Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

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Troll Lord
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Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Troll Lord »

Hey folks,

We've been wrestling with venues and dates on this con.

Well, first thing that comes up is the setting. Davis and I have long wanted to move it out of Little Rock, to place it in a place that has a really cool atmosphere. Somewhere that we can all gather and game like it was 1066! ;) The typical hotel fair is what is offered, by all conventions because that is what is easy and usual. All the usual suspects.

What to do then, has been the discussion. One of the discussions that came up was the Castle they are building in the Ozarks. Its an actual castle being built by a French architect, in medieval fashion. Of course we would all have to game in tents and that would probably not be good...there is no electricity either. hahah

I've been wanting some type of Viking Hall. My folks have a farm in the Ozarks and I offered my pa the opportunity to build said hall, but he had a few choice, but humorous nonetheless.

So with these thoughts in mind we stumbled on Big Cedar. Its a lodge I stay at from time to time; its very cool, on a huge river/lake, has water park, horse back riding, hiking, boating, fishing etc etc. There are 3 hotel lodges and a host of cabins, etc etc. Its located in Branson, MO, about 45 minutes from the Springfield airport (there is a shuttle service I believe).

We have two sponsors lined up for the event: Fat Dragon Games and Impressions Advertising and Marketing.
Fat Dragon has committed to $50.00 in Free product with ticket purchase.
Impressions has committed to a free board game, (about $30.00) for the first to sign up (# as yet to be determined)

But this is one of the things we are considering. Before we get to much in we thought we would pitch the idea out to you guys to see what you think of it.

If we had the show in October, late, or early November at Big Cedar and the rooms were reasonable (we are working on that) who would be interested in going?

This is how it would break down: A ticket would be $100.00-$125.00.

Your ticket would come with:

Access to main hall for 3 days of gaming (here)

$50.00 in games from Fat Dragon Games
$30.00 in games from Impressions
Limited edition TLG adventure

Friday dinner meal
Saturday breakfast
Saturday lunch
Saturday dinner
Sunday breakfast
Sunday lunch

We are still deep in the planning stages on this so have made no commitments, but would like to hear from you. Mark for instance does not like this idea...give me a hall and access to taco bell he says! hahaha

Come on back!
Steve
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by AGNKim »

Team Mark.

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Christina Stiles »

I would definitely consider it. It sounds like it would be a fun atmosphere.

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by magick3six »

The website pics of the place look awesome. First question. What will it look like in late October, November? Us Florida Crew don't do the snow so much.

-Scott

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

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studio3six wrote:The website pics of the place look awesome. First question. What will it look like in late October, November? Us Florida Crew don't do the snow so much.

-Scott
There would probably not be any snow. It rarely snows in the Ozarks. That time of year the leaves are changing and it rains and is misty.

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Troll Lord »

AGNKim wrote:Team Mark.
You do understand that there would be three days of gaming in a great hall at Big Cedar where your ticket includes your meals.?

;)

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by DinoNickus »

I'm new to the forum, but I live in Fayetteville, so this sounds like a fantastic idea to me. :)

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Storycrafter »

Troll Lord wrote:
studio3six wrote:The website pics of the place look awesome. First question. What will it look like in late October, November? Us Florida Crew don't do the snow so much.

-Scott
There would probably not be any snow. It rarely snows in the Ozarks. That time of year the leaves are changing and it rains and is misty.

Steve
But this is looking like Q3/Q4?

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Troll Lord »

Storycrafter wrote:
Troll Lord wrote:
studio3six wrote:The website pics of the place look awesome. First question. What will it look like in late October, November? Us Florida Crew don't do the snow so much.

-Scott
There would probably not be any snow. It rarely snows in the Ozarks. That time of year the leaves are changing and it rains and is misty.

Steve
But this is looking like Q3/Q4?
Yes we have traditionally run the con in July and may return it to that date next year. But we would really like to move it off of Origins and Gencon. The summer months, with those two cons and with the smattering of smaller cons we go to, are very hard on the Trolls organizationally and doing TC in October eases thing greatly with us.

That would be Q4.

Steve
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Troll Lord »

DinoNickus wrote:I'm new to the forum, but I live in Fayetteville, so this sounds like a fantastic idea to me. :)
Sweet! Welcome to the forums and the game!

Your up in that neck of the woods, isn't October when the leaves are changing?

Steve
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

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Here are some images

Image

Image

Image

The entrance to the Hall:

Image
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Omote »

I'm in. I could never guarentee going in October (that's a busy month for me), but the lodge looks good and Branson is pretty cool. If we LARP in the woods, ticks and all, even better.

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by magick3six »

If the ticks in MO are as dangerous as the insects I've encountered in upstate NY, you may want to refer to them as Sir Dire Tick and move along.

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by CKDad »

At the moment I'd be a "maybe". That time of year can be tough for me to break away. Travel costs don't look as bad as I'd first feared, and are reasonably competitive with Little Rock that time of year, though more expensive - at least from a few minutes' research on Orbitz & Southwest. Meals included could be a plus, as long as there's some flexibility about timing. If it's "Your meal is free, but only if you eat in this 1-hour time block" then it becomes a much harder sell.

I'd also be curious about how it would stack up as a gaming venue. Tables (Big enough? Level enough when needed?), noise (Can I hear the gamemaster, or is the room a giant echoing cavern?), enough space so we're not crammed cheek-to-jowl like TC 2009? This is key, because remember, people are coming here to game - it's nice to be able to walk around sometimes when you need a break, but however nice the setting - I'm going to game, and am not at all interested in paying for a gorgeous setting that I'm only going to see through the windows. (For example, I left the hotel at GaryCon once, for a flying Walmart run because I'd forgotten toothpaste.)

Cost of the rooms is also going to be a big deal. For what it's worth, I tried looking at room prices and couldn't get anything for October. I was able to finally get a price for a "Premier King" room in September, and it was a whopping $309 per night. That's a definite no-go for me. Anything past $150 a night is going to be problematic - see above, I'm going to game and am unwilling to pay for atmosphere or amenities I'm not going to take advantage of. I'd ask you to keep that point in mind when looking at venues.

So, maybe. Definite style points for thinking outside the box. :) But remember what folks are really coming for.
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by snowquilter »

CKDad has a good point. I'm not sayin that I don't like the idea of atmosphere. I'm just sayin that after $300 in tickets (two of us), the weekend would most certainly top a grand for us if we can't get good off season rates.

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by moriarty777 »

Wow... it looks really nice. Of course, my knowledge of American Geography isn't perfect so I looked it up. Short answer: Too far.

Driving from Montreal would make it about a 24 drive (almost 1400 miles) so that's no going to happen. The good news is that the return trip airfare is *almost* reasonable... hehe... who am I kidding. Round trip costs around $650 and it looks like the stay I would need (single person) would be an additional $550. Add $200 for spending cash and I'd be looking at $1500.

<sigh>

Not this year. But as 'expensive' as that seems, it's kinda not I suppose but it's all perspective. It's 3 days of gaming and meeting some people that would be nice to finally meet face-to-face. Now, to echo some of what was said, atmosphere and where you choose to game is awesome and all but at the end of the day, you'll probably be gaming. For this kind of retreat, I'd make it longer (say a week) to maximize my enjoyment of it... spend more to spend a few more days there and bring the wife along. Of course, I'd be adding another $1000 for the added company with the extra ticket and room occupancy charge.

Ow.

I haven't checked in a while but I'm pretty sure I could get a cool trip for 2 to London, England for that kind of change (or for just a bit more).

;)

Say... we've got forests up here! Troll Con North!!! Montreal doesn't get snow till late fall (end of November) either. If you like to drink... we've got you covered. If you like specialty... um... 'dancers'... we've got you covered. Great food? Absolutely -- not only can you have the benefit of a real smoked meat sandwich, you can also try a *real* poutine! Don't know what a poutine is? You will by the time you leave!

I say Troll Con North all the way! I'll be glad to host the party and co-ordinate such an event!

M
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by MormonYoYoMan »

Hey, I know that place! And now I'm almost sorry we gave up our townhouse apartment in Springfield!
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Willy Rat »

Moriarty, that sounds pretty good to me! I can grab a $200 Westjet flight from Winnipeg and be there with bells on! No customs, no passport. Non-stop.
And "50" is one of my favorite beers, right behind Maudite and La Fin du Monde.

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Troll Lord »

CKDad wrote:At the moment I'd be a "maybe". That time of year can be tough for me to break away. Travel costs don't look as bad as I'd first feared, and are reasonably competitive with Little Rock that time of year, though more expensive - at least from a few minutes' research on Orbitz & Southwest. Meals included could be a plus, as long as there's some flexibility about timing. If it's "Your meal is free, but only if you eat in this 1-hour time block" then it becomes a much harder sell.

I'd also be curious about how it would stack up as a gaming venue. Tables (Big enough? Level enough when needed?), noise (Can I hear the gamemaster, or is the room a giant echoing cavern?), enough space so we're not crammed cheek-to-jowl like TC 2009? This is key, because remember, people are coming here to game - it's nice to be able to walk around sometimes when you need a break, but however nice the setting - I'm going to game, and am not at all interested in paying for a gorgeous setting that I'm only going to see through the windows. (For example, I left the hotel at GaryCon once, for a flying Walmart run because I'd forgotten toothpaste.)

Cost of the rooms is also going to be a big deal. For what it's worth, I tried looking at room prices and couldn't get anything for October. I was able to finally get a price for a "Premier King" room in September, and it was a whopping $309 per night. That's a definite no-go for me. Anything past $150 a night is going to be problematic - see above, I'm going to game and am unwilling to pay for atmosphere or amenities I'm not going to take advantage of. I'd ask you to keep that point in mind when looking at venues.

So, maybe. Definite style points for thinking outside the box. :) But remember what folks are really coming for.
Those room costs are for what they have left. That's why we haven't picked a date yet...assuming we use Big Cedar. You can get rooms there on week days for about 99.00 and on weekend ends for 140-169. But we would have to book the block way in advance. Cedar is a huge resort destination. McBain is discussing with them seeing what we can do. But for the weekend in October, 25-27 that we have given them they only have Queen rooms left..these are 300 a night. But right now, the date for us is very flexible.

The costs for YOU guys are upper most in our minds and that's why something like this is only feasible if the room costs are on par.

Big Cedar is a choice but not the only one.

One of the other places we are looking at is Petit Jean State Park. This is about 45 minutes from Little Rock and the Meet, or Thing as the Vikings called it, would be set at the Mather Lodge which sits around 100. This picture below:

Image

This is Davis' favorite. It would tickets only, up to 50 probably. The Lodge. This would be a limited ticket only Thing. But Ponca, where it is located, is deep, deep in the woods.

Steve
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Troll Lord »

Oh yeah, and no joke, we are working on a Troll Beer for this convention! Grog! Included with ticket sale.

:shock:

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by tylermo »

Distance and money will keep me from it. Even with Little Rock, I'd have been out. 10-12 hour round trip drive and all of that. If I could go, my vote is with Mr. Sandy.

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by CKDad »

But for the weekend in October, 25-27 that we have given them they only have Queen rooms left..these are 300 a night.
That would be a no-go for me. They didn't seem to have any rooms available in other weekends in October when I was looking last night, BTW.
One of the other places we are looking at is Petit Jean State Park.
I took a look at this, and I'm afraid I would pass on this as well.

Gotta do some of what they pay me to do for a while, but I'll circle back later with the things I consider important when deciding to travel to a con.
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

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For the sake of this discussion, no dates have been chosen for Troll Con. We are throwing around an October date because that is best for Troll Lord Games and our extremely busy Summers (summers are not good times for us...I haven't had a vacation with my kids in about 3 years).

But no date has been chosen yet. If Big Cedar is the destination, when we choose a date, it will have rooms available for $99-$169.00. This date might be April 2013, but we don't know yet. The discussion here is, would you as a attendee be interested in going to someplace off the normal, beaten path. And if it came with something like Big Cedar is offering you, would the $100.00 ticket, its location, the amenities, etc keep you from attending?

To be clear if we did Big Cedar, Petit Jean, etc there would be a game hall where you could game all day and night; there would be more to do than just game if you were so inclined...like me. I would set up a tent, and grill out and drink beer and smoke quite a bit. ;)

Any ideas you may have, toss 'em out, I'd love to hear them.

Steve
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Omote »

It's a Troll world after all. Why not make it a true Troll convention? I see something a little different than the normal hotel affair as a plus for Troll Con. However, there still has to be the dedicated gaming area and events, seminars, etc. Otherwise, if you do not include these usual RPG con tennents, then you have a Relax-i-con. While a Relax-i-con is not a bad idea, most attendees would not be going to Arkansas or Missouri just to hang out. Anybody who has been to a true Relax-i-con knows that it is pretty much just a Hang-Out-i-Con.

Personally, I love throwing down some dice out in the wilderlands, chiggers and all.

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Christina Stiles »

Bring it to the southeast! I bet you could get good room rates in Myrtle Beach, SC, during that time of year!

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Troll Lord »

Omote wrote:It's a Troll world after all. Why not make it a true Troll convention? I see something a little different than the normal hotel affair as a plus for Troll Con. However, there still has to be the dedicated gaming area and events, seminars, etc. Otherwise, if you do not include these usual RPG con tennents, then you have a Relax-i-con. While a Relax-i-con is not a bad idea, most attendees would not be going to Arkansas or Missouri just to hang out. Anybody who has been to a true Relax-i-con knows that it is pretty much just a Hang-Out-i-Con.

Personally, I love throwing down some dice out in the wilderlands, chiggers and all.

~O
It would certainly be a gaming convention, centered around gaming. Just with a different venue.

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by snowquilter »

Honestly, the biggest question has yet to be asked. Will the $100 ticket include all the Dr. Pepper you can drink?

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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by MormonYoYoMan »

snowquilter wrote:Honestly, the biggest question has yet to be asked. Will the $100 ticket include all the Dr. Pepper you can drink?
Yep. And when you reach for a second can or bottle, they'll take it away from you, stating "I'm sorry, but that's all the Dr Pepper you can drink for a hundred dollars."
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by Sir Ironside »

As beautiful as Montreal is (I'm in love with old Montreal) if there is going to be a Canadian Troll Con I submit; Fort William Historical Park.

Yeah it isn't the middle ages, but the 1800's, but the place and atmosphere are just awesome. And it isn't in the middle of no where and it is only about a 15 minute drive for me. :D

You'd want the Bell house or East House or both! And, my boss from the DJ company is also a higher up dude at FWHP. :lol:
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Re: Mountain Feasts (Troll Con)

Post by redwullf »

I'd go just about anywhere, but the October/November time-frame is a very difficult time of the year for me. I'm in the benefits business, and fall is "Open Enrollment" season. Very busy time of year for me. Ironically, the only real vacation I take each year is during Thanksgiving week (November), and even more ironically it's to my Dad's house, which is just outside Little Rock.

So...unless you can swing TrollCon on the weekend immediately before or after Thanksgiving, it's a no-go for me that time of year. I will have to live vicariously through everyone's pictures and commentary. :(

I realize this has nothing to do with feedback for the right location and price, but if you're interested in getting a sense of who can and who can't make it, and what those reasons would be, then this is my response. :)
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