I am sure by now, you have all read the different accounts of the bash from a variety of people. And as the saying goes, perception is reality. I think what one brings from an experience is a result of what a person takes into that experience.
I thoroughly enjoyed myself, and that is mostly due in part to the people that I spent most of my time with. They are dear friends and if we were the only ones there, I would have had just as much fun.
Now, the festivities, well we all know the BMIFC really knows how to throw a party. You have plenty to do, to see, and to eat. The seating was difficult at the cocktail party and dances, but wrangling the wait staff for more chairs was easy enough. Yes, I know cocktail parties are meant to mingle - yeh right, a Manilow cocktail party, people sit and stay okay? Otherwise, everything was all good there.
The shows were great, but that is surely no surprise.
Friday night during the after party, Barry surprised us by showing up. It never ceases to amaze me the audacity of some people. While he was making his way through the crowd (surrounded of course - he had CJ, Keely, Kirsten, Gary and Marc all around him), some chick still managed to plant a kiss on him AND she mentioned it "I kissed Barry on the cheek." Hmmmmm, I would not have done anything like that let alone tell anyone. By the time he made his way around to where I remained seated, he had the most panic stricken look on his face. Who could blame him right? There was only myself and another lady seated on the side he went out, he spoke and continued out the door.
Now, I truly think the scene was partially Barry's fault. I believe if he had alerted the Stiletto group they could have made an announcement for everyone to remain in their places - it would have been a little more orderly. Granted, everyone would not adhere to the announcement, but I think for the most part, it would not have been the mob scene that I witnessed. I was awestruck, and I was not going to even venture that way, my butt remained in my seat and he came my way, and I got a greeting anyway - so it was good.
I think the create your own ornament was fun. My ornament started out the way I wanted, and then it got a mind of its own. This is the reason I purchase ornaments. :)
The Secret Santa Gift Exchange was really a good idea, the sad part of it was that it appeared that everyone did not bring gifts because there were a lot of Barry Christmas bags going around with Manilow Merchandise inside them. Sad, everyone was asked to not spend more than $10 on a gift, if you can shell out the money for the damn bash, surely you could spend a couple of bucks for a gift. *rolling eyes* There were some gifts that people actually spent some time on, a Manilow M&P table runner, shadow boxes, etc. Really creative.
The one thing about the bash that I was thoroughly disappointed in were the show seats. They sucked with my first convention and they sucked this time. I signed up for the bash on the first day the package went on sale, within a few minutes after they went on sale. And I was seated in M2, Row K. Good view for the catwalk, but far away from everything else. The second night I was M3 row F. I was very unhappy. Very.
Sure Garry gave the explanation about seating all of the fans in one section. We are not asking for that, why not all the way across (M1, M2 and M3) right behind one another. I figured out how we were seated - fans one row, civilians the next, and so on. So, the fans were seated every other row. We have to endure being yelled at to sit down, and tapped on the shoulder - why? Why can we not enjoy the show? Why do the civilians get better seats than we do?
As much as I love the events and fun things to do with the bashes and conventions, I don't know if I will invest in another. I will attend the shows during that time because Barry pours his whole heart into them, but I cannot justify to myself the money being spent and having bad seats when it IS a fan event.
The suggestion I would make when the survey comes out is to offer a "No Show" package, that way, those interested in the bash activities can participate in those and be responsible for their own tickets. Plus, that would eliminate the BMIFC having to worry about the seats as well. I think more people would probably be interested in that. Some of the people I spoke to were just as unhappy with their seats as I was. Seriously, that is my only complaint about the entire weekend, I love the parties, question/answer sessions, activities, etc., but I like having good seats without some grumpy asses sitting behind me not understanding how we show our appreciation to Barry.
Casey, who was the MC for most of the events, is totally adorable and I hope he continues because he is really personable to everyone. The other guy, not so much, he was selective, but those ladies that he graced his attentions on seem to drool over him. Chris, and the other guys were wonderful; Kirsten, Ruth and Vicki were all personable and a delight as always.
Well, back to the real world now as I anxiously await my next trip. Hell the real world is what funds my Manilow excursions, so I better get back huh?