On Station At Celebration: Day 4

April 20, 2015 at 1:00 pm | Posted in Celebration, Conventions, Events, Star Wars | Leave a comment

on-station-at-celebrationStar Wars Celebration Anaheim day four was a short day for me as I had to head out early for my flight, but it was still fun. Rather than trying to hit some more panels, I focused on checking out the things I missed and hunting down some cool cosplay pictures. All in all, it was a nice, relaxing way to end the con.

At the beginning of the day I was undecided on what I was going to do, but taking one look at the massive line that was forming up for the Gareth Edwards/Josh Trank panel, I decided to attend the Celebration worship event that was being held at the Hilton. Unfortunately James Arnold Taylor didn’t attend as was planned. Still, it was interesting. I’m actually not a regular churchgoer, but every now and then I like attending to get the experience. They had several speakers and a band who played some songs. There was a even a pastor dressed in a very high quality Obi-Wan costume, so that was a very different experience right there.

Afterwards I queued up about ten minutes before opening and waited about half an hour to get in. Once in, I headed straight for the Cartamundi booth to get card number four to complete my collection. Each day Cartamundi was giving away one card, which was pretty cool.

All four Cartamundi cards

My next goal was the Alan Dean Foster/James Kahn/Michael Kogge signing at the Del Rey booth. I didn’t get there in time for the free book, but I did get one of the cool pins Del Rey was giving out each day (Sunday was Lords of the Sith), and even though they were out of the free books, the authors were still signing any copies fans brought themselves. I had my paperback copies of Splinter of the Mind’s Eye and Return of the Jedi which I got signed. It’s going to be interesting now that we know Alan Dean Foster is doing the novelization for The Force Awakens, though it’s not really surprising. Not only did he do the first Star Wars novelization, but recently he novelized both of J.J. Abram’s Star Trek movies. I think those might be worth reading for anyone who wants to get an idea of what to expect.

Alan Dean Foster (right) and James Kahn (left)

Then I headed for the Rancho Obi-Wan Experience booth. I entered the $5 raffle to win an autographed copy of the 1st printing of the Star Wars novelization signed by George Lucas, and was able to talk with Consetta Parker while I was waiting in line. Consetta was extremely nice and I’m really glad I got the chance to meet her. As for the booth, they had some awesome Star Wars fan art pieces on display. It was all different from the items they had out for Celebration VI, and the layout of the booth was different as well. They had more space to work with so they did a simple ‘U’ shaped display with everything on the walls. The back wall showcased the massive, beautiful painting by Robert Xavier Burden which was laden will all kinds of Star Wars imagery and little pop culture easter eggs.

The Rancho Obi-Wan Experience Booth

While there, I had to check out their book, Inspired By The Force: Star Wars Fan Artifacts & Art. I was leary about it since it was short, only 72 pages, but the large hardcover size and high quality photographs make this a great book. Each piece has a history and many of the items shown at the booth this year are in the book, so it’s like taking a piece of the museum with you, complete with the story behind the items.

In addition to all of that, Steve Sansweet was there to sign stuff for fans (for free), so I managed to get my copy of his book signed. Funny story. Steve asked me what my name was so he could personalize it. I told him Stephen, so he started writing “To Stephen Sansweet” then he caught himself. He joked that it’s truly one of a kind now.

From there, I went to the Celebration Store which was like a boneyard by day four. There wasn’t a whole lot left. Most of the shirts were sold out, but they had lots of the $100 Bossk and Scout Trooper hoodies. There was still plenty of the sushi sets, space slug jack-in-the-boxes and Max Reebo plushes. However the Return of the Jedi Celebration exclusive shirt was sold out and that’s the one I was after. Thus I mosied on over the art area and checked out all the artist booths. They were really busy with small crowds around each table. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to pick up any prints, as some artists still had their Celebration prints available, and the one that really caught my eye was a picture of the Emperor that Brian Rood did that I hadn’t seen before. Regardless, I walked away empty handed and headed back toward the Del Rey booth and the main row of the floor. I spotted Joe Corroney and Brian Miller’s booth that way, so I stopped and said hi and checked out their awesome artwork. Joe and Brian did a cool Episode VII print which features the new characters. Not sure if they’ll have any extra’s for fans to pick up outside of the con, but it’s a great looking print.

The Force Awakens by Joe Corroney and Brian Miller

Another thing on my list was the Droid Builder’s Room which was up on second floor. They had a bunch of R2 units on display, some in various stages of completion so fans could see how they’re put together. They had some other droids, and even a BB-8.

Droid Builder’s Room

For the remainder of my day, I simply walked around and took some pictures of the display booths and some of the great cosplayers. While one might expect to see a ton of stormtroopers, there was actually more female Han Solo’s than anyone else. Even Slave Leia was getting some crossplay action as men found the courage to tackle the outfit. There were franchise crossovers for Disney, Marvel and even DC. All around there were fans embracing their Star Wars fandom. It adds a lot to the experience of Celebration. Where else will you see a detachment of Scout Troopers walking by with one of them carrying an Ewok by the feet saying “we got one!” It’s simply a one of a kind of experience, and it’s one of the many reasons we find ourselves coming back each time.

Next year Celebration will be heading to London, so get your passports ready. Until then, we all have The Force Awakens to look forward to.

Posted By: Skuldren for Roqoo Depot.

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