Welcome back to our weekly news feature where we boil down the week’s news from the convention circuit plus share our calendar of the weekend’s upcoming conventions.
This week: WonderCon Anaheim badges and hotels are (finally) on sale! At $55 for a 3-day weekend pass, WCA is still a much more affordable option than its behemoth sister show, San Diego Comic-Con – not to mention it’s much more easily accessible. WonderCon did sell out last year, but not until much closer to the show – we’d recommend buying tickets as soon as you’re certain of your travel plans, but don’t panic if you need to wait for your next paycheck.
- It’s that time again: the speculation spins on regarding San Diego Comic-Con’s venue plans beyond 2016. The LA Times reports that it’s the usual suspects bidding for the convention, with Anaheim and Los Angeles making their offers to lure the con away from the Gaslamp. A move would mean more exhibit space, but hotels are another problem: downtown LA certainly can’t house the influx of temporary residents, and while Anaheim technically offers (slightly) more hotel space, con attendees would be in competition with peak Disney summer crowds. Plus, neither location offers the concentration of restaurants and nightlife that is found in the Gaslamp Quarter, directly across the street from the San Diego Convention Center. Could SDCC drop the SD? Anything’s possible, but don’t hold your breath.
- SDCC has been busy this week, also sending out a wave of exhibitor approvals for Artists Alley and Small Press. Among those attending this year: Steven E. Gordon, Karen Hallion, Madeleine Holly-Rosing, Patrick Ballesteros, Ryan Claytor, and Kim Penders.
- The actual comic fans who attend San Diego may wish to nominate their LCS for the Will Eisner Spirit of Comics Retailer Award, since the nomination period is now open. Nominations close March 27, 2015.
- Registration for returning San Diego Comic-Con volunteers opened on January 15 and went smoothly, by all accounts. No word yet on registration for new volunteers from the interest list, but any space for new volunteers would be extremely limited.
- And if there wasn’t enough 2015 SDCC news for you this week, here’s a little info on Comic-Con 2016: San Diego is officially hosting the MLB All-Star Game in July 2016, which limits the possible weekends for Comic-Con to… July 21-24, 2016, with Preview Night on July 20.
- New York Comic-Con spinoff Special Edition: NYC is back for a second year, though it’s downsizing its venue to Pier 94 (the former home of Wizard World’s incarnation of the Big Apple show, as The Beat reminds us). The comics-only show returns June 6 and 7, 2015.
- A little something for everyone who spends some of their annual convention time in a Marriott hotel: they have officially lifted their ban on personal wifi networks. All it took was a $600,000 fine from the FCC!
- Adam Baldwin has been added as a guest at two of Supanova’s events (Sydney and Perth, on back-to-back weekends in June) and after his involvement in the GamerGate controversy, plenty of people are not happy about his invitation. Supanova has yet to make a final decision, saying they’re “deal[ing] with the developments.”
- It’s the inaugural PAX South this weekend in San Antonio, and they’re getting set-up for an almost sold out show. Meanwhile, proving that even big corporations can have trouble launching a new show, Mike Mahoney claims he was asked to speak at PAX South… a week before the convention.
— cosplay in america (@cosplayamerica) January 22, 2015
- AwesomeCon is now ready for your volunteer applications!
Volunteers Wanted! The Brute Squad is looking for awesome people to join our awesome team of volunteers! http://t.co/1Mi3dSvxs3
— Awesome Con (@AwesomeCon) January 16, 2015
- Speaking of volunteers: interested in volunteering at Anime Expo this summer? Los Angeles locals can swing by the Operations Recruitment Day in Chino Hills on Saturday. Bonus: it’s also a potluck!
- The logistical consolidation of conventions continues this week as Wizard World buys Pittsburgh Comicon. If you’re wondering how the show will change, Pittsburgh Comicon’s former director Renee George says, “The Pittsburgh fans have been asking for bigger and better media guests and Wizard World will be able to provide that for them.” Good luck with that, Pittsburgh.
- Wizard World returns to Portland, Oregon this weekend, where they’ll also be launching CONtv. If that’s not enough to get you out, they’re sharing the convention center with a chocolate fest.
- The delightful Anne Kirn of House of Darkly’s plushy goodness will be exhibiting this spring at both WonderCon Anaheim and C2E2.
Okay I can announce now I think: I will be back exhibiting at Wondercon and C2E2 this April
— Anne Kirn (@house_of_darkly) January 20, 2015
- The distant cousin of pop culture conventions, PaleyFest, has announced its 2015 panel schedule – including fan favorites like Arrow and Glee plus newbies like Jane the Virgin. TV fans, grab your tickets for the LA-based festival beginning Tuesday, January 27.
- Some incredible artists have offered up their work to be auctioned for the benefit of longtime SDCC Artists Alley coordinator Clydene Nee; Adam Hughes’ promotional poster for the never-produced Joss Whedon Wonder Woman film was the big item this week, but there are plenty more great pieces still for sale.
- Teeny-tiny library-sponsored LumaCon popped up in Petaluma last weekend, and cartoonist Brian Fies is a big fan – check out his recap. They had a bake sale, you guys!
- GeekChic, purveyors of custom designed board gaming tables, have announced their planned convention schedule for the year.
- Heading to Long Beach Comic Expo next month? Enter to win a lifetime pass! Stan Sakai has been added as a guest, and sign ups for the Expo’s costume contest are now open as well.
- Star Wars Celebration is now set to host a screening of the Navajo translation of A New Hope (the what translation?), speed dating, a tattoo parlor, and a tattoo competition.
- Comics publisher Milestone Media lives again, and they’re bringing new stuff to San Diego Comic-Con.
- The countdown to Gallifrey One is on, and we’ve now got a preliminary schedule, gaming room details, t-shirt pre-orders, and masquerade rules. A few tickets to the Alex Kingston evening reception are still available. Get your song requests in for the return of the Saturday night dance with DJ Paul Condon. Bonus: the first read-through of the Inspector Spacetime movie will be at Gally One, too!
- Southeast Asia has a new show to look forward to: Asia Pop Comic Con, popping up in Manila later this year.
- It’s almost time for Salt Lake Comic Con’s FanX event, which means they’re unveiling their new app and this year’s t-shirt designs.
- Good Magazine has a wonderful look at the blossoming fandom scene in East Africa, with a focus on their first convention, Naiccon. This is worth the read; nerd culture knows no boundaries.
Did we miss something? Tip us!
What’s Happening This Week (Wednesday, January 21 – Tuesday, January 27)
- PAX South; Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, San Antonio, TX; Friday through Sunday. Sunday tickets still available.
- Creation Entertainment’s Salute to Supernatural; Hilton Houston North Hotel, Houston, TX; Friday through Sunday. Tickets still available.
- Wizard World Portland Comic Con; Oregon Convention Center, Portland, OR; Friday through Sunday. Tickets still available.
- South Texas Collector’s Expo’s Comic Con; TAMIU Student Center, Laredo, TX; Saturday through Sunday. Tickets still available.
- G-Anime; Palais des congrès de Gatineau, Gatineau, QC; Friday through Sunday. Tickets still available.
- Atlanta Game Fest; Holiday Inn Atlanta Perimeter, Atlanta, GA; Thursday through Saturday. Tickets still available at the door.
- Setsucon; The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel, State College, PA; Saturday through Sunday. Tickets still available at the door.
- Las Cruces Animal Days/El Paso Anime Con: Chibi Edition; Corbett Center Student Union Auditorium at New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, NM; Saturday only. Free and open to the public.
- MAGFest Music and Gaming Festival; Gaylord National Hotel & Convention Center, National Harbor, MD; Friday through Sunday. Tickets still available.
- Phat Con 2015; Dave & Buster’s at The Outlets at Orange, Orange, CA; Saturday only. Free and open to the public.
Organizers: hosting a con soon? Fans: want to help get the word out about your favorite event? Contact us to have it added to the calendar.