(Storm Trooper Rex) and Jarden Smith (an original Storm Trooper) are
playing a virtual reality giant robot game from MechCorp at BayouCon.
Last Modified: Sunday, July 01, 2012 2:39 PM
Science fiction fans, television stars and Batman were all on hand for the first day of the annual BayouCon convention at the Lake Charles Civic Center.
The convention will continue today and be highlighted by appearances by actors JG Hertzler and Robert O’Reilly, who both appeared in the “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” television series.
Hertzler and O’Reilly appeared in costume as their Klingon characters from the Star Trek series Saturday for a question-and-answer session.
“That was the highlight of the event, we called it the Klingon Summit,” said convention organizer Justin Toney.
“Besides the gaming pod that allows you to take control of a 70-ton fighting machine, people really like that. Then there are merchants and panels and autographs and things like that. The good thing about the small conventions is that you can go right up to the actors, talk to them, have a conversation, you are not herding through a line to get an autograph.”
Shane Dison was dressed as a Klingon while attending the convention. He heads a fan group in West Monroe and is second-in-command for the central United States in a national fan club, the Klingon Assault Group.
“The series itself is an optimistic view of the future, that we may not destroy ourselves,” Dison said. “The Klingons are just the biker trash of the galaxy, so they are the most fun to play. They are always angry.”
Dison has been attending conventions for the past five years and dressing as a Klingon for more than a decade.
“Sometimes people are scared, sometimes people love it,” he said of the costume. “The fans here love it. I did a panel earlier on how to make your own Klingon head piece earlier and am always willing to help people make their own costumes or join the Assault Group. We have about 5,000 members worldwide. We have 23 in the Monroe group, we do conventions all over Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi and attend Klingon sword tournaments. I have loved this weekend. (Hertzler and O’Reilly) are great guys, to be able to see them in costume and make-up is a real treat.”
Another panelist is Eric Leblanc of New Orleans, who operates the Sci-Fi Actor Appearances Web site, which provides fans with schedules of public appearances by their favorite actors. Leblanc’s panel today is “Getting Autographs Without Breaking the Bank.”
“I had come to this convention last year just for fun, and I thought it would be cool to come this year to promote the site,” he said. “I met a couple from Memphis that said they were here because they found out about it through my site, that was pretty cool. I love sci-fi, and getting to meet guys that played characters that I enjoyed is fun.“
Activities today include appearances by Hertzler and O’Reilly at 4 p.m., panels on a variety of topics, a gaming room and film festival. The convention will be open 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
For more information on the convention and for a schedule of events, go online to http://www.bayoucon.net.