What is Con of the North?
Con of the North is a volunteer run non-profit organization designed solely for the purpose of fostering a sense of community among gamers, promoting the hobby of gaming, and providing the gaming community with the best possible environment to present their games.
What is a Games Convention?
A games convention is a gathering of people (usually annual) where everyone gets together to have a good time. This is accomplished in general by playing games and participating in other activities.
The games played at a convention are very wide ranging. Role playing games (such as AD&D or Call of Cthulhu), collectable card games (Magic), war games (World in Flames), board games (Settlers of Catan), miniatures games (Warhammer 40K), computer games (Starcraft), and many more.
In order to participate in the games you just register for the convention and then sign up for games, either in advance (by pre-registering), or at the convention.
New or inexperienced players are usually welcome to play or watch as they prefer.
Other activities at a games convention include costume events, auctions, volunteering, hanging out and talking, going without enough sleep and other good times.
More good info. here: http://www.conofthenorth.org/about.php