Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Miss Star Trek Universe 2012

There's only one pageant like it in the world...in all of the Cosmos for that matter—and it's the Miss Star Trek Universe Pageant

This year's Pageant, held Labor Day Weekend at Dragon*Con in Downtown Atlanta (the center of the pageant Universe!), was won by a Vulcan...a very funny Vulcan.

Miss Star Trek Universe 2012, Dragon*Con
Miss Star Trek Universe 2012, Dragon*Con
This year's crowned winner is pictured here with Garret Wang, Trek Track Director and Ensign Harry Kim on Star Trek: Voyager, and Miss Star Trek Universe 2011.

Miss Star Trek Universe 2012, Dragon*Con
Miss Star Trek Universe 2012, Dragon*Con
Among the dozen contestants was "Kim Cardassian"—far left—and a delegation of beauties from other planets...from the Alpha Quadrant and one from the Delta Quadrant, as well as a couple of representatives from Earth.

Miss Star Trek Universe 2012, Dragon*Con
Miss Star Trek Universe 2012, Dragon*Con
The judges panel was indeed distinguished. Nichelle Nichols, Lt. Uhura from Star Trek: The Original Series; David Gerrold, author of "The Trouble With Tribbles" (the most popular episode ever of the original Star Trek series); and a representative from Garrett Wangs t-shirt company, Cosmic City Tees, were wooed by the contestants during fashion, talent, and question segments of the pageant.

Miss Star Trek Universe 2012, Dragon*Con
Miss Star Trek Universe 2012, Dragon*Con
The talent portion ranged from performances of opera to a stand-up comedy routine. The Orions danced, of course. And some musical instruments made their way to the stage. Without a doubt, the contestants were a very talented group!

Miss Star Trek Universe 2012, Dragon*Con
Miss Star Trek Universe 2012, Dragon*Con
This was the third annual Miss Star Trek Universe Pageant and based on the thousands of conventioneers who attended, this particular pageant will :live long and prosper."

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Football Season is Here! Go Falcons!

I can hardly believe football season is already here! As a tourist, if you find yourself needing or wanting a little push to get into the spirit, take a guided tour of Georgia Dome, home of the Atlanta Falcons...it's a totally awesome experience!

Georgia Dome, Home of the Atlanta Falcons
Georgia Dome
Home of the Atlanta Falcons
I wrote about the tour before...and am seriously considering going again. It really was that much fun. 

The crazy thing is that of all the professional sports I've seen live (baseball, basketball, tennis, soccer, hockey, etc.), football is the one that I've never been to a live game of. I need to correct that and I think my hometown Falcons are the ones to help me out!

Enjoy the above pre-sized Facebook Cover Photo, head over to the wanderlust ATLANTA Facebook Page ("Like" it while you're there!), and then get back to the game!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Dragon*Con 2012

"Live long and prosper" and may we all attend many, many more Dragon*Cons! This year's Dragon*Con was totally awesome!

When I checked in on Friday morning, I heard (unofficially) that more than 46,000 conventioneers had already registered. And that doesn't include the walk-ups over the four days of the Convention. Those tens of thousands of people—many in-the-know—were about to embark on a journey unlike any in Atlanta...or nearly anywhere else in the U.S. for that matter.

Travis S. Taylor with R2-D2
Me with R2-D2
With nearly 400 celebrity guests attending, I had a long list of who I wanted to meet, see, hear and rub elbows with. The top of that list was Nichelle Nichols--the pioneering character Lt. Uhura on Star Trek: The Original Series.

I indeed got to meet her and got to see her another several times throughout the Convention, on panels and as a judge at the third annual Miss Star Trek Universe pageant. Nichelle is incredible! When I asked her if she's still having fun doing all the Trek stuff, she told me, "I only do that which brings me joy." I fell in love with her a little more at that very moment.

At one of the panels, one of the conventioneers recalled Nichelle's television first—the first interracial kiss, with Captain Kirk (William Shatner). After talking a few moments more, Nichelle motioned him to come to the stage and...you guessed it...she gave him a kiss.

Cosplayers at Dragon*Con 2012
Dragon*Con 2012
There were countless moments like that throughout the Convention...I had so much fun!

On the first day, before I got to the first host hotel, there just a few feet away from me was Richard Hatch (Apollo on the original Battlestar Galactica). Later I passed Aaron Douglas from the newest Battlestar Galactica, and later in the Convention I passed Virginia Hey (Farscape) in the hallway and told her how much I love her work. Also got to see John Barrowman, Jamie Bamber, Lou Ferrigno, Katee Sackoff, Sean Maher, Dean Cain, Gil Gerard, and way too many more to list here.

Okay...a few more...these are all from Star Trek. I also got to see Jonathan Frakes, Robert Picardo, Tim Russ, Michael Dorn, Garrett Wang, and Connor Trineer who I got an autograph from, chatted with and shook his hand.

Dragon*Con 2012
Dragon*Con 2012
Yes. It's true. I'm a celebrity-spotter. And I'm proud of it. It's all in good fun...no stalking whatsoever. Really. And Atlanta has proven to be quite great for celebrity-spotting...Dragon*Con included.

So, there was also the Dragon*Con Parade, the Miss Star Trek Universe pageant, panels, scientific presentations, movie nights, parties, an artist alley, and tons and tons of cosplayers graciously willing to pose for photographs.

Next year, I think I'm going to get a room at one of the host hotels...and spend 24 hours-a-day at the Con instead of 10-12!

Trekkers at Dragon*Con 2012
Trekkers at Dragon*Con 2012

Thursday, September 6, 2012

New IMAX Shows at Fernbank

The Fernbank Museum of Natural History has several new shows available on its IMAX screen, with one that's shown exclusively during Martinis & IMAX.

Fernbank Museum of Natural History
Fernbank Museum of Natural History
The current lineup is:
"Rescue" - now through November 15
"Africa's Elephant Kingdom" - now through November 15
"To the Arctic" - held over through November 15
"Cirque du Soleil: Journey of Man" - exclusively during Martinis & IMAX through November 30

Now then, I can't say that I've seen any of these, but each is very appealing. With cooler weather ahead, I'm hopeful to see these while they're at Fernbank. And to revisit all the dinosaurs too.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Cover: Suntrust Plaza

Suntrust Plaza is Atlanta's second tallest building at 871 feet. It's glass and gray granite, post-modern facade stands iconic in our city's skyline.

Suntrust Plaza, Downtown Atlanta
Suntrust Plaza, Downtown Atlanta
I made this photo immediately following watching the Dragon*Con Parade this year. The Parade proceeds north on Peachtree Street and banks right on Baker for its final few blocks. For the last three years, I've watched the Parade from the corner of Peachtree and Baker on the corner with Suntrust Plaza.

I clearly remember the controversy over "Ballet Olympia", a John Portman sculpture of two nude dancing ballerinas. People were up in arms and very vocal...even though the sculpture is clearly a work of art. Fortunately, the sculpture to this day graces Peachtree Street.

Enjoy the above pre-sized Facebook Cover Photo then head over to the wanderlust ATLANTA Facebook Page!