Office Convention: provide feedback!

If you attended the Office Convention, here is your chance to give feedback to the organizers on what you liked and didn’t like about the weekend.

Here are some questions to get you started.

  • What could make the registration process smoother?
  • What could make the autograph signing sessions better?
  • A few events had to be relocated because of rain. How did you think that was handled? How could it have been improved?
  • What was your favorite event? What was your least favorite event and why?
  • In the case of another convention, which events should be repeated? Which events should be skipped and why?
  • What did you think about the printed convention program? What could make it more useful?
  • And for my own selfish reasons, what did you think of the Bloggers’ Breakfast? What would you have liked to see during this event? — more speaking from cast bloggers? A geekier, more technical presentation about how blogs are created and run? A tour of the different Office fansites? More 1:1 mingling with the bloggers? Other ideas?

Be honest, be specific, and be polite. Thanks!


  1. The convention was incredible!! My favorite event may be difficult…probably the Q&A from the cast. But I enjoyed casino night, concert and the writers’ Q&A almost as much. The cast Q&A left my cheeks hurting from laughing and smiling so much. It was hysterical. Least favorite was probably the uncommon stockholder’s meeting. Only because I couldn’t hear anything that was being said. Everything else I think went very smoothly and well organized.

    I thought it was great to hear that the cast members also use OFFICETALLY for their information!! You do a great job!! Meeting you (and getting a picture with you) was also one of my highlights of the convention. Thank you for all that you do.

  2. I really enjoyed the convention & thought for a 1st time, it was very well done. Some things that might be changed for the next one:

    *Seats should be reserved not only for the Corporate tickets but also Regional Manager & Asst. to the Regional Manager. They should be tiered like they would be at a sporting event. I paid for the Regional Manager’s ticket & ended up sitting way back at some events with Interns. A minor thing but something that should be considered.

    *Somehow it would be nice to have the street festival a bit closer to the main venue. I live in the Scranton area & know that they can do this.

    *If at all possible, registration should be held at the Radisson all three days. Moving it all over the place was difficult & having worked registration Saturday I can tell you it was a fairly big headache.

    *If they do offer autograph sessions again (NBC asked them to do it), it would be great if people could be guaranteed more than two. I was happy to get Angela Kinsey & Ed Helms at the table & considered it a bonus when Bobby Ray Shafer came out & signed my volunteer shirt but again feel that if you paid for the upper level pass, you should get a bit more in terms of autographs. This was a last minute thing from what I was told so I’m sure that the organizers will look into it for the next one.

    Again, a great weekend of fun & getting a chance to meet so many great fans of one of the best written shows on TV. I hope to meet more of you at the next one & please feel free to ask me any questions you might have about Scranton, Dunmore (my hometown) or the surrounding areas. I’d be happy to help in any way possible.

  3. I thought that there should have been more signs telling us where to go. It took us over half an hour to find registration. I noticed they did eventually put a sign up near the tent, but that was after registration had already started. You would think that they could have signs with arrows showing what direction the events were in. Yes, they gave us maps, but not being familiar with Scranton, it still got a bit confusing. Maybe it was the 4 hours of sleep and the 4 hour drive causing us to be “dazed and confused,” but that’s my main complaint.

  4. All in all, great weekend. Really well done Scranton.

    I think the biggest problem with the registration was simply a lack of anticipation by the organizers. I know the rain was holding them up, but they seemed overwhelmed that so many people were registering Saturday morning. Maybe more staff or realize that because of work, most people will arrive on Saturday? I was also one of those Corporate pass attendees that walked around with Tucker Hottes’s business card around my neck all weekend. This was fine and I had no problems, but I wish I could have gotten one of the passes with my pic on it for a souvenir. Oh well. Many problems like these will most likely be ironed out if more conventions are held in the future. The only other registration problem I had was finding the main area. I parked down by the South stage and asked where to register. Everyone down there, including blue shirt/employees said that area was the main stage. It took awhile to realize everything up “up the hill”. Since so much info was already sent via email and on the site, a map BEFORE you get to Scranton would be helpful.

  5. I arrived early Saturday morning in the rain and I think the rain was their biggest problem. Having registration, the NBC store and the autograph signing under one tent was way too crowded (too many people, too many umbrellas) – to the point where I chose not to get an autograph or buy anything. I was standing right in front of the stage for over half and hour (very happy with my awesome spot) getting soaking wet when after 10 then announced they were moving it inside (thereby losing my prime spot). I think planning ahead for weather with better back-up plans would have been a good idea. I don’t really want to pick a least favorite,but I’ll say the Costume Exhibit. I appreciated it but it was so random with the trolly cars. My favorite event was the Cast Q&A. Smiled for 2 straight hours. I liked the surprise element of not knowing which actors (if any) for going to be at any given event however the not knowing (and the bad improv) was the cause of me leaving the costume party and thus missing what seemed to be an awesome concert.

  6. Skipping around…

    My favorite event was the Writer’s Block. The questions that were selected were generally very good and the Writers were happy to give a lot of information and displayed their quick wit. Awesome to see B.J. as well! (though his “surprise” arrival had been leaked all weekend). I see now why the organizers tried to collect as many questions as they could before hand. When people yell things out, it can feel crazy. Everyone was fairly well behaved though. The actor’s Q&A was great too, but many of the writers had the same comment I did. A bunch of the questions relayed to the cast were writing questions. As Lester Lewis commented, “why would the cast know that?”. Maybe there were only so many questions to chose from.

    Least favorite event was the formal autograph session(s) in the main tent. I know NBC said they had to be done, but even with a ticket, it was a confusing cattle call. So many angry people too…poor Tucker. I saw him get SCREAMED at more than once. They’ll have to put up huge signs in the future that the tickets are RANDOM for most passes.

  7. To be honest, the weekend was great. The only thing I had a beef with was the Regional Manager pass. When I bought the passes, I wasn’t aware of how many sessions there would be, and when we got there, we were only able to attend one (not the Convention’s fault, we had to leave early on Sunday). Clearer distinctions between tiers of passes would be good. I didn’t feel like the Regional Manager pass was that much better than the Assistant pass.

  8. Great convention! Would have liked for Regional Manager tickets holders to have more access to events since they did pay so much. There wasn’t a large enough distinction between Regional and Assistant passholders. Also, I would have liked less talking from Tucker at both the Bloggers Breakfast and Writer’s Block. He may have helped organize the event but he was a terrible mc in both cases. And, at the Writer’s Block, the MC’s focused too much time on Scranton. Much better questions could have been asked if there was less Scranton talk. Thank you!

  9. What could make the registration process smoother?
    The registration process was very smooth, in my opinion. My packet did not contain a lanyard and pass when I picked it up Friday, but they didn’t hassle me when I realized this on Saturday and asked for a replacement. I would suggest not having the NBC store right next to registration though. This line was very long the whole weekend, and it ran into the registration lines, and made things confusing. I would suggest registration be INSIDE the whole weekend, rain or shine. It would make things less confusing.

    What could make the autograph signing sessions better?
    I did not try to get any autographs, but from what I saw, this would also have been better served by moving it away from the registration tables and the NBC store. Things were very crowded and cramped under the main tent on Saturday.

  10. I had a great time at the convention! The evening Scrantones concert was mind-blowing! I also loved the Writers’ Block and the Cast Q&A. My only complaint would have to be that there was no difference between the Regional Manager pass and the Assistant to the Regional Manager pass. I could have spent $50 instead of $100 and got the same stuff. Maybe what could have been done was to put the Autograph session tickets in ALL the Regional Manager packets instead of it just being a random thing. Just a suggestion.

  11. Overall, the Convention was totally dawsome! I hope it won’t be the last. Two complaints though: I feel there was poor organization and communication on Saturday between all of the volunteers. The rain threw everything into a whirl but none of the volunteers seemed to know what was going on or who to go to to find out. I’m not saying they did a bad job but it would have been better if they were divided into groups with designated leaders who would carry walkie talkies to keep abreast of what was going on.

    Also, I felt that aside from the Corporate passes there was no distinction between the other passes. At events that required the passes, interns had equal seating privileges with A.t.t.R.M and R.M. passholders, thereby making it pointless to have paid that extra cash. Corporate passholders should have been let in first and had their own section up front, then AttRM and RM passholders let in together (since they’re essentially the same passes) and then whatevr spaces were left should have gone to interns.

    I have more to say but am almost at the word count maximum. I’ll continue in another post.

  12. The convention program was great! It was chock full of info about ‘The Office’ and how to get around Scranton but it would have been better if there was a section with full page photos of all the cast members for autographing. Also, handheld cards of all the events and their locations with a map of Scranton on the back would have been great.

    I heard the Uncommon Stockholders Meeting was a letdown, that it was hard to hear and that because it was held in the Steamtown Mall, casual shoppers were often blocking the view for ‘Office’ fans who made the trek ovr there to see it.

    The cast q and a and Scrantones show were spectacular. The lookalike contest was good but a lot of people who dressed up and registered to be in the contest (including my friend) weren’t announced to go on stage. I don’t think that was fair. They made an effort and they should have been recognized for it. Also, those fans that did win for each character should have received an actual prize. Perhaps an autographed item from the actor whose character they dressed up as?

    Phew. Part Three to follow.

  13. I had a great time at the convention. I’m so glad it was put together and that I went. I definitely hope they do it again. I do have a few suggestions, though. For one, there need to be more and clearer signs. More than once my brother and I were standing in lines that we weren’t sure were the right lines to be standing in (and in two cases, they weren’t). There need to be more volunteers also, or at least better communication so they all know what is going on. Also, the Office Olympics was very poorly organized and ran way longer than it should have. Also, there needs to be more division between the Assistant Regional Manager and Regional Manager levels. When we ordered our tickets, Regional Manager sounded much better, but in actuality, once we got to the convention, there was very little difference between the two that we could see. We could have saved fifty dollars. Related to that, seats are reserved for corporate people, but oftentimes people with Assistant to the Regional Manager and Intern tickets were sitting in front of us, even though we’d paid more. Seats could be reserved for all the levels depending on how much was paid. Finally, at the Writer’s Block, people who weren’t Corporate sneaked into the extra Corporate seats, and there weren’t enough ushers to stand up and make them move. It wasn’t fair; people sitting in the back had been there far longer but had far worse seats because they played by the rules. And keep in mind my seats were fine, I just felt bad for them. But, really, it was great. You did a good job getting everybody to come.

  14. With regards to the Bloggers’ Breakfast, I would have appreciated some ‘how to’ information on blogging. I asked the question about it & the answers were fine but most likely due to time constraints, they were very high level. I’d love to know more of the technical stuff to blogging because I’d really like to create a good one (nothing that could ever rival this one of course).

    Overall I was happy with the event & many of my gripes seem to be echoed by others here. Let’s remember that this was the 1st time for our little town to try something of this epic proportion but rest assured, the next one will have fewer issues.

    [from tanster: thank you so much for asking the question at the Bloggers’ Breakfast! i would have loved to have given a more detailed answer, but I was unsure how much time we had and didn’t want to get too geeky. to give you a suggestion right now, though, you may want to check out a hosted blogging site such as — you can set up a blog for free!]

  15. Thanks for providing this section to weigh in on the convention. I’m not a poster here Tanster but I read you site all the time. It’s truly the best out there!

    All in all it was an amazing weekend and I had a great time. I have to echo the sentiments of #8 however. It’s great that the weekend could be a celebration of the show and of Scranton but the questions/follow-ups about Scranton were excessive. There were multiple questions at the Writers Block about whether they would incorporate this or that into the show and whether the characters would start talking like Scrantonians now. It just got to be a bit much. It seemed to me like there are fairly obvious reasons why the show can’t be all about Scranton but yet a lot of time was spent on this sort of thing when other more pertinent questions relating to the show could’ve been asked. Despite this I thought both the Writers Block and Cast Q and A were terrific. Those were my two favorite events. And I agree with the tiered seating idea. RM’s should’ve had the next best seats and so on.

  16. information wasn’t clear enough about cast signings. We didn’t realize we could have stayed and got more autographs after the first four arrived (Oscar,Creed,Craig,and Leslie)and we had corporate passes and only got a handful of signatures. We didn’t see in the literature that the actors were going to be peppered in all day, so we left to get out of the rain then came back to find out that we needed to stand outside all day to get a chance to meet each star. we thought our tickets insured signings. I didn’t feel like things were clear enough even with corporate passes. other than screwing up the very thing we came for we had a good time. But I did love meeting the mistress of on the bus to casino night.(I had that TheOffice computer bag)
    Thank you for all your work

  17. The Bloggers’ Breakfast was fun but I felt bad for Tan and the other non-cast bloggers. Brian and Bobby came out way too early and took away from the recognition the other bloggers had been receiving. Naturally, most of the q and a session was directed to them and Kate, who showed up midway through. I would have liked to have heard more from Tan and Co. about how they balance blogging with their regular lives and how they get such great exclusive info.

    I think there should have been designated times and locations for autographs throughout the weekend that could include all passholders.

    As for the schedule, while an hour to get from one event to another and have a good place in line was somewhat reasonable this year, I imagine future conventions will have many more attendees, so spacing these events out a bit more would be good.

    I know I’ve written a lot but don’t get me wrong. I LOVED the convention and had a blast. My favorite event had to be the Cast Q & A. This forum is about posting our thoughts to make the next one even better and that’s what I hope my comments do.

  18. Well my vantage point is a bit different. My wife and I could only make it up Sunday. I already expected some glitches since this was a first. However some comments:
    1.I agree you need to have registration at the same place. I was informed that registration on Sunday was next to the main tent..wrong!
    2.By the time we went to the blogger’s breakfast, and writer’s block everything was closed! Possibly spread things out(I realize this is hard on the last day)
    3. The one thing we came for was autographs and pics, both very hard to get! However did get Ed and Mindy’s pic after basically stalking them! More autograph/pic opportunities needed.
    4. Seriously lower the price a bit, shelling out that much for corporate is a bit much for most families

  19. Except for the fact that it was gross and rainy, I don’t think anything can be done to make registration smoother. For my friend and I it was quick and painless.

    We were pretty bummed that we didn’t get a ticket for an autograph, but I understand that you can’t guarantee everyone who comes an autograph. But man, it would be nice!

    The worst event was definitely the faux board meeting in the mall. I couldn’t hear anything, it was very crowded, and didn’t actually understand what was going on.

    The best event… a tie between the cast Q&A and the Scrantones concert. First I just want to say that it was AMAZING that the organizers of this convention got the cast members involved in basically every single event. No matter what you went to you were able to see your favs.

    So, Cast Q&A– in spite of a pretty snarky MC (the one on the right was picking on the local weatherman!) the questions were great and the cast was just funny and friendly and wonderful. And getting to see the blooper reel was a huge plus.

    The Scrantones concert was fantastic because you didn’t need a corporate pass to be in the very front row. It was my only chance to be within a foot of the cast. And the cast was so into it. WOW.

    The convention program was difficult to sift through to find what you wanted. Clearer maps with *all* parking areas and closed roads identified would help.

    The Blogger Breakfast… Well, first of all, we need an elevated platform for everyone (all cast and bloggers) to sit on so that we can actually see them. Second, it shouldn’t end so soon to the start of the Writers’ Block (or any other event) because my friend and I left early so that we could get good seats. Which was sad. And I guess a better mix of cast and blogger comments would help.

    A blogging how-to would be great, especially if you did it Tanster! 1:1 mingling would be nice, but to be honest Tanster, I think everyone would run directly to you and you’d be in the middle of a fan stampeded ;)

    What else… Well, I don’t know if there’s anyway to do this, but I’m one of those people who didn’t actually get to meet any of the cast face-to-face and say hi. If there was a way to make that more likely for everyone, it’d be nice :)

  20. Sorry one other quick thought. I wouldn’t have traded my corporate pass, it was great and the gifts we got at Registration were such a wonderful bonus. Loved it. Maybe next time instead of the cocktail parties there could be some type of luncheon for the corporate pass holders. The cast could go around to each table and provide a picture or autograph for those seated there and then move on and someone else would come over. Most people seem to want one or the other and it would be a more organized way of allowing the ticket holders to get this without forcing the actors to sit at a long table with a never-ending line in front of them. It was intimated that the VIP’s would have photo ops, etc with the cast and those opportunities were just not that plentiful, thus the craziness of the cocktail parties on Saturday and Sunday.

  21. I think overall the convention was Awesome! If they do this again, I would say please, please, please have the same kind of perks for the Corporate Pass holders. It was so amazing to have so much contact with the cast and crew. Along those lines, I think Casino Night was the best event.
    I only have one complaint (besides lack of Paul Lieberstein!), which is about the Saturday night cocktail event. From what I could tell, the cast was supposed to come there first, but was taken upstairs instead so we missed out on some stuff because we were waiting downstairs. It wasn’t a huge deal since Greg Daniels and others eventually showed up, but I just think there could have been much better communication about that particular event.
    Otherwise I think everything was even better than I could have hoped. The Q&As were amazing and the concerts were so much fun!
    My boyfriend did the registering and he said that it went very smoothly because we had done the express corporate registration, so that was a great option.
    Congratulations to everyone involved with organizing this event, you did a great job!

    [From tanster: the Saturday night cocktail event was pretty frustrating. Did we wait there for like 1-1/2 to 2 hours before any of The Office folks appeared? When Greg Daniels finally came downstairs, I grabbed his arm and said, “Did you know that the people in this room have been waiting to see you since 8pm?” Greg had no idea. The Office folks were never told that they needed to attend! I hope Greg doesn’t put out a restraining order on me … ]

  22. I was one of the first to register on Friday so I thought it went pretty smoothly. I did peek into the registration tent on Saturday and it looked like an absolute zoo. I’m sure this also had something to do with the fact that they had the NBC Store AND autographs under the same tent.

    I also agree with the people who complained about the ticket tiers. I bought the Asst. (to the) Regional Manager Pass and thought it was well worth my money, but they never even checked it to get into the Cast Q+A. I ended up in pretty good seats, sitting next to interns, which I didn’t really mind… but I’m sure there were people with $100 tickets who had much worse seats.

    I would have liked to have gone to some of the Corporate Events but I had to leave early on Sunday so it wouldn’t have been worth my money. It would have been great if Conventioners could have purchased individual tickets to certain events… like $50 for the Casino Night, etc.

  23. I also think the next convention should be held in the summer. I drove 5 hours from Boston and had to leave early on Sunday to make it back for my early Monday classes. If it was in the summer, I’m sure tons more college aged folks would come out. And the rain probably wouldn’t feel so miserable. :)

  24. Overall, great first Convention! As for constructive feedback (not already mentioned) from a Corporate passholder perspective, I would suggest not having a cocktail party at a venue where pictures were not allowed. Though it was great fun, many of us assumed there would be other good opportunities for pictures with cast members, but unfortunately that was not the case. Additionally, it would’ve been nice to have more details about the cocktail parties (what to expect for food and cast/writer interaction). I will also echo the general sentiment of wishing for clearer instruction on where to go/line-up for events. But as I stated, I was generally pleased with the weekend, had a super time, and realized that there were bound to be glitches with any inagural event. I look forward to an even better Convention next year!

  25. In my opinion, the registration process was a disaster. Next time around, it should be at the same venue throughout the convention

    I was incredibly disappointed by the autograph signing. I paid for a Regional Manager pass thinking this was included, and then was told (rudely) that I had to have a ticket that was randomly assigned. Others who had the Regional Pass later told me that by having the pass, you were entitled to a ticket no matter what. This should be clearer in the future.

    There was NO communication at all. People were lost a lot of the time, and volunteers did not know or showed no interest in helping.

    My favorite event was the cast and writer’s panels. Least favorite event was the cast costume exhibit.

    For the next convention, it should be at a venue indoors. Please get some new MCs! They were all terrible. They asked really silly questions, and were so Scranton based. The convention is to celebrate the show first, and the city second.
    Every event needs to have separate sitting for the different kinds of passes, but most importantly, they HAVE to be enforced.

  26. A few events had to be relocated because of rain. How did you think that was handled? How could it have been improved?
    I think this was the biggest error made by the planning committee. Where events would be re-located to due to inclement weather should have been published in advance. My fiancee and I found the room where the ribbon cutting was, but that was almost by luck.

    [from tanster: i agree, greg. i completely missed the ribbon cutting and wanted to check out office olympics, but had no idea where to go. i think if the convention had a Twitter account, they could at least broadcast venue changes that way. everybody has a cell phone, right?]

  27. I loved the Q&A, but you missed a great opportunity to bond fans with an office episode or 2, instead we were forced to listen to a 3rd rate Jazz Ensemble. This was torture as we were trapped there. The organizers missed an opportunity to help the fans have an even more amazing experience.

    2 other quick points: More detailed schedules should have been in the packets and autographs should have been open to anyone who was willing to endure the rain!

  28. I thought the registration process was not organized well. I know that some things had to be rearranged due to the rain, but I think that the NBC merchandise line and the registration line should have been separated because the two were merged, which made the registration process take even longer! It seemed that everything was too jumbled and not organized.
    I loved that you could basically just walk up to any cast member and get their autograph. There were times that we couldn’t, but times that we could.
    My favorite event of the weekend was the Q & A with the cast. It was hilarious! Also, the Q & A with the writers was great too. I loved that we got to watch some of the Branch Wars episode.

    Overall, the Office Convention was amazing and I will definitely go again!

  29. In response to tanster’s (is it OK to call you that despite my brief time on this blog?)reply to my #15:

    I went to the wordpress site & set up my blog. I’ll browse through some others to get ideas & will try to do some studying up on some of the technical things. I figure if Brian and Bobby Ray learned it that maybe I can too.

    Thank you so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to respond to my comment.

    [from tanster: my pleasure! blogging is a wonderful thing, and i’m happy to spread the word.]

  30. What was your favorite event? What was your least favorite event and why?
    My fiancee and I only paid for the intern passes, so we only got to choose one of the “big” events to attend. We chose the cast Q&A and were not disappointed. This was an incredible event, and worth the price of the ticket by itself. The ribbon-cutting was a close second. Once we found the room, we were able to get very close, and the cast was great. Honestly, we did not have a least favorite event. Of course, we weren’t able to go to the Scrantones Concert/Look-Alike contest, the Blogger’s Breakfast or the Writer’s Block, but we heard good things about all of those. The most disappointing aspect of the weekend was the trolley ride around town. We were expecting more of a guided tour, but it was mainly just a method of transportation from one end of town to the other.

  31. First and foremost, I want to thank all of the organizers and volunteers who worked their butts off, the Scrantonians who were so welcoming, local news teams and bloggers for keeping us up to date on all the latest info, and of course, the cast and crew of NBC/The Office who gave convention goers one of the best (if not THEE best) weekends of their lives. You all deserve the BIGGEST heartfelt thank you, so THANK YOU SO MUCH! IT WAS MINDBLOWING!!!

    This is extremely long, so I am probably going to have to separate it into several comments. I know that’s against Office Tally comment rules, but I think this particular topic would be considered exempt from the 200-word rule:

    Part 1:

    I am torn between two favorite events: the cast Q&A where I literally laughed so hard I ended up crying, and the Casino night which was a truly down-to-earth party with the down-to-earth cast.

    I enjoyed the blogger’s breakfast, but when they said “breakfast,” I was expecting tables like when Angela and Brian visited last May, not so much auditorium seating. It should have just been called the blogger’s “panel.” Like others said, I think the bloggers should have gotten more time, and the cast bloggers took away from that. I would have loved to hear how Tanster has the time to hold down a full time job AND do OfficeTally, when I barely have time to work and read OfficeTally, and also how she gathers all her information. All this, however is not to say I didn’t love the cast being there. The thing that really REALLY saddened me was that Angela Kinsey was not present, and she is one of the MAJOR cast bloggers. I was really expecting to see her there, so that was a bit of a downer. I realize she was probably scheduled on an early flight home, but it should have been arranged otherwise. The cast shouldn’t have headed home until Monday, just to assure no one had to miss events in order to get to the airport.

  32. Part 2:

    Registration went fine for me. I chose the express registration option via email photo submission, and I was done in a flash. I am not sure if this option was available for non-corporate pass holders, however, so I can’t really speak for others.

    As for the relocation of events, well #1, thank God the ribbon cutting was relocated, however #2 I was also waiting there for hours in the rain, (just ask Oscar Nunez who passed by while I was there, or Jeff from WBRE who interviewd me), only to lose my prime spot for the move indoors. That wasn’t exactly fair, but I also understand there would have been no way around it. (Let’s just hope it doesn’t rain next year.)

    The convention program had good information in it, however it was “newspaperish.” I would love to see a nice glossy “tourbook” style program, at least free to corporate pass holders and available on sale to others. (I am a graphic designer, so let me know if you need me to lay it out. I would LOVE to do that!!!!) The current style program can also be available for those who do not have corporate passes and don’t wish to spend more on the upscale version. Also, as someone said, each cast feature page should have a nice big headshot and “white space” for signatures.

  33. Part 3:

    The autograph signings…well, I’m not big on autographs, but I do love individually meeting the cast members and getting photos with them. I don’t want them to have to sit there all day to accommodate all of this though, so I can’t say we should get a signing with each cast member. I want them to be out there having fun like we all are! But something on the idea of what was done should be kept in place, however definitely indoors (just in case of rain) and maybe at a more private location to avoid the registration crowd and nbc store customers from making the line seem overwhelming. Also, I just got lucky by getting in the right line for who I most wanted to see, but some people probably didn’t get so lucky. I realize it’s impossible for every corporate pass holder to get an autograph from every cast member, or even for everyone to get who they want the most, but some way, somehow, it should be dealt with differently. I’m just not sure how to do that while not making the poor cast sit around signing all day. I’ll think about it. :)

    I can’t pic a least favorite event. There was nothing I didn’t enjoy, however as people have said, a few things could have run a bit smoother. (This is not a complaint, just feedback…) I loved that the cast was showing up all over the place, however I felt bad when I missed something that cast members weren’t guaranteed to attend, and then I found out they were there. Things should have definitely been spread out more, like someone said. (Maybe a four-day convention to accommodate for this?) The two things that I would say bothered me the most were the following: Saturday’s VIP cocktail party which was a total bust, and the “no cameras” rule at Casino night.

  34. Part 4:

    First off, Corporate pass holders were warned both in email and on the busses that due to casino rules, cameras were strictly prohibited at the casino night event. So then WHY did I see EVERYONE taking out their cameras and no one doing anything about it? It is my own fault, I guess, that I didn’t do the same, but I was terrified that If I did, I’d be the only one to get in trouble for it. This has happened to me countless times before. I had a whole conversation with Kate Flannery about how they terrified me too much to take out my camera. She said I should just do it, but I am too much of an “Angela Martin rule follower” to do that. I am not upset at organizers for warning us, however next year I suggest a venue that doesn’t have camera rules, so this won’t be an issue. Either that or make sure that the entire cast attends a second VIP cocktail reception which does allow cameras.

    That’s my other gripe. With the exception of about ten minutes of Angela and Andy, and random quick escorts of cast members running through our party to get to the Halloween party, there was NO CAST TIME at Saturday’s VIP reception. I know I speak for many when I say we missed all the fun upstairs while we waited there, under the impression that we were going to get something like Casino night with all the cast filtering through and spending some quality time. No such luck. This was deeply disturbing. Something as huge as the halloween party with virtually all the cast on stage should never have been happening at the same time as a VIP event. Obviously the cast had to be at the Halloween party, and those who didn’t have to be wanted to see their fellow-cast members perform, and see all the look-alikes. I don’t fault them at all, and I don’t fault the organizers because they did the best they could and who knew it would have ended up like that, but BIG TIME lesson learned: please, PLEASE don’t overlap vip events like that, because we feel we really got burned with Saturday’s lackluster cocktail reception. At least for me, it was supposed to make up for all the photo ops I didn’t get at Casino night.

  35. Part 5 of 5:

    Finally, a few ideas for next year would be maybe rent out Poor Richard’s or The Bog or something and have a vip event there. I’m not sure how large those venues are though. They might not accommodate everyone. Also, maybe some sort of an all-out party with a dj, full bar, etc. (vips in the vip room WITH cast who spend a lot of time there but also circulate elsewhere for everyone.) I would personally LOVE more party/hang out time with the cast. I would have also loved to see some improv and standup from the cast members who do that. Seeing the musicians was amazing, but there’s so much additional talent that wasn’t showcased and could have been. As for repeat events, DEFINITELY repeat Q&As, parties, and VIP cocktail parties/casino or party night, plus the street fair, brief signings and anything that gets us up close and personal with our beloved cast members. All in all it was BEYOND amazing, and I would do it again in a heartbeat. Thank you again to everyone involved! It was absolute magic!

    (And I’m sorry for the length of all this, but it is impossible to answer all those questions specifically without being lengthy.)

  36. The convention was AMAZING. My only complaints have already been addressed – mainly the total zoo under the autograph tent Saturday morning and the general lack of direction from event workers. But like others have said, it was their first time, so considering that, it was pretty great.

    I was thinking over the weekend that a miniature map of downtown Scranton printed on the back of the passes would be nice, so I wouldn’t have had to carry my program around with me everywhere. Of course, I had the giant Corporate pass, and it might be harder to fit that on a smaller one, but it was just a thought. :-)

    Overall – best weekend of my life! Thanks, Scranton!

    [from tanster: wow, printing the map on the other site of the passes is one of the best ideas i’ve heard! i ripped the map out of the program and carried that in my purse, got kinda ratty at the end.]

  37. Oh yeah, I wanted to add this about the look-alike contest–

    I think anyone who takes the time to make a costume should be allowed to compete in the actual competition instead of just being prejudged and only letting 3 or 4 people up for each category. And the actors agreed.

    Also, the guy who dressed up as Dwight’s vending machine was sort of robbed. He was entered into the Dwight-look-alike category instead of the creative category, which he would have won. Just nitpicky there.

    Also, volunteers need to be given a lot more information. They were friendly and wanted to be helpful, but could rarely answer questions.

  38. *Registration needed to be separated b/w those who had already purchased tickets and those who still needed them. also, the line for the NBC store needed to be distinguished from the others.

    *The autograph sessions needed to be by price level of the tickets. I held a Reg. Mgr. pass and could not stand in line while there were Temps everywhere in line. I payed $75 more than them.. that was the ONLY time i felt gypped all weekend.

    *I had no idea where things had been relocated. I had been under the tent since 9 am and didn’t know where we were supposed to go. There needed to be a sign or periodic announcements.. i know an employee stood up and announced the whole train/ costume exhibit process, but never mentioned the relocation of the events..

    *I had the most fun at the Autograph sessions (i made my way up to the front row and ended up meeting most of the cast) and also at the Scrantones Concert on Saturday night.. that was A-mazing (except for the horrible improv groups. they were too loud and there was not enough story/ timing to back up their acts. it was painful to watch.. i kind of felt bad for them.) But yeah, the concert/ costume contest was a lot of fun!

    *definitely repeat the Q&A’s.. the main reason anyone came out was to hear stories from the cast. Keep the concert.. organize the autograph sessions better

    *The map was confusing.. i liked the interviews- they kept me occupied while between events.

    *I tried to go! but the people i stayed with (And also drove) got ready too slow and i got there at exactly 10:59. I’m sure it went well.

    p.s.- Where was Paul/ Toby?

  39. In the case of another convention, which events should be repeated?
    Which events should be skipped and why?
    The Q&A should definitely be repeated. From what I heard, so should the other 3 big events. I think the Office Olympics was somewhat disappointing, but that may have had a lot to do with the rain and the fact that it was moved indoors. Maybe a Fun Run could be added at the next convention.
    What did you think about the printed convention program? What could make it more useful?
    The convention program was fantastic. The interviews were fun to read, and contained lots of small tidbits I didn’t already know. It also provided a lot of information about Scranton. One thing I would add to either the program or the registration packet would be a map of the U of S campus and a map of the city of Scranton, to go along with the Convention map that was included.

  40. I’d like to comment on some of the comments:

    *Many of us who volunteered were not notified that our services were needed until Friday. There was no time to brief us on what needed to be done for the registration.

    *From what I understand, the reason registration was moved from the Radisson to other areas was due to scheduling conflicts at the Radisson. When I registered at 4:00 PM on Friday, everything went very smoothly. Hopefully if this is done again, the organizers can get the Grand Ball Room for all three days.

    *I know I mentioned this before but the autograph issue was more because NBC asked for the sessions. Organizers did not want to have them because they felt many convention-goers would be disappointed. From what I understand, the organizers felt putting a set number of tickets into random packets was the best way to assure steady traffic flow as well as to give everyone a chance (not an opportunity) to get some up close & personal contact with the cast. I 100% agree that this access should coincide with ticket level OR that attendees be able to pay an additional sum for access to the actors of their choice (I see this done at sports collectors conventions all the time).

  41. Overall, my fiancee and I had a great time. As soon as we left Scranton, we missed it and wanted to go back. We have already decided we are coming back if there is another convention, and this time we will go all out and buy the all-inclusive corporate passes so we can experience everything.

  42. *more information up front would help. Addresses for registration. An online map we could access with the events printed up on it – so we could plan ahead for where exactly to go BEFORE we got there. Some of those ropes to make line cutting less possible would help too.

    *autographs – can’t let interns in. I’d say corporate and regional managers only. They’re paying for it. Plus we should have known it didn’t include autographs necessarily when we bought the tickets. Maybe it was just a miscommunication on my part. Still, I got everyone’s autograph by waiting in the rain, but it would have been nice if I didn’t have to do that.

    *Rain made things hard – a few of the employees told me autographs would be indoors too so everything was messed up. But it was your first time!

    *Favorite was meeting everyone at tracks, but that wasn’t an event. I liked the writer’s block the most out of the planned events. I liked everything, the office olympics maybe the least because it seemed a little disorganized.

    * DEFINITELY the writer’s block. I’d just jazz up the office olympics a bit – make it more organized and not overlapping autograph time. Everything I attended I would want to see again. I didn’t see the stockholder’s meeting.

    *Less ads, more clear, concise information about where things were and the entire schedule.

    * I was there for awhile, but it was disorganized. I got there around 9:15, and I ended up leaving RIGHT before the cast when there. I’m not a “blogger” and therefore I felt left out. :)

    I’m saving for corporate tickets if this is pulled off again which I HOPE it will be – they seemed worth the added cost.

  43. Oh just to add – i’d do registration differently – like they do at ball games and everywhere else. Have like 10 tables and split up the alphabet. So instead of one big line, you’re waiting in the M-O line or the J-L line. Also easier for the employees who don’t have to look through the whole alphabet to find your name. :)

  44. My cousin and I bought $25 intern tickets, and had a blast! I think it was because we had no idea what to expect. We registered on Friday so we avoided a lot of the craziness that we saw on Saturday. We didn’t get to see a lot of the cast, be were so thrilled to meet Phyllis, Bob, Creed, and Andy Buckley. We did think there was a lot of confusion and that the volunteers did not have a lot of information, but we managed to enjoy ourselves. Next year I would be interested in buying more expensive tickets if I knew there would be definite perks of cast meetings.

  45. *I arrived at registration around 5 or so, and there were no lines, so I have no complaints. I did hear that the actual corporate passes were rather difficult to come by, and that some people never got a proper pass.

    *The autograph sessions were confusing due to a lack of signage, and there needs to be more clearly defined lines in addition to a much better location. The lack of an indoor site for the session really made things cramped and uncomfortable for everyone.

    *I really enjoyed the Q&As and the Scrantones concert with the cast. Those three great events that seemed to go off well. The least enjoyable event was the blogger breakfast which was very disorganized and should have been presented by Officetally and The Two Cents, who are leaders in the fandom. I did get to meet a few bloggers that I follow, but there didn’t seem to be a lot mingling.

    *Should there be another convention, the Scrantones concert and the Q&As should absolutely be held again. Perhaps there could be a session for the people behind the scenes like the cameramen, props, etc. who were not represented this year. The Uncommon Stockholders Meeting seemed kind of pointless, to be honest, and could be skipped.

    *The convention program seemed to be well put together and I had fun reading the individual articles about the cast. It was a pretty good resource for finding places to go and eat and drink as well as reminders of things mentioned on the show to check out in town.

    (as far as announcements go, it would have been nice to know more about what each pass level meant, because I would have purchased a Corporate pass instead of RM had the outlines of the benefits been posted sooner. Events should have be a little more solidly planned when tickets went on sale. Here’s to next year!)

  46. Registration:
    Registration was fine for me as I had submitted my photograph ahead of time. They should have made it clear from the get-go that you should be supplying a photograph because I heard that wait was terrible. Also my friend was able to upgrade from Regional Manager to Corporate, but didn’t get a nifty gifty… what gives? They said they’d run out, but then proceeded to hand them out like water at the Office Olympics. Also, why wasn’t there a nifty gifty with just John’s signature on it?

    Also, didn’t realize that the registration for the Office Olympics was in there too. Would have been nice for there to be a huge sign or something.

    Autograph Signing:
    I was scheduled for a certain time and went to it. Not 5 minutes later (it was not an on the hour time) the people I’d gotten autographs were gone and in had come Ed and Angela… the two I’d REALLY wanted. If they want the celebs to be there for only an hour, then make sure they arrive and leave at the proper times so I don’t lose out on a faves. Also- why was line “A” longer than line “B”? (or vice versa) I also think that corporate should have been given one for each autograph signing for each actor, but everyone else the random ones.

    A suggestion would be to have had it in the center that the ribbon cutting took place. The line could extend a greater distance and a table could be set up on stage. Less crowding and less budding in by people.

    My friend and I stood in the rain, by the stage for an hour when they moved us inside. It would have been nice had they told us that it was going to be inside earlier rather than let us soak it all up.

    Favourite event:
    The cocktail night. Loved being able to mingle with the celebs and writers. Wish that the “high profile” celebs would have been able to stay longer in the VIP area though… what was that about? I barely saw Melora or Angela there, but Greg D. and the other writers were there for at least an hour or so…. Saw Ed spend substantial time. I feel like this was the one event where the coporate passholders were actually VIP– they were very strict on checking who was going into the room, so the numbers were more controlled and it would have made for some awesome one on one. I kept waiting for the stars to come downstairs, but when they did they were wisked to and fro and spent the bulk of their time upstairs…

    Also I would have liked to have had it made very clear that we had to register for the costume contest. Had someone not mentioned it to me off hand, I never would have known. IT WAS NOT ANNOUNCED in the VIP lounge, no matter what they say.

    Least Favourite:
    Bloggers Breakfast. Took WAYYYY too long to get started (45 minutes late!!) and the time was too close to the Writer’s Q&A which was across town. I couldn’t stay beyond Brian and Bobby’s opening address because I needed to hightail it to the Masonic Temple.

    I also thought that the stockholders meeting at Steamtown was boring and pointless. They didn’t let the actors run with the improv and the entire thing was just boring and lame.

    Next year?
    I loved the Writer’s Q&A, the cast Q&A, the cocktail night and the casino night. All were fabulous. I would like to see instead of a chip count going toward the winning of prizes, perhaps a trivia contest. This way TRUE Office fanatics win (deservedly) the prizes. The mustaches were left behind because the winner didn’t even care enough for them! (tsk tsk) And some people didn’t even understand the significance of some of the prizes (ie. Dwight’s flute was one of the last prizes to be picked!)

    Not next year:
    The blogger’s breakfast could have been better. Krispy Kreme donuts? Meh. What about a real continental breakfast with bagels, cereal or something?

    I also HATED that the moderator (Gene) at the Writer’s Q&A who insisted on focusing every topic on Scranton… (ie. What do you want to know from the locals about Scranton) I wasn’t there to hear about Scranton, I wanted to hear about storylines and the writer’s process. And it was never supposed to be a “Writers ask Scranton for information” session. That’s why they went on their tour earlier in the week– to learn about the town. Plus he personal questions were so locally centered (ie. “why don’t you use Scranton accents” “The Chili’s doesn’t exist…” that I really just didn’t care and felt that it wasted time)

    Convention Program:
    I loved the convention program. The local stuff found in each episode was really interesting. Same with the Q&As for the cast members. I would like to see it on glossy paper next time with colour. Thankfully mine was free, because there is no way I would have paid $3 for that.

    The one thing that drove me insane was that the celebs were wisked here and there and so you had a SMALL window of opportunity to get your autograph/photo with them. So they were always crowded. I found that the writers (who were not under the same constraints) were less inaudated and it was nice to talk one on one with them without feeling like someone was going to elbow you in the face.

  47. I didn’t go, but based on the reports I’ll definitely be attending next year.

    Just based on TWSS’ podcasts of the Q&As (for which I am eternally grateful), I have to agree about the MCs. They were terrible. I emailed a handful of what I thought were good questions about the writing process, (especially to the new writers like Ryan and Jason, since they wouldn’t have had as much to say otherwise) and instead of hearing any of them answered I had to hear the writers handle the stupid idea that the actors should suddenly start speaking “Scranton.”

    But next year, Corporate pass here I come.

  48. * Keep registration in the same place. I felt bad when I told someone where I thought it was only to find out it kept getting moved. There should also be lots of signs everywhere.

    * Let people designate in advance which cast members they want to meet (limit 2?). Give them the ticket for their fave cast member(s?). There’d be only so many tickets to give out per cast member, so it’d be a first come/first serve basis. Each cast member really only needs to hang around an hour, and people get to meet who they want. Win-win-win (third win for the convention being even more awesome).

    * Always have a backup plan in advance. Know where events will go in case of bad weather, and have that printed in the program.

    * The Q&A and Writers block were my favorites. Loved all the fan questions. Some things (like the stockholders meeting) just need a bit more organization. I think lots more people will show up next year, since Scranton has now proved it can throw a great event. Adjust venue sizes accordingly.

    * I really like the idea of a glossy paper program. I will be sad when my newsprint fades.

    * I really would have liked to hear more from you, Tanster, at the bloggers event! I love this site so much. It was cool the cast members were there, but I have heard their stories before. I think it should have focused mainly on officetally, because it truly is what keeps my Office addiction going!

    *Actually make the different ticket levels mean something. Corporate got lots of perks, but the three other ticket levels got pretty much the same thing.

    * Finally, I think if there’s another convention next year, this year’s attendees should get priority! I’m totally on board. My only fear for next year is that it could get too crazy!

    [from tanster: thanks, alison! you could probably tell that the bloggers’ breakfast NEVER had an official agenda. i can probably talk for hours on officetally, but wasn’t sure if people would be interested. ]

  49. (tanster- I am reposting this because my first comment went over 200 words)

    First, let me just say it was an amazing experience and I’m so thankful to the writers, cast, NBC, organizers and city of Scranton for putting everything together! Best weekend of my life!

    Corporate registration did take almost 2 hours of waiting time, but I understand it had to do with printing out the badges. I don’t think we were sent the email about express registration early enough, so most people did not know about it. I think the other levels seemed to have a much smoother registration process.

    I know many people had complaints that the Regional Managers had basically the same exact benefits as the people who paid only $25. There definitely needs to be a greater distinction between the price levels or an enforcement of ticket rules.

    I was so grateful for the autograph sessions, but of course the lines were long and the timing was off. Maybe people could choose which session they wanted to attend, or have all cast members do one signing. I thought it was nice though, that even those without tickets were somewhat close enough that they could get a quick picture of a cast member from far away- even if it was not actually with them.

  50. I also think the autograph session should have been moved inside rather than out in the same exact tents that had registration and the NBC store. Way too much going on in one area. The NBC store was quite ridiculous. There should have been at least 3 different areas selling the NBC merchandise so that the lines were not as long.

    There should have been more signs pointing out where certain events were- such as Friday’s kick-off reception, or where the Office Olympics were taking place.

    My favorite events were Casino Night, Writers Block and the Scrantones concert on Saturday nights. I was so impressed that we were actually able to mingle with the cast and the music/drinks/food was great. The Writers Block was so informative and the questions were great.

    I loved how the setting was a bit more intimate than the cast Q&A. I really have to say that all the writers were so down to earth and genuine and it was amzing to see/meet them. The Scrantones concert was great and I loved seeing the cast members rock out on stage.

  51. Office Olympics was probably the weakest event, although it was still fun. I think it was boring for the people just watching.I think some trivia events should be incorporated next time.

    I didn’t attend it, but I heard that stockholder’s meeting was set up badly and there were not enough seats and attendees could not hear.

    I also think the look-a-like contest and the improv before it was somewhat boring. I heard many people suggest that they should have had a cash bar at that event, or at least food/drinks.

    I enjoyed all of the interviews in the program and I was glad they supplied us with a map and list of events.

    Oh- another complaint I had was about some of the moderators. They continued to add in their own comments about Scranton, and hound the writers about Scranton-related questions. I felt bad for Greg Daniels because he kept trying to explain that even though the show takes place in Scranton, it still needs to represent every office in every town and can’t get too Scranton-y.

  52. Tanster- I know I’ve written a lot and I hope that is okay.

    I liked the Blogger’s Breakfast and I thought it was great that the cast talked about their blogs/myspaces. I think maybe the other bloggers should have had the opportunity to talk a bit more about their experiences and maybe shown their site to the crowd.

    Overall, the whole weekend was above anything I expected and I think the fans did a great job being kind and respectful to the guests. It was so surreal to see Brian dealing blackjack, Craig bartending or Bobby Ray just hanging out with the fans. And I must thank you tanster for your amazing website because without it I would have never even heard about the convention!

  53. This is not necessarily feedback, but I wanted to address what Debbie said about the VIP Cocktail party, and being upset that the whole cast was at the Scrantones concert/ costume party. I wasn’t at the VIP party but I believe it was scheduled from 8-9 in the brochure. The costume party judging didn’t start until close to 9 and The Scrantones didn’t even come on stage until about 10-ish. I’m assuming that anyone who wanted to come upstairs could have done so. I don’t know what was happening from 8-9 but the cast certainly wasn’t upstairs.

  54. i do think that autograph / cast access should coincide with the ticket level. i paid for the $250 and felt a little gipped that i didn’t get to see everyone and when i did get a chance to meet one of the cast it was rushed because there were so many people waiting to talk. probably had about 30 seconds with jan/kelly. about 5 seconds with Ryan.

    also totally agree on the NBC store line. waited long time (abuot 45 mintues before i gave up because it’s be another 40 minutes) when i could have seen other things.

    The Halloween judging part was not announced in the VIP party and i was upset i missed most of it. from what i saw of it it was a blast. had i known that the cast wouldn’t make much of an appearance until an hour after it started (party was only suppose to last an hour) i would have hung upstairs more. i finally did get to see ed/angela after popping upstairs/downstairs alot and i was about three people away from angela before she said she had to leave. she did feel bad about it. i never did get her autograph or a picture or even a chance to say hi to her =(

    with the bloggers breakfeast i was kind of upset that it seemed that anyone who had a pass could be admitted. there wasn’t enough seating. also a little more than doughnuts would have been nice since it was a mad rush to the cultural center afterwards for the writers block. i’m not exactly thin and the last thing i need to do is eat 3 or 4 krispy cream doughnuts (it’d turn out it’d be the only thing i’d have to eat until about 3:30 pm)

    the cast q/a was awesome. i dont’ think i’d change a thing on it. same with the writer’s block. halloween party was great and again i wish it had been announced that the cast was upstairs judging instead of waiting at the VIP party for them.

  55. I agree with a previous post about the look-a-like contest. Audience members persuaded me and another jilted Pam contestant to go on stage despite not being called as finalists. I was hesitant to do so and then was completely embarrassed on stage when the host kicked us off. Thank you to the audience members for booing that decision!
    Anyhow, the pre-judging was clearly faulty since it mis-categorized creative costumes AND failed to call the winning Dwight up as a semi-finalist. Luckily audience members forced him to go up there as well.
    Lastly, why weren’t there any prizes for the winners of the look-a-like? The Olympics winners got yogurt lids and autographed memorabilia and I felt badly for the people who spent so much time on their costumes to maybe get a chance to get a photo with a cast member before they were whisked away.

    Other than those complaints, I had a great time. I’ll definitely come back next year!

  56. The convention was amazing! I am still pinching myself that I was really in Scranton just a few days ago! To be with so many people who love this show was simply great. I met so many wonderful people. If there is another convention – count me in!

    – Registration was ok for me, but I was late to register on Friday so I missed the crowd. I had to come back later to pick up my picture, and there seemed to be a lack of communication between the helpers, but they were friendly. Thanks to persistence I found my picture up on the pedestal and didn’t have to have a business card.
    – I didn’t know about the autograph session and kicked myself for not having read through all the materials. Frankly, I was so amazed by Casino Night and getting to meet and greet so many of the stars – so many wonderful moments – it’s just my own fault. It wasn’t until I was talking to another fan that I heard about the session and then I found my paper that indicated the time I was allotted. Bummer.

  57. Sorry for the multiple posts – I too am suffering from the 200 word maximum
    – Hailing from the Pacific Northwest, rain = liquid sunshine. I liked the suggestion of a backup plan though, especially since we knew from Al Roker that rain was in the forecast.
    – I enjoyed Casino Night; the performances by Creed and Daryl were too cool for words. I loved the Cast Q&A and the Writer’s Block. And the ending to the Saturday concert was fantastic with the stars coming up on stage to the theme song.What really made these events I think were everyone from the show – from the stars to the writers to the producers. They were open, approachable and totally reinforced why I love the show so much – it’s authenticity, creativity and humor. I mean how cool is it to be sitting in an auditorium with all the writers, Craig Daniels, Kent Zbornak and a few of the stars and be shushing the moderator for talking over Thursday’s preview of the show??? Do we not love this show? Amazing!
    – I don’t think there was an event that I didn’t like. Even the train museum with the costumes was cool.

  58. Last post!
    -For the next convention, please keep the Cast Q&A and the writer’s block. The Cocktail Party’s were cool, but I think what made them cool were the impromptu performances. I hope that these will be continued. All of them were incredible. I think as the season progresses, there will be new themes emerging that will lend themselves to be convention appropriate. Perhaps the organizers will allow suggestions from the fans at an appropriate time? The 3 day convention felt like it was so much more.
    -Ok, I was disappointed with the bloggers breakfast. I must admit I am not much of a blogger but rely on OfficeTally for all Office related information. I think this session could have been better organized with clearer focus. I agree with the person who suggested risers – it was hard to see those up front talking. I would have loved to have the top bloggers introduced and more of an exchange/discussion with the bloggers. The session could have included info about the Dunder Mifflin Infinity branches. I thought the present for Tanster was super cool – you really deserve it! You have done so much for the fans and the show.

  59. I hope it’s okay to leave some feedback as someone who wasn’t at the convention, but wishes now that she had been –

    The main thing that kept me from going to the convention was the fact that nothing about programming or cast and crew appearances was announced until so late in the game. I didn’t feel like I could commit to spending so much money, without really knowing what I was going to be spending it on. I didn’t ask for the time off work, and I wasn’t able to go.

    That said, I VERY much hope there’s another convention next year, so that I can plan ahead, and attend!

  60. As a professional event organizer myself, I thought this event was really poorly organized. I was unable to be part of the events team due to my job here, but it was pretty much a madhouse at the events. A lot of people there didn’t respect the rules and set up of the event and just did what they wanted. And there was no one telling them otherwise. I don’t plan to pay for a VIP pass next year because a temp got everything I got and more. What a rip off. Live and learn. Hopefully, I’ll be able to come out and be very involved in orchestrating the event next year (since this is what I do for a living for a major sports team). But for a bunch of novices and such it was okay.

    My highlight was talking to Steve Carell on Jenna’s cell phone.


    Bloggers breakfast should have tables and chairs and not be set in an auditorium setting. That was weird and uncomfortable.

    Have more giveaways and prizes throughout event.

  62. Meeting tanster was my ultimate fantasy brought to life. You answered my questions and helped me with what I needed to know and introduced me to other bloggers and just made me feel welcome. I would have liked a basic demo of how you got your blog started, how you are able to be so active on your blog AND work a full time job (what do you do for a living? some dead end job for a paper company where you can just spend time on your blog 24/7 and no one knows or what?)

    Also, how do you find all the links that you post on your site? Do you google them or do you have one source that you just copy/paste from?

    Who was the first person from the real office cast to notice your website and contact you – either in person, via phone or via e-mail? what did that conversation/exchange go like? what dod you say back to them? were you caught off guard? did you freak out?

    Tanster…how is your website funded? I don’t see any banners or popups when I come on here. How do you keep this site going and how are you able to make it so huge – this site is freakin’ huge! You must have a good day job to support your blog site.

    [from tanster: all really great questions! perhaps i should answer them in a video or something. TallyTalk’s Question of the Week … ]

  63. Overall, I had a fantastic time. Unfortunately, I feel credit for that is largely due to the Office cast & crew. All my complaints are convention planner related. While the cast and crew made us fans feel very welcome and appreciated, I repeatedly felt insulted and treated poorly by the convention planners, especially at the bloggers breakfast and mall improv events. The local Scrantonians were fantastic, I only take issue with the attitudes of the planners. I was especially irritated by the fact that some of the local hosts felt it necessary to interject their own Scranton-related questions into Q&As. Yes, its great that so many Scranton locals came out for the event, but what about the OFFICE fans who traveled thousands of miles to be there for the OFFICE. There seemed to be a disconnect there in the minds of the planners, who wanted to make every event about Scranton, not the show. I’ve emailed the planning team and have yet to get a response regarding the 100$ Regional Manager pass, which ended up being totally meaningless. 25$ pass holders got to do every single thing 100$ pass holders got to do, even sitting in front of them at some events. There was absolutely zero benefit to having an RM pass versus having an Intern one. Absolutely zero. That is very wrong and I expect an explanation. I definitely feel my trip was worth it, again, thanks almost exclusively to the cast and crew, but I’m wondering why I paid an extra 75$ for nothing. I’d appreciate an answer.

  64. First things first, I want to thank all the organizers of the convention because overall I think it was a great weekend. I had a lot of fun and I would definitely do it next year.
    The suggestions that I do have have to do with the different ticket levels. I really wanted to purchase the Corporate pass but unfortunately could not afford it. So I purchased the Regional Manager pass which was still $100.00. I did not feel like there was enough difference between the Regional Manager and the Asst. Regional Manager. We were mixed in with the interns and the Asst. when it came for seating to the big events, which I felt was unfair since we paid more. I feel like there should of been designated seating for the Regional Managers too. Both times there was seating left in the corporate areas that we could occupied. I feel that we should of been able to attend one of the cocktail parties for the amount of money our pass cost. Next year I just think that if you do buy one of the 2 top level tickets there should it should come with more advantages.
    Also the autograph signing was not in the event booklet so I missed it completely and was forced to practically stalk these people to get picture and autographs. I think that this should of been more organized it should of been announced either in the booklet or at the ribbon cutting. I also feel that it should of been a part of the ticket prices. Maybe the $50 -$250 ticket holders should of been eligible.
    Other than that once again it was a great event and I really enjoyed myself.

  65. This is re: 52
    The interesting thing about the stockholders meeting was that there were seats all reserved for Scranton big-wigs. I got pulled as a “VIP” because I reacted to her question about being from out of country, but there was certainly many, many empty seats and I saw her filling them up with definite locals. Not fair! As boring as the event was, I’m sure out of towners would have appreciated it as much or more. Maybe a draw or something to “win” those seats… because I was really close and it certainly was an advantage, especially in meeting Andy Buckley.

  66. I wanted to weigh in as well. I’ll do this in sections because I have a few issues. I had a Corporate pass and was also extremely angry at how they STRESSED that the Casino night was just a night to have fun and that we were NOT ALLOWED to take pictures. I was fine with that because they also STRESSED that we would have the rest of the weekend at our VIP parties to rub elbows with the cast and crew. But so many people ended up taking pictures and being the good guy I am, didn’t in fright that I would be booted for the remainder of the convention. (Their threat, not mine) I was told by an organizer that we should have lowered our expectations. But, on the site of theofficeconvention, they described those VIP parties as mingling with EVERYBODY. That was so untrue. The reason I paid that $250 was because it stated that the cast and crew would be attending all 3 VIP parties. That was just deceitful. I waited around like a fool on Saturday night hoping for the cast to come in but they brushed any cast member through to go through another door; most like to have a meet and greet with the local politicians. That was just so wrong.

  67. (Tanster – I’m reposting, but in 2 parts as to stick to the word limit)

    I thought the convention was incredible! I had the Regional Manager pass, but will splurge for the Corp. pass next time. Thanks so much to all of the organizers and participants! Every attendee I met was very nice.

    The good: The writers’ block was my favorite event, followed by the cast Q and A, and the Scrantones concert. They were amazing events. I thought the autograph shifts worked well for the cast, and agree they should not be at autograph tables all day. It’s unfortunate if you don’t get to meet your favorite cast member, but I think it’s important for them to have fun too, and that seemed to have been accomplished. The good news is we were at the tent when they announced they were opening the autograph lines up to everyone. That was a good decision made by the staff. I really enjoyed the use of various venues in Scranton, vs. having all events in one bldg. I thought the program was good too. I also enjoyed the costume display. It was cool to see Pam’s dress from Casino Night. Office Olympics was fun as well, once we figured out where it was.

  68. The bad: I agree with the complaints about Saturday’s registration. It was a nightmare. Great idea to keep it in the same place all weekend, away from other events. I also agree the ‘autograph tickets’ should’ve been distributed differently. There were three of us w/RM passes and no one got a ticket. Line cutting was a problem at most events, and I agree seating at those should be based on your pass level. I thought the bloggers breakfast was unorganized, and felt bad for the bloggers who didn’t get introduced. It would’ve been nice to hear more from them. Overall, communication was probably the worst. The next one should have signs everywhere, and volunteers walking the lines making announcements about what the line is for, etc. We were upset that we missed the ribbon cutting because we didn’t know where to go.

    As far as what I would change: I would suggest that the local theater show episodes. It was difficult to find the other theater. We eventually gave up. I would’ve really enjoyed watching episodes with other fans during the down time. I know the Trolley Museum was showing episodes, but that was bit removed from the action as well.

  69. As a Scrantonian, I was glad to see so many people enjoy themselves here. My 16 year old daughter and I attended the convention and had a great time. We were lucky. We went to the Raddisson on Friday afternoon (after she got out of school) to register. There was no line to register at that time, but there was a long line for the NBC merchandise store. The lines at the store location by the U of S on Saturday were even more ridiculous. To me, this is one area that needs attention for next year’s convention to run more smoothly. Overall, it was a great time. We’ll have to save up to upgrade our tickets for next year! “Ain’t no party like a Scranton party…”

  70. Part 1 of 3 (sorry, so much to say!)

    Overall, I had a fantastic time at the convention, so what follows is just constructive criticism to help next year’s event (and I really hope there is one) be even better…

    Favorite event = Cast Q & A. Don’t change a thing. The format worked perfectly, a mix of pre-screened questions directed at each cast member, followed by an open format for audience members. Also loved the Season 3 bloopers and the “Please Come to Scranton” video made by the locals in order to lure the Office cast & crew to visit. Is there a place to see that online? An earlier post complained about having to listen to the “3rd rate jazz band” – I disagree 100% on this one – hearing the local jazz band (college students, I think) added a lot to the local charm. Please let them play again next year, they were great!

  71. Part 2 of 3

    Least Favorite event = Uncommon Stockholders’ Meeting. This had potential to be fun, but the acoustics were just awful and the whole thing seemed to meander and not really have a point. I was sitting just in front of “David Wallace” and even he seemed a bit confused about what was going on. The end was somewhat funny and I like my stock certificate and D-M ream of paper, but overall there is a lot of room for improvement here.

    Registration – Everything went smoothly with our registration on Friday evening. I believe there was a wedding reception in the Radisson ballroom on Saturday night – perhaps this was part of why it didn’t stay in the same location all weekend (the wedding had likely been booked longer than the conference was even a twinkle in its planners’ eyes). Also, we had Asst to the Regional Manger passes – I don’t think there was anything that we went to that we couldn’t have gotten in with just an Intern’s pass, so the extra $50 feels like a waste. That said, I can really sympathize with the Regional Managers, since they paid even more.

  72. Part 3 of 3

    Autograph session – what autograph session? I completely missed out on that one – in fact, I didn’t even know there was one until reading everyone’s posts when we got back. I looked through all of my conference materials, but didn’t see any mention of it. Of course, it is probably right there and I am just blind 

    Costume contest/Scrantones concert – Lots of fun. Sorry, but I could’ve done without the improv ahead of time. I did actually like that one skit on “Heyna-onics”, the Scranton dialect, because of its local flair. Next time, please let the costume contestants get up all the way on stage so that we can see everyone. Also, next year be sure to include an “Other” category because the Vending Machine Filled with Dwight’s Stuff was robbed! Also, the music was great, but far too loud. In fact, we had to leave because it was hurting our ears. Wow, complaining about loud music – I am officially old!!

    We left after the Bloggers’ Breakfast on Sunday morning, so no comments on the Writers’ Block – wish we could’ve been there. Thanks Scranton/The Office for a very memorable weekend and SEE YOU NEXT YEAR!!

  73. Signs – or lack of them.
    I totally agree with the fact that there should have been small poster signs all over the city directing everyone where each event was being held. We missed the Kick Off party because no one knew where it was.

    Registration –
    There should have been more than 1 person/machine creating the picture passes for Corporates.

    Jazz Band –
    I hated them. I wanted more Office stuff.

    Big Tent –
    Needed ropes to separate individual lines if you insist on that big tent. The NBC Store should have been in a number of locations. And especially not with the autograph line.

    Different Levels –
    I agree that there should be different roped off lines for the different levels. Let the Corporates in first, Regional Managers, next and so on. If you have people pay a different amount for the different privileges, then you should treat them as such.
    And let the cast, writers, and producers know the schedule of events that you expect them to attend with the Corporates. If you tell us that they will be there but don’t even let them know, then how do you expect them to show up?

  74. Has anyone considered taking all of these suggestions, creating a document & getting a copy to the organizers? I think it might be a good idea to help them take care of the main issues for next year. All of the suggestions seem to be good ones & I’m sure the organizers would like to make sure everyone has a great experience.

    [from tanster: yep. that’s what i plan to do.]

  75. I felt like the autograph session was the biggest disappointment of the Convention. It did not seem fair to me that some people with 25 dollar tickets could get an autograph, while some people with 100 dollar tickets,such as myself, could not. I think it would have been better if the top two ticket levels were automatically given autograph stubs and, to give everyone a chance at getting an autograph, tickets were distributed randomally to the lower levels. I also feel like the registration session could have been better handled. The lines were confusing, and there didn’t seem to be anyone who could give us a definite answer as to where we should have gone. I also think there should have been more of a distinction between the different ticket levels because, at least while I was there, there was really nothing I could do that everyone else couldn’t. By far, the highlight of the trip for me was the Cast Q and A. I thought it was so much fun, and a great opportunity to hear what the cast had to say.
    Overall, it was a wonderful weekend though!

  76. Any idea if the Convention organizers plan to create and sell a DVD with highlights of the weekend? I realize that there are numerous videos floating around online, but for those (like me) who are not super-savvy when it comes to downloading videos and burning DVDs, I would certainly be interested in buying one to re-live the experience. :)

  77. I was asked what do you call the people who attended the convention, I told her we are “officionados”. Sounds better than “trekkies”, I think.

  78. I thought it was fantastic. Came up from DC with my Mom and we had a blast. While it was hard to bear with the lines and the crush at the autograph sessions, I figured out that if you hung out at the Radisson, chances were good that you’d see somebody. (It seemed like Bobby Ray was living in the lobby!!!) Got to see Kate and Brian and Creed a lot. Had my picture taken with all of them in the lobby. So that was very cool.
    Thought the outdoor street fair was a little lame. And the weather sucked.
    Biggest surprise? The Scrantones ROCKED! Oh my God!!! We almost left while that crummy improv group was on-stage but someone said that Kate was going to sing so we hung around. Got more than our money’s worth on Saturday night.
    Can’t wait for next year.

  79. I went on Saturday and had an excellent time. My suggestions:

    Autographs: I think it would be more effective if the higher ticket levels were able to get in the autograph line repeatedly so that it would be possible to get everyone’s autograph. I liked at the end that everyone was allowed to get into line and get autographs (that’s how I got a lot of mine, actually). When they let anyone get in line, those who still had passes were allowed to move to the front of the line and I think this sort of strategy should be applied to autographs next year – if you have the right level pass, you can jump to the front of the line and get autographs at every session (I liked the session idea – it gave me a chance to wander a bit) instead of just one. Or sell “autograph passes” that you could add on to any ticket level with the same privilege I just mentioned.

    Cast Q&A: Amazing. I loved the format. Keep it. Perfect. The only thing there was a kerfuffle about was a Corporate pass holder complaining about having to wait in line – I think it should be made more clear if Corporates can jump ahead in line or still need to wait in line but be ushered to the Corporates section of seats (so that if one Corporate pass holder who has been waiting in line to be fair isn’t cut off by one who jumped to the front). I just think that should be more clear. I’d also have the band play for less time and play an episode or two – maybe have people vote on the website for what episode they want to see?

    – Maybe add in trivia or quote contests into the Office Olympics
    – Shuttle stops needed to be marked more clearly! I always saw one driving past, but didn’t know where it was stopping or when.

  80. As for the Corporate passes jumping the line –
    I think that Corporates should not have to wait in any of those long lines. They should have their own separate line; as should the Regional Managers. That’s a lot of money that was asked for the Corporates and they should have that privilege not to have to wait in those horribly long lines.

  81. My husband and I had a great time and by virtue of dumb luck and getting in the waiting lines asap, we were able to make the most of our regional manager passes. There should have been better signage for the events, with organizers going through the lines to let people know what was going on. A lot of the times we just guessed that we were in the right lines. My biggest point of contention is the miscommunication with the autograph signings. I thought by purchasing my r.m. pass and indicating a time period I was getting a chance to meet with a few of the cast members at an assigned period. I obviously, was terribly mistaken. To know that I could have spent $50 instead of $200 and attended all the same events is LUDICROUS! This was poor planning. Why did the brochure keep indicating that interns would get seating as space permitted? Every line I waited in they were sat at events the same way my husband and I were. I could have spent that $150 on a much better hotel. Please fix this if you want to see some of us return.

  82. I had a ball at the convention. I had a corporate pass, and it was well worth the $250. I do have some suggestions for improvements though.
    1. For people who held corporate passes, they shouldn’t have had to wait on the long lines with intern passes. (Registration line, Cast Q&A, Writer’s Block.) The extra money we paid should’ve saved us that hassle of waiting on line with so many people.
    2. I attended all events. Next time though, while we’re sitting waiting for an event (Cast Q&A, Blogger’s Breakfast, Writer’s Block), why don’t you play Office episodes. It felt like an eternity while we waited for the Cast Q&A, and Scranton University’s Orchestra just didn’t cut it. I think we all would’ve enjoyed watching an episode or 2 of the Office. (The time definitely would’ve went by quicker.)
    3. I totally loved the Casino night, and did feel priveleged to go, since it was only corporate passes. But other then that, I felt all other ticket holders had the same access to everything we did. I actually met a guy who had no ticket, and was able to meet the whole cast, and get autographs. He also was able to sneak into the last cocktail party after the Writer’s Block.
    Again, the event was amazing. I really appreciate all the hard work, and planning that went into it.
    P.S. Please definitely consider putting an official DVD out of this event.

  83. #68 Andy I totally agree with you about Casino night. I honestly felt it was cool to let the actors and writers relax and have a good time. I had no problem respecting their wishes. I even approached the guy who came on our bus to warn us not to pull out any cameras, or they’d be confiscated. I asked him in the casino area why nobody was being thrown out for using their cameras? Then I asked if I could use mine? He said not to chance it, because I’d end up being the lucky one to get caught and thrown out. But I was very upset about this situation too.

  84. #67 StarryDreamer, I totally agree w/ u about the Stockholders meeting. I had the corporate pass, and thought the VIP reserved seats were for us. The woman hosting the event was borderline nasty about us not sitting there. But yes, she ended up letting locals sit there. Plus they were handing out freebies to the locals who just happened to be walking by and were curious. I would bet my bottom dollar these people probably don’t even watch the Office. I tried so hard to get a ream of DM paper, but no luck. Instead one of the guys handed a bunch to the onlookers.
    When giving out freebies, some kind of Office Convention pass should need to be shown to receive the stuff. We would’ve so much appreciated it more then people just passing by.

  85. Another suggestion would be for the Question and Answer sessions, weed out terrible questions. Leslie Baker was asked “Who does Stanley’s character dislike the most?” That was such a wasted question.

  86. I had a blast

    QUESTION; What would make it better next year?

    Michael, Dwight, Jim, and Pam

  87. I thought the convention was great, especially for it being the first year. I came on Saturday morning and I guess registration would have been better if we weren’t all stuck in weaving lines under the tent. But that was because of the rain so I guess it could not be helped. Some people had no idea what lines were what but there were convention people walking around helping distinguish between lines and handing out the paper with Ed Helms on the front. I didn’t mind the wait for registration because I was just excited to finally be out of the car and be there. I didn’t know that the Office Olympics was rescheduled indoors but that may be because I was there later on Saturday morning. I thought the Q&A for the actors as well as for the writers were both awesome. I thought I was just going to be excited to see famous people but I actually enjoyed it most because they were all so hilarious and seemed so excited to be there. During the concert at night all the actors who performed genuinely seemed to be having a great time and that it wasn’t a chore for them to be there.

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