Here’s an old gem! Rare (very amateur) video of an early Trek Convention taken at the Northglenn Mall in Colorado! Leonard Nimoy and James Doohan are there, looking Fab! Not quite sure who the dog-faced boy is supposed to be. Pardon poor audio, cheesy organ music and very poor cinematography, but it’s a fun little trip down memory lane. I wish there was more coverage of it – I will have to investigate! Were any of you at the early cons? (we’re talking pre-Star Wars here!)
Good Morning Scrappers! This week I take a trip down memory lane to the first (and best) Star Trek convention I ever attended wa-a-a-ay back in 1976. It was the Star Trek Bi-Centennial-10 Convention in New York City that celebrated the 10th Anniversary of our beloved original Star Trek series. Why was this the best one I ever attended? Well, the main reason was that it was probably one of the last conventions before the Star Wars era, when TOS was at its zenith of popularity, before Star Trek became something called a franchise, when the expressions ‘Keep On Trekkin’ and ‘Star Trek Lives’ were on the tongues of everyone enamored of the series. There was something quaint, yet universal about a bunch of people gathering to celebrate this little show. I think a lot of us felt that we were misfits; geeky types who were socially awkward, the stuff of ridicule and mockery. Yet here at the convention, as a shy 15 year old, I felt accepted for the first time in my teen life by a community of people from all over the U.S., enjoying and conversing about pointed ears and mini-skirts.
I attended with my Mom, Anna and my older sister Kathy. They, and the fact that this was my first ever trip to NYC, were a big part of why this was a special event for me. Looking back as a Mom myself now, I really appreciate any stress this might have caused for my Mom, who had been widowed only 2 years before, to take on (for us) a big undertaking. (Thanks Mom!) Kathy, along with several of my other older siblings had introduced me to Trek in the first place, which, at the height of my mania was something I think she regretted for a while. But for now NYC, The Convention, and the possibility of seeing Trek stars in the flesh for the first time was a thrill beyond belief. I’ll always look back at this with fond memories, even though my pocket camera took awful pictures that didn’t develop too well!
For Today’s Flashback, here’s the first few pages of the official program from the convention, and even a scan of the custom plastic tote bags it came in! (custom plastic tote bags were a novelty in ’76) Note how The Enterprise is zipping past the Statue of Liberty! Enjoy, and if any of my readers attended this convention and have any memories to share of it, please post them here! Thanks, and ‘Keep on Trekkin’ , Therese
The Program! (with the date I scrawled on it)
The intro page, written by the famous Star Trek Welcommittee, with my Saturday badge stuck to it.
Here’s some flyers from the 1976 Bi-Centennial 10 Star Trek Convention I’ve mentioned here before, and you can see I checked off (or is that ‘Chekov’ed) all the stars I got to see there and which episodes I was allowed to go down from our hotel room at the Statler Hilton to watch! I remember watching The Day the Earth Stood Still for the first time at that convention; one of my all time favorites! For today and the next few installments, I’ll be recalling my two days at that convention, with memories I’ll never forget! I still have a little journal of it that I wrote in a small memo pad, and I’ll be posting that here; with all it’s teenage awkwardness intact! So stay tuned!
Here’s today’s flashback: November 12, 1976, from our local daily tabloid The Sun-Bulletin (which was later merged with The Binghamton Evening Press — yeah, we used to get two daily local papers, how times have changed!) Now, we didn’t get the Sun-Bulletin at our house, but the neighbors did, and when I got the chance, I’d either bike down to the local drugstore and check the dailies or sometimes take papers from my neighbor’s trash on Sunday nights (but only if they were on top); I’m pretty sure I bought this one, but Dear Lord, is it any wonder I never had a date in High School? What a goofball!
Anyway, at this point, the talks are heating up about a new Star Trek, and Nimoy ‘reveling’ in his Trek association. But with all this hype, it would still be three years until an actual movie was released. I remember wondering why, when my paper ever posted articles on Trek that they always used promo stills from the earliest episodes of the series, often with Kirk or Spock in their all gold uniforms. I didn’t realize then that papers have a deadline and stock photos are just the ticket for these types of articles. And speaking of paper management, note that this was the ‘lifestyle’ section, a section that used to be in both daily papers every day, but these days you only get it on weekends. Will we even have newspapers 5 or 10 years from now? We can only wonder.
Posted in My Star Trek Scrapbooks
Tagged 1976, George Takei, Kirk, Leonard Nimoy, newspaper, Press, Spock, Star Trek, Sulu, Sun Bulletin, Trekking, WIlliam Shatner
I’m just watching CNN now, and I hope you’ve caught this too. The original prototype shuttle Enterprise is swooping around NYC to land at JFK soon and prepere for it’s final home at the Intrepid Museum. So exciting for NYC and NASA! I remember when the Enterprise was unveiled in 1976, it was originally to be called The Constitution, but Trek fans all over the country wrote NASA and inisited that they name this prototype after their favorive Starship! On CNN now John Cerrella joking referred to it as ‘The Rodney Dangerfield” of Shuttles, because it did’t get to fly into space, hence ‘getting no respect’, but it’s safe to say that without this prototype which was used for practice landings, our shuttle program may have never happened!
Certainly The Enterprise is getting that respect now! Nimoy Alert: I’ve heard several commentators say that Mr. Nimoy is going to speak today at JFK – I hope so ! Nimoy was a the first roll-out of The Enterprise in 1976 along with Dee, Jim, Nichelle, George, Walter, and Gene Roddenberry. I’m so glad he’s there today! I remember the roll-out well! Several of the Trek men were wearing awful leisure suits! (save for Nimoy and Takei) But it was so exciting! Nimoy at the time was surprised that it wasn’t the Star-Spangled Banner playing at the roll out, but rather the original Star Trek Theme!
The Star Trek Cast welcome the newly christened NASA Shuttle Enterprise in 1976. L-R NASA Employee, DeForrest Kelly, George Takei, James Doohan (partly hidden, w/beard) Nichelle Nichols, Leonard Nimoy, Gene Roddenberry, NASA employee, and Walter Koenig.
The best thing about Enterprise coming to NYC is that it is in such beautiful condition because it doesn’t have any space-wear on it, no loose or missing tiles. It will be a beautiful addition to the Intrepid Museum when it opens in July! I’ll keep you updated when Nimoy speaks today!