BY LUKE CHEESEMAN
It’s Dragon Con weekend, the southeast’s biggest and most fan-centric Comics and Fandom convention. Going strong after three decades, Dragon Con is still the place to be for fans who like the family-like feeling. Here’s THE CON GUY’s survival guide. First up, THE CON GUY show, where we discuss the ins and outs of Dragon Con:
THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW FOR DRAGON CON
Whether you’re a first-timer or a Dragon con veteran, we break down the things you need to know, do, and see to get the most out of Dragon Con. And we throw in a few Dark Horse picks just to keep it interesting. Here’s your SURVIVAL GUIDE.
- WHERE: Dragon Con is held at five host hotels: the Hyatt Regency Atlanta, Atlanta Hilton, Sheraton Atlanta, Atlanta Marriott Marquis and the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel and at AmericasMart.
- COST: On-site membership is $140 for the entire weekend. One-two- and three-day memberships start at $40. Registration is at the Sheraton Atlanta Hotel.
- MARTA (trains): If you take MARTA, the best stop is Peachtree Center Station. MARTA said on Twitter that extra trains will run Saturday morning for the parade and the rest of the day’s events. The recommended stations are Civic Center, Peachtree Center and Five Points.
- PARKING: Dragon Con has partnered with Parking Panda, which allows visitors to search and reserve parking before the trip or on the go. View real-time availability and pricing at lots within easy walking distance to Dragon Con events. Parking Panda is also available at 800-232-6415.
- DRAGON CON APP: The Dragon Con app for iOS and android users. The app can also be viewed on desktop. Features includes a map, event schedule, speakers and an option to create an itinerary for the convention.
WATCHING THE DRAGON CON PARADE
One of the best and most unique things about Dragon Con is that it has its own parade! By some estimates, it is the largest parade annually in the city of Atlanta… here’s what you need to know to watch. The 2017 parade kicks off on Saturday, Sept. 2 at 10 a.m. But get there early, because 65,000 people are expected to pack downtown Atlanta for the convention and parade. The parade breaks up in front of the Marriott Marquis, so if you want to try to catch somebody to get a picture that’s the place to do it.
Parade Route: It launches at Peachtree Street and Linden Ave, going South on Peachtree passing the Hyatt Regency and taking a left onto Andrew Young International Blvd (at the Westin). Continuing one block on Andrew Young and taking another left onto Peachtree Center Ave. and continuing to the Marriott Marquis where the parade ends. The route is almost one mile.
Parking: In addition to DragonCon, the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game is at the Georgia Dome. The big decks on International or Baker near Williams/Spring may be good choices. If they’re full, you may have to park farther away and walk to the parade route. Also use Parking Panda.
Watch on TV on online: If you can’t make the parade in person, you can watch on DRAGON CON TV. That’s right, Dragon Con streams much of its convention, including the parade, on its own streaming service.
Weather policy: The weather policy is they march rain or shine unless the weather poses a threat to life or property. There is no rain date — the window is Saturday morning at 10 a.m. (until Noon’ish).