Creation Entertainment's Official Star Trek Convention opened for business yesterday with a Trek zombie invastion, and things were hopping at the Rio in Las Vegas as fans from across the globe gathered together to celebrate Trek together and in style.
Among the earliest events of the day was StarTrek.com Presents One Trek Mind Live, with Jordan Hoffman hosting a debate about Trek's Best Fight Scene. Bobby Clark, the Gorn himself, surprised the hundreds of fans at the panel, when he arrived to announce that he thought the Gorn-Kirk battle from the TOS episode "The Arena" deserved at least a spot in the top three. Holding a Gorn head, Clark joked, "I'm beside myself."
After 45 minutes, the fans finally agreed to the Top 10 Best Fight Scenes.
Fans filled the dealer's room, now officially renamed the Captain Dave Vendors Room, after the late Star Trek fan featured prominently in William Shatner's Get a Life documentary.
Dozens of vendors sold their wares and many Trek actors signed autographs at their respective booths/tables throughout the day, including Bob Picardo, Brent Spiner, Celeste Yarnall, Lois Jewell, Bobby Clark, Marina Sirtis, Gates McFadden, Michael Dorn, Chase Masterson, John de Lancie, Armin Shimerman and Kitty Swink, Max Grodenchik and more.
Meanwhile, Trek guests took to the stage in two rooms, regaling fans with stories. Creation co-CEO Adam Malin, for example, chatted with TNG guest Ben Vereen, then opened the floor to fan questions. At the end of his time on stage, Vereen said "Live long and prosper," and then, smiling broadly, added, "I always wanted to say that!"
Other stage appearances combined talent, as when Martha Hackett, Jeffrey Combs and Casey Biggs joined forces. In other instances, actors didn't hold traditional Q&A sessions. Ethan Phillips and Rene Auberjonois, for example, put on a ribald comedy show. Later, Armin Shimerman, Casey Biggs and Jeffrey Combs performed their most-beloved scenes by Shakespeare.
StarTrek.com offered another panel later: Star Trek Federation Revealed. John Van Citters from CBS Consumer Products and author David A. Goodman previewed the upcoming book. Fans were treated to a trailer, previously unseen images and insider revelations.
Thousands of fans gathered for Nichelle Nichols on the main stage. Asked about Nichols' recent meeting with President Barack Obama, she told about the President entering the room and saying "I've had a crush on Uhura since I was a teen." She also revealed that while it was her idea to do a Vulcan salute photo, that the President loved the idea. Nichols added that President Obama is "a real Trekker".
Nichols also took a few moments to talked about her work with NASA and specifically her efforts in the original recruitment drive to diversify the astronaut program. She told the story about her first meeting with NASA administrators and her concerns about whether they would follow-through with the diversification. Nichols also disclosed that Sally Ride was one of her recruits.
Also, throughout the day, more than 20 Trek figures joined fans for photo opps and autograph sessions. Some of the names included de Lancie, Vereen, Nichols, Picardo, Gregory Itzin, Sirtis, Masterson, Auberjonois and Phillips together and more.
And on and on it went. Evening events included a sold-out Borg Resistence Is Futile Party & Bingo Game and a Gold Dinner Celebration in the famed Voodoo Lounge.
Today (Friday)'s events include:
10am: The DeForest Kelley Theatre - Brasilia Ballroom
StarTrek.com presents Trek Girls: Who is a Trek Girl and how did she become one?
Join our panel of female Trek fans as they discuss how female fandom has evolved over the years, particularly in the Star Trek universe. Fangirl expert, Ashley Ekstein will get Trek Girls and the audience talking about why they love the series, and why now is the best time to be a woman, and a fan.
Eckstein gives followers a unique point of view, having founded Her Universe, a new merchandise line featuring fashionable, feminine apparel and accessories designed specifically for fangirls. Having an expert in the world of female fandom will make this an event you won't want to miss.
12:10 pm: The DeForest Kelley Theatre - Brasilia Ballroom
StarTrek.com presents Trek Treasures: What's the value of your Trek treasure?
How can you tell what is real Trek treasure or a rip-off? Alec Peters, StarTrek.com guest blogger and CEO of Propworx, an auction house for Hollywood studios, invites fans to bring their Trek treasures to the Las Vegas convention for a free valuation. He will also offer tips to identify a real Trek treasure versus a fake prop.
Alec Peters has been a Star Trek fan since he first watched TOS on TV in the 60's. He started collecting screen-used Star Trek props and costumes at the Christie's Star Trek Auction in 2006 and then turned his passion into a business. His blog, StarTrekProps.com is the leading website for information on collecting Star Trek props & costumes.
7:15 pm: The DeForest Kelley Theatre - Brasilia Ballroom
StarTrek.com presents One Trek Mind LIVE:
StarTrek.com's humor, nostalgia and list-making columnist Jordan Hoffman invites fans to join him for four fan-centric sessions. Together they will debate and determine new "best-of"s for various Trek topics. Todays's topic is: Best Next Generation Episode. With luck, the session will confirm your most closely held beliefs and enrage you with their wrongheadedness – most likely at the same time.
Click HERE to view the full list of scheduled events & check back tomorrow for a recap of day two at Creation Entertainment's Official Star Trek Convention.
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