A great day at ComperCon!
On Saturday 3rd June 2017, 120 keen compers gathered at Whitburn Academy in Sunderland for a day of comping, quizzes, raffles and fun!
This was the very first ComperCon (Comper Convention), organised by a group of North East compers – and it was brilliant. Having helped organise three big comping days in Derbyshire ten years ago, I know what a mammoth task these ladies had – in particular, getting hold of all those fabulous raffle prizes. The stage was jam packed – everything from a TV and PlayStation 4, to dozens of beautifully packaged hampers and cuddly toys.
All the money raised – over £8000! – will go to local charity Tiny Lives Trust, who support premature babies and their families.
We sat on tables of six, some of us with old friends, some with new friends. Everyone got on so well, because we had one very important thing in common – a love of comping! There were table quizzes (name the kids TV characters and famous couples, identify the close up photographs of objects), individual quizzes and judged competitions – and classics like name the bunny and count the peas in the jar. There was even a selfie frame comp to win a camera!
The qualifier table was laden with alcohol – for this raffle you had to bring along a quallie (a promotional product where proof of purchase is required to enter) and received an amount of raffle tickets dependent on the value of your donated item. There were also cash prizes up for grabs. I think a lot of compers left the table clutching a bottle of Bacardi!
Steve Middleton, the Editor of Compers News, gave a short talk about the magazine, reminding us why even with social media, there’s still demand for a monthly printed magazine. Compers News has been around (in various formats) for over a hundred years and is such a good read – each attendee also got a free copy of the latest issue in their goodie bag and they had donated several cash prizes for the quizzes. If you’d like to know more about the mag, read my post Is Compers News worth the money?.
During lunch we were entertained by a lovely choir, then afterwards I took to the stage for my presentation – twenty years of comping in twenty minutes. I was perhaps a bit ambitious with squeezing all that in – sometimes my passion for comping runs away with me! And no, I still can’t talk about Ryland’s big day at the FA Cup Final without welling up…
Later we nominated a representative from our table for a ping pong ball throwing competition, which was won by Vicky’s table. The prize included coffee and brilliant ComperCon personalised KitKats – such attention to detail by the organisers!
The results of the earlier competitions were announced – there was much laughter when Sheila on our table won £35 cash for her fabulous ‘weird’ drawing of a winning horse!
The event culminated in the epic charity raffle, and somehow I ended up with the unenviable job of calling the numbers. This is always a challenge, with the various ticket colours and serial numbers to deal with – is the colour pink, orange or red? Is it EB or EA?
Thankfully the runners were super efficient and hundreds of fabulous prizes were distributed in record time. I was lucky enough to win six prizes myself – a Crabtree & Evelyn set, a Gardeners gift set, a £20 Tesco voucher, a bundle of kids books, some Joseph sunglasses and a crafting set. There was an opportunity to swap prizes at the end too, a lady wanted some goodies for her craft sessions with the elderly so I swapped for a book of quotations!
At the end of the day everyone left with goodie bags, prizes and smiles on their faces. The sun was shining in Sunderland, and the ComperCon team could relax enjoy a much needed drink at the pub – congratulations to you all!
As for me, I had a cheeky cocktail with Emma, Jess & Vicky from my Lucky Learners Facebook group, and then an amazing curry – with a seaview! – at Goa restaurant with some of the ComperCon ladies and their other halves (plus Steve and family!). A lovely end to a lovely day!
I must admit, having such a great day out at ComperCon has tempted me to organise my own comping day for 2018 – watch this space!