Calgary Expo: Goodbye and Thanks for all the Fish

Those of you who know me know I love to cross the fandom streams.

Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo 2017 marked our 7th and final year as a vendor at this wonderful convention. CCEE is where we got our feet wet running charity booths and met people who have become as much family as they have been friends.

We’ve been attending Calgary Expo since 2010 and have always had a wonderful time. Each year we’ve watched it grow in size and duration and we’ve had a ball meeting Browncoats from around the world. Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end – even if only temporarily.

For those of you who aren’t aware, the AB Browncoats is a 100% volunteer run organization. In addition to volunteering our time, those of us who attend conventions also personally pay for the privilege to chat with you, sell you draw tickets and shiny goodies, and run panels, screenings, or post-con concert events.

What this means in practical terms is that convention volunteers take vacation days from work, pay to travel all around the province to conventions, pay their own hotel and food bills, and often pay for tickets to attend the convention just to stand behind a booth all day when extra vendor badges are required.  In our first few years of operation, these individuals also pooled funds to pay the booth rental fees and for all stock carried at the booth. Dedication and love kept this group flying at conventions in its early years and shiny fans like yourselves ensured we were always able to donate funds to a variety of service organizations.

One thing has remained constant over the years, our volunteers give a lot of themselves to each and every one of our events and we’ve never properly acknowledged their sacrifices and commitment.

Due to changing life events – our board chair is returning to school while working full-time, other board members have changed jobs and have limited vacation time, while still others have retired and are living on fixed incomes, etc. – we are unable to staff and finance the annual trek to Calgary in 2018. Accepting this reality broke our hearts a little, as we’ve met so many wonderful people, had a great time on our travels, and know the chances of returning to Calgary Expo as a vendor in years to come with be a challenge as the waiting list is long.

While we’ll be absent from Calgary Expo for a while, we hope to continue to see you out and about in our home base of Edmonton.

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