Help support TMP

"My philosophy on the "Saturday Night Exodus"......" Topic

33 Posts

All members in good standing are free to post here. Opinions expressed here are solely those of the posters, and have not been cleared with nor are they endorsed by The Miniatures Page.

For more information, see the TMP FAQ.

Back to the Conventions and Wargame Shows Message Board

1,305 hits since 21 Mar 2017
©1994-2018 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Rangers Lead the Way21 Mar 2017 11:24 p.m. PST

It's real simple walk around the con and dealer hall and what do you see? An aging group of gamers who do most of there gaming before 7:00pm. Not a big deal when I return back to my Hotel, There were a couple of groups playing board games. A lot of us just don't stay up like we used to. Want to keep people from leaving on Saturday night? Plan something for the membership. Use the Lampeter room, Open gaming, a DEMO area for dealers, a SATURDAY NIGHT FLEA MARKET, Giveaways FREE BEER WINE OR SODA and some light food options PAID BY HMGS. Announce award winners let the BOD meet the membership and briefly address us on the state of affairs. I will continue….

TSD10121 Mar 2017 11:34 p.m. PST

I had no problem finding a Saturday night game to play. Played in the upstairs Lobby, the giant Resident Evil zombie game. Although the game was slated to run 7-11, we ended up playing till 1 AM and had a blast.

Yes, Saturday evening past dinner it seems anyone with a drive of only a few hours elects to go home instead paying an extra night for a hotel and giving a quick run through the dealer hall and flea market Sunday morning. Can't say I blame them.

Rotundo22 Mar 2017 2:43 a.m. PST

I stayed until 3 pm on Sunday. Pretty sure we were the last to go. Assembled a ton of models. We live in Delaware County. 1hr to 2hrs away. We keep saying we should use that day but we keep heading home early. Just dog tired. Also, need to do chores put off for three days.

historygamer22 Mar 2017 3:45 a.m. PST

I thought one of the staffers said there was a good amount of no-show games due to weather. Move the con a week or so later and I suspect attendance will increase a bit, including games running Saturday night.

Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP22 Mar 2017 5:13 a.m. PST

Often weather deters me from attending Cold Wars. Not this year though.

Personal logo Murphy Sponsoring Member of TMP22 Mar 2017 5:29 a.m. PST


Yeah…I've seen drunk gamers at a con before…not pretty…

Winston Smith Supporting Member of TMP22 Mar 2017 7:21 a.m. PST

Here's a solution for hmgs not making money.
Let's have them pay for more free stuff.

I think I can afford my own beer.

And as Murphy said, I have seen too many games with falling down drunks.
Not to mention legal liability.

Personal logo Miniatureships Sponsoring Member of TMP22 Mar 2017 8:33 a.m. PST

I believe Rangers was just suggesting that HMGS plan something special for Saturday night to encourage attendees to participate more and maybe stay for the night. Give them a reason to spend one more night.

Plus, I am sure that the idea of "free" was not meant to be unlimited. I do know that many take it that way. I have attended mini cons were there are free hot dogs and chips and have seen some gamers help themselves in such a manner that you would think that they haven't eaten in weeks.

But, I do know that many have suggested that instead of one of the flea market times being at the same time as the dealer hall, make it at night, which would also allow for dealers who are members and gamers to sell what they no longer need. This idea has been suggested for years, and I would join HMGS just for the chance to participate.

Personal logo capncarp Supporting Member of TMP22 Mar 2017 9:37 a.m. PST

Usually,one of the games I play are scheduled on Saturday night, this year bring an exception.
As for "free" I think a free hot pretzel or hot dog or ice cream cone would be more welcome and less potentially harmful.

Jamesonsafari Inactive Member22 Mar 2017 10:46 a.m. PST

I think the biggest issue is just folks have done what they want (shopping) and are heading home

At Hotlead most of my attendees live within a comfortable drive. But numbers drop around 50% at dinner time.

Also there are those who stay but are having dinner and drinks with friends so aren't at the show itself.

egoodlander22 Mar 2017 11:36 a.m. PST

I run Road Warrior at 10pm Saturday. I had 12 gamers plus 7 or 8 guys hanging out at the end of our table. I do provide beers for anyone that wants them too. Looking around at 9pm it was 80% empty though. We used to have more games still running when we started ours.

Personal logo J Womack 94 Supporting Member of TMP22 Mar 2017 8:22 p.m. PST

One issue for me has always been the timing of the games. I always seem to be either in back to back games or waiting around all day – never a break of one or two hours to eat a meal and check the dealers hall or flea market. I love playing the games, and that's a big chunk of what I come for, but I need some time to go shopping, especially in the flea market where the product does change from day to day.

I usually do my big vendor hall purchases on Friday. And by big, I mean I usually drop about $500 USD-800 at various stalls. I'm not the biggest fish in the pond, but I try. In the flea market, I am looking for hard to find stuff, not current production.

And in the evening I usually have a little flask of something in a pocket or down the boot. If your thirsty. And its usually rum.

robert piepenbrink Supporting Member of TMP23 Mar 2017 8:28 a.m. PST

I've left on Saturday afternoon myself, sometimes. I'm tired, I've spent all the money and I can break for the night at Breezewood and save some money on the room.

Much more often, I'm there and not gaming. I'm in my room sorting and packing my loot because the game starts at 7:00 and is slated to run 4-6 hours, by which time I will be dead, and I have a long drive ahead on Sunday. More two or three-hour games on Saturday night might get more of us to the tables.

But if I can be at the Host I will be. The Sunday flea market is a wonderful incentive.

Double G Sponsoring Member of TMP23 Mar 2017 8:47 a.m. PST

Funny someone should start a thread on this topic as myself and several of my friends/customers were talking about this as we sat in the Distlefink room Saturday night and it was about 33% to 50% full.

My observations; basic point, but we're all getting older, gaming till the wee hours of the morning, or even late at night is no longer an option for some. As a dealer, by the time Saturday night rolled around, I was gassed and I'm 56, not young, but not old either.

I think a lot of people get up on Saturday, check out of their hotel rooms, game a bit, shop a bit, flea market a bit and then head home. The dealer hall is very light on Sunday, some cons I do hardly anything in sales, some as in this one, I do ok.

I'd be all for, as in 100% ALL IN on a Saturday night flea market from say 6:00pm till 9:00pm; you know, once the dealer hall closes.

Move the afternoon session on Saturday to a night session, it's simple.

As a dealer, I'd love a shot at some of those terrific bargains, dealers as a whole have pockets of cash by that time on Saturday (if they don't, it might be time to rethink that careee path), so who better to shop there than us?

I got a chance to sneak over to the flea market for the Saturday session, but I had to make it quick as my cousin was nice enough to watch my tables for a few minutes. I saw a number of things of interest, but I did not have the time to fight the mob and wheel and deal, so I had to leave.

It would be great to give people a reason to stick around Saturday night; what better reason than a night flea market session……………………so simple, yet so much resistance………………….

Ember52 Supporting Member of TMP23 Mar 2017 9:33 a.m. PST


I agree that a Saturday night session (possibly replacing Saturday afternoon) makes sense. It would allow the dealers a shot at the flea market and create another reason for folks to hang around. I do think it should be a pay to play session, unlike the free Sunday morning session.

You're right that there'd be pushback. The folks who really enjoy doing pickup games and have pretty much free run of the flea market space at night, would likely not be happy campers (many of them, at least). There might be ample space in the Distlefink for open gaming, but the better lighting, easier access, lack of competition with scheduled games, etc. seem to make the Lampeter the preferred option, at least according to a number of the folks who have posted on TMP.

Still, something worth thinking about.

BTCTerrainman Supporting Member of TMP23 Mar 2017 9:49 a.m. PST

I like the idea of a Saturday night flea market, but would run it from 7pm until 9:30 (this would give time for vendors to participate as sellers of old and personal stuff. Might be a lot of deals to be had).

It could be held in a section of the Distlefink. No need to check badges. It would also fill up this space which is not being utilized as well on Saturday nights……..

Double G Sponsoring Member of TMP23 Mar 2017 11:45 a.m. PST

Good ideas in the last two posts; 7:00pm to 9:30pm is even better, would be great as a dealer to be able to buy and also sell in there, I'd blow out a lot of the older wargaming items I've been humping around for years, mark it down, blow it out.

And yes, the pick up gaming area would be impacted, but not all of it, just the left side of the room for a few hours, then pick up game all you want.

Again; the pushback on this would be epic, so it's a non starter.

As a business owner, in the past 20 years I've made a lot of changes to my business model; constantly improving my website, getting more and more internet exposure through Facebook and other forms of social media, selling on Ebay, Amazon and other new forms of bringing your product to market, taking Paypal and other new forms of payment, etc, etc; you know, as new business ideas come along, rather than being a dinosaur and keep doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result (Enstein had an idea of what this is called, right fellas?), I make changes as the times dictate.

vagamer63 Supporting Member of TMP23 Mar 2017 2:40 p.m. PST

IF, there were to be a Flea Market in the Lampeter Room on Saturday night, say from 7 – 9:30, I don't think there would be a big push back on the effort! Especially if it's set up on the left side aisle as DoubleG suggests! There may some grumbling, as we know some will feel put out, but for that short time I believe they would adjust and deal with it!

It would be worth a shot to find out how many vendors would participate, and then open the remaining spaces up for sign up from members! A trial run at Fall In seems like a good time to give it a go! Announce it well in advance, and give everyone a chance to adjust to the idea! Grumble endlessly, make plans, grumble a little more, and then make plans for it. It's worth a trial run just to see what kind of response it gets!

Double G Sponsoring Member of TMP23 Mar 2017 2:57 p.m. PST

What he said.

Swap out Saturday afternoon for Saturday night and see what happens.

If it's an epic fail, then go back to the old way of doing things.

Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Poniatowski Supporting Member of TMP Inactive Member24 Mar 2017 11:32 a.m. PST

Consider this done….. I have been promising to try new things. It is time to step up.
We cannot know success without first knowing failure… or getting very lucky the first time.
Please no hate on this decision!

Long Valley Gamer Supporting Member of TMP24 Mar 2017 11:47 a.m. PST

There are 2 sessions on sat. If your looking to move the later session to the evening I would be for it but not both…

historygamer24 Mar 2017 12:14 p.m. PST

Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Best of luck with it, and anything else new you try.

Double G Sponsoring Member of TMP24 Mar 2017 12:37 p.m. PST

What LVG said; move the Saturday afternoon session to Saturday night.

It will give people a reason to stick around.
It will give dealers a shot to get in on all the bargains.
It will give dealers a shot to sell stuff for short money.
It will give the flea market sellers two sessions that day.

I can't see the downside……………….

vagamer63 Supporting Member of TMP24 Mar 2017 3:19 p.m. PST


The one suggestion I would offer, as last time this subject came up there seemed to be a little more negative feedback then positive. Identify ALL the tables you plan to use for this late night session, and label them with a sign stating the table must be cleared no later then say 6:00 pm Saturday evening, so there is no question about their use. Then, personally walk the area an hour or so ahead of that time to remind anyone using said tables they need to have their game, or bull session cleared up in time for setup!

Also, have an area in the Distlefink room set aside for Open Gaming, if there are no scheduled games to fill the space. A small area for those who just can't wait to play a pick-up game should suffice!

It will be a little extra work, but if everyone knows well ahead of time what is planned they can adjust as needed to keep things positive!

BTCTerrainman Supporting Member of TMP24 Mar 2017 3:30 p.m. PST

Since many expressed concern about the Distlefink being empty on Saturday nights, why upset the apple cart? Just have a section of the Distlefink laid out for the flea market. It can easily be done, and I doubt there is a need to check badges of the shoppers, so this will allow an easier use of the space……

TSD10124 Mar 2017 4:32 p.m. PST

Since many expressed concern about the Distlefink being empty on Saturday nights, why upset the apple cart? Just have a section of the Distlefink laid out for the flea market.

So disturb the people running and playing games when there's already a Flea Market area set?

Tumbleweed Supporting Member of TMP24 Mar 2017 5:24 p.m. PST

A flea market session on Saturday evening? What a great idea! Sure beats sitting in a room and watching TV.

Count that as a YES vote from the Viking Forge.

BTCTerrainman Supporting Member of TMP24 Mar 2017 5:48 p.m. PST

TSD101, just trying to think out of the box since this started with comments about the emptiness of the Distlefink. I thought there would be more uproar from the open gamers on Saturday night…….

I guess not.

historygamer24 Mar 2017 6:08 p.m. PST

Let the pick up games fill the Distlefink. But you know what you'll need to help manage that? A gaming area management table in the gaming area to ensure there are no table conflicts. Gee what a great idea.

Johnnyutah8000 Inactive Member24 Mar 2017 8:12 p.m. PST

Considering they gave away our table this year on Friday night I'm not quite sure they can handle the table conflicts. Instead of asking the guys to tear down and let us use the table we were moved to a different table which then displaced yet another game. Perhaps situations like this are a reason for the empty Distlefink.

masm6110 Supporting Member of TMP25 Mar 2017 5:05 a.m. PST

Saturday AM Flee Market stays at the same start time but now goes till 3 or 4.

Saturday night Flee market starts at 7:00PM and goes till whenever.

I'm fine with that, but won't it effect the "grab a table and do a game" crowd that tends to setup in that area?


TSD10125 Mar 2017 6:57 a.m. PST

I'm fine with that, but won't it effect the "grab a table and do a game" crowd that tends to setup in that area?

Which they can do anywhere. I'm not sure why they get to hold the flea market area hostage to inhibit any growth or new ideas.

historygamer25 Mar 2017 11:07 a.m. PST

This idea will not work without an onsite gaming area managment table to ensure no registered games are bumped and to direct pick up games to empty tables.

It is also only likely to work in replacement of the saturday afternoon flea market, otherwise it really is only the left over stuff. Or, kill the morning one and hold an afternoon and evening back to back. Remember, the Sunday flea market is the stuff that didn't sell previously – at least at the original prices.

But you don't want to waste half of the Lampeter room during any peak hours, otherwise that is wasted money and wasted prime space.

Sorry - only verified members can post on the forums.