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Mack Ahern of Murrells Inlet celebrates during a game of Artemis at last year’s ShushCon.

Waccamaw Library: SushCon draws gamers for serious fun

By Roger Greene
Coastal Observer

Self-described geeks and gamers will gather this weekend as ShushCon returns to the Waccamaw Library for a second year.

“It’s the only gaming convention for the [Waccamaw Neck],” said Donald Dennis, teen technology and games librarian. “It’s an opportunity to come and out enjoy a unique atmosphere and have a great time.”

Gamers will find a wide variety of offerings at the convention, including board and video games, anime and escape rooms. Activities are geared more toward teenagers and adults, but there will be events for children as well.

“It’s a fun way to expose the library and showcase what we have to offer,” Dennis said. “We had a very good crowd response last year and many requests to do another convention. If you like escape rooms, playing games, cosplay or watching anime, this will be your type of [weekend].”

Catan and Ultimate Werewolf are two of the more popular board game offerings that will be featured. Video game fans can enjoy options that will include Artemis Bridge Simulator or Overcooked.

One of the additional draws to the convention are the educational workshops that allow librarians from other areas – or even convention attendees – to develop their own gaming ideas. This year’s topic is escape rooms, physical puzzle games that players resolve to reach a destination or complete tasks. That’s the opening event Friday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

“It’s a way to expose my brand of geekiness,” said Dennis, who will lead the workshops. “It’s a hands-on way for people to generate ideas about creating their own escape rooms and their own adventures.”

Dennis’ background is in the hobby industry, where his work familiarized him with a wide variety of games and gaming activities. That familiarity has only increased since he joined the library in 2008. A regular convention attendee himself at one time, the idea to bring ShushCon to the Waccamaw Neck was a natural fit.

“We were looking for an event we could do in the spring,” Dennis said. “I don’t get to attend as many conventions as I once did, but I always enjoyed them. And [gaming] continues to increase in popularity. We wanted to do something unique to capitalize on that.

“We were very pleased with how the convention turned out last year. This year we want to say we topped that. We want it to be bigger, better and more fun.”

If you go

What: ShushCon ’17 gaming convention.

When: Friday, 9 a.m.-10 p.m.; Saturday, 8 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Details at shushcon.com.

Where: Waccamaw Library.

How much: Free.

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