The Leaky Cauldron, a Harry Potter news site, has a annual fan conference called LeakyCon in different cities across the country. This year is the first year 2 conferences will take place: LeakyCon Portland and LeakyCon London. LeakyCon Portland has been going on since Thursday and today (Sunday) was the last day. Now, it’s not just a Harry Potter convention. They cover all kinds of fandom from Buffy to Doctor Who.
I LOVED the Harry Potter books. I started reading them after the 4th book was released and went through them quickly. I remember reading one book on Thanksgiving day in between helpings of turkey. Whenever a new book was released after that, I was always at the midnight Friday night release and I finished it before the weekend was over or on Monday. I enjoyed the movies as well for what they were. I saw all of them at the theater except the first one and sometimes I’ll watch a few minutes of them if I stumble across them on TV. That said, I know I’m not the biggest Harry Potter fan in the world. I’ve only read the books 1 time each. I don’t know a lot of minute details. I know that there’s a musical out there, but I’ve never seen it. When I found out LeakyCon was coming to Portland, I wanted to go. I wanted to go mostly because I listened to PotterCast, the official podcast of the Leaky Cauldron, and I figured it would be a lot of fun. I know someone who goes every year and she has a good time there. Also, I try to do as much as I can in Portland, especially the type of things that I wouldn’t be able to do if I were still in Mississippi.
Overall, I enjoyed LeakyCon. At times I felt like I was too old and too male to be there. Most of those in attendance were young girls and ladies. There were a few older adults there, but a lot of them were with their children. No one did anything to make me feel weird though. I’m sure it was all in my head.
Because of work, I ended up missing a lot of cool things I wanted to do during the day Thursday and Friday. I decided not to go Thursday to the official opening ceremony on Thursday night. Apparently, that was one of the highlights of the show. Anthony Rapp from Rent did a parody of “La Vie Boheme”. That part is online, so I don’t feel too bad about it. Friday night I sat in on a trivia competition. The first round was Doctor Who questions. They were so easy. I wish I had decided to compete. I ended up leaving after the first round. Saturday morning I got there early for a Doctor Who fan meetup. The room was full when I got there, but they did have an overflow meeting outside the room. I went to panels the rest of the time I was there that day. I got to see the girl that played young Lily Potter in the last Harry Potter movie, Tom Lenk from Buffy and Angel, and Anthony Rapp. On Sunday I went to a Buffy sing-a-long followed by a Doctor Horrible sing-a-long. After that I went to the last ever PotterCast, which was the closing event of the conference.
I started listening to PotterCast a few years ago. I think it was around the time they interviewed J.K. Rowling. After the last book and movie were released, they slowed down on releasing episodes. It’s been almost a year since they released an episode. I’m glad they were able to end the show this way instead of just fading away. I know I’m going to miss it, because I was already missing it. Hopefully, there will be more Potter books and they can bring this show back. Maybe they’ll do a new show together.
I’m glad I went to LeakyCon. I had fun there. Like one speaker said, even though the Internet can make us distant, cons prove that it’s important to come together in person from time to time. My biggest regret is not seeing Devon Murray, who played Seamus Finnigan, one of my favorite characters from the books and the movies. What I loved the most was something that I love about all cons: the feeling of inclusiveness. Despite the age difference, it was great being around fellow nerds/geeks, and feeling like I belong, and not being judged. I’ll at least consider going back if LeakyCon is in this area again.
I added a link to the “La Vie Boheme” parody from LeakyCon.