Norman, Leigh-Anne and the Dixon’s Vixens lighter.
Vixen Leigh-Anne (@ButtrscotchBoom) went to Spooky Empire Weekend in Orlando, FL this past weekend and she had a great time! Although we think the lighter was a wonderful gift (and is super cool – how come just Norman gets one?), judging from the condition of Norman’s shirt above maybe we should give him something different at the next con? Here are some more photos and her report from the weekend…
My boyfriend and I arrived in Orlando from Atlanta, checked into the hotel, and then headed out for a bite to eat and some sight-seeing. After getting back to the hotel, we decided to have some drinks at the pool bar with the convention early birds. Little did we know that Anthony Michael Hall had the same idea. There was a spattering of people at the bar when he showed up around 11 p.m., and he was gracious to every single one of us. The only awkward moment of the night was that the DJ actually had the nerve to play “Weird Science” … twice.
We slept in and then did a little more sightseeing in Orlando early in the day before heading to the convention center to check things out when it opened. The first super sweet guy we met was Jon Bernthal (Shane from The Walking Dead). We chatted with him for a few minutes about the fact that we were from Atlanta and about Season 2 of TWD. He asked what the weather was like in Atlanta when we left for Orlando, and I could see a look of dread come over his face when I told him it was pretty much as hot there as it was in Orlando. He still seemed really excited about filming the next season of the show, though. He’s an extremely nice guy, and not so bad on the eyes either.
After meeting Jon, I went over to the Zombie Survival Crew booth to introduce myself to fellow Vixen Juliette. [Edit: Juliette filed her weekend report and posted pics over on the Zombie Survival Crew site.] Anthony Guajardo (Miguel from the TWD “Vatos”) and his mom, Lisa, were with Juliette at the ZSC table. Little did I know at the time that this meeting would lead to some of the best memories of the entire weekend. I love these two ladies, and Anthony is an absolute angel. He is mature beyond his years and has the demeanor of someone who comes from good people, as we say in the South.
The plan for Friday afternoon had been to give Norman the Zippo. As much of the Twitterverse knows, those plans were slightly derailed when he tweeted that he wouldn’t be in town until later that night. We spent some time perusing the vendor booths, eating dinner, and meeting new people. After all of that we headed back to the signing room around 9:30 p.m. just to see what was going on. I just happened to peek in and saw Norman sitting there with no one in line, so I knew it was the perfect moment even though I didn’t have half of the things in order I wanted (like the freaking video cameras).
I introduced myself as one of Dixon’s Vixens and his reponse was, “I love The Vixens!” He was so stoked when I gave him the Zippo that he gave me a big hug saying, “You’re so sweet! Thank you!” I then asked for a photo and autograph after which he gave me another hug and even a quick kiss on the cheek. Needless to say, I almost fainted but somehow managed to compose myself enough to tweet some of Dixon’s Vixens about the moment.
We started out the day with The Walking Dead panel at 1 p.m. where we had front-row seats to witness the family-like dynamic of the cast and learn about some special effect secrets from the amazing Greg Nicotero. We followed up the TWD panel with the Bruce Cambell Q&A at 4 p.m. He had the crowd rolling with laughter and he still looks as handsome as ever.
After snagging an autograph and photo with the hilarious Sean Patrick Flanery, we decided to rest up for VIP party, which started at 8 p.m. There, I saw Norman and Jon again and met Steven Yeun, who portrays Glenn on TWD. After the 30th Anniversary celebration of Evil Dead, Juliette, Lisa, Anthony, my boyfriend and I decided to head down to the pool bar. Drinks, drinks and more drinks pretty much sums up the rest of the evening.
By this time, the weekend had started to take it’s toll on everyone’s energy. Thankfully, we managed to make it to the Evil Dead reunion panel in time to get good seats and then made our way up to the front row for The Boondock Saints panel. Norman had to leave early to catch a flight back to Georgia for filming of TWD, but as always, Sean filled the void with his antics and great stories. After the BDS panel, I ended my Mayhem convention experience with an autograph I thought would be impossible to get without missing everything else because his line was always out the door. Luckily, I caught Bruce Campbell just as he was about to leave and I was able to get his signature after all. That moment, hugs and a kiss from Norman, drinks with Rocco and making some amazing new friends like Juliette and Lisa made for a pretty awesome weekend.