GeekGirlCon 2014: Our Little GeekGirl Is Growing Up

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Photography by Fearless Photoworks

When I first attended GeekGirlCon last year it quickly stole my heart and became the con that I looked forward to all year long. I mean, what’s not to love about a con that celebrates the female geek while promoting equality for all? It has interesting and unique panels, and my favorite from this year’s were Zombies, Butts, and Teen Female Sexual Agency: A Study of Tina Belcher, and Cosplay is for Every Body. Most importantly the environment of the con is positive and incredibly welcoming to all. I always know I’m going to have an amazing time with my friends at GeekGirlCon. I’ll also always have a special fondness for the con since that’s how Robin and I met! Without GGC I never would have met Robin, nor would I have had the amazing opportunity to write for FanGirl Confessions.

This year I had the pleasure of attending GGC with my good friend Cora Idle. When she’s not busy running Seattle Supernatural, she’s putting her English Literature and Language Arts degree to use as a very talented writer. She had more than a few words of praise for our beloved GeekGirlCon. Here’s what she had to say about this year’s experience:

Ah, GeekGirlCon.  There will always be a small space in my heart dedicated to your awesomeness.  You were the first con I cut my teeth on, and to this day remain one of my favorites.

She may still be in her toddler years – turning four on October 11th – but GeekGirlCon is growing up fast.  As Natasha and I approached the front doors at the Seattle Conference Center, there were already SOLD OUT notices plastered on the windows.  There was even a Deadpool cosplayer hanging a few feet back with a sign that read “WILL GIVE HUGS FOR GGC PASS,” making it very clear that buying tickets at the door was no longer an option.  Even though we were only a couple of hours into the first day of the convention, it was obvious the moment we got up to the Dealer’s Hall why tickets were unavailable: attendance was phenomenal.  It definitely felt a little more crowded this year, which is great because that means the con is gaining the notoriety it deserves, but also a little disheartening of intimacy this con has granted in the past and how lovely that was.

What makes this con a cut above the rest is how empowering it is for its attendees and target audience.  While still known as the con that is all about Celebration of the Female Geek, the number of male-identifying attendees is tangible and the atmosphere remains blissfully respectful and safe despite the growing concerns of the geek girl community.  The wonderful and infamous Anita Sarkeesian was part of the long list of amazing panelists in attendance, although sadly we were unable to attend the panel due to traffic and its early morning timeslot.  Women of science and industry filled the Connections hall; panels devoted to advising artists, makers, and hopeful entrepreneurs were available from opening to closing hours; and cosplayers of all shapes, colors, sizes and skill-levels strode excitedly on every floor.  It’s also worth noting that the nostalgia element was rampant.  In the two jam-packed days of attendance, we saw Doug Funny and Patty Mayonnaise of early 90’s Nickelodeon television show Doug, Gadget from Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers, April O’Neil of old school TMNT, the Wicked Witch of the West and her pet flying monkey, and so many more! It was hard to contain the excitement, and even leaving for food breaks felt like a horrible waste of time.  What if we missed a really fantastic panel, or couldn’t make it back in time to make the line cut?  What if one of the cosplayers in a female version of the MythBusters went home early and we weren’t able to track them down in time for a photo?  Not that I’m speaking from experience or anything.

For all of the years I’ve managed to attend, there hasn’t been a single boring or unoriginal thing with regards to the panels, exhibits, or dealers.  I find myself counting down the days until I can stalk the halls again, eagerly awaiting the announcement of who will be playing at the CONcert and the celebrity guests that plan to join the thralls.  Is it too early to start sending feelers out for Felicia Day of Geek & Sundry fame to join the program next year?  Who knows, maybe The Fab Lab with Crazy Aunt Lindsey will premiere on PBS and she’ll be leading her own panel!  A girl can dream, and Geek Girl Con paves the way by building community and positivity.