The sixth annual Southern Fried Gaming Expo (SFGE) was held at the Marriott Renaissance Waverly Hotel and Convention Center, Atlanta, near the Cobb Galleria Shopping Center.

The Southern Fried Gaming Expo show banner in the Waverley Hotel & Convention Center

Atlanta, GA is certainly to be ranked among the most interesting and diverse cities in North America. It is the headquarters of the Coca-Cola beverage company and the World of Coca-Cola experience, as well as Turner Broadcasting (now part of Warner Media) and the Inside CNN Studio Tour. Atlanta was the host to the 1996 Summer Olympic Games as commemorated by Centennial Olympic Park constructed in the city center. Other ‘must see’ tourist destinations include the spacious Georgia Aquarium, Atlanta Botanical Gardens, and the College Football Hall of Fame.

As with similar shows, the SFGE was a 3-day event, opening to the public on Friday July 12th and concluding on Sunday July 14th. There was a full slate of seminars, tournaments, a film festival, cosplay, vendor presentations, auctions, stand-up comedy, live wrestling, an ’80s prom (with live music), and much more.

Upon receiving an advance copy of the SFGE daily schedule, I realized not only that I would be very busy, but also that it would require some planning to get to all of the pinball-related events.

The crowd waiting for the doors to open

The SFGE organizers went to considerable effort to ensure that attendees could easily find show events that they wished to attend. Daily schedules were posted outside of each breakout room and the full schedules were available in the well-produced event program as well as on the event website and an event app available for iOS and Android. Key event staff were equipped with two-way radios which allowed quick response to the few show technical difficulties.

The Film Festival schedule

SFGE had an interesting Indie Developer area set up in the Grand Ballroom Salon 4 for console game developers to show off their latest creations.

Will this ‘bee’ the next big thing in board games?

I feel it should be noted before I get into the report proper that SFGE covered a broad spectrum of