Last weekend I attended Shore Leave 39, an old-school sci-fi con. While yes, the con is at its heart a Star Trek con, other sci-fi is celebrated as well. It has a great science track, too.
On Friday afternoon I got to gaze at the sun (and observe sun spots, and watch plasma separate from the sun) thanks to the Westminster Astronomical Society, who brought a handful of telescopes with them. There were panels on science in movies, women in sci-fi, superhero panels, LBGTQ+ panels, and a wide selection of teen programming as well. There was also a wedding and a birthday party, which was open and inclusive to everyone at the con.
As I said, it's an old-school con. Attendance usually hovers around 1500 people, which is perfect. The guest list is also pretty impressive. This year they had Kevin Sussman, Marina Sirtis, Michael Dorn, Michael Hogan, and more. One of the nicest things about this con is that they offer guests a chance to get a free autograph from select guests on Saturday evening. I wound up getting autographs from Sussman, Sirtis, and Dorn for my father. I honestly can't think of another con that offers that perk.
If you've been on the fence about Shore Leave, I implore you to visit at least once. The hotel is nice, and there's plenty of food options around the hotel. Plus, there's ample parking. You can find out more information about Shore Leave on their website. Hope to see you there next year!