August 21 - 24, 2008
Report by Amy Baird, Outreach Coordinator
This year, Sea Shepherd was invited to participate in a very special event by Sea Shepherd Board member Richard Dean Anderson and Legends Memorabilia. Anderson was the celebrated lead role on the television series "Stargate SG1" for many years, and the show raised a significant following. Consequently, the Gatecon convention was born. Anderson agreed to participate in the convention, after ensuring that Sea Shepherd was the beneficiary charity organization to receive proceeds from convention earnings. As a result, Sea Shepherd was able to reach out to a whole new audience and provide valuable information about ocean conservation issues.
On the first day of Gatecon, Anderson and Captain Watson took to the stage for the opening ceremony to discuss Sea Shepherd and Anderson's support of our efforts to defend the world's ocean wildlife, followed by a Q&A session that was received with thunderous applause. Immediately following the opening ceremony, Sea Shepherd's "30 Years on the Frontline" short film was presented to an audience of over 200 attendees and with that the convention was off and running.
Sea Shepherd staff attended and hosted an information and merchandise booth in the exhibition room where conference attendees could meet with the staff, ask questions, and join Sea Shepherd. The booth was very successful in no small part due to the Sea Shepherd staff who traveled from headquarters in Washington State to participate.
Other exhibition booths which supported Sea Shepherd at Gatecon included Eric Cheng, professional photographer, Sharkwater, and the Shark Angels featuring Kim McCoy, which all sold merchandise and distributed information to protect ocean wildlife.
Captain Watson was available throughout the convention at the Sea Shepherd booth to sign books and meet with supporters.
On Saturday evening, a live auction was held with Sea Shepherd and Stargate memorabilia, hosted by Richard Dean Anderson and other stars of the show. The auction was highly entertaining and exciting for everyone who attended! Included in the auction was one of Sea Shepherd's Jolly Roger flags which flew on the Steve Irwin during the last Antarctic Whale Defense Campaign and other unique Sea Shepherd merchandise and photographs all to benefit Sea Shepherd.
Our heartfelt thanks and gratitude go out to Richard Dean Anderson and Paul Brown of Legends Memorabilia for getting Sea Shepherd involved with the Gatecon convention and helping to raise critical funds for our upcoming ocean defense campaigns. Special thanks to Eric Cheng, Adam Lau, Lisa Walden, the crew from Legends Memorabilia, and the fabulous team from Gatecon.
(from Left) Tiffany Spendiff, Eric Cheng, Amy Baird, Phyllis Clem, Jonny Vasic,
Richard Dean Anderson, Kim McCoy, Kristine Vasic, Captain Paul Watson, Alex Earl
(From Left) Adam Lau, Eric Cheng, Kim McCoy
(the following photos all credit Eric Cheng)
Captain Watson and Richard Dean Anderson at the Gatecon 2008 opening ceremony
Captain Watson met with supporters and signed books
The Sea Shepherd information table. (From Left): Amy Baird, Kristine Vasic,
Jonny Vasic, Captain Watson, Sam Wheeler, Heather Callin, Danielle Olivas
Richard Dean Anderson entertains the audience during the live auction
Captain Watson proudly displays the Jolly Roger flag up for auction
(From Left) Alex Earl, Kim McCoy, Paul Brown