cramping or get headaches. The con staff do have some painkillers in most cases, but if you have something specific that you take (my friend takes advil and the staff had ibuprofen), you'll want to bring that yourself. 
Don't forget money for food. Food within the convention hall (if avaliable) is upcharged somewhat, and unless you see a grocery store right next to the convention hall be generous with your budget in case you can only eat at a Cheesecake Factory or Applebees.
For cosplay, I'd bring a backup outfit in your bag in case you need to get out of your costume for any reason. I'd totally suggest cosplaying if you can, you'll be like me and regret it if you don't!
That's about all I can think of right now, which con are you looking into?   
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Offline nightmare muffin

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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2018, 06:09:43 PM »
Choose comfort and practicality over making it complicated.  Work up to complicated, or you will not have a fun time.

And also know that people will assume you're cosplaying even if it's not super accurate.  I went to Bronycon once, just wearing a yellow/orange dress that I had had for years with cowboy boots and I got a million compliments about my "cute Applejack cosplay".

It was literally an outfit I just wore once a week.
it's also going to be my first time cosplaying- if I do it at all. I know how expensive it can get. So If I do do it, I really don't think I'll be doing anything super accurate. XD I have a friend who cosplays (but for Marvel/ DC  superheroes and stuff), so maybe I can see if she'll help me out.
also, I wear basic t-shirts, jeans and sneakers everywhere. I don't think anyone will think I'm cosplaying, if I just go as myself. Haha.

Post Merge: August 02, 2018, 06:26:03 PM

Bronycon-er for the past 4 years! I've done a few anime conventions here and there as well.
Admission tends to be around $50-80 dollars for the full weekend, sometimes a bit higher depending. If you can buy your tickets in advance, I'd strongly advise to do so, as prices are upped a bit at the door. Sometimes, if you know you can only go for one day, you can buy single-day tickets online that are reduced price. Make sure you bring ID just in case they check if you register online.
For merch splerging, depends, again. If you want to buy art prints, they tend to be from $10-20. Buttons are oftentimes two for $5. Plushies are $50-500 depending on complexity of the plush. If you buy official merch (assuming MLP con), that tends to be about market price. I've spent from $100-300 in a con. At Bronycon 2018, the most expensive thing that I bought was an Applebloom plush for $60-80 dollars, while I got a microfiber cloth for $3 at the Bobdude table. I'd suggest that you bring some in cash, and bring your card if you have one, as many tables are taking card more often for large purchases.
Bring a backpack, or have a friend with a backpack at the con itself. Know your physical limits, and think of it almost like a day at Disney if you can. You will be on your feet a good amount, especially if you attend panels with little sitting room. I know I can't go for more than a few hours without water, so I always bring a bottle of water or iced tea in my backpack. At least one of the people in your party should have a phone charger, and don't forget pain meds if you are cramping or get headaches. The con staff do have some painkillers in most cases, but if you have something specific that you take (my friend takes advil and the staff had ibuprofen), you'll want to bring that yourself. 
Don't forget money for food. Food within the convention hall (if avaliable) is upcharged somewhat, and unless you see a grocery store right next to the convention hall be generous with your budget in case you can only eat at a Cheesecake Factory or Applebees.
For cosplay, I'd bring a backup outfit in your bag in case you need to get out of your costume for any reason. I'd totally suggest cosplaying if you can, you'll be like me and regret it if you don't!
That's about all I can think of right now, which con are you looking into?
I have no earthly idea of what con I want to go to. Going for the final Bronycon next year sounds fun, but I've never traveled before, have no sense of direction, and really wouldn't have any idea on what to do if I went alone out of state XD Plus, I'm not really a social butterfly offline, so I know jumping into something like this is the farthest thing from my comfort zone, but i think it could be a nice experience (and a better use of my money than thrifting for ponies that i don't have room for). Are there any cons held in L.A.?

Ok, so walk-ins are possible, just not advised because price gouging? Good to know. Once I decide where I want to go, I'll have to buy my tickets online. Although I would like to go to a con and enjoy it for the whole weekend, I think one day, for a newbie, would be plenty of action and less money to save up.

I never would've thought I would need pain meds, but that would be good, since you do do a lot of walking. And probably get headaches with all those people and noise.

Do they give room discounts on hotels that the cons are affiliated with?
« Last Edit: August 02, 2018, 06:26:03 PM by nightmare muffin »

Offline tailrustedtealeaf

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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2018, 06:46:46 PM »
If a con has an associated hotel, you may get a bit of a discount through booking with their site. I found that one day was a good start for me, and now that I know what to do I know I can do multiple days without tiring myself out.
I know there are some conventions held on the west coast, the most prominent (if still running) is Everfree Northwest, although I believe that's further north. Someone probably does compile all of the pony cons somewhere, although I'm not sure where that would be.
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Offline lordalexander74

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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2018, 12:18:39 AM »
There was a con in LA, though that one shut down a year or two ago. Closest would be Babscon in San Fransisco, small but still going on. Everfree's still a decent choice.

If you can work it out, I highly suggest going to Bronycon. Gonna be the last one, might as well enjoy it before it's gone

Offline nightmare muffin

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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2018, 12:50:09 AM »
There was a con in LA, though that one shut down a year or two ago. Closest would be Babscon in San Fransisco, small but still going on. Everfree's still a decent choice.

If you can work it out, I highly suggest going to Bronycon. Gonna be the last one, might as well enjoy it before it's gone
I've never flown before. Going cross country for a con...I dunno. I think Babscon would be closer, but not by much....hmmmm. But Bronycon's last blowout is tempting. Still up in the air, of course. Are small cons better for con newbies, or larger ones?

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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2018, 01:46:35 AM »
I'd say both have their perks. I'll consider the Pony Fair a small con simply because of what it boils down to in my example.
When I went to Pony Fair in Orlando, there was a vendor hall for shopping, and two rooms for panels. That made it fairly easy for me to decide when to shop, what to see, and when to go to eat because there was less going on. With only two panel rooms, there could only be two panels at once, which made it easy to make decisions. It didn't tire me out and I still had energy to go see other tourist destinations that night. (To be fair, I am a bit of a 24 hour power pony)
Bronycon this year had a vendor hall and at least eight seperate panel areas. So that meant that I had to decide when there were no panels going on that I wanted to attend for shopping, when I wanted to squeeze in some food, which panels I had to attend when it came down to it. There were lots of people around, so the whole event felt very high energy. It didn't absolutely exhaust me, but I did enjoy quite a bit of sleep when I went home.
Depending on your energy level and how you react to large groups of people, it may be a better idea to attend a small con (again, look around for local anime ones to test the waters if you can afford) before you go to Everfree or Bronycon.
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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2018, 02:19:19 AM »
And also know that people will assume you're cosplaying even if it's not super accurate.  I went to Bronycon once, just wearing a yellow/orange dress that I had had for years with cowboy boots and I got a million compliments about my "cute Applejack cosplay".

I wore a simple black dress, and lace up boots to an animecon... and I got complimented on my "cosplay". O_o

Anyway, if people know you are cosplaying, then they might ask to take your picture.

As for how much you want to spend -- that's totally up to you. Some people drop $100s at cons, other people might only have $20 (*for merch). I find it best to make a loop around the vendor rooms and pick up what I think is truly unique, or appeals to my taste. You can always pick up a card for people who make prints and etc...
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Offline nightmare muffin

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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2018, 02:34:49 AM »
I'd say both have their perks. I'll consider the Pony Fair a small con simply because of what it boils down to in my example.
When I went to Pony Fair in Orlando, there was a vendor hall for shopping, and two rooms for panels. That made it fairly easy for me to decide when to shop, what to see, and when to go to eat because there was less going on. With only two panel rooms, there could only be two panels at once, which made it easy to make decisions. It didn't tire me out and I still had energy to go see other tourist destinations that night. (To be fair, I am a bit of a 24 hour power pony)
Bronycon this year had a vendor hall and at least eight seperate panel areas. So that meant that I had to decide when there were no panels going on that I wanted to attend for shopping, when I wanted to squeeze in some food, which panels I had to attend when it came down to it. There were lots of people around, so the whole event felt very high energy. It didn't absolutely exhaust me, but I did enjoy quite a bit of sleep when I went home.
Depending on your energy level and how you react to large groups of people, it may be a better idea to attend a small con (again, look around for local anime ones to test the waters if you can afford) before you go to Everfree or Bronycon.
where is Ponyfair held? Is is a cross-gen con? Strictly g1? g3? g4? How many are usually in attendance? Guess once I figure out where I want to go, I'll have to make a schedule of what to do in the day that I'm there. What usually is there besides vendors halls and panels?  I've watched a few con videos from others, like Dr Wolf, and there doesn't seem to be much other than that. sitting around for Q&A with horsefamous fandom people or even official show staff doesn't seem like it'd be interesting to me.


Post Merge: August 03, 2018, 02:39:07 AM

And also know that people will assume you're cosplaying even if it's not super accurate.  I went to Bronycon once, just wearing a yellow/orange dress that I had had for years with cowboy boots and I got a million compliments about my "cute Applejack cosplay".

I wore a simple black dress, and lace up boots to an animecon... and I got complimented on my "cosplay". O_o

Anyway, if people know you are cosplaying, then they might ask to take your picture.

As for how much you want to spend -- that's totally up to you. Some people drop $100s at cons, other people might only have $20 (*for merch). I find it best to make a loop around the vendor rooms and pick up what I think is truly unique, or appeals to my taste. You can always pick up a card for people who make prints and etc...
so people are just going to assume that you're cosplaying at cons, no matter what you wear? Great. Well, now I know to be expecting that. Hopefully no one takes my picture without asking. I've always admired and been envious of people who do fan merch in good quality, so I really want to hit up the vendor halls if I go (hopefully not go too crazy on purchases. I do have a spending problem with ponies, so a strict  budget sounds good) XD
do people take cash at cons?
« Last Edit: August 03, 2018, 02:39:07 AM by nightmare muffin »

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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #10 on: August 03, 2018, 03:41:38 PM »
where is Ponyfair held? Is is a cross-gen con? Strictly g1? g3? g4? How many are usually in attendance? Guess once I figure out where I want to go, I'll have to make a schedule of what to do in the day that I'm there. What usually is there besides vendors halls and panels?  I've watched a few con videos from others, like Dr Wolf, and there doesn't seem to be much other than that. sitting around for Q&A with horsefamous fandom people or even official show staff doesn't seem like it'd be interesting to me.
Ponyfair's venue changes every year. It tends to stay along the east-mid coast. We're waiting to see if they'll hold a 2019 right now. It's aimed towards G1 collectors, although there were plenty of people selling G3 and up.
Attendance varies depending on the circumstances, and as I've only attended one I'm not the most fit to answer that question.
There may be small scavenger hunts or even an arcade area set up to chill out with people. Sometimes they'll get local restaurants to have a section of time where they have trivia and giveaways.
There are many panels other than simple Q&As, sometimes they have craft panels where you pay a small fee for materials and get to make something. I attended one where fanfiction writers gave an hour long presentation on how to improve your writing, and I found it helpful. Of course, only attend what interests you. :)
do people take cash at cons?
They sure do! As with any travelling, if you can avoid having all of your cash on person, I'd advise you to keep some in your hotel room just in case. I assume all tables take cash, and only ask if they take card if I'm buying a more expensive thing.
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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #11 on: August 03, 2018, 03:48:22 PM »
so people are just going to assume that you're cosplaying at cons, no matter what you wear? Great. Well, now I know to be expecting that. Hopefully no one takes my picture without asking. I've always admired and been envious of people who do fan merch in good quality, so I really want to hit up the vendor halls if I go (hopefully not go too crazy on purchases. I do have a spending problem with ponies, so a strict  budget sounds good) XD
do people take cash at cons?

I feel like 99% of people ask before snapping a picture. It can just get overwhelming, in my opinion. And not EVERYone will think you are in cosplay, but some might. :) I just wanted to throw that out there, so it wouldn't be a complete surprise.

When I do artist alley, I only take cash. ;) I always appreciate smaller bills for my cheaper $1-5 items... It wipes out my cash box to break $20s early on.
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Re: Considering going to an MLP con
« Reply #12 on: August 09, 2018, 04:59:48 PM »
I can't be helpful for you regarding US cons and meets because I've only ever been to UK ones, but for me I started with a small meet and worked up. Bearing in mind I'm not sure how UK Ponycon rates sizewise to any of the US ones, in the past or present.

In any case...

Wear what you are comfortable with wearing.
Don't worry about being there on your own. You will meet people. A lot of ponypeople have the same worries you do about engaging in person but you do find you meet people you know online and that helps break the ice.
Take what you can afford, don't be in a rush to buy the first thing you see unless you absolutely know it's a winner item. I got a MIB Flutter from ponycon once by doing that but usually I take my time and think things over. If they go then they do - if you had to think about it, then you probably didn't want it. Same applies for Merch although I guess fan crafts and stuff may be different - some may be one off, and some may not.

On the travelling. I have extremely severe navigational problems so I understand the fear of being in a new place or dealing with new stuff. But where there is a will there is a way. I always try to stay either near the venue or near transport hubs of some kind. I don't know what the transport in the US is like in different areas but do all your research on transport options well before you decide to buy a ticket for the event. Leave plenty of time and if you can, scope out the venue in advance (either online with google maps to see landmarks or in person if you arrive a little early).

Finally, good luck with choosing your first pony meet or con. If you are feeling unsure, maybe see if anyone in your area is having a local meet first so you can meet some people who might then go to con with you...but it's really fine to go on your own. You'll still have a great time :D
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