Connooga 2016 Review of Times Had

Hello again friends!

Connooga was a week ago and we had our typical laid back fun at this convention, which tends to be a laid back event.  I always enjoy seeing the Choo Choo hotel and enjoy downtown Chattanooga in general.  If you’ve seen my previous reviews on Connooga you know it’s a multi-media convention for all kinds of geeky fun and mayhem.  I particularly enjoyed starting our weekend with a trip to the dealer room and then our shuttle trip back from the convention center with a humorous Kylo Ren cosplayer.  He actually looked just like the character from the movie and was playing around with everyone.  He stood at the front of the shuttle, saying he should threaten to keep everyone on board as he turned on his light saber.  You really had to be there as I’m terrible at painting this picture right now, but it was a fun ride hearing his banter back and forth.  🙂  Speaking of the shuttles, the hotel shuttles were fantastic all weekend for the convention!!  I don’t know why, but I’ve never noticed the hotel shuttles before.  I don’t know if they had more running this year or had them running more efficiently, but it was great!  If you haven’t been to Connooga in the last few years then you might not realize they moved a lot of the convention events into the downtown convention center.  So there are a few things going on at the Choo Choo Hotel, but the dealers room, panels and such are held at the convention center now.  It’s about a mile, I believe, from the Choo Choo.  So our routine was always to go to the bus terminal which is right by the Choo Choo’s entrance and get one of the free buses to get over there.  The only problem is it stops all over town and if you aren’t familiar with where you are you might not know where to get off and you have to take the ride around town before it stops at the convention center.   It also takes a bit longer to pick up one of these buses.  This year, we would literally step outside the front of our hotel building and a shuttle from the hotel would stop right there to take us directly to the convention center.  One came by every five minutes so it never felt like you were waiting a long time, plus they had a Connooga flyer on the front of the shuttle so when you were coming back you weren’t questioning if you were getting on the right shuttle.

Another new thing we experienced this year was a new restaurant that was actually build into the front of the Choo Choo Hotel.  It’s called STIR and they apparently have a fancy pants Ice Chef!  You heard me right, …. I said “ICE CHEF”.  Nothing says fru fru like hiring someone to specialize in and specially prepare your frozen water.  Despite the fun I’m having poking at the Ice Chef, I was excited to try out the restaurant.  The reviews I read online sounded good, but I have to say I don’t know if it lived up to my expectations.  My drink was fantastic, but I don’t feel it was $12.00 fantastic.  It was a Mule concoction.  Ironically there was a lot more ice than drink.  So I felt a little ripped off on the ratio.  For my dinner I ordered a shrimp and scallop ceviche and it was a pretty dish and tasted fresh, but the chili flakes they sprinkled on it made it a bit too spicy for me.  Plus the seafood still seemed to be a little too under cooked by the acids for my taste.  I’ve only had ceveche one other time, when I made it and I enjoyed mine better.  I had the crab bisque which everyone online raved about, but i felt it was sort of blande.  Sorry STIR!  For positives, the atmosphere is really nice and I’m glad they kept some of the historic elements from the hotel.  You’ll see big beautiful windows, high ceilings, the same tile scheme as inside the Choo Choo and these crazy library shelves for storing the 300 liquors they have!  My bestie and I were joking about how we wanted to use their library rolling latter to re-enact the scene from Beauty and the Beast.  🙂  So I would probably return to STIR, but it would be for more of a girls night out for drinks or something like that.  I would like to give the food another shot, but that will probably be up to my friends if we go.

This year I was pretty casual again dress wise.  I was excited to wear the new BB-8 dress I bought and I made a hair pin to go with it.  I also found a cool pendent in the dealer room to wear with it for Saturday night.  Everyone seemed to really like it.  Thanks friends for the nice compliments!!  You make a girl feel warm and pretty!  🙂  Other than that, your typical room parties were fun.  Fall Out Party…, why no music??  I was very sad there was no music and the fact you were sneaky and hiding the jello shots!  I heard they had some once I left and went across the way.  Party who had the virus drinks, who was playing fantastic music in the beginning of the night, A+ for you!  I wasn’t a fan of the music later on, but your strong start gave me a happy and fun beginning to my evening!  😉

I was mainly snapping friend photos at Connooga, with my Iphone!  Sorry for not giving you a better view on the con, but this is what happens when you wanna just focus on chilling out with friends  🙂

And with that I bid you good night friends!

-Little Neko