At this point, Fragapalooza 2009 has been finished for well over a week. I wanted to get this post out earlier, however business travel for the week after the event prevented me from uploading all of the pictures and photos that I took, and I wanted to make sure they were all up on the internet before posting. Fragapalooza 2009 was a fantastic event. This was my third year attending Fragapalooza, at a third different location. When I first learned of the location change, I was worried. However, Fragapalooza 2009 came away as my favorite event, except for the lack of a rock-paper-scissors contest of course. That was desperately missed.
I have already posted detailed accounts of what I brought, initial setup, Tent city, Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, and Day 4, which you can read. What I don't necessarily convey in those posts is just how much fun the event really was. The smaller size of the venue actually made the event feel a lot more fun, and it felt like I was closer to everyone, even sitting near the rear of the venue.
The venue itself was fantastic. We were on the indoor soccer field at the DOW Centennial Center. Actually being on the field was nice. The turf was still down, and provided a us with a nice environment to walk in. The aisles were a little narrow, but nothing terrible. Overall the event felt very cozy, much more than my previous times.
The staff were awesome. I could say so much more, but there isn't much more to say. Aside from a couple hiccups, which can be expected when you set up a network for 400 people in 16 hours, everything ran very, very smoothly. The staff pour hundreds of their own hours in to make sure we can have the best experience possible, and every year they pull it of beyond my expectations. They should be applauded for their near herculean efforts.
The contests this year were very good, except for the lack of my favorite, the afore mentioned rock-paper-scissors contest. There were random contests like usual, a foam dart war, a dodgeball game, the wall sit, and the Rock Band tournament. I participated in everything except for the Rock Band tournament, won nothing, but came out happy.
Were there hiccups? Yes. There always are. You cannot run an event with 400 people and keep all of them happy. The air conditioning broke, and the DOW staff were amazing at keeping what was left of the AC running, and allowing us to keep extra doors open at night for air flow. Tent city was small, and cramped, and not a great experience this year, but I managed.
Overall the event was the best one yet, and if at all possible, I will be there next year, without a doubt.
I took a ton of pictures and videos of the event. You can find the pictures at my flickr page here.
You can find the videos on youtube. The Pencil Sharpening contest has 4 videos, heat 1, heat 2, heat 3, and the final. The foam dart war can be found here. I don't have a full video of the Foam Dart War, as I only started taking video after I got knocked out. Lastly, I took video of every single performance at the Rock Band tournament. Sorry for the ones that are not in HD, my mino HD was full and had a dead battery, so I was forced to use my digital camera for some of them. The playlost with every video is here. The staff band is here.