Photo Essay: Hawaiian Sling

Posted in Event Coverage on March 4, 2006

By Scott Johns and Craig Gibson

Pro Tour-Honolulu had the biggest turnout of any individual Pro Tour in history, which made it good timing as the first event to feature a separate line for Players Club members Level 3 and up to skip the wait for registration.

 

Once signed up players received a goodie bag with tropical shirts, flip flops that say Pro Tour on the bottom (excellent for leaving your mark on the beach), card sleeves, and even free draft sets!

 

Finished with registration, the players got to proceed to the Wizards-sponsored luau. It was so popular that many players called this the best Pro Tour dinner ever.

 

And it showed, as pretty much everyone eligible took advantage of the free food and entertainment welcoming them to Hawaii.

 

The luau featured free dinner, dancing, and even a live band.

 

But some things are maybe best left to the pros. (Professional dancers that is.)

 

Now doesn't this make more sense for winter than blast-chilled Chicago?

 

One of the stories to come out at this event was the return of Alan Comer to Wizards of the Coast. He managed to get two Pro Tour events as a Hall of Famer under his belt during his hiatus, but he's back as a company man starting Tuesday. We missed you, Alan! I guess the world will have to go back to looking elsewhere for its Eye of the Storm-type atrocities. Quick side note: How many Hall of Famers sit at this table? "Depends on when you read this" is my bet.

 

The other way to get ahead on the dinner rush was to just be an employee or on the writing staff. So what happens at table 1 in the dinner hall as soon as the food's gone? Draft of course!

 

I've been buddies with the potato for a long time now, and I can say with some confidence that people always seem to have this reaction looking at Mike's budding draft decks when he sits to my left.

 

10 out of 10 visible thumbs agree, it was a night to remember.

 

Getting to the venue, as with past events the Pro Tour-Honolulu Players Lounge offers a set of computers for checking email, surfing the web, or, as I've already seen several players do, pulling up pictures of your own mug reading the event coverage on magicthegathering.com.

 

This version of the player's lounge also offers two pool tables for some between-rounds relaxation…

 

… plus this surfboard for your video gaming enjoyment.

 

We fellows here on the event coverage staff are often fond of sharing our favorite snack food finds. This one is a warning. These are just exactly as bad as you are currently imagining them, maybe even worse.

 

One of the artists signing cards and selling art at this event, rk post is pictured here with his original art from the Ninth Edition version of Zur's Weirding. It's a special piece, because the readers of magicthegathering.com gave him the chance to paint it when its sketch won the vote during the Selecting Ninth Edition promotion.

 

Speaking of artists, three of Seishiro Ookubo's wildly popular 3-D cards have made the journey to Hawaii, and will eventually find their way into the hands of three very happy Magic fans. They are pictured here in the hands of our show manager, Whitney Williams.

 

Being the fanatics we are, there's no question that the venue isn't the only place Magic is getting played this weekend. This draft, which broke out around snacks and drinks (virgin, of course!), was one of many to fire just off the pool at the event hotel, just a hop and a skip from world-famous Waikiki beach.

 

It appears that the pace of Hawaiian life agrees with coverage reporter Brian David-Marshall. If he doesn't show up in New York this week, send out a rescue party.

 

So what do you think? Is this a worse way to spend the winter pro tour? Should we just go back to somewhere freezing like Chicago or New York?

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