Tag Archives: contest

(*Gasp!*) Godzilla, Costumes, Trek and more at my day at RoberCon. (Gallery)

Hey Kids,

I had a fun time at our local “RoberCon” convention in Binghamton NY yesterday — the first sci-fi convention of its kind at the Roberson Mansion and Planetarium.   It was attended by 1000+ fans and it was especially a pleasure for me to see the universe spanning array of costumes people came in. It was like a grand ball for Geekdom, and I’m delighted  to say that I pulled off finishing my  T’Pau costume in time for the event!

The  the hardest part of  building my costume was the T’Pau’s complicated hairdo!  Seriously, it’s not a hairdo, it’s an Engineering Thesis!   The styling  took me @ 90 minutes early yesterday morning, as I assembled six different hair pieces into my own for the multi-braid effect.   Adding the ears was a little nerve-wracking too, but although it wasn’t too difficult to attach them, I felt sympathy for Mr. Nimoy and anyone who’s had to don those points. Actually, I hardly felt them at all once they were in place,and they worked quite nicely.  My favorite part of the costume was the great walking stick, which I made from an $8 wooden chair from the Salvation Army.   I reassembled the legs and a spindle from it, and spray painted it black.  The filial on top was a door pull from Home Depot, and the big ‘bead’ was a piece of florist foam, carved and painted to look ornamental.

In addition to the costume contest, there were panels discussing costume construction, and a panel that was supposed to discuss Star Trek, but it became more centered The Twilight Zone. There might have been another Trek panel, but I missed it (for the contest) There was also a guest appearance by Annie Serling (Rod’s Daughter), but I didn’t stay that long (my two teen sons were getting hungry and we had been there for nearly 4 hours).

Here’s a gallery of characters from the con.  Some of the costumes were really masterful – especially Godzilla!  Now don’t be fooled, this may look like a factory manufactured rubber suit, but it was actually was hand crafted and tooled by its wearer! I could see elements of foam rubber and styrofoam in it, and the gentleman who wore it said it took over a year to create in his garage! Wow.  Amazingly, he didn’t win 1st place that went to the two young girls who hand crafted their dazzlingly frightening costumes of Weeping Angels (including the masks) from Dr. Who.  Other winners were The Iron Patriot, (which was also amazing), Wonder Woman, and a delightfully loony Freakazoid. There were Lots of comic book, and gaming characters represented there too, as well as Steam punk creations and many Dr. Who’s (two wearing a fez).

There were many fan groups as well, with Star Wars well represented.  There was only one Star Trek group, U.S.S. Serling, whose ‘Captain’ and ‘First Officer’ I posed with (Lisa Stucky, Doc David Rasey) They liked my costume, and for me personally, it was nice to have someone there recognize my 44-year-old TV character! I admit, I got a lot of odd looks from people, with hardly anyone recognizing me as a Star Trek character.  It definitely made me feel old, as a few people thought I was from Lord of the Rings, and no one said “It’s T’Pau!” To be fair, if this was a Star Trek Convention I’d be more recognized, but despite my crafted look, I did feel a bit dated here.  At least I passed out a few trekkerscrapbook calling cards to anyone who had an inkling as to what the Original Series was! Maybe we’ll get a few more watchers here.  Glad I went.

Trekker Scrapbook-What’s in the Box? – Part 2 The Star Trek Bicentennial -10 Convention in NYC 1976 and Nimoy in 1978

Today I’ll be sharing the rest of the contents of The Box, including one very special souvenir.  As I  scratched through the pieces within, I came across several writings I had forgotten about — breathless explanations of events Trek related -the convention of ’76, of course, which  I’ll transcribe here later, as my original writing was pretty horrific in both style and execution. There are bus ticket stubs and jotted lists my mother made of what we spent there at the NYC con.,  and some letters from people I met at various Trek events, and letters from an aunt or two when then found an article related to Trek in their newspapers.  It’s fun to see how cheap so many things were then, although they were a big expense to us at the time.   I recall it cost us $35 a night to stay a the Statler-Hilton.  There were 3 of us, my Mom, sister and me, and it was my first trip ever to NYC.  I just wish we took more pictures, as my only equipment at the time was my state-of-the-art pocket old flashcube Instamatic which took the incredibly poor pictures you’ll see here.  ( I apologize for the quality; this was the best I could do)  I  remember that we were on the 33rd floor, and that we had a grand view of the Chrysler Building from our room; oddly at the time I found it somewhat ugly and creepy, but within a couple of years I appreciated it for the glory of deco art it is, and it remains my favorite skyscraper to this day.

Winner of the Spock look-alike contest

Here’s the few pictures of the con that did develop from my crappy camera.  First, a Mr. Spock look-alike contest, the winner of which was a guy dressed up as a transporter malfunction! The sign pinned to the guy here says “Is the Transporter fixed yet?” as he also carries his ‘head’.  Clever stuff!

Then the celebrities! Almost the entire cast was there, from Shatner to Koenig, only Nimoy and Majel Barrett couldn’t make it.  We saw all the stars that came, but my camera was so crappy that only a few pictures developed.  Here’s James Doohan and George Takei.

Jimmy Doohan ‘touches hands’ at the convention

Doohan was newly a father and talked at length about the Lamaze method that he and his wife used to deliver the baby; interesting, but probably not what the fans wanted to hear.  He also sang and jigged a little to “Roamin’ in the Gloamin”, a song my mother (embarrassingly) insisted that I ask him to sing!  But he was a a good sport about it, and I remember him walking up and down the aisles of the auditorium to ‘touch hands’ with the enamored thrall.

George salutes us!

Takei was happy and bright, in a powder blue leisure suit, although at the moment I can’t recall anything he said.   I think he was asked about an audition he made for a silly sitcom called “Mr. T. and Tina”, glad he didn’t get that one, for it’s hardly the stuff of TV legend.

Leisure suits were the uniform of the day- that hideous melt-able double knit polyester garb that almost every male wore.  I recall Shatner wore a dark blue one, De Kelly wore a black with a wild orange and white floral print shirt under it, and Doohan wisely opted out of a jacket, just   wearing beige trousers and a white shirt instead. But every male celeb had huge lapels and wide bell bottoms.(God the 70’s were atrocious)  The convention had a lot of fun events, from art shows (I was heart broken I couldn’t enter my  home made bust of Mr. Spock), the endless dealer room with oodles of Trek merchandise, to the wildly popular episode and blooper showings, and, of course, autograph sessions, which were FREE — something you never get anymore.

But speaking of autographs, the box contains the ultimate prize of my youthful fandom, and I only had to wait a couple of years after the con to get it;  Nimoy’s autograph.  I got to meet Mr. Nimoy on February 18, 1978 after a splendid lecture he gave in nearby Elmira NY.  But  since we FORGOT THE CAMERA that fateful night, I hung on to the pen he signed my copy of I Am Not Spock with;  a purple Flair fine point! (made in the USA!)  Good ol’ Flair, and no one has used it since Mr. Nimoy.

Then the  piece de résistance.  There inside the front cover my well- thumbed paper-backed edition  of I Am Not Spock are 7 little words that made me so happy:

To Therese, thank you! Leonard Nimoy, ’78.

And why was Mr. Nimoy so grateful to a giddy 16 year old girl that night?  Well, get your mind out of the gutter and I’ll explain this, along with a couple of photos, in a future post!