Here's the short version. Typically we figure on a certain amount of gross revenue at the dealers table based on the number of people at the convention. It never seems to vary by much, but at this convention it did. It *appeared* as though there were fewer people than last year, but if there were, they were a lot more willing to spend money. Coupled with the lack of any real overhead because the convention was local (no airfare or hotel room expenses) made this a pretty good convention dealer wise.
There were some serious cost cutting measures in place. The member badges had been very expensively made last year and in high quality badge holders designed to last months, not the 2 or 3 days a con badge has to last. This year they were the normal kind. The staff shirts seemed to be made of a much lower grade material with only one small logo on the front, no design on the back and nothing specific to this year's convention. I assume the unused shirts from this year will no doubt be used for the staff of next year's con. This is probably OK as the staff doesn't seem to change much from year to year.
The con guide was the one big failure of the convention. It was, quite frankly, a piece of crap. In the spirit of the convention theme, I and a friend did some detective work of our own and figured out that it had been printed on an aging Xerox copier that still used Fuser. The last time I saw one of those in commercial use was in Huntington Beach in 1988 when I did the covers for Huzzah #2! The dark lines of the cover were repeated about 3" down the page, which clued us in as to how it was printed as well as to the apparent fact the copier needed service and was rather dirty. Some of the drawings in the interior of the book were so muddy they looked like smears on the page rather than pictures. One was copied from an ancient issue of Centaur's Gaetherium and very much looked like the 3rd generation copy that it was.
I'd comment on the layouts but Roz already did that. They weren't good either.