Fragapalooza 2011 - That's a wrap

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Well, its the morning after.  Fragapalooza is over, and I'm recovering.  I'm actually sitting outside writing this, enjoying the sun that I saw too little of for 4 days.

Day 4 of Fragapalooza was largely un-eventful.  I played a couple of games of Starcraft II, but that was about it.  I spent most of my time in the chatroom, and actually walking around talking to people.  there aren't too many games played on the last day, as everyone is pretty tired by then.  I personally had only slept 9 hours in 3 days, so the last thing I wanted or was able to do was concentrate on gaming for a long period of time in the morning.  I spent some time packing up my tent and emptying the melted ice out of my cooler, and worked on packing up my computer.  there isn't really much more to say about the day, because that's about all that happened.

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The closing ceremonies were the standard fare, tournament winners were recognized and prizes were given away.  It's been 5 years and I have yet to win anything, not that I'm bitter at all (ok, maybe a little).  One lucky person won an Alienware m14x laptop, pretty jealous about that.  There weren't as many prizes as there were in the past mainly due to lack of sponsors.  But while I do wish there were more, it's not the reason why I go to Fragapalooza.  I would still go, even if there wasn't any prizes at all, but they do help, and make for some fun at the end.  The random contests on Saturday night are more than good enough.

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The closing ceremonies did feature one really nice gesture by the staff and volunteers.  A custom made guitar hero guitar was auctioned off.  This guitar was made mostly of wood and had the Fragapalooza logo sculpted to form the body and end piece of the guitar.  It was actually really well done, and looked fantastic.  The staff and volunteers pitched in to win the auction, and presented it to Gil Amores, the President of Fragapalooza.  It was a nice moment, and a nice way to celebrate the 15th year of Fragapalooza.

The venue itself was fantastic.  I said in my first post about this year's event that I was excited because this was going to be the first time I had been to Fragapalooza in the same venue twice.  The facility was great, I enjoyed being able to go for a swim in the morning, and having a resturant on site was nice.  Not the greatest food I've ever had, but it did the job.  The only gripe I have is that Leduc itself doesn't have a whole bunch in it, but that's a function of the size of the city itself, and something that I can live with.

I cannot talk about Fragapalooza without mentioning the staff and volunteers.  As usual, they were fantastic, and their tireless efforts are appreciated.  The staff and volunteers are just that, volunteers.  The staff work year round to make sure the event is as good as possible for those who attend, and the volunteers at the event work hard to make sure everything goes as well as possible at the event itself, giving up some of their gaming time to make sure that we all have a better time.  It's not all very glamourous, I know I wouldn't want to be the one doing the overnight security shift, but they all do important work and the event would not be possible without them.  They deserve more credit than they will ever get, as they make the event go, and I thank them for that.

Now, I came to Fragapalooza this year thinking it would be my last.  If felt like it would have been good closure.  The 15th year of ragapalooza, my 5th.  There were many factors for this, including holidays next year, other priorities, etc.  I'm still not sure if I'm going to make it next year, but II've decided that it's going to be a much higher priority than it was going to be.  This has been one of my favourite years that I've been to.  Sure, the event is not as big, and it's a little harder than it used to be to find some games to play, but I had a good time.  the main difference this year is that as time is going on, I am having as much or more fun with the people there, not just the games.  I know more people, and I spend more time actually talking to the people, not just gaming.  Fragapalooza is more fun because I know more people, and have a better time with those people, this year was most evident of that than ever before.  That is the appeal that is going to keep me coming back, more than anything else.

Fragapalooza 2011 can be called nothing short of success.  There were no major issues or glitches, everything went smoothly, and most importantly, most people if not all, had fun.  It made me want to come back when I didn't think i was going to, so it must have done something right.  Thank you, Fragapalooza, for making this year's event awesome, and I can't wait for next year.

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