Anime Crossroads 4

Anime Crossroads was held for the fourth year at the Indianapolis Marriott East, over the weekend of December 7-9, 2012. This year we had been given more responsibility for the dealers' room, so we had sent out several mailings over the previous week to inform dealers of important facts and procedures. By doing so, we were hoping to avoid unpleasant surprises for our dealers and ensure everything went as smoothly as we could make it.

Because dealer load-in and setup began on Thursday evening, we got there early Thursday afternoon to make sure everything was in order. Doe the most part we waited, and I got a review written on a book I'd finished reading.

Once the hotel finally turned the dealers' room over to us, we discovered some problems in the layout the hotel staff had provided us. So we ended up working on fixing the problems even as several early-arriving dealers were loading in, which meant we had to make some adjustments even as setup was in progress. We also had some problems caused by communication failures, but most of them were resolvable with reasonable ease. Within a few hours things became routine enough that I could sit down and write another book review for a book I wanted to get back to the library.

By midnight we were tired and ready to go to bed. However, our night wasn't over yet, because once we got all the dealers out, we couldn't get the door to lock properly. So we had to call hotel security, who showed us how to get it to lock. By the time we got home, got the cat fed, and got to bed, it was 1AM.

The next morning came way too early, but we had to drag ourselves over there and get the dealers' room open so our dealers could finish setting up. At least an energy drink and a couple of caffeinated pops were able to keep me awake enough to function, and I was even able to get a couple more book reviews written while I was sitting at the dealer control table.

When we closed to the public, it took a fair amount of time for our dealers to close their booths for the night so we could close up and get home. Part of the delay was one dealer relocating their setup to the area another dealer had failed to claim.

On Saturday morning I had another activity in the morning, for which I had to get up very early. When it was over, I headed over to the hotel to join my husband, who'd opened the dealers' room for setup. Because I'd been up so early, I was really tired, so I didn't get a lot done in the afternoon. I did get some work done on a couple of book reviews, but by the time we closed the dealers' room for the night and headed home, I was very glad to be able to get to bed.

Sunday came far too early, as we headed back to the hotel earlier than strictly necessary because we wanted to have some things prepared when dealers and artists started arriving. We had some bad weather in the forecast, and were concerned that it could cause difficulties in load-out, so we wanted to be prepared.

Fortunately, everything went reasonably smoothly, and after our brief meeting with our dealers and artists to go over critical information, we opened the doors for sales.

Because of the weather and slow sales, several of our dealers wanted to load out early. We couldn't open the loading dock door while we still had customers in the dealers' room, so we opened the last emergency door and stationed one of our safety people on it to make sure only the dealer and their designated helpers came in and out.

Once we actually closed the dealers' room, I sat at the door to let people know we were closed, since several dealers and artists were loading out through the front rather than using the loading dock. Because of the rain, we were concerned that load-out would take longer than normal and we wouldn't be able to get the room back to the hotel by the appointed time. As it turned out, the rain had already ended, and although the pavement was wet, dealers were able to load out fairly rapidly. We actually did our last checks, closed the loading-dock door, and locked up the room with half an hour to spare.

Then we headed over to main events to wait for the dead dog party. Because everything had been planned on the basis that getting the dealers' room clear would run late, we ended up waiting almost an hour for the party to begin. But once it did begin, it was great. This year we had sandwiches instead of pizza, and there were also chips and some Japanese snacks.

By the time we got done, I was very glad to be heading home for bed. However, I was already energized to plan promotional activities for next year.

Copyright 2013 by Leigh Kimmel

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Last updated February 1, 2013.