All posts by Sharon VanBlarcom

#FarpointCon2020 Thanks!

Everyone on the Farpoint Convention 2020 committee and staff sends thanks to our guests, vendors and attendees for a wonderful weekend! We are very glad you were with us. Please take all precautions necessary to avoid the Coronavirus pandemic we are currently facing because we want to see everyone at Farpoint Convention 2021, to be held February 19-21, 2021 at the Delta Hotel by Marriott, Hunt Valley, MD. #FarpointCon2021

10 Things To Do At #FarpointCon2020 – First Visit Edition

This is the fourth in a series of posts covering different things to do at #FarpointCon2020 for various attendee groups. If this is your first time attending Farpoint Convention, welcome! We’re glad you’re here and want you to enjoy yourself this weekend. Here are some suggestions for you on things to do during the convention. Places and times from there activities will be found on our convention schedule.

  1. Attend the Opening Ceremony on Friday evening. It starts with a Cocktail Party at 7:00 and there will be cash bars for drinks and food. The Food Bar wristband must be purchased before the program starts at our Registration desk. At 8:00, our hosts will introduce the 2020 Volker/McChesney Award for Service to Fandom winner, leading to a short live auction for our charities and ending with a performance by cabaret performer D’Manda Martini. Many of our guests and attendees will be there and it is a great chance to relax and make new friends.
  2. Attend the Saturday evening Masquerade Costume Contest, or better yet join in as a contestant! Entrants of all ages and costuming experience levels are welcome.
  3. Check out the schedule of panels on favorite movies and television shows and attend the panel focusing on your favorite.
  4. Attend the talk on NASA’s Artemis program to learn the latest plans for USA’s return to the Moon.
  5. Attend talks on Saturday or Sunday (or both) by our celebrity guests Penny Johnson Jerald, Anthony Montgomery and Mary Chieffo and visit them at their signing table for autographs.
  6. Grab a snack in our Marty’s Place Con Suite.
  7. Dance until you drop at our Ten Forward Party Saturday evening.
  8. Play a game or make a craft in Hal’s Place Gaming Oasis.
  9. Enjoy karaoke with the Pack Ratz on Friday evening.
  10. Visit the Art Show and Silent Auction, where you can pick up an original work or find that missing piece for your collection.

This is just a small selection of the many things to do at Farpoint Convention! Drop us a line after the convention and let us know what your favorite was. Maybe even suggest an activity for next year! Details on submitting a Programming Application for #FarpointCon2021 will be published in spring 2020.

10 things to do at #Farpointcon2020 – Young Adult edition

This is the third in a series of posts covering different things to do at #FarpointCon2020 for various attendee groups. If you’re a fan between the ages of 12 and 20, we’re glad you’re here and want you to enjoy your time with us! Here are some suggestions for you on things to do during the convention. Places and times for these activities will be found on our convention schedule.

  1. Visit the Video Game Lounge in our Marty’s Place Con Suite. Grab a snack in the suite and pick up a controller from our array of video game consoles to challenge friends or family.
  2. Attend the Saturday evening Masquerade Costume Contest, or better yet join in as a contestant! Entrants of all ages and costuming experience levels are welcome.
  3. Visit our Dealer’s Room – there will be toys, books, games and more for fans of every age to find that perfect item.
  4. Check out the schedule of panels on favorite movies and television shows and attend the panel focusing on your favorite.
  5. Learn how to (safely) duel your parent or siblings with the Wizarding Association of Non-Lethal Duelists (W.A.N.D.S.) on Sunday morning.
  6. Attend talks on Saturday or Sunday (or both) by our celebrity guests Penny Johnson Jerald, Anthony Montgomery and Mary Chieffo.
  7. Visit the DC Anime Club in the Derby Room – they will be presenting a curated collection of anime movies and shows. You may find a new favorite to binge when you return home.
  8. Attend SciFi Jeopardy and see if you can answer more questions than the onstage contestants.
  9. Gamers can attend our panel discussing “Critical Role” and share your thoughts on the latest happenings in this streaming D&D game.
  10. Dance until you drop at our Ten Forward Party Saturday evening.

This is just a small selection of the many things to do at Farpoint Convention! Drop us a line after the convention and let us know what your favorite was. Maybe even suggest an activity for next year! Details on submitting a Programming Application for #FarpointCon2021 will be published in spring 2020.

10 Things to do at #FarpointCon2020 – Young Fan Edition

This is the second in a series of posts covering different things to do at #FarpointCon2020 for various attendee groups. If you’re a young fan age 12 and under, we’re glad you’re here and want you to enjoy playing and learning with us! Here are some suggestions for you on things to do during the convention. Places and times for these activities will be found on our convention schedule.

  1. Make a personalized Dice Bag when you visit Hal’s Gaming Oasis. It’s the perfect accessory for transporting your dice to and from gaming sessions.
  2. Visit the Video Game Lounge in our Marty’s Place Con Suite. Grab a snack in the suite and pick up a controller from our array of video game consoles to challenge friends or family.
  3. Create an original or learn to draw your favorite Pokemon with Art Way Alliance.
  4. Attend the Friday evening Movie Party – enjoy snacks, crafts, story time and a movie if that is more your speed than the convention Opening Ceremonies.
  5. Enjoy the Science Magic presentation where scientific principles come to life.
  6. Attend the Saturday evening Masquerade Costume Contest, or better yet join in as a contestant! There is a Young Fan category and all types of costumes are welcome.
  7. Visit our Dealer’s Room – there will be toys, books, games and more for fans of every age to find that perfect item.
  8. Check out the schedule of panels on favorite movies and television shows and attend the panel focusing on your favorite.
  9. Sing along with the Boogie Knights at their Saturday concert. Our favorite medieval troubadours return to raise their voices in merry melody.
  10. Learn how to (safely) duel your parent or siblings with the Wizarding Association of Non-Lethal Duelists (W.A.N.D.S.) on Sunday morning.

This is just a small selection of the many things to do at Farpoint Convention! Drop us a line after the convention and let us know what your favorite was. Maybe even suggest an activity for next year! Details on submitting a Programming Application for #FarpointCon2021 will be published in spring 2020.

10 Things to do at #FarpointCon2020 – Returning visit edition

This is the first in a series of posts covering different things to do at #FarpointCon2020 for various attendee groups. If you’ve attended Farpoint Convention previously, thanks for coming again! Here are some suggestions for you on things to do as a regular Farpoint attendee. Places and times for some of these activities will be announced upon publication of the convention schedule, which will be happening very soon.

  1. Attend the Opening Ceremony on Friday evening. It starts with a Cocktail Party at 7:00 pm and there will be cash bars for drinks and food. The Food Bar wristband must be purchased before the program starts at our Registration desk. At 8:00 pm, our hosts will introduce the 2020 Volker/McChesney Award for Service to Fandom winner, leading to a short live auction for our charities and ending with a performance by cabaret performer D’Manda Martini. Many of our guests and attendees will be there and it is a great chance to relax and make new friends.
  2. Test your knowledge at the Geek Trivia Challenge
  3. Learn how to (safely) duel your friends with the Wizarding Association of Non-Lethal Duelists (W.A.N.D.S.) on Sunday morning.
  4. Instead of being an audience member at the Saturday evening Masquerade Costume Contest, how about celebrating 2020 as a contestant? Entrants of all ages and costuming experience levels are welcome.
  5. Grab a snack in our Marty’s Place Con Suite and try your hand at a game in the Video Game Lounge located in the suite.
  6. Talk with authors and other readers about the influence of Star Trek in books and media in the panel “Star Trek and Contemporary Science Fiction”.
  7. Play a game or make a craft in Hal’s Place Gaming Oasis.
  8. Enjoy karaoke with the Pack Ratz on Friday evening.
  9. Visit the Art Show and Silent Auction, where you can pick up an original work or find that missing piece for your collection.
  10. Visit the DC Anime Club in the Derby Room – they will be presenting a curated collection of anime movies and shows. You may find a new favorite to binge when you return home.

This is just a small selection of the many things to do at Farpoint Convention! Drop us a line after the convention and let us know what your favorite was and maybe even suggest an activity for next year. Details on submitting a Programming Application for #FarpointCon2021 will be published in spring 2020.

Farpoint Convention 2020 Reminders!

Here is a list of upcoming deadlines to help you prepare for #FarpointCon2020, February 21-23, 2020 at the Delta Hotel by Marriott, Hunt Valley, MD.

1. The deadline for hotel room reservations at the convention rate is January 10, 2020. You can book your hotel rooms through our dedicated link.

2. The deadline for pre-registration for the convention is January 31, 2020. You can register online here.

3. We will once again be offering our member perk of 1 complimentary signature from the celebrity guest of your choice – 1 signature on Saturday and 1 on Sunday, meaning 3-day weekend members will receive 2 signatures over the weekend. Our author guests will be available at the Book Fair Friday evening, as well as at various times throughout the weekend with our performer guests at tables in the signing area. It’s a good idea to make a list of items you wish to bring with you to be signed. Right now, guests are taking cash only. We will update this information and the pricing very soon on our website.

4. Questions and suggestions are welcome and can be sent to us online via email or through our social media channels on Facebook (Farpoint Convention), Twitter (@FarpointCon), and Instagram (@FarpointCon). You can use our Farpoint27 Facebook event page to ask about particular events and/or to look for ride and room shares. We hope to see all of you this February. Thank you for your support!

Introducing Farpoint Foundation!

We are proud and happy to announce the start up of the FARPOINT FOUNDATION as of January 1, 2020. Our mission to promote the cultural and educational advancement of literary, graphical, musical and theatrical art forms inspired by science fiction, fantasy, comics, anime, horror and all realms of the imagination in our community. Farpoint Foundation will continue to organize and stage the annual Farpoint Convention, with plans to expand our mission into year-round activities supporting creators and fans of these art forms. Please continue to follow our events here on our site and on our social media channels.

Select a movie for #Farpointcon2020 Friday!

Here’s your chance to contribute to our #FarpointCon2020 #Friday programming! Our friends at Castwave Studios will be bringing us Alternative Commentary 2K20 and they want you to help choose the classic film for their live riff. Make your choice by December 31, 2019 and mark your convention schedule to make sure you’re in the audience! Click on this link to find the poll on our Facebook Events Farpoint Con 27 page!

Mary Chieffo from Star Trek Discovery at #FarpointCon2020!

Please join us in welcoming Mary Chieffo, the actor behind Star Trek Discovery‘s Klingon High Chancellor L’Rell, to our Farpoint family of legendary guests! Mary will be joining already announced guests Penny Johnson Jerald from The Orville and Anthony Montgomery from Star Trek Enterprise for all 3 days of the convention.

Mary received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Juilliard in 2015, winning the Elizabeth Smith Voice and Speech Prize and the Saint-Denis Prize for “Outstanding Achievement and Leadership in Drama.” In her fourth year, she took on the title character in Erica Schmidt’s all-female Macbeth, reprising the role with Schmidt in 2016 for Seattle Repertory Theatre’s The Other Season. After portraying Iago in October 2015 for Harlem Shakespeare Festival’s all-female Othello, Mary participated in workshops of Lover, Beloved: An Evening With Carson McCullers—a one-woman show written by Grammy Award-winning Suzanne Vega and Tony- and Grammy Award-winning Duncan Sheik. She performed the piece at the Sherry Theatre in LA and at the Alley Theatre in Houston, TX in March and August of 2016. Mary stars as Jane in the upcoming webseries Digital Detox—a futuristic rendering of Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s short story The Yellow Wallpaper—opposite her fellow Juilliard classmate Justin Lawrence Barnes, directed by Amber Benson (Buffy The Vampire Slayer). Mary hopes to use her newfound Star Trek platform to bring about greater intersectional gender equality in front and behind the scenes in the entertainment industry and beyond. To that end, Mary is currently producing, writing, and starring in a feminist, gender, and color conscious Shakespeare adaptation alongside Viola Davis and Julius Tennon’s JuVee Productions. She is thrilled to reveal more details about the project soon!

#FarpointCon2020 Welcomes The Orville’s Penny Johnson Jerald!

Penny Johnson Jerald was born in Baltimore, Maryland. She trained at the Juilliard School, where her classmates in 1982 included fellow actors Megan Gallagher, Jack Kenny, Jack Stehlin, and Lorraine Toussaint.

She currently portrays Dr. Claire Finn in the FOX show “The Orville”, with the character also hailing from Penny’s hometown of Baltimore, MD. Dr. Finn leads the ship’s staff of medical officers and has established herself as a source of strength for the rest of the senior staff.  Her presence both on the Orville’s bridge and in sick bay places her in the unique position to help the bridge officers and to communicate the needs of the rest of the ship.

Jerald began her career with small guest roles, appearing in The Paper Chase from 1984 to 1986, General Hospital in 1986, and Do the Right Thing in 1989 before playing the title character’s unflappable personal assistant, Beverly Barnes, on The Larry Sanders Show. Throughout the 1990s, Jerald guest starred in several television series, including Parker Lewis Can’t Lose, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Grace Under Fire, Cosby and Family Law.

Following Larry Sanders, Jerald appeared in the 1997 film Absolute Power and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine playing freighter captain Kasidy Yates, the love interest for the series’ main character Benjamin Sisko, a recurring role which she played from 1995 to the show’s end in 1999. She also had a recurring guest role on ER as Lynette Evans from 1998 to 1999. She then appeared as Roscoe Dellums in the Emmy Award winning TV movie The Color of Friendship. Jerald has also guest starred on Frasier, The Practice, Touched by an Angel, The X-Files and Tyler Perry’s House of Payne among her many credits.

Jerald’s arguably most-recognized role came in 2001 when she appeared in the pilot episode of the Kiefer Sutherland-led Fox series, 24, playing Sherry Palmer, the wife of Senator David Palmer. She appeared in all but two of the first season episodes and multiple episodes of the second and third seasons.

In 2003, Jerald played Condoleezza Rice in DC 9/11: Time of Crisis, a TV movie about the September 11 attacks in 2001. She reprised the role in the miniseries The Path to 9/11, which aired September 10–11, 2006.

Jerald joined the cast of ABC’s Castle in its fourth season as the new captain of the 12th Precinct, Victoria “Iron” Gates, replacing Ruben Santiago-Hudson’s deceased character Roy Montgomery as captain of the precinct.

Jerald also teaches acting workshops and produces and directs for Outreach Christian Theater Company, which she and her musician husband Gralin Jerald founded in 1994. �