On December 18th, a group of 120 Tolkien fans gathered together in New York City at thge lowes theater on 42nd street right off Times Square, to see the midnight showing of The Fellowship of the Ring. Valen (the man destined to win the 'iron man' prize for the evening) started our line at 10:30 in morning. At 2:00 om (the official start time of the line) the line quickly grew and soon a hardy gang of Tolkien fans was braving the cold and cheerfully crowding the sidewalk on 42nd street. The line entertained themselves by playing several rounds of a Lord of the Rings themed version of the classic party game 'Mafia', renamed 'Ringwraiths', in which the mafia became ringwraiths, the cop became an elf, the doctor became a wizard, and the innocent townspeople became hobbits of the Shire. (just goes to show Tolkien's universality).
The line continued to grow throughout the day, ably managed by Jamey Christopher Shafer, Zach Parker and Marc (aka "Chops") with additional help from some of the other line members. By the time I arrived around 7pm, the line was stretching well down the street. After a quick food run, we held several contests, beginning with a Tolkien poetry recital.
The42ndGuy - "A Chicago boy only recently moved out to the East Coast, I wasn't sure what to expect from a party of New Yorkers, other than an obvious devotion to the works of the good Professor. As it turned out, the good people of New York could not have pleased me more. The line party itself and related festivities were pure fun; everyone was passionate, informed, and witty. What's more, when I needed help getting back to Grand Central at 4 am for my train out of town after breakfast, not only did the partygoers help me with the niceties of hailing a cab in Midtown, they got money together for my fare to boot. Ten hours was far too short a time to spend with such excellent and admirable Big People.
"The passer-bys were quite entertained by this, and several stopped to watch and listen to The42ndGuy and Lia reciting The Song of Eärendil and The Man in the Moon, respectively.
Thanks to Decipher and the generosity of two line members, Jim and Stefan, we had many wonderful prizes to give away to the line! Along with the poetry recital, a fan art contest and superlative votes were held to award the larger items - Decipher cards, LotR hats, shirts, photo guides, "Making of" DVD's and some excellent gaming miniatures from www.Dwarvenforge.com. Jim played Santa Claus and gave out Lord of the Rings badges, bookmarks and tattoos to the line.
Elanor (not pictured) - While I was waiting, a guy walking by stopped and called my name. Turns out it was an old buddy who I used to work with but I haven't seen in 15 years! We start chatting to catch up and he says he should have known he would eventually run into me on a line for LOTR since he remembered how much I loved it. Then he reminded me I had given him a set of the books for his birthday. He ended up canceling his plans for the night and joined us on the line!
Another fabulous piece of fan art.
Stefan with the fan art contest winners.
Most Likely to Be an Elf (our very own line wrangler, Zach Parker). Proud winner of a fistful of Decipher cards
Most Likely to Be a Hobbit
Most Likely to Be a Dwarf: Winner of, appropriately enough, a treasure set from Dwarven Forge.
Most Likely to Secretly Be Heir to the Throne (Isildur/Isaac)
"Mostly I was just standing around being kind of cold and talking to numerous psychology students. It seems like everyone was either a psychology student or an actor. Does that have any significance?"