Posted: April 13, 2012
Running from Friday, April 20 through to Sunday, April 22 - hosting everything from movie screenings and special guests to a memorabilia packed auction and breakfast with Darth Vader... and so much more!
With all that fun on tap – we just had to get the scoop.
What follows is my Q & A with the NL fella that founded and now heads the Sci-Fi on The Rock committee – Mr. Darren Hann.
SABS: Congratulations on the 6th Year for your convention...take us back to how it all started
Darren Hann: This craziness all started a little over six years ago.
You see I attend conventions in Toronto and Montreal every year, and one year when I returned home I mentioned to my co-worker that it would be great to have a big con here in Newfoundland, that was the start of it.
We had our first con in Mount Pearl which brought in over 400 people, so we instantly knew that there was interest in the genre. We then set out and planned number two which was held at the Holiday Inn here in St. John's. We have been going strong ever since.
SABS: I was looking through your auction items - you've got some sweet stuff up for grabs and I love that there's a charity tie in too.
Darren Hann: Yes, this year we are supporting The Student Lunch Association whose mandate is to provide children with hot nutritious lunches who wouldn't otherwise have access. We do have a lot of pretty cool items! For instance we have a black long sleeved t-shirt worn by Richard Dean Anderson in Stargate with a certificate of authenticity! Thanks to Mark Critch we will have some 22 Minutes swag. Local story teller and author Dale Jarvis has kindly given us a copy of his book "Haunted Shores" which he has also autographed and speaking of autographs we have several photographs signed by the actors from Star Trek.
One of our planning committee members has donated 2 computers and there are plenty of other cool and fun things to check out on our website.
A lot of these items - we managed to get by just contacting certain groups and explaining why we are asking for them...most are eager to lend a hand. Which makes us feel good because every child should have food in their bellies, so that they can concentrate on their school work and not their hunger.
SABS: I L-O-V-E-D the original Battlestar Galactica so very cool to see Richard Hatch (Capt. Apollo) will be one of your guests - how did that come to be?
Darren Hann: I first met Richard at a con in Toronto a few years ago, I told him about our con and we have been working on having him attend ever since. Finally – we got his schedule to work with ours and we booked him.
When we first started out six years ago, we would have to approach managers like our special guest Lolita Fatjo and see who we could book, or I would approach them at the different conventions I attended. We lucked out on our first year with Jeremy Bullock of Star Wars fame (He played Boba Fett). Nowadays we are the ones being approached by actors who want to come here. The word has gotten out about the people and the beauty of the island. Most guests who come here love Signal Hill and other local sites that we take them to on private tours - and the friendly, laid back attitudes Newfoundlanders are famous for...
Aside from Richard we also are welcoming Jeffery Combs who is best known for his work on Star Trek; Peter Roy who has been on Doctor Who,and in Star Wars, Superman, Harry Potter and too many others to name! Joining them will be Drakaina a female model who has been the inspiration for many fantasy novel covers and comedian Fat Apollo.
Local talents are also highlighted with Matthew LeDrew, Ellen Curtis of Engen Books; Cartoonist Kevin Woolridge and writer Scott Bartlett. Halifax is also represented by Jay Paulin of Ink'd Well Comics and D.C, Rind who is best known for his Calebra fantasy series. All of whom we're very excited to have on board!
SABS: I know with so much going on it would be hard to pick, but what part of the convention are you most looking forward to this year?
Darren Hann: That's a tough question! It would have to be two different things. First the actors' Q and A where the fans get to ask the actors what ever they want. It's interesting to see what people ask...The second would have to be the light saber techniques workshop which is attend by people from 5 to 75 years old; it's very cool to see something connect with such a wide age span and speaks volumes about how all encompassing the Sci Fi/Fantasy community is.
We also have a new feature to our Convention called the Space Ball...it's an adult only event where the general public can buy a ticket and rub elbows with the Stars while sipping on a cocktail. Most people forget that even though our guests are indeed famous - they are still people and love to talk to their fans...So one word of advice, don't be shy!
The Sci-Fi on The Rock Convention takes place at The Holiday Inn 180 Portugal Cove Road, St. John's NL April 20 – 22, 2012
For more information visit www.scifiontherock.com
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