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JemCon 2011: Makin' it Happen in Holland, was attended by around 40 Jem™ fans from all over the world, including attendees from the USA, England, Scotland, Holland, Italy, Belgium, Chile, Canada and France - quite an accomplishment considering that this was our first ever non-US convention!
The convention featured special guest, Christy Marx (Jem Animated Series Creator). In addition there were fan panels, workshops, dealers, and an extensive display exhibition from the 2011 Con-Chair's own personal collection.
We were also honored to host the premier performance of doll-action movie "Rock & Romance" by filmmakers Italo Chianti, and sample the delights of an international language dubbing panel with professional European voice-actor, Davide Quatraro!
On Thursday there was a fabulous tour of Holland, while Friday shone with a celebratory "25 years of fashion and fame" Jem exhibition that pushed the scheduled catered Meet 'N Greet buffet dinner and outrageous Jem™ trivia contest over to Saturday.
Saturday also held a special introductory guest panel with Christy Marx, with a follow-up Q&A panel with Miss Marx again on Sunday.
The convention continued throughout Saturday evening with cosplay hi-jinx, Jem™ Karaoke (with dazzling performances by Ilana from Canada and fabulous Karaoke vocals from Muriel of France and Laurie from the US), a fantastic Battle of the Bands Masquerade and disco!
The JemCon 2011 Charity Auction raised $1200 for Playground Schiweijk of Holland, who provide the children of Rotterdam with a safe place to play while arranging fundraisers such as flea markets, camping trips, and children's discos to support the playground's operational fund.
Stefan (JemCon 2011 Chair) is currently living in Rotterdam, Netherlands. Stefan became a Jem fan when the series was re-run in 1988 in the Netherlands. Stefan and his cousin Rob taped every show aired and watched them over and over again. By the end of 1989 the dolls were all priced-down so Stefan and Rob tried to find as many as possible, until they had disappeared from the shelves. In 2004 Stefan began collecting again and in 2007 he attended his first JemCon! For Stefan and Rob, JemCon has been THE BEST experience! They've met many fellow fans from all over the world and become part of a very warm family! Stefan's personal JemCon highlight, by far, was meeting Christy Marx! Hosting JemCon 2011 "Makin' it Happen in Holland" is going be a new highlight for Stefan being part of the Jem community!
Cousin Rob (JemCon 2011 Co-Chair) also joins us from the Netherlands, as Stefan's right-hand man and shoulder to lean on when times get tough.
David (Vice Chair) has lived in the St. Louis area all his life. David first came to know Jem in the summer of 2008 and was hooked after watching all of the DVD episodes. Since then, David has obtained the entire produced doll and fashion line in unopened condition. He didn't play with dolls as a kid, so he has never felt the need to collect any loose or played-with Jems. In fact, he is so interested in unopened Jem things that he has kept track of all the unopened Jem eBay auctions on his JemCon-hosted mini-website known as Jemorabilia since the beginning of 2010. He first attended JemCon in 2009 and again in 2010. David says, "I feel it is my duty as a fan and collector to keep the Jem spirit alive. I am very passionate about JemCon because it gives me the opportunity to bring so much happiness to others." His favorite song from the cartoon is "Top of the Charts".
Beverley (Webmistress), affectionately known as "Bob" by friends and family, has been a dedicated fan of Jem since the age of 7. She started collecting Jem merchandise seriously in 2002 after the discovery of the internet and the realisation that Jem extended beyond the run of season 1 episodes originaly aired in the UK. As webmaster of: www.jemthingsandstuff.co.uk, Bob enjoys being creative and artistic. She credits Jem with sparking her interest in webdesign, which lead to a career move early in 2008. Bob now works as web technician for a Specialist Technology College while developing web administration tools, such as Fast Edit, in her spare time. In 2004 Bob made 10 full-sized Holograms and Misfits costumes for her friends to wear on her birthday "Jem Night." She is looking forward to continuing this creative streak and making more costumes for her twin sister Jacki and herself to wear at JemCon 2011!
Sean (Senior Public Relations Coordinator) is from MA and works as a Theatrical Musical Director/Pianist. Sean's obsession with Jem began immediately when it aired in 1985. His late mother was very supportive of his new found love and encouraged his creativity. His collection is a living memorial to her and the bond they will forever share through Jem. After attending and sewing fashions for JemCon 2007 he found himself compelled to devote more time to JemCon and the Jem community, where he's made many amazing friends. Without Jem in his life, Sean doesn't believe he would have ever become a creative person nor a musician/performer. Check out his website: www.foreverjem.com
Ter (Public Relations Coordinator) had his first Jem experience was when he was in first grade. His sister rented a Jem VHS from the local Video Watch store and when the first note of the theme song began, he was hooked. Since then it was a snowball effect; Ter began collecting Jem dolls when he was in third grade when he found Jem and Synergy sitting on a shelf at an antique store. Ter begged to take them home. His parents bought them for him, as they always supported his hobbies interests without question. Ter first got into OOAKing when he was 17 with his first OOAK (One Of A Kind) being a Rock N' Romance Jem re-paint. Ter's boyfriend, Ryan, has always supported him with his hobby and Ryan helps Ter OOAK frequently (though he’s not a hardcore Jem fan as Ter). Ter focuses mainly on re-rooting and re-painting, though he's currently trying his hand at sewing fashions. Ter says "sewing is a lot harder than it seems!"
Shevona (Senior Advisor) is from MI and works for a large Marketing Research firm. She has loved Jem since she was a little girl, since then she has acquired the entire produced Jem line. Shevona's favorite episode is 'Mid Summer's Night Madness' and her favorite character is Jerrica. She loves to make OOAK Jem dolls, fashions and accessories. Feel free to ask her anything Jem related, nothing is too bizarre! For more info on Shevona's work, check out her website: www.beyondjem.com
Rachael (Fashion Coordinator), also known as "Jemgirl' lives in Melbourne, Australia and has been a Jem fan since the first show aired on TV. Later when the internet allowed her to collect the dolls beyond the odd lucky find at markets and toy fairs, she soon got interested in taking her creativity into customizing dolls and has turned her passion into a career as a doll customizer where she customizes everything from the head to toe on a doll. Rachael also works as a musician, composing and producing her own music along with some voice over work and finds this another element of Jem that has inspired her to do so. "There's so many elements of Jem with the dolls, the show and the music that seam as though Jem was made for me!" Rachael will be producing the fashions for the event. You can check out her website: http://jemgirl.com and her new Jem podcast: http://jemcast.com
Olga (Graphics Coordinator) hails from Ontario, Canada. She has been a Jem fan since the cartoon first hit the airwaves and still loves Jem as much as she did then, if not more! When on vacation in 1985, at a Toys "R" Us store she first spotted the Jem dolls, her mom said to get Pizzazz because she came with a music tape but Olga wanted Jem because the flashing earrings and two outfits were "cooler". A house fire in 1998 wiped out her beloved Jem collection (which was complete at the time), but thanks to the internet she now has an almost complete collection once again. Olga was also thrilled when Jem came to DVD, but is still wishing like all Jem fans that they will put out the last part of season 3. Her favorite episodes are "For Your Consideration" and "And The Winner Is". Her favorite Jem song is "Only The Beginning". Olga has been drawing and digitally painting Jem characters now for over a decade and was positively thrilled to become part of JemCon as a Jem artist and meet so many other wonderful Jem lovers over the years online. She hopes to continue creating Jem art for years to come. To see more of her artwork check out her DeviantART page.
Mike (Graphics Liaison) has been a Jem fan for as long as he can remember. He was drawn to the music and all of the adventures that the Holograms and Misfits went on. Mike began collecting in 2003, when all he wanted was a Stormer to display. That led to the rest of the Misfits, then the Holograms, and his collection grew exponentially. Mike joined the Jemcon website and was inspired to create boxart for characters that weren't produced. He also began to dabble in some OOAK'ing, but his love was always art. Mike was the winning designer for JemCon 2010, Silver 25th Anniversary Fashion Design Contest, chosen by the speaking voice of Jem herself, Samantha Newark. Supporting JemCon with his Battle Of The Bands mini-website, Mike was then approached to join the JemCon staff and is very excited to join his "partner in creative crime" Amjara. Mike's favorite character is Stormer (although he is a huge Stingers fan) and his favorite episode is "Glitter and Gold."
Shannon (News Coordinator) is from Detroit, Michigan. While growing up she was first introduced to Jem by a friend's older sister, and has been captivated ever since. Both of her parents were very supportive of her collecting Jem and would take her to every flea market or antique store that would come along. When Jem was on TV Shannon would be late for school almost every day just so she could sing along with the theme song. Shannon's favorite episodes are "That Old Houdini Magic" and "Trick or Techrat" and her favorite songs are "Trapped", "Perfect Match" and "Love Will Show The Way".