After a previous late night of dancing and celebrating at at the opulent and luxurious Renaissance Hotel Heathrow during the fun Abnormals Ball, my Sunday began with a surge of adrenaline as attendees began to prepare themselves for the final day of the AT6 Ripples convention.
The day began as the attendees began to fill the panel room once more, for the third question and answer session.
Amanda Tapping bounded into the convention ballroom with much energy. This delightful person, talented actress and gifted producer and director immediately began to ask the AT-6 Ripples attendees for questions.
The brilliant GABIT Events staff were quick to attend to the fans and their questions from all over the room, which provided us with much amusement to start off the morning!
But Amanda Tapping, In all her charm, was quick and witty to reply to each and every one of them to the delight of her fans in attendance.
Some of the questions were fandom-related. Others about working as a director and producer. Some were random, but nevertheless fun questions mixed in for good measure.
But it is another flair that becomes a trademark of GABIT Events, how they manage to get Amanda off the stage.
Bear in mind if you have met Ms. Tapping, you will know why. She is the type of woman to give you the utmost attention at all times, and pours all her heart and soul into her words.
In saying this, Ms. Tapping often disregards timing, which ends up to be a bit of a running GABIT Events joke through every one of their Amanda events. So what did the “GABIT 4” (G4) have planned at AT6?
Over the course of the weekend, we were shown short clips shot in hand-held cam style, of a Werewolf running around London. Of course, this was a mystery person in a suit. And yet it provided us with much entertainment and laughs, and Amanda’s expressions were priceless!
Each clip, being a few minutes long, showed the journey of the Werewolf all the way to the Renaissance Heathrow Hotel. So during the end of the third question and answer session on Sunday, this Werewolf bounded into the panel room and attempted to scare Amanda Tapping off stage! Though of course Amanda played along, and soon enough, she was off!
Following the laughs of this session, fans prepared themselves for the autograph session with Amanda Tapping. Those who attended were treated to two personalised autographs by the woman herself.
Some chose to have their photo with Amanda Tapping signed, some chose to have their pictures signed during the AT6 Ripples Cocktail Party. Many fans even used that opportunity to purchase one of Dennys Ilic’s stunning prints of Amanda to have signed.
These were purchased in the charity room. Though what the fans had planned, was entirely up to them. I was seated in row D, so I did not have to wait very long.
For those in further rows, attendees had another opportunity to watch Space Milkshake to pass the time, in one of two showings of the day. The wait was definitely over sooner than originally thought, and soon enough, I was on my way to see Amanda yet again while others enjoyed Space Milkshake!
We include, courtesy of Robin Dunne, a newer clip of this great movie for your enjoyment!
There is always something special when you meet Amanda Tapping. Not just of admiration, but even the rare opportunity to share a moment with her. To be able to have a conversation with her while she signs her autograph is truly a blessing.
Seated next to Amanda was the incredible Julia Hague, which made the moment even more special. But Amanda has this wonderful way of acknowledging you, and almost as if there was no one else present. It is always a rare opportunity, but GABIT Events definitely helped make this dream a reality for the fans.
As nervous as I was waiting in line, it was my turn to see her and once I saw her greet me with her welcoming smile, all nerves were put aside. I actually surprised myself as to how much I was able to share with her in such a short amount of time, which left me satisfied by the end.
As I always do when I greet Amanda Tapping, I simply asked for a hug. At the same time I took the opportunity to give her hugs on behalf of some dear friends back at home who wished they were at AT6 Ripples. I gave her my photo taken with her the day before, along with a lovely Dennys Ilic print for her to sign.
Once again, she commented on my eyes, which was the third time she has done so since I first met her at Gate to the Sanctuary in Melbourne, back in December 2010. I also took that opportunity to show her a drawing of mine, which is an in-progress caricature of a children’s Nubbin book I plan to create, and donate the profit 100% to Sanctuary For Kids once it is published.
The first page being a snapshot of Helen Magnus – Main character of the brilliant sci-fi show Sanctuary – surrounded by Nubbins in a Where’s Waldo-style book. She was quite excited about it, so I told her I would show her more progress shots when I see her again at Oz Comic Con Adelaide, Australia, in March next year.
Editors Note: Subsequent to when this report was drafted, it has been announced that Ms. Tapping will not be attending the aforementioned Australian convention event in March 2013. However, Robin Dunne, Richard Dean Anderson and many others will be attending.
Lastly, I used my final moments to give both Amanda Tapping and Julia Hague a very heartfelt thank you, for their unwavering spirit and the inspiration they both gives to not only me personally, but fans all around the world. Words just never seem enough, especially within this moment, but I thanked Amanda especially because I have a wonderful circle of friends made just from this fandom.
They are friends who will always remain a part of my family, and whom I would not imagine living my life without them. Before I turned to leave, I gave them both a hug and made my way out of the room. We were also told to choose a small satchel, and within it, was a gorgeous hand-made beaded bracelet made in Nepal – A gift from Amanda.
As the autograph session continued through much of the afternoon, the silent auction for Sanctuary for Kids was taking place in the charity room. To explain in short form – A silent auction is not a public bidding system. Pieces of paper for each auctioned item was placed on the table, and those interested, would place their name and their bidding price. So eventually, people would start overbidding after another.
A deadline was set at the end of the day, and those with the last highest bid on the list, wins that item. And like the main auction which took place on Saturday, all proceeds go to Sanctuary for Kids and Hearing Dogs for Deaf People.
Once the autograph session with Amanda was completed, attendees filed back into the main room for the fourth and final question and answer session. This was a last chance for fans to ask questions directly to Amanda Tapping.
Like the previous sessions, they were filled with many laughs, heartfelt words, and a slight sadness that AT6 was coming to an end. But the GABITers still had many things planned for us, and what better than an ABBA sing-a-long?
Indeed! Just as the final question session came to an end, the song to ‘SOS’ by ABBA began to play and four figures dressed as their respective band members, paraded down the centre aisle to the stage where Amanda was sitting.
Those who were dressed up as the band were none other than Jenn Scheffler, Rebecca Ford, Tracy North and Liesl Bland . Many of the fans sang along, and Amanda Tapping herself even began to dance on stage with the ABBA-impersonators. It was a lot of fun to watch and sing a long too, and definitely ended the final question session on a high note.
Attendees were given a final break time to prepare for the Closing Ceremony of the sixth Amanda Tapping convention by GABIT Events. One of the beautiful memories I have of AT6 Ripples, was the singing in the lobby. Fans began to gather around a beautiful piano right near the reception desk of the hotel, where a small group of fans had already begun singing.
One by one, more attendees joined us, and soon enough, we literally had our own choir. It was simply magical. We sang songs ranging from the Sanctuary episode ‘Fugue’, to ‘You Raise Me Up, and ‘Rolling in the Deep’ by Adele, to name a few. It was amazing because everyone was singing along, and even brought a few tears to my eyes. What an amazing group of people they are!
Finally, the AT6 Ripples closing ceremony was at hand. We were all quite excited to see the final amount of the money we had raised for the entire weekend, and yet there was a slight sadness that this event was almost over.
Not only because I had the opportunity to spend it with Amanda Tapping as the solo guest, but more so for all the amazing attendees that we were able to share it with. Not only was it a place for old friends to meet again, but it was also a time when new friendships were formed and people met for the very first time. It was such a wonderful thing. GABIT Events surely knew how to make this event very special and so near and dear to our hearts!
First things first – The amount of money that was raised. Combining all auctions, merchandise purchased and independent donations, a grand total of 40,000.00GBP was raised! Utterly amazing!!!! We sat in suspense as each number appeared on the screen, and yet the numbers kept on raising. Truly phenomenal to witness, and once the final figure was up, we all gave a huge round of applause.
It is incredible to think that a small group of fans could raise this much in just one weekend. It was a figure we did not expect, but we most certainly felt extremely proud that we have made a difference in these charities. 10,000.00 British Pounds went directly to Hearing Dogs for Deaf People, and as the speaker elaborated on; that was exactly how much it would cost to properly train a dog for a deaf person.
To make this even more special, there was a puppy on the way from one of the Hearing dogs, and attendees were able to suggest names for the new puppy. Amanda Tapping had the honour of choosing and name, and thus, she settled on ‘Ozzie’.
The remaining 30,000.00 British Pounds was donated directly to Sanctuary for Kids – a charity so near and dear to Amanda herself, and one which has been supported by the Sanctuary fandom for its entire 4 year run. As both cheques were displayed, every single attendee gave a huge standing ovation followed by cheers and even a few tears.
Both the speaker for Hearing Dogs for Deaf People gave a speech of thanks on the money raised, and Amanda Tapping also provided up with a heartfelt speech giving us all words of gratitude which made us all feel completely proud of our achievements throughout the weekend.
The amazing Julia Hague also provided us with a speech, from working at GABIT Events, to beautiful words about Amanda and her fandom, the charity work of the weekend, and giving thanks to the fact that we were there. We raised money from the goodness of our hearts, and the inspiration provided by Amanda throughout the years. Her generosity has sparked our hearts, and we can only hope to do the same in return.
But AT6 Ripples was not over yet. As promised by Amanda on one of the question panels on Saturday, she decided to call the hilarious Robin Dunne, who played Will Zimmerman on Sanctuary, and who is one of her close friends. She spent a long while on the phone, and at the same time, held the microphone to the speaker for all to hear. Amanda Tapping was asked on Saturday, what nicknames Robin had for her. And so Amanda promised to call Robin and ask him directly. Just for the humour of it all. After many laughs, Robin said goodbye, and we all said goodbye on our side which was even more amusing.
We then remained seated as a final video was shown to us about our influence of both Sanctuary for Kids and Hearing Dogs for Deaf People. Though a few slight technical difficult with the music, we took that opportunity to sing ‘You Raise Me Up’ all in unison, which added a brilliant touch to end of the incredible weekend that we shared. After that was shown, we all raised to give Amanda Tapping and all the brilliant staff at GABIT Events, a well-deserved standing ovation. The weekend was phenomenal and truly displayed what it means to give, and share our generosity with the world. Because together, we can do so much if we focus our hearts and minds to the cause.
There was so much admiration for Amanda Tapping, that it was simply an honour to be able to share the weekend with her. Her generosity; heart; and love gives us the motivation to do the same and make a difference in the world. Her words give us strength, and the reason this amazing fandom has become a family for so many people. Lifelong friendships were formed through this fandom and this event, and will stay in our hearts forever.
First, I would like to thank Amanda Tapping and Julia Hague – Both incredible woman who inspire so much good and well-being to hearts and minds around the world. They are amazing role-models to so many, including myself, and they are the light that lifts the world up through their generosity and their heartfelt words of wisdom. I am ever so blessed to have met these two – Julia being the first time we’ve met – and I am forever grateful for the opportunity to be able to unite and make a difference in this world. From my heart to theirs, I thank them.
A huge thank you to all the GABIT Events staff who made AT6 Ripples possible. It could not have worked out more smoothly, and they have worked incredibly hard to make sure it stayed that way. And it most certainly did. They did a fabulous job, and made us feel completely looked-after. Fantastic!
I would like also like to give an incredible thank you to Mike Carvalho (GateworldRocky). Such an amazing soul, and kind-hearted person who has helped make AT6 Ripples that much more special for me. Such a pleasure to work with on these reports, and I could not have done it without all of this support and uplifting words of encouragement throughout this weekend.
I would also like to thank Kenn Weeks owner of WormholeRiders for giving me the amazing opportunity to interview both Amanda Tapping and Julia Hague, alongside Mike Carvalho regarding Sanctuary for Kids and Hearing Dogs for Deaf People. It has been such an honour!
A final thank you to Elaine Trevizan (@_Elaineland_) for contributing some photos of the event, and to WormholeRiders News Agency for allowing me to post my experiences and report on the memorable GABIT Events AT6 – Ripples, 9th-11th November 2012!
Thanks to Kenn for staging my first stand-alone report for WormholeRiders News Agency, for audio embedding, locating additional images, additional hyper-linking, and for working tirelessly New Years Eve 2013 to format my report to share my experiences about AT6 Ripples with you!
Thank you for reading and visiting our news site dedicated to conventions at WormholeRiders News Agency.
I would appreciate it if you could leave a comment here or if you prefer, click the social media icons below to share this news article. Visit with me on Twitter by clicking the text links or image avatars in this news story. I and Team WHR thank you for sharing the fun with us. Thank you.