Surviving a Minneapolis Comic Con
To an outsider, Comic-Con is an intimidating beast. Throughout the year, videos show up on YouTube of guest panels. The Minneapolis Comic-Con has evolved from something for Trekkies for a place for everyone to celebrate their love of their favorite pop culture show. It was not until last year, that I found that these events were not held exclusively in California, but all over the US. In May of this year, it will be heading back to Minneapolis! The question is what is a Minneapolis Comic-Con like?
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A Minneapolis Comic-Con
Think of it as a costume party where you dress up as your favorite fictional character, known as Cosplay. Some people go to great lengths to get the perfect costume. The authenticity is amazing. You will see people dressed from the current dramas, but the best has to be when your favorite 90s TV show pop’s up. Just because someone is dressed up, it doesn’t give you permission to take their photo. Use common courtesy and ask first. You would be amazed at how much people do that.
The most publicized events are the Meet and Greets, photo opportunities, and discussion panels. This year’s guests include Lou Ferrigno and Peter Tork. More are being added too. This is also where you will spend the most money. Depending on the star power, photo opportunities and pictures start as low as $55 and go up from there. My recommendation to save a little money is to purchase the VIP package of the celebrity you wish to see. Depending on the celebrity, it includes show admission, photo, and meets and greet with an autograph. They also provide some of their swag and sometimes even reserve seating to their panels. Every package is different, so check out the details.
Besides celebrities, they also have a lot of vendors selling comics and artwork. You will also find other swag there. If you were planning on getting an autograph but didn’t’ have anything for the celebrity to sign, they usually will have their own headshots to give away. If you want something a little more special, you can pick up movie posters and other artwork for the guests in attendance at one of the vendors.
Shopping and Experiences
In the vendor section, you will also see different cartoonists and illustrators with their own booths. In addition to selling artwork and signing autographs, some may create custom works just for you. Last year, I saw one artist incorporate the guest into the comic they were creating for him.
They also feature a lot of custom cars and provide photo ops right there. This includes sitting in the DeLorean from Back to the Future and getting to ride a hoverboard. These photo ops come with a cost. The nice thing is they will print off a copy of the picture for you while you are there.
When to Buy Tickets
Buying tickets is the trickiest part. You can get a 3-day pass or purchase single-day admission. If you plan on spending a lot of time in lines to get autographs and attend the panels, the three-day option is the best. But if you only want to get a taste, 1 day is probably enough. The trick is picking the day. Friday is the cheapest admission and you will get the best comics. It is also the least busy. They also have the least number of celebrity guests.
I went on a Friday last year. I had been monitoring who the guests were and I wasn’t that interested. After purchasing tickets, I found out my favorite celebrity Jewel Staite would be there on Saturday and Sunday. It totally bummed me out. I recommend that you wait a little before purchasing tickets to see who will be in attendance. Two months out, they only announced a handful of participants. More will be coming. Trust me. VIP experiences will sell out too, so don’t wait until show day.
I’m gearing up again this year for another Minneapolis Comic-Con. I hope that some of you will get over the fear of the Comic world and celebrate the nerd in you. Even if you spend no more money than the cost of admission, I promise you will have fun. And you never know what celebrity you might find roaming the halls.