It used to be that Expo had less space in earlier venues. Now there is space. Twice in its history, the Expo had to move because the hotel it was in was going to be closed or torn down.
It used to be that the games and the vendors were all in one room and the entire room shut down for the banquet. This room was locked to prevent theft to vendors. Absolutely nobody played any pinball machines during the banquet. Nobody. That changed, and a separate room was made and left open. The so-called dedicated free play area. Having the vendor area left open all night as was being done lately was not always an offering.
Way back, Sunday used to have more events on the schedule but people (like me) had to fly out that day to get back for work on Monday and would miss certain events. Nowadays, just the tournament extends into Sunday. No need to formally declare it a tear-down day on the printed schedule because informally it's been that way for years. One look at the Sunday schedule and anybody can know when they plan to leave that day.
Sad to see if the pinball halls will indeed close at midnight Saturday night next year because after I attend the banquet I always meet up with others to play all night. That's the best time for us, after attending all the seminars and fireside chats. This suggested midnight closure idea sounds like my pinball playing opportunities at this show will now end at 6pm Saturday for me when I get ready for the 7pm charity auction which precedes the banquet. Not sure why those who don't stay up all night need the halls to be closed all night as suggested earlier in this thread. I would think it wouldn't matter to them at all. If they want the halls open during the banquet, that's cool, but I don't see why closing them for all night has to be necessary for that to happen.
I wonder if the vendor hours are a problem only with the non-vendors despite the fact that the non-vendors keep recommending to Mike that the vendors be surveyed for what hours they would like. Was it ever established that the vendors are in fact majorly unhappy or are only the non-vendors keeping this issue alive? Just asking.
It used to be that if you did not attend the banquet you could not get in the room to bid the auction. That changed and now there are chairs in the back for those who want to bid but do not want to eat. I hope that change is appreciated.
Strange that even if indeed freeloaders are walking into the seminars, the seminars aren't fuller. I'm not complaining about the honest people who walk among us.
It's kind of funny. No matter how many changes are made over the years, there are always people who want to physically be wherever the show schedule says they can't be. After 31 shows, so many ideas have been tried and, later, tried again, it's like a pendulum swinging back and forth.