I love science fiction conventions! I got started at ArmadilloCon when I was living in Austin, Texas. I loved it, so I branched out to Aggiecon, in Texas A&M, my alma mater. In fact, I loved conventions so much, that I joined FACT, a group of wonderful fans who initiated me into fandom. The year after my first convention, I was the editor of the program book for my second ArmadilloCon, and I was a member of every subsequent ArmadilloCon’s convention committee (aka ConCom) until I moved to Wyoming.
Since that move, I’ve been out of the con-running business, but I still love attending cons. My family and I make an annual pilgrimage to MileHiCon in Denver, Colorado, and we often go to CONduit in Salt Lake City, Utah, as well.
Westercon, a major convention in the Western United States, is one I dearly love, and we will probably be attending it in the next few years. It was run by FACT in 1996, and I was glad to play a minor role putting it together. We had it in El Paso, Texas, just about the only part of Texas that is westerly enough to hold a Westercon. What I remember most about it is that I met Larry Niven for the first time there. He has a reputation as a wonderful person, very friendly to fans. I’m glad that the reality more than lived up to the expectation. Westercon is also special in a different way. My wife didn’t make it out to El Paso with me, but when I came back from that first Westercon, she announced her pregnancy with our first child! (Side note: the pregnancy got started in Aggiecon earlier that year.)
Of course, there is also Worldcon, the World Science Fiction Convention! My first worldcon was Lonestarcon 2 in San Antonio, Texas. I missed subsequent worldcons, but I did get to go to Denvention 3 in Denver, Colorado, 11 years later. Ghod willing, my family and I will be attending Sasquan, the 2015 worldcon in Spokane, Washington.