Dodecacon II was held in the Days Inn Conference Center in Columbia, MO. Easy access right off highway 70. Unfortunately, that exits been under some strange construction for a really long time so a little looping was involved to get to the hotel. The center was pretty small but not bad. I wouldn’t consider it a prime vanue but hopefully next year the show will be big enough to move somewhere bigger.
This was somewhat disappointing. Because of some confusion with the venue, space seemed more lacking than I would’ve liked. We originally thought we would be getting 8 foot tables, artists and dealers alike. A few days before the show, we got an email stating that artists would be downsized to a 6’ table but refunded $5. Upon arrival, it turns out that artists and dealers alike got 5’ tables. Huh.
Even better, some dealers were given a smaller space than they were promised and I didn’t even have a spot when I arrived. A volunteer made a spot for me on the map and found me a table. Part way through setting up, I was told that table was designated for something else and had to tear it back down. What a way to start my weekend. I guess I can’t really complain, my new “spot” was right next to the door and super close to the bathrooms.
The dealer’s room did lock up at night which was nice. It was also the first thing you got to when arriving at the con. I think there was only 1 other room being used for the con panels and events so there wasn’t much to take away from the attention. The room was freezing all weekend though. Guess there were never enough bodies to warm it up.
The hours were… wrong. We were emailed a list of hours which were cut down each day and I didn’t know what time the room would open and close until the day of.
This was definitely a comic and steampunk show. The main guests were comic artists and Airship Vindus, a live action steampunk acting group. Because of this, many of the artists were novelists, comic artists, and steampunk jewelry sellers. Come to think of it, over half of the artists sold jewelry. Only a couple artists with prints and a few with plushies and sewn/crocheted goods. Vendors sold a lot of action figures and comics. This was a small show but the variety was pretty good for the audience. The only thing missing was a snack vendor.
So for starters, my table stuck out just a wee bit. My stuff is more geared towards anime cons and this show was much more comic and steampunk. Naturally my sales were slower than at other shows. I went through many hours without a sale. I barely sold any jewelry but the buttons pretty much kept me afloat all weekend. I’d say it was where I expected it to be for such a small show. On the bright side, there was great company to keep the weekend fun.
I’d say artists who sell items more related to comics, tabletop gaming, and scifi niches would do really well.
Randy and Tony (not sure I spelled that right) are fantastic people. They’re nice and really go out of the way to help make things work. I don’t know who else was staff because they weren’t identifiable but the volunteers were also great. Despite the confusion and almost misery trying to figure out tables, lunch, and hours, I did feel that everyone was trying.
To wrap it up, Dodecacon was a ton of fun. I had a great weekend just hanging out and seeing the other artists. I would recommend it for comic artists and scifi fans, perhaps not so much for anime artists. There was some disorganization but overall worked out. The cost to enter to dealer’s room is pretty low so you don’t have a very high overhead. I wouldn’t suggest traveling for it, but if you’re local it’s a good show to check out.