I've never been able to attend one before, but this year, i actually could stop by after a trip i have to take to New York. For someone 40 years old, who's never met anyone in the club, will this be fun or just akward???
I was in your shoes in 2002. Except I traveled to OK to attend my first convention. Awkward, maybe at first, but the love of HPing overcomes that and after you start your first conversation, you're with friends and family.
I hosted WA in 2004, and remain excited about every convention. Come on in, the water's fine!
I have attended every convention since 2000 (Hawaii), though I had been in the club for about nine years before I was able to get to my first one. There is something special and unique at every convention. As the others noted, it's a great way to pick up information about other peaks, meet other climbers (and possible climbing partners!), and enjoy the camaraderie of other (crazy, driven, whatever adjective you prefer) highpointers. I have learned new things at every convention. Besides, the fun of the "back porch liars' club", plus the special added attraction this year of the "roast" of Grand Poobah Don Holmes is not to be missed. And aren't you just a bit curious to meet some of these folks that you read about in the Newsletter? You'll meet them and folks of every background, and in age from several months to over nine decades.
Roger and the Urbanski Boys are putting on a GREAT event (I won't judge as to whether it will be better than the wonderful Wisconsin convention I hosted in 2007). You will be warmly welcomed and your company very much appreciated. I hope we see you there. JES
...won't be there necessarily, but it is fun. I went in 02 and 04 and had loads of fun. I recommend it. Meeting others with your same interests in HPing confirms you really are not alone in this world.