CONvergence facts for kids
Quick facts for kidsCONvergence
Science fiction convention
|Venue||Hyatt Regency Minneapolis in Minneapolis, Minnesota|
|First held||July 2, 1999|
|Last held||July 4, 2019|
CONvergence is an annual multi-genre fan convention. This all-volunteer, fan-run convention is primarily for enthusiasts of Science Fiction and Fantasy in all media. Their motto is "where science fiction and reality meet". It is one of the most-attended conventions of its kind in North America, with approximately 6,000 paid members. The 2019 convention was held across four days at the Hyatt Regency Minneapolis in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
The convention is known for several attractions, which are available to members throughout the event.
Art and Merchandise
- The CONvergence Art Show offers items created by artists around the country. Some are available for a live auction or silent auction.
- The Artists Alley provides space for artists to offer commissioned art.
- The Dealers Room features a larger number of vendors selling crafts, apparel, or collectibles.
- The Charity Auction funds community activities provided by the Geek Partnership Society.
- Official CONvergence merchandise is available with branded goods and commemorative event apparel.
- The convention is known for its themed room parties hosted by community and fan groups. Each party room is unique from one another, each with varied themes. The walls of the convention are usually plastered with advertisements for different parties.
- Space Lounge presents a futuristic space-themed entertainment venue with music, entertainment, and sensory refreshments.
- Several spaces for gaming are available at CONvergence, with options for board games, card games, and roleplaying games. The gaming area offers LAN-based gaming, tabletop gaming, and the Artemis Spaceship Bridge Simulator, among other things.
- The CONvergence Teen Room is available for members between 13 and 20 years old.
- Harmonic CONvergence features live music, spoken word, burlesque, and comedy.
- Cinema Rex is a couch- and sofa-filled movie room. Running popular movies, short films, and film festivals, Cinema Rex provides drinks, popcorn, candy, and other refreshments.
- Theater Nippon presents a series of classic and modern anime with free drinks, popcorn and candy.
Members of CONvergence have access to ConSuite, with complimentary rice and soups throughout most of the day, and around-the-clock access to candies, veggies, fruits, and chips. Other hospitality rooms are also provided, such as the COF2E2 Coffee Shop, and the Volunteers Den with hot food for members who volunteer.
CONvergence runs many parallel programming tracks, filling several convention rooms simultaneously with panels, speeches, demonstrations, recognitions, and screenings.
CONvergence panels are scheduled for each day, across a wide range of topics. Most panels are group discussions in front of an audience, while others are more interactive or performance-based.
Main Stage Events
The Opening and Closing Ceremonies are held on a Main Stage, as well as live performances and other events that require a lot of space.
The signature Masquerade event is held Saturday night, displaying the best in costuming and cosplay creations, usually with short skits.
Live music sometimes occurs at the Main Stage. Dances and raves are often scheduled for the late hours in the main stage area.
The primary mascot of CONvergence is the gynoid "Connie", who is occasionally opposed by Connie's scheming younger sister, "Connie Mk. II".
Guests of Honor
Like most science fiction conventions, CONvergence selects a few special guests every year.
|Guest of Honor||Known For||Years Attended|
|Forrest J. Ackerman||SF historian and collector||1999|
|Pam Keesey||Author of Vamps! and other fiction||1999|
|Harry Knowles||Movie critic and web entrepreneur, Ain't It Cool News||1999, 2001, 2005, 2008|
|Jay Knowles||Web entrepreneur, Ain't It Cool News||1999, 2001, 2005, 2008|
|Gordon Purcell||Comic book artist||1999, 2018|
|Gary Russell||Producer of the Doctor Who audio series||1999|
|Neil Gaiman||Author of books, comics and film||2000|
|Peg Kerr||Award-winning author||2000|
|Regina Pancake||Hollywood prop creator||2000|
|Ruth Thompson||Fantasy artist||2000, 2012|
|Keith Topping||Author of Doctor Who novels and more||2000|
|Go To Hell! (cast and crew)||Adventure, comedy, horror film||2000|
|Peter Mayhew||Chewbacca in Star Wars||2001, 2008|
|Michael Sheard||British SF movie and television actor in Star Wars, Last Crusade, and many other projects||2001, 2003|
|Eleanor Arnason||Award-winning science fiction novelist||2001, 2018|
|Crist Ballas||Movie makeup and physical effects artist||2001, 2004, 2008|
|C.H. Morgan||Sci-fi and fantasy artist||2001|
|Diane Duane||Popular author of books and television||2002|
|Peter Morwood||Sci-fi and fantasy author||2002|
|Mark Altman||"Trekspert" and co-creator of Free Enterprise||2002|
|Robert Meyer Burnett||Co-creator and director of Free Enterprise||2002, 2008|
|Nene Thomas||Popular award-winning fantasy artist||2002|
|Daren Dochterman||Designer and illustrator for over 35 feature films||2002, 2008, 2016|
|Adam 'Mojo' Lebowitz||Author and former lead animation supervisor for Foundation Imaging||2002|
|Andrew Probert||Production designer for Star Trek||2003, 2008|
|Eric Flint||Author and editor of many books||2003, 2006, 2008|
|John Kovalic||Dork Tower and Dork Storm Press, Out of the Box Games||2003, 2007, 2008|
|Katherine Kurtz||Author of the Deryni trilogies and stories||2003|
|Denise Garner||Romantic fantasy artist||2004|
|David Gerrold||Science fiction/fantasy author of many books||2004|
|Larry Niven||Author of many science fiction books, including the Ringworld series||2004|
|Vincent Truitner||Animator and CGI artist||2004, 2008, 2018|
|Christian Colquhoun||Physical effects artist||2004, 2008|
|Len Wein||Writer for comics and animation, creator of Swamp Thing, Nightcrawler, and Wolverine||2005, 2008|
|Dr. Jim Kakalios||University of Minnesota physics professor, author of The Physics of Superheroes||2005, 2008, 2018|
|Mercedes Lackey||Author of many popular novels, including the Valdemar and Bardic Voices series and folk music lyricist||2005, 2008|
|Larry Dixon||Co-author of Mage Wars and Dariens Tale series, author of many short stories and game material and fantasy artist||2005, 2008|
|Marv Wolfman||Writer for comics and animation, creator of Blade, Bullseye, and The New Teen Titans||2005, 2008|
|J. G. Hertzler||Actor on Star Trek as General Martok||2006|
|Ken Hite||Role-playing game author and designer||2006, 2008|
|Bridget Landry||Astronomer, Jet Propulsion Laboratory Engineer (Hubble, Mars Pathfinder, and Cassini missions) and Master-level costumer||2006, 2008, 2010|
|Robert O'Reilly||Actor in many well-known science fiction TV series including Star Trek as Chancellor Gowron||2006|
|Miles Teves||Set designer||2006|
|David Weber||Author of military sci-fi||2006, 2008|
|Greg Weisman||TV and comic book writer, animation producer, Gargoyles||2006, 2008, 2011, 2014, 2016, 2018|
|Emily Hagins||Writer and director of the zombie movie Pathogen||2007|
|Brian Keene||Author of The Rising, Grave Conditions, The Last Zombie||2007, 2009, 2011|
|Bernie Wrightson||Comic book artist, co-creator of Swamp Thing||2007|
|Lois McMaster Bujold||Sci-fi and fantasy author||2007, 2017|
|Wally Wingert||Voice actor with credits including Invader Zim (Almighty Tallest Red), Bleach (Renji Abarai), and The Garfield Show (Jon)||2007, 2008, 2010|
|Trace Beaulieu||Mystery Science Theater 3000 (Doctor Clayton Forrester and Crow T. Robot) and Cinematic Titanic||2008, 2009|
|Mark Evanier||Writer of comics and television shows||2008|
|Joel Hodgson||Mystery Science Theater 3000 (Creator and on-air host Joel Robinson, seasons 1–5) and Cinematic Titanic||2009|
|Frank Conniff||Mystery Science Theater 3000 (TV's Frank) and Cinematic Titanic||2009|
|Mary Jo Pehl||Mystery Science Theater 3000 (Pearl Forrester) and Cinematic Titanic||2009, 2018|
|Kelly McCullough||Author of WebMage||2009, 2018|
|Dwayne McDuffie||Creator of Static Shock||2009|
|Patrick Rothfuss||Author of The Name of the Wind||2009|
|L.A. Banks||Author of the Vampire Huntress Legend series of novels as well as the Crimson Moon, Dark Avengers and Soul Food series||2010|
|Jeremy Bulloch||Actor with credits including The Empire Strikes Back/Return of the Jedi (Boba Fett)||2010|
|Paul Cornell||Writer for Doctor Who (television, novels, audio), novelist and writer for Marvel Comics (Captain Britain and MI-13)||2010, 2013, 2018|
|Chuck McCann||Veteran comedian, actor, and cartoon voiceover artist, voice of Sonny the Cuckoo Bird||2010|
|Jason Carter||Actor, Dead Matter, Babylon 5||2011|
|Edward Douglas||Gothic horror Fantasy musician, Midnight Syndicate||2011|
|Seanan McGuire||Urban fantasist, October Daye, InCryptid, Newsflesh||2011, 2017|
|Paul and Storm||Special musical performers||2011|
|Lynne M. Thomas||Librarian, author, editor of Chicks Dig Time Lords||2011|
|Anthony Tollin||Historian, publisher, comics colorist, The Shadow and Doc Savage reprints||2011|
|Catherynne Valente||Novelist, poet||2011|
|Brian Van Camp||Actor, Dead Matter||2011|
|Jenifer Clarke Wilkes||Game publications editor, Wizards of the Coast||2012|
|Tamora Pierce||Writer||2012, 2018|
|Charlie Jane Anders||Writer and Blogger||2013|
|Bill Corbett||Mystery Science Theater 3000 and RiffTrax||2013|
|Kevin Murphy||Mystery Science Theater 3000 and RiffTrax||2013|
|James Moran||Screenwriter Severance (film), Cockneys vs. Zombies, and Tower Block (film)||2013|
|Melinda Snodgrass||Author and Scriptwriter||2013, 2018|
|Greg Guler||Gargoyles character designer||2014|
|Marina Sirtis||Demona from Gargoyles, and Deanna Troi from Star Trek: The Next Generation||2014, 2018|
|C. Robert Cargill||Internet film critic, author||2014|
|Amy Berg||TV producer, writer||2014|
|Wesley Chu||2015, 2018|
|Nicole Dubuc||Actress, writer||2015|
|Lee Harris||Hugo-nominated editor||2015, 2018|
|Bryan Thao Worra||2015|
|Amal El-Mohtar||Poet, writer||2016, 2018|
|Amy Shira Teitel||2016|
|Christopher Jones||Professional comic book artist, attendee, and co-founder; designer of Connie and the other mascots||2016|
|Joseph Scrimshaw||Comedian, actor, and playwright||2016|
|Ytasha Womack||2016, 2018|
|Tracee Lee Cocco||2017|
|Naomi Kritzer||Speculative fiction writer||2017|
|Michael "Knightmage" Wilson||Sheriff deputy, stunt performer||2018|
The idea for CONvergence began at a room party held 24 years ago at the Minicon 33 event, where 500 pre-registrations to CONvergence 1999 were collected. The planning team celebrated the one-year-to-go mark with a picnic on the weekend of July 4, 1998.
|July 2 – July 4, 1999||After All, It's Just a Party||Inaugural convention||Bloomington Radisson South Hotel||1,398|
|July 7 – July 9, 2000||No one can tell you what CONvergence is ... you have to experience it for yourself||The Matrix and similar fiction||Radisson, Downtown Saint Paul, Minnesota||1,533|
|July 6 – July 8, 2001||Curioser and Curioser||Alice in Wonderland and similar fiction||Bloomington Radisson South Hotel||1,615|
|July 5 – July 7, 2002||If Adventure Has A Name...||Indiana Jones and classic adventure themes in speculative fiction||Bloomington Radisson South Hotel||1,679|
|July 4 – July 6, 2003||Time Flies||Time travel||Bloomington Radisson South Hotel||1,709|
|July 2 – July 4, 2004||Out of the Shadows||Mystery and Noir, the dark side of speculative fiction||Sheraton Minneapolis South||2,014|
|July 1 – July 3, 2005||Snikt! Bamf! Thwip!||Super-heroes and comic books||Sheraton Minneapolis South||2,283|
|July 7 – July 9, 2006||Boldly Go.||Space exploration, such as Star Trek||Sheraton Minneapolis South||2,434|
|July 6 – July 8, 2007||Creature Feature||Monsters, Aliens and inhuman characters||Sheraton Minneapolis South||2,549|
|July 3 – July 6, 2008||Ten Years 1999–2008||Anniversary of Tenth CONvergence||Sheraton Minneapolis South||3,102|
|July 2 – July 5, 2009||This Con Goes to 11||Humor in Science Fiction and Fantasy, also the 11th CONvergence||Sheraton Minneapolis South||3,894|
|July 1 – July 4, 2010||Bring on the Bad Guys||Villains||Sheraton Minneapolis South||4,737|
|June 30 – July 3, 2011||Tomorrow through the Past||Steam punk & retro Science Fiction||Sheraton Minneapolis South||5,031|
|July 5 – July 8, 2012||Wonder Women||Female creators and characters of Speculative Fiction||DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington||5,864|
|July 4 – July 7, 2013||British Invasion||British creators and characters of Speculative Fiction||DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington||6,291|
|July 3 – July 6, 2014||A Midsummer Night's Dream||Urban Fantasy, such as the Gargoyles TV series||DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington||6,118|
|July 2 – July 5, 2015||DoublePlusGood||Dystopias||DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington||6,057|
|June 30 – July 3, 2016||... And How Do We GET There?||Vehicles and transportation||DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington||5,693|
|July 6 – July 9, 2017||To Infinity And Beyond||Space opera||DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington||6,477|
|July 5 – July 8, 2018||Natural Twenty||Anniversary of 20th CONvergence||DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington||5,785|
|July 4 – July 7, 2019||The Next Celebration||Reboots and re-imaginings in Science Fiction||Hyatt Regency Minneapolis||5,597|
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