I’m sure everyone’s heard by now that America’s largest FAN-run sci-fi/fantasy convention, is once again descending upon Atlanta, GA this weekend (Fri Aug 29 – Mon Sept 2)! Here’s a brief line-up of the JRR Tolkien: Welcome to Middle-earth fan track to be held in the Greenbriar Room at the Atlanta Hyatt Regency:

TheOneRing.net once again journeys to the Deep South to tell the tale of that which is closest to anyone who is a regular of this site: previews and a behind the scenes look at The Lord Of the Rings: The Two Towers. TORN founders Calisuri, Tehanu, and Corvar will be attending and presenting this hugely popular program. (Note: Saturday?s TORN presentation will be in the Centennial Ballrooms. Sunday’s will be in the Greenbriar.) They’ll have a session about webmastering with Saulone of ThereandBackAgain.net. Saulone will also have a session about ThereandBackAgain.net, showing his incredible artwork and telling how he came to be influenced so deeply as an artist by Tolkien?s works.

Tom Shippey, renowned Tolkien scholar and author, joins Dragon*Con for several sessions, including two with the Tolkien Track. If you haven’t read JRR Tolkien: Author of the Century, you have 3 ½ days to do so. ; ) This book is a definitive study of Tolkien and his works. Tom will be discussing philology and Tolkien’s place in the modern world. If you have an interest in the created languages of Middle-earth, be sure to catch these sessions!

Master metalsmith and historical re-enactor Joe Piela joins us for the first time this year. Joe has studied Tolkien’s battle related passages and brought this knowledge into his work as a metalsmith. He’s bringing many items created in his Lonely Mountain Forge for display and discussion. Roleplayers and weapons collectors will find these sessions of great interest.

In the arts, The Butler Ballet has been working on a new dance composition based on Tolkien’s touching story about Beren and Luthien, entitled The Silmaril. The Butler Ballet is a pre-professional dance company of Butler University, world famous for the great artists and choreographers that begin there. Slated to be premiered in 2003, there’s already a buzz in the dance world about this new work. Please join us for a preview, brought to Dragon*Con, by Stephan Laurent of The Butler Ballet.

Returning for their third year, Jeff Sherrill & Paul Dunne bring back their popular Elvish 101: An Introduction into the basics of Tolkien’s created languages. Learn the history behind the words (and how to pronounce them!) Jeff and Paul will set you on the path to fluency in the Elvish languages!

In music, Steve Babb, of the band Glass Hammer pays us another visit, with premieres of new videos of two of the band’s Tolkien-inspired songs. Currently at work on their seventh release, Glass Hammer has a huge following.

This year, the gaming world is represented by Universal Interactive and Games Workshop. Universal Interactive brings previews of their new video game based on the Lord of the Rings, including never before seen screen shots and a behind the scenes look at the making of an interactive video game. Games Workshop, famous for Warhammer tabletop games, has created a game for the Tolkien enthusiast, and is now adding more scenarios as the game grows in popularity. They’ll be showing the latest additions to their LOTR game.

In celebration of JRR Tolkien, we will have a night of fun, in the tradition of the Prancing Pony. Drop in for an Evening in Bree to meet fellow Tolkien fans, maybe sing a song or two and enjoy live music by Emerald Rose. We’ll have trivia questions galore. Dress in Middle-earth inspired costume for our costume contest, for your chance at very cool prizes provided by Sideshow-Weta Collectibles, Decipher, and Houghton Mifflin, to name a few. (Please note: Fire marshal rules will limit number of guests attending this. Doors will be closed when capacity is reached.)

TheOneRing.net will have a fan table set up at the Marriott Marquis. Stop by and meet the founders and staff of TORN (including Tehanu, our Kiwi Founder, who?s attending Dragon*Con for the first time!) We’ll have drawings and giveaways throughout the convention and would love to meet you : )

For complete schedule listings and news, visit TORN’s Dragon*Con [Schedule]. For more information about the enormous event that IS Dragon*Con, visit [Dragon*Con].