Hey Everyone. Well, My family and I had an interesting and nice weekend of gaming at Tennessee Games Day 2010.
What was it that made it so interesting. Well, let’s see.
Tennessee Game Days were held at the Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville Tennessee. This is an amazing hotel, beautiful, and TGD was able to secure an unbelievable room rate for the convention. Those that booked early enough got a wonderful rate of about $79 a night, plus a resort fee, etc. They ended up being about $110 a night after all was said and done. However, this hotel had amazing amount of value for that amount of money.
It happens to be the largest hotel in America, (That is not a casino). TGD Was just a small part of the festivities and amenities available at the hotel. Because of this, my wife and family decided that they would come along with me.
So, I booked the family rate of the TGD Convention online and booked the room. TGD is very family friendly. The individual rate for three days pre registered was $40. The family rate, (adding my wife and two daughters) was only $50. It was a no brainer to bump up even if they didn’t want to play anything at TGD just in case. It would have been a no brainer for me at even $60, I might have thought about it for a few minutes if it was $70.
So we arrive in Nashville on Friday Morning and it is a beautiful day. We find free parking in the Opry Mills Parking lot and walk to our hotel on a short walkway which also just happened to used to be the Grizzly River Rampage ride at Opryland. It brought back a few memories back from when I was younger. It was quite interesting.
We check in at the TGD Registration Desk fairly early Friday Morning. Chat with some old friends I only see once a year or so, and get our badges. Olivia (5) and Sarah (10) are quite enthusiastic about the cool passport badges that they have…
Oh, yeah, so the theme of TGD is that it’s like a traveling theme. The badges are ‘passports’ and you can get stamps for playing certain games which gives you more chances to win from a quite generous supply of prizes from their sponsors.
Anyway, the kids love the theme, we sit around and chat for a bit with new and old friends.
Hotel Registration. Not wanting to wait to terribly long, and also wanting to explore the hotel which we were in awe of while looking around (It really is amazing.) We decided to head toward the front and see just how early we could check in.
So, after checking in, and wandering around an amazing hotel, we meandered back to the TGD Ballroom and started playing some games, Me and the kids played some Crokinole on the TGD Logo Crokinole Board. There is a local Woodworker making some amazing Crokinole Boards in Nashville, You may remember the Jupiter Board. There was also the TGD Logo board, and a Death Star which was quite amazing looking too.
After Crokinole, the wife and kids decided to check out the hotel swimming pool, while I stayed and played some games. Got into a game of Ghost Stories, where we were doing alright, but then all of a sudden about 4 cards before the Wu Feng came out, it all fell apart, and we started dying left and right. Finally succumbing to the ghost threat before we could make it to the Wu Feng.
I also played a game of In the Year of the Dragon, and Chinatown in fairly quick succession.
I played the only new to me game of the weekend (alright, maybe there was one other coming shortly, but not sure it counts) Finca.
I liked it a lot. Didn’t really see it coming, but the lightness and the quickness and ease of possibly being a nice family game and gateway quickly have put it on my want list. I’ll keep an eye out for that one and get it as soon as I can track a copy down, or make an order. I wanted my wife to try it out before the weekend was up, but unfortunately that didn’t happen.
I stuck around for the Friday night drawing playing a game of Loot, While we were playing my younger daughter was called out as a winner, unfortunately, she was already asleep and since you had to be present to win, I felt a little disappointed for her.
On Saturday I woke up pretty early to get my flea market stuff ready, and set up in the game room.
I set up for the flea market trying to get rid of some unplayed stuff in my collection, and did fairly well, striking up a few deals just to get some stuff out.
I browsed others, but I really am trying very hard to restrict my game purchases and did a very good job, I was tempted by several things, I finally ended up picking up an in shrink Quiddler for $2 and a copy of Neuroshima Hex, with the expansion, and a deftly prepared (by Verkisto) DIY Expansion as well for $35, but I still came out ahead in the flea market by about $40 bucks or so.
The most interesting item sold at the flea market was the cursed copy of Fact or Crap, which was sold for -$2 (Yes, that’s a negative two dollars)
My family came in sometime during the flea market while I was manning my area and started playing some games over in the corner. I walked over finally when I gave up on the last few stragglers and me and the family headed out to Dinner and rode the shuttle bus over to the Opryland Mall (we would have walked, but it was pouring down rain all day Saturday.)
Walked around Opry Mills for a good while, and had a nice time, but made it back in time to play a few games with the kids before our scheduled matches of the Crokinole Tournament.
I played a game of Pickomino, A couple of games of Crokinole, and a game of Hula Hippos with the Family and some others that had kids there as well. Hula Hippos I guess was the other, new to me game of the weekend.
Then we set up for our rounds of the Crokinole Tournament. My wife and daughter made it through to the second round of doubles, I was eliminated in the first round in singles, but regai and I managed to make it to the third round in doubles.
I let my kids stay up during this, because I felt bad about Olivia missing her chance to ‘win’ from the prize table. So I took the kids and wife over to the prize table to discuss strategy. Talked about the five games we really wanted off the Saturday table, (Warlords of Europe, Mystery Express, Genoa, a new Tigris & Euphrates, and something else, can’t remember) and Sarah (My older daughter) said if she won she was going to pick up the copy of 7 ate 9 first.
Wouldn’t you know it, she won and took the copy of 7 ate 9 that she wanted, I don’t know what was left when she went up there, but I was happy for her. I actually read the rules, it looks fun, I’m sure it will get a lot of good play in our family!
Went to bed shortly afterwards on Saturday Night.
Woke up early Sunday morning and walked down to go to the Take it Easy Tournament, My favorite time of the TGD Weekend. Unfortunately, I didn’t do so hot when the inept caller never called the numbers he should have, and instead kept calling stuff that kept messing up my board even more.
Finished with a 76.
After that, picked up my games and was going to pack up the car and get them out so It would be easier to check out and come back to play games that afternoon. Went to go out in the pouring rain to get my car out of the Opry Mills parking lot (It was still raining!!!) When I noticed the Mills parking lot was a lake, I decided hmm, maybe it’s not such a good idea to stay here after all. I was listening to the radio, and according to it, I40 was still open, so I got the car around and took it to the hotel lobby and we loaded it up. Deciding to get out instead of staying around. I left kind of suddenly, but tried to go say bye to people real quick before I left. The room was pretty sparse though.
Anyway, Started going west on I40, got directed by officers through standing water on I40 at Exit 201, and then it was clear, for two more miles, where it was gridlock somewhere near Exit 199.
We finally after a couple of hours, got off at 199, and were stuck in the Bellvue area of nashville for several hours trying various little roads going west seeing if we could find a way home. Finally, after giving up and deciding to sleep in the car in a parking lot of a Target Store, we went into the store to kill time and met a couple saying they were trying to get to St. Louis, but couldn’t get West or North, but told us I65 south was open. So we got back in our car and drove around trying to make it that way without using I40. Although we got through some roads which were at or very near flooding, we never got stuck and finally found a way to hit I65 fairly far south of Nashville and managed to get home via Birmingham and Tupelo.
It took a lot longer than we expected, but I’m glad we made it out safely. I hope that everyone else at TGD 2010 is able to get home safely too!