Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee

Westercon 69 Day 3, Concluded: Match Game Mania!

People were asking me today why we didn't do Match Game SF on Saturday night, which I thought bode well for the Sunday show. Having learned our lesson from Friday, we started our move-in shortly after 6 PM, which was when we got the room for our 9 PM show. As it happens, we needed that time.

Match Game SF Set

This is what the set looked like just showtime, but it took a lot of work to get it to this state.

Blank Set Be Seated

This was how we found the Jefferson/Adams Room when we got there with the large cart of gear. Empty, with the chairs pushed to one side. Had it been 8 PM, we would have panicked, but at 6:30 it actually was a good thing, as we could set things up completely to suit ourselves, and we did.

Ready for an Audience

We set the chairs to make the aisles and spacing we wanted, leaving lots of space up front.

Match Game SF Contestant Set

The contestants table had better access than at the Friday night show. The tape X on the floor was where winners of the main game stood to play the Bonus Round. David W. Clark arrived early and helped up set up the tables. Because there were no table drapes, the card-stock score indicators wouldn't stay put on the tables unless you set down some tape on which they could grab, and Dave set that up for us.

Match Game SF Panelist Set

Here's Panelists Row. We didn't have risers, so we couldn't do the traditional 3 x 2 tiers, but we were able to rake things so that the panelists and contestants faced each other across the game board while the audience could still get an okay view.

Also visible here is one of the nice vinyl banners that Sasquan made for us last year. One is the MGSF logo and the other is the contestant front-of-table banner.

Match Game SF at Westercon

Just before 9 PM, we were ready to roll.

Westercon 69 MGSF Panel

Here's the panel of stars for Sunday night's show. Lee Moyer, in seat 5, was really into his part in his first appearance on the show. (I hope it won't be his last.)

New Kid on the Panel

Seth Breidbart was sitting in for davidlevine, who was called away on a family medical emergency. Seth was pretty good at this, and had a decent number of matches.

I was impressed at how full the room got. There were, by our count, 67 seats in the room, and all but five of them filled, but there were also some people standing. With turnover during the evening, I think it's fair to say that we had around 70 people during the evening. They were really getting into things, showing lots of enthusiasm.

Full House for Match Game

At one point when the panel was taking a particularly long time to answer a question, the audience started doing the "Match Game Dance" to the "think" music.

The show wasn't flawless: part way though, an odd beeping noise started showing up on the speakers. This threatened to derail the show until Lisa and the team (including a couple of the panelists) figured out that the power outlets in the hotel-provided desks, despite being plugged into the wall outlets, were not working, and that the beeping was the low-battery warning on the computers that power the sound effects. In other words, once again, Lisa was let down by tech provided by anyone but herself. She got it sorted, and the show continued. Aside from that one disruption, things went pretty well, even though Lisa was obliged to not only run the tech but serve as announcer. Lisa adds that for a change, we actually had the time to do the full set of sound checks and special sound effects set-ups, which added a lot to the game.

Between the large crowd and the happy panelists, we ended up going into "overtime." Inasmuch as there wasn't a deadline for us to get out of the room and everyone involved wanted to play more than the budgeted four games, we added an extra game on short notice. Fortunately, we carry extra questions, although they weren't actually pre-set and thus I had to toss questions in without thinking much about them. This worked okay, though.

The Glamorous Life of a Game Show Host

After the show, people pitched in to strike the set. Thanks to the hotel letting us use the large catering cart, we were able relatively easily move the heavy tech gear out. With no more shows ahead of us, we moved some stuff to the Astro in the parking garage and some of it back to the hotel room. Oh, the glamorous life of a game show host!

This was one of the most successful Match Game SF shows we've ever done. Probably not the largest turnout (we've had larger audiences in smaller rooms), but the show went well enough and we filled just about every seat. The contestants were able to match the panel a reasonable number of times and we did give away some prizes. A good time was had by all.

We don't know where and when our next show will be. We're not going to be doing a show in Kansas City for Worldcon, and we haven't been invited yet for future Westercons. We'll announce here the next time we have a show planned.

I thank very much everyone who made this possible: panelists, contestants, audience, and volunteers. I'm very tired and my legs hurt something awful, but I had a good time and I hope you all did, too.
Tags: lisa, match game sf, westercon

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