The ballroom, lobby and parking lot at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Cherry Hill were teeming with Vulcans, Klingons, Cardassians, Starfleet officers, and Romulans (but no Tribbles) as Trekkies gathered for the official 2012 Star Trek convention.
This year marks the 25th Anniversary of Star Trek: The Next Generation, the syndicated series that ran from 1987 to 1994 and tracked the voyages of the Starship Enterprise about 100 years after the setting of the original Star Trek. That original Star Trek, created by Gene Roddenberry, debuted in 1966 and ran for three seasons on NBC.
The convention celebrates The Next Generation's achievements with special presentations and prizes for those coming in costume. A half dozen actors from the series, including Sir Patrick Stewart, who played Jean Luc Picard, the ship's captain, were scheduled to address fans. Other members of the Enterprise crew will appear throughout the weekend: Jonathan Frakes (Cmdr. Will Riker), LeVar Burton (Lt. Cmdr. Geordi LaForge), and Brent Spiner (the android Lt. Cmdr. Data) among other Star Trek alumni. They will meet fans and sign autographs (some for a fee).
"The Official Star Trek Convention: The Celebration of the 25th Anniversary of The Next Generation" at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 2349 W. Marlton Pike (Route 70), Cherry Hill. $30 Sunday; $15 for children; children age 6 and younger free. Hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday. Information: 818-409-0960, or www.creationent.com.