Super Soap Weekend 2000
By Tracey Warren

Note:  The photos included are thumbnails to speed the loading time of the page.  Please click on them to enlarge.  More photos are included in the photo album at the end of Tracey's narrative.

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First, A Zen Moment
This is a photo off of Mallory Square
in Key West, Florida.

The Fifth Annual Super Soap Weekend was held on November 11 and 12, 2000, at Disney’s MGM Studios in Orlando, Florida.  This was my fourth trip to SSW and I think the most fun.  The things I do for you people!  LOL!

First, the list of attendees: 

All My Children

Rebecca Budig (Greenlee Smythe)
John Callahan (Edmund Grey)
Mark Consuelos (Mateo Santos)
Josh Duhamel (Leo du Pres)
Michael E. Knight (Tad Martin)
Susan Lucci (Erica Kane)
Cameron Mathison (Ryan Lavery)
Kelly Ripa (Hayley Santos)
Esta TerBlanche (Gillian Andrassy Martin)
Walt Willey (Jackson Montgomery)

One Life To Live

Linda Dano (Rae Cummings)
Kamar de los Reyes (Antonio Vega)
James DePaiva (Max Buchanan)
Kassie DePaiva (Blair Buchanan)
David Fumero (Cristian Vega)
Catherine Hickland (Lindsay Rappaport)
Erika Page (Roseanne Delgado)
Jason-Shane Scott (Will Rappaport)
Hillary B. Smith (Nora Buchanan)
Erin Torpey (Jessica Buchanan)

General Hospital

Sarah Brown (Carly Corinthos)
Nancy Lee Grahn (Alexis Davis)
Rebecca Herbst (Elizabeth Webber)
John Ingle (Edward Quartermaine)
Wally Kurth (Ned Ashton)
A Martinez (Roy DiLucca)
Coltin Scott (Nikolas Cassadine)
Jacob Young (Lucky Spencer)
Jackie Zeman (Bobbie Spencer)

Port Charles

Lynn Herring (Lucy Coe)
Thorsten Kaye (Ian Thornhart)
Jon Lindstrom (Kevin Collins)
Julie Pinson (Eve Lambert Collins)

Saturday, November 11th

Saturday morning started earlier than usual because I was with people who would actually get out of bed on time so we arrived at the park prior to it’s opening.  It was a little chilly that morning but nothing compared to the hideous weather from last year.  Having had the schedule posted at we made the decision to visit Thorsten Kaye first at 9:45 (Wally wasn’t out until noon so I had time to kill before stalking him!).  I intended to see a net friend, who is an adamant Thorsten fan, but I never saw her; however, while standing in line for Thorsten we did get an up-close view of several stars emerging from the “behind the scenes” area, including Josh Duhamel, Esta Terblanche and Jason Shane Scott.  I managed to refrain from taking any pictures thereby sticking to my rule about not wasting film on shots that would have little use later.  That rule went all to hell later as the pictures you’ll be seeing with this story will not even be ¼ of the pictures that I took.  Anyway, you can always tell when someone arrives for signing by the overwhelming “wooooooooooooooooooooo” heard around the park and this line was no different!  As soon as someone spotted Thorsten and started the “woooooo” heads snapped around and the flashes began.  Let me just say that if you think this man is a hottie on tv, wait until you see him in person!  Oh my gawd!  I forgot my name temporarily when he spoke to me.  It’s a good thing I had the GH/PC Fan Club pin on.  He saw it and asked “How are you doing today, Tracey?” I was looking at him through glazed eyes like “uhhhhh what?”  It took a second for my brain to register anything other than the fact that he was speaking to me and I must add that I love the way he says my name in that accent.  YUM!  He was very sweet and asked me if I was having a good time.  This being the first event of the day I told him that I was and at least the weather was way better than last year.  He said he’d heard about that and was glad we got better weather this year.   I think I’ll be tuning into Port Charles a little more often now.   


After leaving his line I walked around for a while snapping some pictures of the people I knew I wouldn’t get in line for like Jacob Young, Rebecca Herbst and Josh Duhamel. 

Who had the not-so-brilliant idea to have Josh and Jacob not only signing at the same time but in stations right next to each other, hmmmm?  That part of the street was so crowded from all the gawkers that nobody could get through without being some sort of body contortionist!  


Then, I stopped briefly for a sandwich while one set of my friends went off to have lunch at the Sci-Fi Diner and I headed to the area where Wally would be signing.  There was already a line forming so I made a few new friends and pimped the site and the GH fan club while watching Susan Lucci sign some autographs behind me.  By this time the temperature had risen and there wasn’t any shade in this particular area so I was thankful that I was still sporting my Keys tan; otherwise, I would have been crispy before Wally ever made it out.  When he stepped out and walked toward his podium I got the silly little grin on my face as if I’d never seen him in person before.  After waiting for what seemed like hours (not really) it was finally my turn.  I walked up and he recognized me, I’m assuming because of that manhandling stunt in L.A. earlier this year, so he asked how I was doing.  Everything in my little alternate sense of reality was just perfect at that moment in time.  So after the obligatory small talk I told him he’d have to sign one of the black and white photos because he’s signed everything else possible (5 CDs and the book).  The first question on the agenda was asked on behalf of myself and the other Gatekeepers ( ).  We wanted, nay, needed to know whether or not the Nexis wedding was actually going to take place.  He just grinned that adorable dimply grin, which he should know by now is dangerous when I’m standing that close to him, and said he wouldn’t tell me.  I told him that was fine because the other GKs were in Nancy’s line in an attempt to extricate information from her.  He said she wouldn’t tell either, all the while grinning dangerously.  I accepted that, got my Wally hug and had to ask one more question.  “Are you ever sick of the leather pants?”  He said, sometimes he is sick of them due to the fact that he can’t move around as much.  I told him that I felt sorry for him last year during the concert at SSW because it was unbearably hot for everyone and he couldn’t have been comfortable wearing those pants on stage.  I told him that for my part he could give them up because it’s not a novelty any more.  Everybody has leather pants now and it’s become acceptable to wear them everyday.  He still wears them better than 99% of the population (remember Jax in the leather pants? ::::shudder:::::) but it’s gotten old. 

Ok, so that part of my mission completed I walked over to the station where Nancy Lee Grahn was signing to find the other Gatekeepers and observed some of them getting autographs.   Nancy is such a good sport that when two young ladies wearing pink “Charlie’s Angels” t-shirts asked her to pose with them in the classic Angel opening stance, you know the one – back to back holding out their hands as if they were guns, she willingly obliged.   


After the GKs had their NLG autographs we all tromped over to the SuperStar TV theatre to stand in line for the Talk Show starring Catherine Hickland and featuring Nancy Lee Grahn, Wally Kurth, Sarah Brown, John Ingle, Josh Duhamel and Rebecca Budig.  While waiting we were given a bag of goodies from Colgate Total (sponsor of SSW) which included 3 or 4 different kinds of toothpaste (hey – never turn down free stuff!) and a copy of the Soap Opera Digest SSW special edition.  I don’t normally attend anything where fans are allowed to ask questions of the stars because we are inevitably treated to the same irritating, asinine questions over and over and over and over and….well, you get the picture.  This time was no different.  Also at this particular event, you are forced to stand outside the theater in the crowd like a herd of cattle and when they finally open the doors everybody is pushing and shoving trying to get in to get a good seat.  It’s ridiculous and some people also fail to comprehend the directions to go all the way to the end of the row and sit.  You can’t just stop in the middle.  In all the madness, our group got separated into three smaller contingents.  One person ended up sitting next to Angela Shapiro so a conversation was sparked and AS only wanted to know what she thought of Sonny and Carly.  Gag me with a sharp object!!!! 


Nancy and Wally were introduced first.  The first question Catherine asked was if they liked working together.  They both answered at the same time laughingly saying that no they hated each other.  Then said that they are really good friends.  It’s quite obvious that they enjoy working together and get along well. Wally had to explain to Nancy where the “Eddie Maine” persona originated, apparently she’d never heard the entire story.  He mentioned that dreadful “L” word referring to Bratlynn’s Mother and I cringed. I don’t really remember all that was said so I’ll have to update you once I receive the video.  I do remember at one point Wally was sitting on the couch with his arm around Nancy and he commented that he was sitting awfully close to her.  Actually they were cozy all weekend. They showed the clip of the reporters going into Ned’s hotel room and finding “Eddie’s Angel” for the first time.  Nancy said that when she got ready to do that scene she started out standing on the bed and the director told her to sit down.

John Ingle was introduced next and was asked (again) about who his famous students were from his teaching days.  I can recite almost the entire list because I’ve heard it so many times.  New questions please.   Catherine then asked him why Edward was so grumpy and his answer was “good writing”.  Wally commented then that John is nothing like Edward and you will not find anyone as nice as John.  I wholeheartedly agree with this assessment.  I love that guy! 


Sarah Brown was introduced next.  Catherine commented that she played the “best bad girl of all time”.  Sarah told her that she would have to take a backseat to her.  I agree on that point.  Lindsay is so much more entertaining than Carly, but then I’d rather have bamboo shoots shoved under my fingernails while enduring Chinese water torture than watch Carly.  Sarah said that some days she’d like to throttle Carly for her lack mothering abilities but stated that nobody ever takes care of their kids on TV.  At some point she made the comment that she learned everything she knows about comedy from Nancy, drama from John and music from Wally.  I thought this was quite nice (cheesy, but nice).  I really liked Sarah from what I saw of her over the weekend, but it hasn’t improved my opinion of Carly at all.  

Rebecca Budig and Josh Duhamel were introduced next and somebody really should have turned on the AC because that man is hot, hot, hot!  Catherine was really impressed (and rightly so) with Josh’s acting ability.  Rebecca was just so excited to get to see Catherine, it was cracking me up.  They showed the clip of Leo and Greenlee in the bathtub and if you watch AMC you know which scene I’m referring to.  Josh jokingly said that while they were filming that scene he was wearing pants and socks but Rebecca was completely naked.  Rebecca just cackled at that remark. 

Afterwards there was another motorcade with Wally, Nancy, Sarah and John.  The interviewer and fans asked the same tired questions.  While we were waiting on this motorcade there was a motorcade and conversation with Susan Lucci.  I wasn’t sitting where I could see anything, but I could hear the conversation.  Nothing new was divulged.  


The Street Jam that evening began with the Grand Motorcade with all of the stars who were not performing later in the evening.  It’s tough to see anything during the motorcade because everybody is out front for this and add that the to fact that the Disney characters ride with the stars blocking the view of the stars (that we are there to see!) from at least one side. The best picture I took of John Ingle was during one of these motorcades, but Kate (Nancy’s daughter) is in the picture too and I have a long-standing rule that I don’t post pictures of stars with the children. 

After the motorcade passed the crowd was allowed to come to the front of the stage and it turned into a mosh pit.  I could only tolerate this for so long and bolted after a couple of songs.  Once everyone was on stage they played “Maria” by Ricky Martin and all the stars were dancing around.  At one point Cameron Mathison was carrying Esta Terblanche around on his shoulders.   


He always has a good time.  He was also filming everything with his video camera and I’m sure by now you can see video clips on his website at if you are so inclined.  After the stars leave we are treated (if you want to call it that) to an obnoxious DJ playing CDs and trying to keep us entertained until the bands got set up.  One of the things he attempted was to have everyone do the macarena.  I’ve never done the macarena and never intend to do the macarena so that seemed like a very opportune time to get a drink. 

The first band to perform was The High Lonesome (with Jon Lindstrom).  Jon played drums on a couple of songs and sang one.  He’s pretty good and the band was entertaining.  I wouldn’t mind hearing them again.  The song he sang was “I love my car more than my girl”.  I liked it.    


Next up was Kassie Depaiva.  She sang one song and then did a duet with James Depaiva.  She’s not bad but should keep a death grip on that day job.  Their duet was sweet but had me standing knee deep in cheese.   


Catherine Hickland sang next and she was much easier to take this year.  She’s really very good, but the songs are still inappropriate for the SSW forum in my opinion but at least she wasn’t singing a lullaby this time.  I wasn’t really listening to most of her set because there was a serious discussion going on about how Lindsay would make a great love interest for Stefan Cassadine on GH.  I believe she dedicated one of the songs to Michael and again I must say CHEESE!   

A Martinez sang one song that he wrote and sang for his younger sister’s wedding the month prior to SSW.  He’s pretty good, but should definitely stick to acting.   

not a thumbnail 

Coltin Scott came on next and I was skeptical at best because his lackluster performances on GH leave a lot to be desired; however, I was IMPRESSED!  He can sing!!!  He did three songs and I’m now a fan of his singing career.  After the first song a discussion was held about the Prince becoming L&B’s new feature artist.  This could provide a good Cassadine story.  Stefan would hate it.  Helena would hate it.  Alexis might be skeptical at first, but she’d come around.  Plus we’d have the added bonus of not needing Juan (not that we need him now).  I highly recommend Coltin’s singing.  Why is he bothering with GH if he can sing like that?   


FINALLY, we got to why I was still hanging around the park after 12 hours on my feet. Kurth and Taylor – WOOHOO!  Yes, Wally was wearing the leather pants.  I left my fellow Gatekeepers in the back of the crowd and squirreled my way into the wheelchair section right next to the stage to take some pictures and enjoyed the concert from about the 4th “row”.  They did “Hero”, “September”, “Who Knew” (one of my favorite K&T songs!!!), “Surrender”, which he dedicated to the Gatekeepers because we never surrendered in trying to get a story for Ned & Alexis. (yeah, we rule!)  Needless to say we were overjoyed.  That was followed by “Simply Irresistible” which was a HUGE improvement over that Nurse’s Ball video.  And as the finale, he sang “Let it Go” and fireworks were set off behind the stage during the song.  This was my suggestion from last year, so you’re welcome.  All in all it was a great day.

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 SUNDAY, November 12th

This day started far too early in my opinion.  Brunch with Susan Lucci was scheduled to begin at 7:30 a.m.  I am not a morning person, ever!  Usually, my alarm is going off at 7:30 and that is CST so basically I had to be at MGM at 6:30 according to my internal clock, meaning I was up around 5:30 (to my brain anyway).  The only reason I agreed to this insanity was to avoid having to stand in line to get Susan to sign my AMC book.  Three years ago I dedicated an entire morning (i.e. 4 hours) to standing in her line to have her autograph the Erica Kane book and the lines have gotten even longer for her.  Now that I have both books signed I can skip her from now on so I would like to thank the other Tracy from the AMC Luncheon for the heads up on this info.  Immediately upon returning from NYC I joined Susan’s chat club and ordered the exclusive pin so I could go to this brunch.  This was so much easier than standing in line!   

It was chilly that morning and walking through that myriad of hotels I could smell breakfast cooking and was getting pretty hungry since I didn’t eat anything the night before.  We arrived at the bus stop by 7:00 a.m.  The MGM bus was late and we were getting pretty nervous because we had to be checked in by 7:30.  It worked out just fine because we arrived before 7:30 but we were still among the last few people to get there. The Brunch was held at The Brown Derby in MGM and was the best meal I had all week.  We were each given a bag full of goodies including the travel pack of Susan’s hair products and Invitation perfume, a Soap Opera Weekly T-shirt, the copy of Soap Opera Weekly with the 10 most Wanted stars we’d like to return to Daytime with Lane Davies (yeah baybee!!), Mathew Ashford, Louise Sorel and some other people on the cover.  Helmut Huber (Susan’s husband for anyone who’s been living under a rock and doesn’t know that) was milling about all morning.  Susan arrived around 8 with Mickey Mouse.  Who is the bigger star?  You be the judge.  They raffled off one of the new Susan Lucci dolls and a poster that Susan said had been hanging in her dressing room for 6 or 7 years of Erica and Dimitri.  I wanted that poster, but I didn’t win it.  I did think about offering money to the winner for it though.  The chat club presented Susan with a donation to her favorite charity, Little Flowers Children’s Services of New York (“the largest child care agency in New York State providing foster care and adoption services to all five boroughs as well as Long Island” quoted from Susan’s website – ).  By the time I finally got to the front of the line I was getting a little anxious to get out of there and on with my day.  I didn’t say much to Susan, but I did have a clean page saved in the front of the AMC book reserved for her autograph.  There is no one quite as gracious as Susan and I recommend that every AMC fan that has the opportunity to meet her – DO IT!  Just please refrain from getting too emotional. Some of her fans get a too excited and cry. 

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The first line I got in that morning was for Hillary B. Smith.  I’ve only been watching OLTL for a couple of months and she is by far my favorite person on that show so I took a shot and I got there early enough to be about the 10th person in line.  I had my friend claim my spot and went walk-about to take some pictures of the stars that were already out and signing like Jon Lindstrom, Lynn Herring, James and Kassie Depaiva.  Once I reclaimed my spot in line I had enough time to chat with the other people in line, pimped the site and the fan club some more and just generally enjoy the fact that I was still on vacation.  Hillary is very playful with the fans and she’s so much fun to watch.   I had forgotten that I was wearing my GH Fan Club pin and when I finally got to meet her she started reading the pin out loud, then looked at me in fake astonishment and asked “How dare you wear that in my line?”.  Well that took me by surprise and while we were laughing about it I told her that I was sorry but I hadn’t been watching her show for very long.  She signed one of the black & white photos for me and I got a picture.  Then I told her that she should “go with Ty, because he’s the hottie!”.  That seemed to get me off the hook because I got a high-five for that one!  I really loved her!  She’s one of those people that you just want to continue to hang around. 

 Next mission of the day was to obtain a signature and picture of A. Martinez.  My goal was to get the b&w photo signed as a surprise for our dear webmaster for all that she does for us [Note from Katrina:  “Awwww.  These great pics are enough to thrill me to my little girl bones. J]; however, after standing in line FOREVER A was late getting to the station and proceeded to take his sweet time with everybody. (I was about the 80th person in line and had promised a friend that I’d go to NLG’s signing with her which was about to start) so I had to bail.  I got a few nice photos of A.   


I high-tailed it over to where Nancy’s line was forming and claimed a spot for myself.  Then bribed the people in line to hold my spot for me so I could run around and take some random pictures of the stars that were already out, like Jacob Young, Cameron Mathison and Josh Duhamel.  Firmly planted back in my spot at NLG’s line, I found a few of my Gatekeeper friends who informed me that Nancy had aggravated that cornea abrasion again and was wearing a bandage over her eye, she couldn’t see at all and might not even be coming out to sign. Fortunately, Nancy is such a trooper (and probably still feeling bad about bailing on the GH Luncheon, although her reasoning was completely forgivable – family comes before fans!) that she came out for pictures but was unable to sign any autographs.  She also said that anyone who wanted an autograph could leave his or her address with her Disney attendant and she would mail a picture to everyone once she could see again.  The line was moving so swiftly without having to wait for autographs that I gave up my spot in line and hung with my fellow Gatekeepers further back in the line.  We got a group picture with Nancy and she said some cryptic things about the upcoming Nexis wedding and no one could agree on what she exactly meant.  I’m a little frightened that the wedding might not go through now.  She said she was sorry that she couldn’t see us and one group member promised to send her a copy of the group shot so she’d know who she was taking a picture with.  Since I was in Wally’s line on Saturday while the GKs were in Nancy’s line I also got a picture of just me and her and explained that I needed this because I was ogling Wally the day before. 

Afterwards we split up and a few of us were going to get in Coltin Scott’s line to tell him how great he was at the concert on Saturday night.  We were thwarted by the long line and elected to watch Wally sign and one of the GKs asked Wally just before he left if we could talk him into a group picture with all the GKs.  He willingly agreed and a time of 2:45 was set to meet him beside Star Tours (the Star Wars ride).  I hung around to take some pictures of Coltin with my camera and a friend’s camera (she refers to Coltin only as her “boyfriend”) while they went to locate the other GKs for the picture.  Coltin deals with the crowds well considering he’s only been on the show for a year and a half and is very attractive in person. 


I went immediately over to Star Tours to stake out a location to wait for Wally and the other GKs.  While waiting I saw Linda Dano and overheard her ask her Disney escort if she had time to ride Star Tours before going to her next station.  I almost ran in to the line to see if I could get into the same booth with her, but quickly weighed my options and decided that waiting there for Wally was more important (you knew I’d say that right? lol).  I also saw Kelly Ripa, Mark Consuelos, Jason-Shane Scott, Michael E. Knight and Susan Lucci being led backstage.  All of them stopped for pictures and autographs with the fans that had discovered this prime location and no one seemed bothered by this, even Mark which seriously shocked me!  He usually shows nothing but contempt for the fans. 

John Callahan

Once the other GKs arrived it didn’t take long before Wally’s Disney attendant came out to retrieve us.  A little voice inside me was gloating that all of those people standing out there were asking “Who the hell are they?” because we got to go backstage.  Wally was waiting backstage for us and his Disney attendant took a group shot of us with all seven cameras.  Before leaving we somehow managed to get on the topic of the election and Wally stated that he didn’t vote for Al Gore (he didn’t vote for Bush or Nader either!) and made the mistake of mentioning that fact to Nancy.  She was not pleased by this information at all.  That spiraled off into a political discussion for a few minutes.  We had to shut it down so he wouldn’t be late for his next appearance but he did promise to dedicate a song to us again at the concert that evening! (yeah baybee!) 

We went directly to the front for the Motorcade and Star conversations with Wally, Nancy, John Ingle and Sarah Brown.  See above description of this as nothing different happened.  Same questions, same answers. 

A motorcade and star conversation followed with Cameron Mathison, Esta Terblanche, Michael E. Knight, David Fumero, Erin Torpey and Jason-Shane Scott.  I wasn’t really paying attention because I only wanted to get some pictures of the OLTL group since I had no intention of standing in line for any of them.  I do remember the interviewer asking Cameron the most asked question of the weekend and he left it up to the crowd to answer.  {drum roll please}  “Take off your shirt!”  I know Cameron is tired of this request and frankly so am I.  It was only cute the first time. My GKs deserted me in favor of trying to get fast-passes for the Rock-n-Roller Coaster, so I wandered over to try to get a decent picture of Sarah Brown.  It just wasn’t happening with all of the gawkers standing around her station so I planted myself in a keen location and saved seats for the gang until the final motorcade.  

The Grand Motorcade was very much like the one on Saturday night.   The concert line-up was a bit different.  Kurth & Taylor opened that evening.  This was my sixth or seventh K&T concert and I don’t think I’ve ever seen them give a better performance.  In Wally’s own words “What we lack in rehearsal we make up for in energy.”  He wasn’t kidding.  They sang “Barefoot Ballet”, “Seventh Son”, “Surrender” and dedicated it to the Gatekeepers again (told you we ruled!), and “Let it Go” among others which I do not recall at this time.  My GK friends left immediately after the band left the stage and I tooled around looking for the friends that I was staying with.  I knew they wanted to hear Susan Lucci sing so they’d still be around. 

Michael Saucedo sang next.  I pretty much ignored him while I was talking to some new friends and waiting on Susan. 

The first song Susan Lucci sang was a number from “Annie Get Your Gun”.  She did pretty well but again this was the improper forum.  In the context of the play and inside a theater I’m sure I would have enjoyed it more, despite the fact that I HATE it when anybody tries to fake a southern accent.  The second song was the same one she sang on AMC and it was a big improvement over the first song.  I think she was wearing the same dress she wore on AMC when she performed it too. 

I bolted from the park as soon as Susan was done singing because BBMack was scheduled to perform next and I have no use for boy bands on a regular day and I certainly have no use for them in the middle of my soap stuff. 

One final note before I leave you.  If you should ever attend a fan event, please do the star (and me) a favor by learning his or her real names.  This is a huge pet peeve of mine, just ask anyone who spent any time with me over that weekend.  Anyone who spends that kind of time, money and energy surely could spend an extra five seconds to either learn the name of the star or read it off of the program. 

That’s it folks, at least until I get my copy of the video. 

Happy Soaping! 

Tracey's SSW2000 Photo Album

Click here to go to the AMC Fan Luncheon 2000!