I saw no one who had been at the recent Amiga startup show had reported on it, so I thought I would take a stab at it. First of all it was held in a large area, a National Guard Armory in Indianapolis, Indiana, just a few minutes off of Interstate 70 (a major freeway that crosses the country) so it was easy to get to. There was a fair amount of construction, however around the city, which may have slowed some of us down.
My girlfriend and I got there and went and checked in at the Sleep Inn, which was one of the two sister motels giving a special rate. The place was great with included breakfast, nice rooms, an area just for kids to play in and a decent adults only exercise area.
The show, as far as attendance was concerned was relatively small. When I checked with some of the ARCUG members who put the show on it looked like around 85-90 by the end of Sunday (not counting people working the dealer booths). I know of some of my friends who would have gone, but so many people still seem to be angry or shocked over the raw treatment of Amiga users by Gateway and Amiga Inc. Betty and I put this aside for the while and went ahead anyway and had fun.
What did we find there? Well I got a monitor for my mothers Amiga from a Mr. White of a toaster users group. Betty got a used Amiga 2000, I think from Dans Deals of Ohio. I got a chance to talk briefly with a hero of mine (we never met before), Eric Schwartz, a great Amiga cartoonist. I even bought a comic of his! CompuQuick of Columbus, Ohio was there with fair prices on software and hardware. A very knowledgeable young woman was there representing Nova Design (must save up some money for some software from there!) I think we both spent the bulk of our money at the nice couple who run FWD Computing (from the small burg of Mexico, Indiana). Lots of software on CD ROM, as well as getting some of the best on disk from them (Magellan II, TurboPrint 7 and CrossDos V7 Gold). Frank Davis, one of the owners, even managed to talk me into buying the new version of Amiga Forever V3. It was the best thing I could ever do for a PC. It now does AGA, and OS 3.1 (I have heard it will also support OS 3.5 so I went ahead and payed ahead for that also).
There were users from Chicago, users from Michigan, Ohio and even from Texas. Digital Arts from Bloomington, Indiana was there with a lot of Toaster stuff and a software seller called Systems For Tomorrow from Missouri. I am sure i have left out someone. Sorry, just so much to remember! I would like to have seen more users, but I saw this new show had no support from Amiga Inc, none from the User Group network (are they still in existence?) and I saw their ad for Amazing was late getting out, as the magazine is late these days. Could be that if we supported the magazine by actually subscribing they could afford to be more timely. I guess we always get what we actively support.!
Thanks for letting me sound off about the show. They have some pics from the show available at the club, ARCUG, show website. Go have a look. http://www.midlink.com/amiga/aeshows.html
I hope to see better attendance at the shows coming up in Toronto, St.
Louis and hopefully Sacramento next year. J.R. Wilson, President of Amiga
Rescue Computer Users Group told me that ASK, the user group from Kentucky
and a user group from the Chicago area talked about helping out to put on
another amiga Extravaganza next year. Could be a bigger show. the future
will show. Oh, yeah. The banquet, I forgot, from what those who attended
said had great food catered in with enough food to feed the lot for a
week. They also showed some of the videos that Don Hicks of Amazing is
selling. We were too late to get tickets for that. I bought some of Bob
Sharp's Magic mugs at the show (got one from him and one from FWD
Computing who was selling them as well as Amiga basball caps, fleecy Amiga
shirts, t-shirts, etc from AmigaWares).
Terri May Willis