• Tuning in to SciFi TV
  • June 18, 2021

My name is Kevin Bachelder and I’ve attended Dragon Con every year since 2005. I founded the Dragon Con Newbies Facebook discussion group back in 2011 to help a few friends who were coming to con for the first time.  The group is a newbie friendly place to ask questions about how to get the most out of your Dragon Con experience. Over the past nine plus years we’ve grown to almost 5,000 members and we now have a team of people (Sue Kisenwether, Kim McGibony, Michael Falkner and myself) helping to run the group. We have a great mix of experienced con attendees as well as many newer attendees so there are several people there to help out their fellow con goers who are new or newish to the con. All con related questions are welcome.  No need to worry whether your question has been asked before.

You can find the group here – https://www.facebook.com/groups/dragonconnewbies/

Please keep in mind that this is a fan run group. We are NOT an official Dragon Con resource.

We put on several events at the convention each year to help out the newbies. We do walking & rolling tours of the convention as well as Q&A sessions. The events below will also be listed in the official con program and smartphone app. Here are our 2021 events –

Thursday Newbie Walking & Rolling Tours –
link coming in the summer of 2021

Thursday Newbie Q&A Panel –
link coming in the summer of 2021

Friday Dragon Con Newbie 101 Panel –
link coming in the summer of 2021


Below is a list of just a few of the most helpful resources about Dragon Con. Many more are shared regularly in the newbies Facebook group.
Please keep in mind that Dragon Con is a fan run convention so while it would be great if all the helpful information was in one place the reality is that the community at large is the best resource for helpful tips, advice and information.  Therefore, things are often spread out over several websites. Some official and some not.

Official sites

Dragon Con website – http://www.dragoncon.org

Review the fan tracks page (http://dragoncon.org/?q=fan-tracks-view) for information about the different programming tracks.  There are also links to the tracks individual websites, Facebook pages, etc. Dragon Con is like having 40+ different conventions all happening at the same time and in the same place.

Review the guest list (http://dragoncon.org/?q=guests) regularly as new guests are added on an almost daily basis as we get closer to the convention.  There’s even a link there to sort the list by announcement date so you can see the newest additions easily.

For information on disability services at con you can find lots of helpful information here.

The official Dragon Con Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/DragonConOfficial/) and discussion group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/officialdragoncon/) can be great resources. Keep in mind that the discussion group is a large community (37,000+ members) covering a wide variety of topics. In late 2020 the con also setup a Discord server that you can find here.

Unofficial sites –

We did a newbies tips panel as part of Dragon Con Goes Virtual for the 2020 online con. You can watch it on Dragon Con’s Official Facebook page – here.

I highly recommend that you watch this 60 minute award-winning PBS documentary ‘Four Days At Dragon Con’ because it will give you a great feel for what the con is like. You can find it here.

Dragon Con wiki (http://dragon-con.pbworks.com/) has tons and tons of information.

A good fan based discussion forum can be found here – http://www.dragonconforums.org

The Unique Geek podcast (http://www.theuniquegeek.com) does a series of podcasts and blog posts every year beginning in July called “50 Days Of DragonCon” where they do interviews with track directors and other people connected to the con.

The ESO Dragon Khan Report (https://esonetwork.com/podcasts/dragon-con-khan-report/) is a monthly podcast series from the folks at the ESO podcast.  They discuss all kinds of topics related to con.

If you need to contact us please send us an email at info [at] dragonconnewbies.org. You can also find us on Twitter as @DConNewbies.

Hope to see you at con!