What a weekend that was.
The weather was with us with the sun coming out until the Sunday afternoon.
As the 2008 Discworld Convention was on Bank Holiday weekend, and Wadfest was the following weekend, several fans decided to make a week of it, and went straight from the Convention to Wadfest, which meant that when I arrived at the site on the Wednesday after putting the direction signs up, I was greeted to rousing cheers from various fans.
Unlike other years, because I had to pick up the security team on the Friday morning, plus returning the van on the Thursday night, I did not stop at the site on the Thursday night. I would like to thank the fans that were staying extra nights for volunteering in helping in making up the welcome packs.
Back to the site on Friday morning with the security team, and time to set up my tent, grab security team, (Justin, and Phil), who volunteered to put up my tent, OK after several bribes with beer they helped put up my tent, they put it up I watched, well I say I watched, this became the first event of the weekend, with several other campers pulling up chairs opening bottles of beer, and shouting encouragement to the lads as they wrestled to put up a tent that they have never seen before. Flashbacks to 2002 and my other son Marcus in a similar situation.
The usual Haggis hunt was set up so that the parents could get on with setting up their tents while their children scoured the camp site for pictures of Haggi.
Wadfest started properly with the raising of the flag, this had to be a virtual flag, as I had forgotten to bring the stakes to hold it up, this was followed with a minuets noise in memory of Karen Methven, shortly after was the initiation of the Wadfest Virgins, it was surprising to see how many new Wadfestien's there were this year, after choosing three from the volunteers, they were brought forward and were initiated into the Wadfest family. Tim gave the opening dedication, and in keeping with the theme it was in a wake em up style.
Friday night continued with Richard doing the story telling in the marquee, which according to the people who was there was very enjoyable, I could not make this because of greeting the Wadfesters as they arrived.
Friday night was rounded of, with what has now become a Wadfest tradition, the Welcome Cocktail Party , this was hosted by The Guild Of Drag Artistes (and Gender Impersonators), which meant that the tradition of men dressing in cocktail dresses was once more upheld, this year there was a lot more men taking in part in this tradition, and also the women took part by dressing as men, so many took part in fact that if you didn't dress up you felt a little under-dressed, even the security team dressed for the occasion this year, which caused some concern to Justin when he had to advise a new camper where to pitch their tend, when dress in a fetching little cocktail number, the Ms. Wadfest crown this year was won by Bill, and very fetching he looked, in fact he looked that good that when I was talking to him just after he had got changed, my son wanted to know who the bird I was talking to was. This is a definite annual event, and people are already deciding on what to wear next year
Saturday morning, Waddy decided to be real evil and dress in his Day glow suite, to cries of Ah my eyes, my eyes, from other campers.
The Burger wagon was doing a good trade selling various themes on breakfast, and many a camper was glad that they were there again this year to save cooking.
The Murder Mystery was taking place throughout the day, and yet again Rob had done a great job of thinking up a mystery for us to solve.
During the day there was paint your own in the main marquee, with the whites produced by Vime's, his sculptures are getting very collectable now, and a must buy for anybody visiting his stall.
There was a lot to do for the youngsters this year, with face painting supplied by periwinkle, (Big thanks from the committee for giving up your time for this as well as taking part in the murder mystery), and the making and painting of the luggage ready to take part in the Luggage Wars that takes place on the Sunday, also there was an opportunity to make masks ready for the masque ball, although a lot of adults where taking the opportunity to make masks as well, larry was also there to show how to make a jumping frog that really jumped, and a box to try to make it jump into.
Dodge ball took place in the games field and many a fan took part, this was followed by the now famous smack the penguin, the Penguin Liberation Front was there again in force to give voice against Rob who was urging everybody on with his shouts of Boo the Penguin, Hiss the Penguin, Blow Raspberries at the Penguin. Mind you he did look a bit worried when a six foot Penguin in the shape of Waddy dressed as a penguin turned up. Hodges also got some funny looks when he turned up with a stuffed Penguin speared onto a spit from his latest invention of a fire pit.
Saturday night saw Rob and AJ's wedding Blessing, Tim did a sterling job as a Feegle giving the Blessing in a not to bad Scottish accent.
After the Blessing it was the Masque Ball, lots of fantastic masks had been made, and also a lot of fantastic dresses where worn by the ladies, and there were many a gentlemen in a suits, it was strange to see the men in suites, normally you either see them in jeans or carrying swords, a live group gave us some good music, (Big thanks to Bill for doing the lighting again this year), this helped get people together and lightened the evening, when the Band took their break it was outside for the light parade, led by a lot of people carrying light sabres, there were three entries this year, but I can see this building up each year, the parade looked fantastic as it wound it's way round the camp site.
After the light parade it was back into the marquee for the unmasking, again, then off to bed for some, and talking and the odd few drinks for others.
Sunday morning, and yet again the burger wagon doing a roaring trade.
Once everybody was up it was off to the games field to watch the Luggage Wars, this is a chance for the parents to show just how much attention their children take of what the tell them, which means it leads to great amusement for the spectators. This year because of the number of competitors there had to be several heats before the outright winners where decided, and Rob did a great job making sure there was no cheating this year.
After the Luggage Wars it was back to the main marquee for the Charity Auction, highlight was a Gold Rhinu, from the Colour of Magic/Light Fantastic film, this was one of the four handed over the bar by Twoflowers. The auction raised over £3,500 which will be wining it's way to Cancer Research, this is the charity that Wadfest has always supported due to the number of people this disease has affected.
After the Auction it was time for the prize giving, but before that the Karen Methven No Gong Award had to be presented, this award is given to people who do a lot of work in the background but don't get recognised for the work that they do, and this year it gave me great pleasure in awarding to Dave Hodges for all the work he has done over the years not just for Wadfest, but for other events as well.
I was them struck dumb by the committee presenting me with a silver ring with the Wadfest shield engraved on it for my 60th birthday, (Who thought that would happen).
After the prize giving it was a goodbye to all, but not before I had thanked the committee, and once again forgot to thank the security team for doing a really good job, so I would like to thank the here, so Justin, and Phil thank you.
Below is the links for the photos that Loz took over the weekend.
Hope to see those who have been before again net year, and if you have never been to a Wadfest before I hope to meet you next year.
read Discworld Monthly write up of the Wadfest weekend click
Links to Wadfest 2008 photos
Photos taken by Loz Green
Click on icon below for a diary of a Wadfest Virgin