Browncoat Ball Comes to ‘Burque

By: Jonathan Baca, Staff Reporter | Photo Courtesy: Charlie Fitch, Albuquerque Browcoats

The Eighth Annual Browncoat Ball will be hosted by the Albuquerque Browncoats for the first time , and tickets are going fast, said Albuquerque Browncoat member and orga­nizer Charlie Fitch.

The Browncoat Ball, a non-profit convention orga­nized completely by volun­teers, will take place Sept. 14-16 at the Sheraton Hotel Uptown. “People are coming from all over the United States — one gentleman is coming from Australia,” said Fitch.

Pre-Health Sciences major and Browncoat member Harriet Engle said that the Browncoats are a fan group for the cancelled Joss Whedon cult television series “Firefly”.

Engle said everyone is welcome to the Browncoat Ball, even if they do not iden­tify as a Browncoat or know about the series.

“It’s come as you are. You put on your best garb that would fit into that universe, and you go and have a meal and a good time,” said Engle.

Fitch and others have worked hard to organize three days of activities, music, food and dancing, he said.

“It’s a big undertaking with risk. I think Albuquerque’s been very successful,” he said.

Throughout the weekend, there will be raffles for auto­graphed collectibles, a hospital­ity room, and a display of rare “Firefly” memorabilia which includes props and handmade costumes, said Fitch.

At $180 for a weekend pass, Fitch said they have worked hard to make sure attendees get their monies worth.

The event begins on Friday night with a party in which everyone is encour­aged to attend as their favorite character, said Fitch.

The party will include, a buffet of New Mexican cuisine, a costume contest with prizes, arts and crafts, belly dancing, an open bar, and live music by the “Firefly” themed Bedlam Bards, he said.

Early on Saturday, there will be various “Firefly” themed adventures to show off Albuquerque to visiting Browncoat members.

Saturday night is the Ball Proper, with a cocktail hour, formal dinner, and ballroom dancing. Afterwards, Fitch said The Bards will play more rowdy dance tunes, followed by a midnight pajama party.

Sunday morning will include breakfast burritos, card games, and board games inspired by the show.

Browncoats around the country have also been involved in an ongoing char­ity event called “Can’t Stop the Serenity,” where the film Serenity is screened in local theaters. The Browncoats donate the ticket proceeds to charities like Equality Now, a women’s rights organization. Fitch and the other members of the Albuquerque Browncoats have been organizing the event in Albuquerque for four years.A portion of their ticket proceeds will be donated to the UNM Children’s Hospital; they have raised nearly $2,000 so far, said Fitch.

“It’s definitely a lot of work,” says Fitch.

Although their beloved show is cancelled, he said the Browncoats, like their fictitious counterparts in the show, are a feisty bunch.

“We’ll survive,” said Engle. “It’s become its own culture, and there are enough people and enough interest that I think it’s going to keep on going.”

For more information on the Albuquerque Browncoats, visit For more information on the Browncoat Ball visit

Get your tickets

Full Weekend – $180

  • Friday dinner, party and after party
  • Saturday activity, lunch, dinner, ball and Midnight Pajama Party
  • Sunday bruch, and games

Saturday Only – $130

  • Saturday activity, lunch, dinner, ball and Midnight Pajama Party
  • Sunday brunch and games

Ball Only – $80

  • Saturday dinner, ball and Midnight Pajama Party
  • Sunday brunch and games

Friday Only – $50

  • Friday dinner, party, and after party
  • Sunday brunch and games

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