Affiche de la prochaine Convention US à la Nouvelle Orléans
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They started in 88. the first ones were commercial events oganized by the specialized firm Creation, sometimes 'twinned' with other shows, but starting in 1990, the B&B fans took the matter in their own hands with the first Tunnelcon in Vegas, followed by two others. Ever since, yearly US and almost-yearly UK cons have been organized by fans. Two years of hard work, and a financially risky business.

Logically enough, the most regular and best-attended B&B cons are

In the USA

(this way for the rest of the world and the cybertunnels)

Though at the beginning the attendance neared the thousand, the B&B conventions nowadays painfully gather a hundred participants, more or less depending on the year, and resemble more a family reunion than a big, money-making machine like some other shows' huge commercial-run conventions. It's both an advantage and an inconvenient. The main inconvenient is monetary. Those small conventions strive to make ends meet and can no longer afford guests like Ron Perlman, who's become too expensive. His last official participation in Orlando in 99 all but bankrupted the Con. He did make a short appearance at the banquet the next year in LA, but it was only a 'neigborly' visit his friends had dragged him into.

Ron with David Schwartz and Edward Albert
in Orlando in 99  Photo Marina
ron and lisa
Ron and his "double" Lisa Gould
Orlando 99  Photo Marina

Roy Dotrice and Ron Perlman
Los Angeles 2000

On the other hand, the advantages of small numbers are legion. Warmth, friendship, interactivity, relaxed atmosphere and peals of laughter, the first reason for coming to a B&B con is to spend time with the 'family'. The guests are  approachable, mingle easily with the group and those who have come to many Cons have become themselves a part of the family. No faraway unapproachable stars protected by bodyguards or endless hours in autograph lines just to get a chance to say hello. 

Dîner avec 'Mouse'  LA 2007  Photo Chandler

The US conventions usually take place around July 10th, Friday to Sunday. Add-on activities are usually scheduled on Thursday, Monday and Tuesday, for those who want spend the week together. The schedule can differ depending on the city and the guests, but there are a few fixed traditional features.

The Opening and Closing ceremonies

The panels, all kinds of activities and games proposed by fans, or Q&As with the guests.

The Talent Show offered by the participants, generally coupled with a costume parade

Costumes  LA 2007  Photo Suze Howe

The Banquet: everyone dresses up on Saturday night for a formal dinner, during which the traditional candle lighting ceremony takes place.

The Dealers' Room, where tables offer all kinds of B&B merchandise, official or fan-made: zines, T-shirts, art and various other stuff.

The auctions: offering art, zines and B&B related stuff, they are often led by one or several of the guests and are a show in their own right. The profits may go to the owners of the stuff, help finance the Con or go directly to the Con charity (there's always one, a tradition linked to the show's spirit)

Myhr, David Schwartz and Jay Acovone
NYC 2001  Photo Marina

Every convention has a name, most of the time a quote from B&B, and a logo printed on all the con merchandise, T-shirt, conzine (a collection of fanfic and fanart) and the con tote-bag every attendant gets on registering, generally filled with delightful and useful goodies. Sometimes there are also con mugs and other merchandise.

The guests

Ren Woods (Edie)

Terrylene (Laura)
'speaking with her hands'

Caitlin O'Heany (Brigit O'Donnell)

Lee Holdridge (composer), Wendy Pini (author of the B&B graphic novels)    
et James Avery (Winslow) LA 2007
(photo Suze)

Franc Luz (Kristopher Gentian) in "Vincent's chamber"
New Jersey 2008

In twenty years, almost every B&B actor (plus other people who worked on the show) participated in one or several Cons, with the notable exception of Linda Hamilton who never wished to attend. Frequent visitors like Roy Dotrice (Father), Jay Acovone (Joe), David Greenlee (Mouse), producer David Schwartz, scenarist Linda Campanelli... are now 'part of the family'. As was  Edward Albert (Elliot Burch), who died in 2006. His warmth and kindness are sorely missed.

Edward Albert à NYC en 2001
Photo Marina


For more pics, go to the Conventions section of Marina's website.

A couple of con reports

         San Francisco 2003       New Jersey 2008

all pics and reports of LA 2007 and New Jersey 2008 


And outside the USA?               Back to Menu