THE CONVENTION [01-05]
AND THEN CAME HUDSON [06-11]
 The HERCULES/XENA Convention in Minneapolis was a small, but entertaining Creation endeavor. While I personally only met a few new faces (to put with online names), it was a good chance for folks to get together and meet as well as indulge in their obsession. This was only my second convention and third "big" gathering of Xenites that I've attended and it's always a joy to be able to share space with people who don't think you're crazy, but may even be a little crazier than you! I know there were a number of fans, myself included, who traveled to be at this con and it was well worth the time spent.
 The merchandise tables were good, especially the picture table -- so many to choose from! It would have been more helpful to have three people taking money and shuffling the pics, rather than just two overworked people. The sales and display area was busy, but not overrun.
 The event itself got started with a Creation music video salute to Xena and Gabrielle with "Sisters Are Doin' It For Themselves." This was followed by Sharon Delaney's presentation of slides and scoop of the upcoming season of episodes. There were just enough spoilers to get us excited, but not too detailed. I can't wait!
 I personally liked the video salutes to the characters. Just as the one for Gabrielle began ("Wind Beneath My Wings") I leaned over to a friend who attended the San Francisco con with me and said "Great, I'm gonna cry again" to which she replied, "I've already started." There were a few of music video salutes put together by a couple of area high school students. They were very well done and certainly on par with the professional videos. A round of applause to Creation for allowing these videos to be presented and 'huzzahs' to the creators of the videos.
 Although I was dressed in an Amazon costume, I didn't participate in the contest. All who entered and especially the top three put forth an excellent effort and seemed to have fun with the whole thing. The audience selected the winner by applause and the first one on the stage remained to the last. 'Gabrielle' was excellent in both her costume and demeanor.
And Then Came Hudson
Photo courtesy of Heather McGinnis
 Hudson held us all in the palm of her hand. She simply stood there and sighed at the beginning and we loved it! Her "new" short haircut looked absolutely fabulous on her. Someone asked her why she cut her hair and she replied that she was tired of being treated (or looking like) a Barbie doll. That got a huge response from the audience, particularly from many women. I appreciate that she did it for herself because SHE wanted to.
 Hudson answered questions honestly (and sometimes playfully) and with forethought. She seemed very centered and relaxed, after all, she does have this convention thing down to a fine art!
 It was determined that she would sign autographs for two hours which was very generous of her (and Creation, who generally limits time). This was good news to my friends and I who only had general admission seats and weren't sure what the chances would be that we could even get in the autograph line.
 By Hudson's graciousness and Sharon's (and a few other's) willingness, those of us who were members of the Hudson Leick Fan Club got to meet with her privately for a short, but productive time. Hudson was kind and was joking with all of us who were somewhat dumbfounded that this had actually happened. She posed for many pictures (and must have been flash blinded in the end) with us individually or in couples. She also suggested (in writing) to my friend which yoga techniques to use for recovering after a stressful day at work.
 Though Hudson is a sexy woman and a fascinating actress, what I admired most was her "groundedness" and sense of calm, though it was obvious that her wickedness is never too far away!
Photo courtesy of Heather McGinnis
 I went to the convention with a couple of friends who are fans of XENA: WARRIOR PRINCESS, but not Nutballs like a lot of us. I think, however, that has changed, since they seemed excited about the new season information and I heard them talking about taping episodes. Thus more unsuspecting vict... folks have become Xenites.