It's every fan's dream to meet our favourite celebrities. Gregg drove all the way from Iowa to meet Summer at Wizard World Nashville - it was a 14 hour drive, but as he half-jokingly told me, "I would have drove 14 days if I had to" - and it was totally worth it! You can read it for yourself after the break.
I have already posted a couple fan stories, but Gregg and I had planned to share the story of his trip to Nashville to meet Summer and the Firefly gang for a long time and I really wanted to give it the credit it deserves.
From Iowa to Nashville:
I have been a fan of Summer Glau since 2002 when I first got the opportunity to see Firefly. Ever since then I have been enamored with her. I have wanted to meet her for a long time now. So, when I saw that she was going to be in Nashville, I made it my mission to go and finally meet her. I purchased the Firefly VIP package that Wizard World was offering that including Summer Glau, Jewel Staite, Sean Maher and originally Alan Tudyk. The package offered a VIP pass for all three days, a group photo op with all the cast, and one ticket for an item to be signed by each of them. Alan, unfortunately, had to cancel for a scheduling conflict and I was unable to meet him.
I planned my trip back in July for the Con in September. I placed my vacation in at work and started saving up for the trip. I started looking around my house for a poster that I had bought a few months back that had most of the cast on it because I knew I wanted all of them to sign it. I also had recently purchased an autograph sword that Summer had signed that was based on the one from the movie Serenity. I had a poster from Serenity that was her with the sword and thought I would also be cool to have her sign this and make a display with the poster and sword. Since I wanted this signed too, I purchased an additional ticket for another signature. Also, since Summer was the main reason I was going. I wanted to get a picture with just her and me, so I purchased a photo op with just her. Once I had the tickets I wanted and gathered the items I wanted them to sign I waited until September with high anticipation to meet her.
It was a 14 hour drive for me from Fort Dodge, Iowa to Nashville, Tennessee. Once I arrived in Nashville for the first day, I took my time to look around the convention and just enjoy the first day since Summer wasn’t going to be there until Saturday. I wanted to enjoy what the convention had to offer, so I purchased some comics and art from the local vendors and enjoyed the panels that were scheduled on Friday. I located the booth that Summer and the rest of the cast were going to be at for Saturday, so I knew exactly where to be the next day.
On Saturday, it was my goal to make sure I got in line for the autographs early seeing as how I didn’t want to carry around my posters all day and accidently get them damaged somehow. I knew that Summer was going to start signing at around 11 o’clock, so I got in line at 10:20 to make sure I was near the front. Actually, I was the first person in line. Once I got in line, everyone else kind of showed up and decided they better get in line too. Sean and Jewel were supposed to be signing around 11 as well, so I knew if I got lucky I could get them all in one go.
Everyone seemed to run a little late, but having been to conventions before I knew this was normal and didn’t worry too much. Summer showed up around 11:15 looking beautiful in a nice red, black, and white floral dress. I think my heart skipped a few beats and I might have been staring a little. The handler for the tickets waved me up to the table and asked me what I had for her to sign. I said I had two posters. She then took my tickets and Summer waved me over. I was probably in shock at first, not realizing “I’m actually meeting Summer Glau.” I told her I came from Iowa to meet her and that she was my biggest celebrity crush. She seemed shocked that I said she was my biggest crush and said “Really?! Me?! Well, thank you.” We then talked for a few minutes about her appearances in different things and I told her I have seen almost everything she has been in including the “Long Hot Summer” music video she was in with Keith Urban. I told her I actually use it has my alarm in the morning when I wake up since it makes me think of her whenever I hear that song and it starts my day off with a smile on my face.
Once I got her autograph, I saw that both Sean and Jewel were still signing autographs. I went ahead and jumped in Jewel’s line. I have met Jewel before back in 2015 and she was super sweet and lovely as well. I got her autograph and told her thanks for coming and went ahead to Sean’s line. I have never met Sean before, but I heard he was quite the character. Sean was so nice and actually talked to me about his work on Arrow and Warehouse 13. I knew he did an episode each of those shows and since they were a couple of my favorite shows, I wanted to ask him about them. Since, I figured most people would only ask him about Firefly/Serenity, I wanted to be different.
It was then around noon and I had until 1:30 for the Summer Glau photo op. I took the time to place my posters in my car and grab a little snack before the photo op. I made my way over to the photo op area around 1:00, again wanting to be around the first people to see her. I was once again first in line for the photo op. She was a little late again, but seeing has how she was pregnant I was completely understanding of this. I was just glad she was even there. I would have waited hours for her. I was originally concerned she was going to cancel with the Hurricane in Texas and her being from San Antonio. I was glad she showed up and took time to even see her fans. Once she arrived I made my way up to her and she recognized me from being first in line at her autograph session. She said, “First again uh.” I told her, “Only for you.” I took my picture with her and it turned out wonderful.
I then went ahead and took that to the car, so it didn’t get ruined and went back to the con. The group photo op was at 2:30, so I had about 40 minutes to kill. So, I took my time and walked around and looked at all the cosplay. Many people were dressed up as characters from Firefly and I complemented them on their outfits. Around 2:10 I made my way over for the group photo op. This time I was 5th in line. A little disappointed in myself, but I thought “o well.” I saw a couple ahead of me that took two photos, one was a goofy photo that I thought was pretty good, where Jewel was choking Sean, I complimented them on that. Once it was my turn I walked up to the group. Summer once again recognized me and she made room in between her and Sean knowing I would want to be beside her. That photo also turned out perfectly.
At 4 O’clock they were having a Q&A panel for the Firefly cast. At around 3:30, I made my way to the ballroom where they were having the panel. I watched the Clerks panel final 30 minutes and made my way up front to have a good seat. Luckily, with the VIP pass it guaranteed me a front row seat. I saw that the middle seat was open and I gladly took it. The Firefly panel was hilarious. Jewel and Sean kept giving each other crap when someone would ask only them a question. When people would ask Jewel about Stargate: Atlantis she would lean over to Sean and say “that was a good show.”
The best moment in the panel came when one person told her story on how her and her husband were going to get married and they were going to have a Firefly wedding. Her husband was going to be Mal and she was going to be Zoe. She said she was going to start the wedding and then once she got halfway down the aisle, she was going to cancel it. Basically, making fun of how the show was canceled too early. The panel was a great time. I wish it was more than 50 minutes. I could have listened to their stories all day.
All in all the experience was wonderful. I wish I would have met Summer earlier and I know if I get the chance to meet her again, I would do it in a heartbeat. If anyone hasn’t met her or any of the cast of Firefly, I would recommend doing so. They are all wonderful people and I hope one day I get the chance to meet the rest of the cast because I know they would be just as cool as Summer, Jewel, or Sean.
A huge thank you to Gregg for taking the time to tell his story and sharing it with other fans. On a personal note, I appreciate his kind words for my efforts to keep everyone informed on what is going on in the world of Summer.
On the same topic, check out photos and stories of fans who have recently shared with us their Summer Glau experience: