WHAT IS RUSHCON?
RushCon 14: August 22nd - 24th, 2014 - Toronto

RushCon is the largest North American gathering of fans celebrating the music of Canadian rock band, Rush.

Once a year, fans from all over the world gather for several days of activities such as games, a charity auction featuring rare and collectible band memorabilia, a tribute band concert, important guest speakers from inside the band's inner circle and much, much more!

RushCon is a by-the-fans, for-the-fans event where folks have an opportunity to raise money for an important charity whilst having an amazing time learning more about the band, getting to know each other and connecting with other fans from around the world. Over the past 11 years, RushCon members have formed life-long friendships and bonded over their fondness of this band.

It's a tremendously fun, informative and exciting series of events where fans are able to spend a weekend experiencing all the sites and sounds of Rush and simultaneously catch up with old friends who'll make you feel like you're not the only kid in the room who can recognize an odd time signature.

See Past Events

PAST EVENTS

All though they're just a memory, some memories last forever..

RushCON 12: 2012
RushCON x1: 2011
RushCon 10: 2010
RushCon 9: 2009



RUSHCON: 14 - August 22 -24, 2014 Toronto



RushCon 14 was a carnival celebrating Rush’s 40th anniversary, with a great mixture of old and new – friends, guest speakers, games, and, as always, Rush’s great music.

RushCon 14 was a carnival celebrating Rush’s 40th anniversary, with a great mixture of old and new – friends, guest speakers, games, and, as always, Rush’s great music.

FRIDAY AUGUST 22, 2014



Team RushCon huddles for a work session the night before the convention.

The Mixer is always a great place to catch up with old friends and meet new ones. We split into groups for the trivia games. Team Presto went up against Team Roll the Bones who went up against Team Rush, etc. The lyric pictogram game, titled “Gaze at Their Feverish Pictures”, was quite a fun challenge. We ended the evening playing RushCon Against Humanity, a cheeky RushCon version of Cards Against Humanity.

 

SATURDAY AUGUST 23, 2014

We were in a new venue this year, The Great Hall. We loved the warmth and style of the place, which we put to good use in our Carnies-inspired decorations. The Rush album banners were a big hit…more about them later.



RushCon Staff ready the registration desk.



Greeting our early birds.


We were thrilled to present four Guest Speakers this year, covering Rush’s entire history and giving us a variety of viewpoints into the music industry.  Howard, Tony, Martin, and Kevin were all so approachable and fun.  

Howard Ungerleider kicked off with insights into his early years with Rush before seguing into development of the lighting design that amazes the fans at the concerts. He proceeded to surprise us with an amazing laser demonstration, set to “YYZ”.





The Marquee outside Massey Hall, welcoming RushCon.

Tony “Jack Secret” Geranios joined Howard during his question-and-answer session before giving a photo and story presentation of his own. It was wonderful to see pictures and hear stories about the band’s early recording sessions. .





Kristy welcomes guest to our first event, The Mixer at Massey Hall

Martin Popoff spoke of the band Max Webster, and their connections with Rush, capped off with playing a recording of the energetic Max Webster and Rush song, Battle Scar.




Jillian kicks off the first event, by introducing all the "Air Captains" and breaking up everyone into groups.

Hanging out at the Bar at Massey Hall.



The tour guide shares the history of this awesome music venue.



One group of RushCon Attendees standing on the very stage where Rush played, many moons ago.



Yes, _that_ stage left!



Old friends making new ones.





Brain tends to the merch sales at the RushCon and Rush Back Stage booth.





Patti chills out backstage at Massey in the green room where tons of famous bands and musicians have gotten ready before their shows.



The view from the stage.

Words of the Profits is a popular game that is always good for laughs and challenging for our players! This year, we pitted three teams against each other: Jeremy & Chris, Angela & Sean and Kane & Mindy. Long-time attendees, Jeremy and Chris, triumphed and won drum heads signed by all three members of Rush!









Brian and Adam amaze us with their talent at an spontaneous Rush Sing-a-long!

SATURDAY JULY 6th, 2013

Up and early for the RushCon Caravan to hit the road! A trio of comfy charter buses transported our Con folk to the one & only Lakeside Park, for a catered BBQ lunch.



Some crazy people we let on the bus.



Enjoying the 'Scenery" of the bus ride down to Lakeside Park.



The official sign welcoming us to the famous landmark!







Drinking by the pier.. get it..?







Eddy shows that mic who is boss!













One of the best parts of the weekend happened next. We gave everyone a really REALLY hard Rush word game for the ride to Lakeside park. Only a handful of people completed it. But we did have 2 winners. Claude, who came all the way from Hawaii with his family, and Dave, a long time Rush fan from the Toronto area. Claude had almost a perfect score and Dave was a close second. We gathered everyone by the buses before we departed the park. Jillian called them up to claim their prizes. She asked them “is that what you are wearing to the show tonight?” and held up 2 RushCon t-shirts, and they looked a little confused, but happy to be winning shirts, but then Jillian said “Because you will be meeting Geddy and Alex before the show!” And the crowd went wild. They were both in disbelief to finally be meeting their idols after being fans for so long and traveling so far. They were jubilant and so so happy.  This Meet and Greet prize couldn’t have gone to better guys. These guys were the best!



Dave and Claude get the surprise of their lives!



80% of Team RushCon. (Kristy was on the road to set up at the hotel)

 

Next stop was a change/shower run at the Sheraton Hamilton, before the main event: Rush live at Copps Coliseum!

 



Everyone was excited for the evening that awaited them!







That darn Anarchist kept popping up everywhere.. even the front row!




The boys put on a blistering show - as always - and many happy, but tired fans made their way back to “The Rocinante”, “Bus #2” and “The Short Bus”.

SUNDAY JULY 7th, 2013

Sunday morning began with our annual tour of Rush’s own record label office, Anthem Records. The group walked from the hotel over to the modest office space. But inside it’s decked out better than any museum you could ever find. Guests snapped pictures of all the historic awards, art work and soaked up all the amazing Rushness.



Sunday crew gathers in front of Anthem Records for their exclusive tour.







Some of the amazing awards and artwork on the walls.

 

We then had our triumphant return to the Hard Rock Cafe in downtown Toronto for a game of games, prizes and much more fun!

Our first game was our "name that tune" game- Countdown. Contestants had to name a Rush song by only listening to a few short seconds. The competition was fierce, but Brian Kaser (aka Vitamin Bu2b) was our eventual winner. Jason R. was in 2nd place.



Round 1 of "Name that Tune" game- Countdown.





Our runner up, Jason on the left, and winner of a signed Clockwork Angels LP Brian, on the right.



Brian's epic prize.

We followed up with our ever-popular "Taboo style game" Words of the Profits. With many laughs and hijinks. (What happens when you fart in the bathtub?)



Veteran players Beverly and Jill warm up the teams.





Never before have we had such a competitive, fast moving game. The points were racked up to the highest in RushCon history. It was down to only one point! but team Rob and Jeff beat out Jeremy and Alex in one of more hilarious games yet! They each won signed tour posters from the band.



The faces of hilarious frustration.



Winners Rob and Jeff take home signed posters from the band.

We had a short break between stage events with a showing of the entire induction ceremony for Rush into the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame.

Our next event was guest speaker, Martin Popoff, who presented a slideshow about the history of progressive & heavy metal. Of course, many good words were said in relation to our favourite Canadian band! He had copies of his various tomes for sale - including his latest work, "Rush: The Illustrated History" - and autographed them personally.





We wrapped up our day events with our Annual Charity Auction. Many wonderful items went on the block this year, including a series of John Arrowsmith photographs, a VIP Silver Edition copy of Clockwork Angels kindly donated by Kevin J. Anderson and some wonderful graphic art by artist, Adam George. Our showcase item - a Rush Clockwork Angels leather jacket by Vanson - went for $1000. Did we mention the jacket was to be autographed personally by the band? Longtime auction dominator, RushGirl took home this epic prize.











 

The snipers were out in force! And there were many tense bidding moments! Who would have the final bid? Nail biters! All in all, we raised a total of $8100 for our charity, Care Canada.

We then headed over to Alex Lifeson's famous club, The Orbit Room.





















We were treated by a private show by local Toronto Prog band, The Dave Barrett Trio. We rocked out, sang some tunes, drank many a beer, hugged many new friends goodbye, and we sadly had to put this con to bed for another year.

"Some days were dark
I wish that I could live it all again
Some nights were bright
I wish that I could live it all again"

We are always so grateful for the continuing support from Anthem Records.

Very special thanks to this years support staff, Nancy and Brian

Max, Todd, and Rodney for their heroic efforts year after year.

The staff at Hard Rock Cafe, and Massey Hall.

Martin Popoff

Paulie Beaulieu and The Canadian Music Scene

Tim Notter, Tim Wilson and the staff at the Orbit Room.

The Dave Barrett Trio

Patrick and John at Showtech Merchandise, Rush Back Stage Club

And from the bottom of our hearts, thanks to all our attendees. We look forward to seeing you each and every year. You make doing this so special and rewarding for us.

And of course, none of this magic would be possible without the tireless effort of Team RushCon. Jillian, Eddy Maxwell, Kristy Williams, Holly Smith and Mary Jo Plews. Thank you all!

Photos: Jessica Winkworth, Eddy Maxwell, Melanie Bichener, M0b13us, Paul Beaulieu, Bruce Lee, Kristy Williams





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All Contents ©2013 Rushcon. RushCon is a by-the-fans, for-the-fans event where folks have an opportunity to raise money for an important charity whilst having an amazing time learning more about the band, getting to know each other and connecting with other fans from around the world. RushCon has no official affiliation with Rush or Anthem Entertainment. As much as we wish we could, we have no way of getting anyone concert tickets or ways to meet the band.