A Kingdom by the Sea (1996 Beauty and the Beast convention)

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Name: A Kingdom by the Sea
Dates: 1996
Location: Norfolk, VA
Type: fan con with guests from the show
Focus: Beauty and the Beast
Organization: Lyn Musacchio and the Dreamseekers Fan Club of Virginia
Founding Date: cited here
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.
convention shirt

A Kingdom by the Sea was a Beauty and the Beast convention that was held in 1996 in Norfolk, VA. The convention also published a charity zine under the same name: A Kingdom by the Sea (Beauty and the Beast zine). The event was subtitled: A Romantic Celebration. Photos, memories and videos can be found here [1][2] and here.[3] During the charity auction CABB raised $1600 for the Pediatric AIDS Foundation. The convention charity raised $4,500 for the Samaritan House.

There were two other conventions by the same name: A Kingdom by the Sea (2002 Beauty and the Beast convention) and A Kingdom by the Sea Revisited (convention).

The convention dealt with the ongoing Beauty and the Beast Classic Wars by announcing the following in Volume 3 Of Love and Hope:
"For the conzine, guidelines have already been mailed to many writers and artists, and anyone is free to submit. Stories are to be Classic, with a romantic focus, up to an R rating......The art room and dealers' room, however, have as the only restriction that the material be B&B related: it need not be Classic to be displayed. And panels and other activities are planned for those of us who enjoy 3rd season, although the con's overall theme and orientation (like those of all other previous cons) is Classic. This, Nan has on the authority of Trisha Kehoe, in charge of the conzine and the dealers' room, and of Lyn herself. Pay no attention to any hurtful rumors to the contrary."
The rumors persisted, prompting another letter to Volume 3 Of Love and Hope:
"In other convention-related news, there's been concern in the fandom that, given the preferences of the convention's organizers, A Kingdom by the Sea would be militantly and exclusively Classic, with no others welcome. Definitively, that is not so, Lyn assures us. True, the conzine will be all-Classic, but so have all other conzines in the past. The dealers' room will be all-season, with the only requirement that at least some of the merchandise displayed be B&B-related. The art room's sole requirement is that it be B&B related. All-season and even R-rated art is welcome. There will be third-season oriented panels and events (Nan was invited to organize two such panels, and gladly accepted.) This is the convention's policy, and it will be adhered to. Ignore any rumors you hear to the contrary. And several people have conveyed to us worries that only Classic zines, stories, and artwork would be considered for awards at the convention. Nan checked with Lyn, and that plain isn't true. And Nan says, enough, already! At the moment, she can't imagine how else somebody could suspect or accuse the con committee of season bigotry, but undoubtedly someone will. This is an all-season convention, like all those before it. Period. Can we just accept that and give the rumor mill a rest for awhile?"

Convention Notes/Reports

(regarding the 1996 convention decorations): "The New Jersey group did Vincent's Chamber and the V & C silhouette. The Chesapeake's Helpers did the tunnel into the dining room and the DreamSeekers did everything else."[4]
(on offering advice to a new convention attendee): "I don't know if this info will help or hurt you in your preparation for the con but: I had some stuff on Lynette Combs' table last year, just 10 minutes before the con closed on Sunday a lady came by and bought $500 worth of stuff - fanzines, jewelry, and art. And one girl on our table made $1400 . Some people spend lots of money at the conventions. Not me, - I don't have it. But if I did all the dealers would go home with empty boxes. : )

My second favorite part of the con (after meeting the other fans) is the art show. Now I can draw a little but nothing like Sandy C. Shelton, Claire Sieffert and Jamie "Myhr" Murray. Do you remember Claire's 'Vincent on the Staircase' painting last year? God, it was great! I couldn't afford to buy the original but I got a photo that she sells of her art work. And did everyone lift Vincent's towel on the little Vincent statue? It was anatomically correct. The life size Vincent doll was cute. My husband loved helping in the art show and went crazy over Chandler's art work. And he and Claire may have a surprise for y'all at the 98 con.

Does anyone else think it's a good idea to give "virgin " convention goers a clue as to what things cost at the cons? Like the average cost of fanzines, art work, food, photos of stars, photos of art work, t-shirts, rubber stamps, etc.

At my first con I had paid for the tickets and room in advance but due to some nastiness from my roommate I left for the con with $30 in my pocket, that was mainly for food. I didn't get to buy anything but I still had a great time, meeting the other fans, working at the con, seeing the stars, got to see Ron Perlman late Saturday night wandering the hall of the hotel in ratty shorts and a cigar. My photos were my souvenirs, every week for months I brought 2 rolls of film. I left for the con with 22 rolls, had 3 left when I got home."[5]
"Last year [1996] was my first convention and I just couldn't get over all the stuff to be had! I mean, there are a lot of really talented people out there in this fandom! I also was quite impressed with Claire's artwork and didn't bring nearly enough money to buy any of her original paintings, but like you, grabbed up a few of her (8X10) prints. I think they were about $6 or $7 each. I got the one of Vincent on the staircase in the Chamber of the Winds, but my favorite was one of the Vincent portraits. It looked like an actual photo rather than a painting, it was THAT good! Damn, I missed the anatomically correct Vincent statue in the art show!! I think I wandered through the art room (Kristopher Gentian's Studio) at least three or four times while drooling on my bib! Anyway, I mostly bought zines which make for excellent reading on the trip home (if you can save them without reading them for that long). I saw new zines anywhere from $15 to $25 (averaging about $18-20???). Used zines, of course, are quite a bit less (look for boxes full of used zines under the dealers' tables.) Folks, your cash will be gone in the blink of any eye because you will want a little of everything. Food suddenly becomes unimportant (gee, breakfast and lunch? or a zine? Hmmmm. Tough decision!) Here's an idea: Pack your extra zine suitcase full of snacks, eat them all during the con, then you'll have room for your loot on the way home! I don't think I'll mention how much stuff goes for in the art auction. It will blow you away."[6]

By 1996 many Beauty and the Beast fans were online and posting their convention reports to the Of Love and Hope mailing list. Below are various selections from these reports.

"To put it simply, I had a blast at the 1996 "Beauty and the Beast" con in

Norfolk, Virginia. This was one of the most well-planned, creative and successful cons in our fandom's history. It's difficult to formulate a report since there's so much fun to describe. Among the many aspects which made it such a terrific event were the abundant, stunning decorations, the lively sense of tunnel-fandom community, the smooth progression of scheduled activities and the addition of new and clever features. Even the hotel setting, on the banks of the busy Elizabeth river and next to a fabulous mall, was a treat. Many of us had private balconies where we could watch the Navy ships, tourist vessels and tug boats carry on their duties--including

transferring out to sea away from the hurricane....."
"Among our fondest memories are the truly impressive banquet, the Sunday

Celebrity Brunch, and the romantic atmosphere that was created throughout the convention area. The Dreamseekers and their helpers did an outstanding job on all of the above. At the banquet, the table decorations of candles, mirrors and roses were just lovely. Everyone raved about the wonderful food, especially the sinful chocolate cake. At the Sunday brunch, the Dreamseekers arranged to have a harpist. That was such a nice touch. Beautifully created decorations seemed to be absolutely

everywhere, and for just a moment, it almost felt like we were Below."
"I believe there were about 300 participants, much less than at previous cons, yet this core group of enthusiastic fans created enough of a friendly party atmosphere to make it seem perfect. We were able to have reunions again with dear friends, some of whom we've known since TunnelCon I. Perhaps just as thrilling, though, was the chance to have face to face meetings with our cyberspace buddies. Having the unique chance to communicate daily with various fans via e-mail has solidified a family feeling among us. Several met for the first time in Norfolk, in person, to exchange hugs and smiles with those whose names and words have become so familiar. We have each other. In this fandom we have little else since the long-hoped-for movie is still a vague promise from Republic. (No representatives attended, but a letter was read which spoke of their remembrance of Vincent and Catherine and the dream.)"
"I did participate in the Fandom in Cyberspace panel. Lisa Howard arranged

for this and did a great job. The updated booklet was fantastic. Eric Tullis spoke about the web page and the e-mail digest "Of Love and Hope", Becky Bain and I filled in information about AOL and Genie, and Aurea Andino spoke about newsgroups, mailing lists and other internet features. Sandy C. Shelton told the folks about IRC (Internet Relay Chat). There were lots of questions and answers and fun. If it weren't for the common ground of cyberspace, I doubt that fandom would be as unified as it is now. Cyberspace buddies build bridges across fandom philosophies and I am certain that the efforts of Lisa, Eric and Aurea have created this current level of cooperation and

understanding. It isn't an easy road, but we've done well."
"The entire con venue was filled at every turn with clever and unique

decorations which sparked a distinct tunnel feeling. There was a tunnel entrance into the Great Hall, Vincent's chamber, Crystal Cavern, a shimmering blue waterfall, a city street complete with newsstand, a romantic Vincent and Catherine embrace, a Central Park Drive-Through traffic sign, a sheltered park cove with our lovers hidden in the trees, a Hollywood-style spiral photo mural looking like a giant roll of film unwound, and more. The stage backdrop was a huge city and bridge photo with real twinkling lights. I must report the special delight I felt when, upon exiting the elevator on the first floor early Monday morning, I saw a wonderful Vincent mannequin sitting in the lobby holding a rose in his palm, ready to bid adieu to the departing

guests. That was classy."
"One of my favorite activities was a caption contest. About 20 photographs

were displayed on a wall and fans were asked to write captions below on a large lined paper. One showed Catherine and Vincent in Chinatown--my favorite caption was "So this is what's at the bottom of the Abyss." Another had Linda Hamilton in her Terminator garb, holding a huge gun. "So, who did you say this red head is?" Another was a picture of a demure looking Catherine in the tunnel passageway. "Oh, Vincent, I have something to show you." You get the

idea, it was great fun reading everyone's ideas and adding a few of my own."
"My favorite place is the dealers room. I get to sit in one place and visit

and socialize with everyone as they come by. Sales were fantastic. I ended up selling every single fanzine I had brought with me and then took lots of mail orders. The continued enthusiasm for "Bondstories" was apparent, most people picked up the two new volumes without stopping to evaluate them by scanning through--they just bought them and said they were confident the quality was there, as always. (Blush, blush, beam, beam!) Oh, "Bondstories IX" won 2nd prize in the anthology category and "Classic Connection" won 3rd prize in the letterzine/newsletter category. It was a treat to get the certificates (and a hug from David Greenlee and Jay Acovone as they handed the certificates to me.)

Not many people had new fanzines available this year. That was a shame. I believe plans are better for next year among the publishers. The CABB auction items were certainly the most inspired. See separate report from those ladies. There were the usual things at the other tables of course, plus stained glass and jewelry dealers. A new item which was quite attractive, was a pin--a little wooden book, with a quote, a crystal and a red and white

rose. Very nice. The 1997 con group from Minnesota had this on their table....."
"....what else can I say but that a lot of fun was had,

a lot of money was raised for charity and an immense energy filled with love and fellowship was floating about the entire area all weekend. I hope to see everyone next year. In the months ahead, we can all keep in touch, via

e-mail, letters, phone calls--keep the dream alive for each other. Be Well."

Fan Choice Awards

At the convention the following fan choice awards were given:

Favorite Single Story Zine:

  • Beyond Beginnings Book 2 - Linda Barth
  • The Quickening - Teri
  • In Search Of Angels - Trish Kehoe

Favorite Anthology Zine:

  • All Things Are Possible Volume VII - Sandy P. Shelton
  • Bondstories: IX - Joyce Kleikamp
  • A Distant Shore Con Zine - Carousels & Caverns Community

Favorite Single Story:

  • Everything To Lose - Sandy P. Shelton - All Things Are Possible VII
  • Counterpoint - Linda Barth - Soulmates - A Neverending Dream
  • Safe Haven - Teri - Bondstories: IX

Favorite Poem:

  • Wave Of Passion - Pat Leslie - 1996 Calendar
  • The Haven - Ben Bock - The Mirror Pool
  • Father's Grace - Peg McNabb - Beyond Beginnings Book 2

Favorite Fan Publication:

  • The Crystal Rose - JoAnn Grant & Vicki Thomas
  • Soulmates - A Neverending Dream - Barbara Hill
  • Classic Connection - Joyce Kleikamp

Favorite Foreign Zine:

  • Two of a Kind - Rosemarie Hauer
  • Thanks to the Human Heart - Rosemarie Hauer
  • One Moment in Time - Marilyn Preston

Favorite Work In Other Media:

  • 1996 Wave of Passion Calendar - Sandy C. Shelton & Pat Leslie
  • 1995 V/C Calendar - Rosemarie Hauer
  • Songs of the Blue Bird Web Page - Eric Tullis

Favorite Cover Art:

  • Passion of the Moment - All Things Are Possible VII - Sandy C. Shelton
  • Cover of Soulmate - Soulmates - A Neverending Dream - Terri
  • Cover of Demons at the Gate - Vincent's World Novel 8 – Terri

Favorite Art:

  • Vincent (Eyes of Love) - All Things Are Possible VII - Sandy C. Shelton
  • Vincent - Beyond Beginnings 2 - Terri
  • Vincent (Dreamer) - Love Songs - Mickey Sayles


  1. "1996 A Kingdom by the Sea". Archived from the original on 2011-02-02. 
  2. WebCite.
  3. "myhr album4". Archived from the original on 1999-11-17. 
  4. 96 Con Decorations posted to alt.tv.beauty.beast dated Feb 1, 1997.
  5. convention stuff posted to alt.tv.beauty.beast dated Feb 18, 1997.
  6. convention stuff posted to alt.tv.beauty.beast dated Feb 18, 1997.