Saturday was the inaugural show for the Tricon Convention in Huntington, WV. I was told over and over again that there hadn’t been a comic convention in those parts for over 20 years. Even with most of the Marshall University students home already for the summer, the turnout was amazing. I really love these one day shows. They’re not exhausting and people are there to shop! Not just wander aimlessly for three days. As an exhibitor, I can’t complain about that…
Our table was set up right next to Beau Smith’s. While I don’t think this was an accident, I’m not sure the show’s owners anticipated all the shenanigans that were sure to ensue when you put Billy Tucci next to Beau Smith next to Mike and Lora Innes. Last time this explosive combo occurred, Mike died and I went home with the wrong man.
Because Huntington is right around the corner from Beau’s home base in Ceredo, we got to meet the whole family. All day long kids, cousins, babies and friends streamed in to see him sign autographs and shake hands.
I was most excited that his spunky wife Beth spent the day at the show. I haven’t seen her in a decade! Mike had a blast teaching her to use her brand new iPhone. They’re both techie junkies. Beau said Mike was the son Beth never had. I told Beau I was the daughter he never wanted.
In case you’re wondering the connection, Beau Smith gave me my first (second, third, and fourth…?) break into the comics industry. He’s kept an eye on me since I was a teenager when he discovered me while I was still in art school. Everyone needs someone to believe in them. I am very, very fortunate to have such a great mentor. If you have copies of my books, you’ll notice that Volume 1 is dedicated to him, and he has a cameo in Volume 2.
I was asked to be on the Comics and the Internet panel with Todd Beistel (Yuri the Awakening). The audience asked great questions the entire time, all the way up and to the end. Todd had great insights and we agreed on most everything. I’m not sure if they recorded it, but if I find a copy I’ll link to it in the future.
What’s that? Yup. THE MOST ADORABLE BEA FAN ART EVER!!!
I was happy that this was a show close enough that my favorite guy could come with me without taking off work. Webmaster Mike would not dare miss the chance to hang with Billy & Beau.
The show wrapped up at six. We had a drive ahead of us to get home but we decided to go out to dinner with our friends first. Beau & Beth took us to their favorite spot, Black Sheep Burrito. If you live in the area, I highly recommend it!
If you’ve ever met Billy Tucci, you know he’s more fun than is allowed by law.
We stayed later than we’d planned but Billy had us laughing till we were crying. Then after that, we talked D-Day, the Rough Riders, Bunker Hill and Little Round Top till we cried again. He’s a veteran and a big lover of history as well.
A huge thank you to Tricon for the invite! Already looking forward to next year.
(And I would be remiss if I didn’t mention today that it is Dr. Joseph Warren’s birthday! Huzzah & happy birthday to The Dreamer’s favorite Patriot!)