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Installment #45

Tonner Con 2011 – Romance is not dead!

The Tonner Doll Convention is a four-day doll extravaganza. Attendees come from all over, and as far as Australia, to attend this annual event. It is always a fun-filled weekend where Tonner's motto is "Believe in the Power of Play". In 2011 Tonner celebrated their 20th year in the collectible doll business, and just like all past conventions, they encouraged attendees to dress up for each themed event. Saturday night's banquet event had a Masquerade Ball theme; so many of the costumes were outstanding and Laura, one of the company's most enthusiastic "dress-up" employees, made herself a Belle costume ball gown, it was spot on to the character's beautiful yellow dress. Laura was a transplant from Minnesota, she came to NY do an internship with Tonner, which turned into a full-time position. Her and her sweetheart Scott had been enduring a long-distance relationship, with Laura in NY and Scott attending college in Chicago, but this temporary arrangement finally came to an end and they were a few weeks away from being together once again, starting a new life in California. The night of the Masquerade Ball Robert Tonner asked Laura to dance, it was just the two of them up on stage as Robert had announced to the attendees that Laura would be leaving the company. As they danced a man dressed as the Beast came out onto the dance floor from behind a curtain. The Beast walked up behind Laura and tapped on her shoulder to ask for a dance. Laura slowly turned in confusion, with a look of "Oh my, now what?" as if being put in the spotlight like this wasn't embarrassing enough. She gazed up into the eyes of the Beast and recognized them right away, it was Scott. He smiled, she cried, and they danced arm in arm as if the rest of the world didn't exist. Scott had come up with this idea about 4 weeks prior and had contacted the staff at Tonner for cooperation. Laura thought Scott was on his way to California, little did she know he had bigger plans up his sleeve. His mom and Laura's mom helped him put the "Beast" costume together, and Laura's sister Jennifer made sure Scott got into the hotel and the banquet room unnoticed. They pulled the whole thing off without a hitch and it was the sweetest, most romantic thing I think I have ever personally witnessed. Were YOU there, did you get to witness this beautiful moment?

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