Not unless you ENJOY being treated like a mangy, smelling animal, who gets relocated to...wait for it...a PARKING GARAGE.
I am not making this up my friends. This years AA and vendors hall at Aki Con was set up in a parking garage. Now, before you go saying, But Shondrea, I've been to conventions set up like that, it's not a big deal! Let me explain.
This was a parking garage with a dripping roof. As in, about 100 buckets strung up to the ceiling to catch the dripping water. Which was dripping in along rust and mold covered holes. Oh, and these buckets filled with reeking, moldy water? They were DIRECTLY ABOVE THE TABLES. Oh sure, they were ALL OVER the garage, but many were strung in high traffic walk ways, or directly above merchandise. Does this sound OK to you?
It gets better. It wasn't heated. The pitiful heaters they did have were sporadic, and went out and quit at least once.
Oh, and those buckets? Failed pretty well. We had several drip, if not DUMP OVER onto customers and the floor. Oh. And there were extension cords and power outlets all over. I know of at least one melted power cord, and one betting pool on when the electrical fires would start.
It was cold. Not, oooh chilly put on a jacket cold, but, I can see my breath cold. Because they turned off the heat at night. And the lights. It was lovely. Not to mention the humidity and water RUINED many peoples prints, including my own. And business? No one did well. Everyone I spoke to, artists AND vendors, either did not make any money, barely made back the price of their table, or did as poorly as HALF what they did last year. And many people didn't even see fit to return on Sunday, myself included.
But here's the best part. Here's the REAL juice right here. THEY LIED TO US ABOUT IT. In email they told all vendors...I mean, the ones who actually GOT emails, that we would need to be careful of hooow we displayed our things, so as not to damage hotel walls. We were not in the hotel. But it gets worse. When I personally asked a staff member, a higher up staff member, over the forums where to find this so-called Exhibitors Entrance into AA, I was told, AND I QUOTE-
"At the convention in the new opened area of the Hilton :3"
Oh. How cute. AA is at the Hilton (The Hilton with broken toilets, filthy environments and torn bed sheets) I would never have GUESSED it was at the Hilton!
No. That's all the reply I got from her. I asked SPECIFICALLY where we would be put, and that's what she told me. The next reply I got was simply, "go to pre reg. You'll find out there." (Oh, by the way, they lied to us about pre-reg too)
So yeah. There's that. And don't believe me? Here, have a look for yourselfwww.akiconforum.org/viewtopic.…
Play the Aki COn Feedback Drinking Game. Take a shot every time you see the words, Fire hazard, cold, dripping, ruined items, flared arthritis, refund and mold. Then, finish your drink once staff does a half-assed attempt at damage control five pages in, while the rest of the staff is too chicken to own up to their mess.
Seriously. Click that. We took pictures. I'm so effing sure someone peed in one of those buckets.