ZappCon, Year One

26 Oct

After spending the better part of a decade in major cities, and adventuring off to parts unknown (alright, just other parts of the U.S.), it’s tough to attend a small convention and come out happy. However, after relocating back to California’s Central Valley, NerdLush has attempted to get back into the community in the area. Which means attending the inaugural year for ZappCon.

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Not going to lie- the NerdLush crew is spoiled. Our first comment was that we are used to being exhausted after walking the floor of a convention. Once. And for this event, we were able to walk the room in an hour, and that includes stopping to look at booths, and talk to people (including the NerdLush Kidlets). So… that’s us being picky- we wanted more! However, this was the first year. It will grow. And fast.

IMG_20141019_005717One thing we loved about the booths was the amount of local artisans and geeky fun groups that were represented. There was only one true comic booth, though, and that made us sad. We know that there is really only one major comic shop in the area but there are others… and they need to get booths in the future. Some of the booths had a box or three of comics, but that doesn’t count. Also, there weren’t a lot of collectibles. A Sideshow representative and one booth with toys from the 80s… can’t fill in the collections for missing toys/collectibles with that. However, the local artists and their wares were plentiful and wonderful.

IMG_20141018_150338There was a booth for Fresno IdeaWorks, where congoers could go to learn about the organization that helps people learn to build and create as well as helping build a community. In speaking with the representative, we learned of their outreach to local student robotics clubs, as well as just to the general person. The idea being that people come into the location and either learn how to use tools, etc, in order to build or have a place to go in order to do whatever their idea is. Perhaps even sit down with someone to flesh it out. There’s talk of sewing classes coming soon, and hopefully (fingers crossed) an arena for those robotics clubs to practice before they head out to a battle.

Cosplayers were every where and quite the delightful bunch. Lovely to see so many! A lot of Doctor Who, Orphan Black, DC, anime, etc. After running into the NerdLush Kidlets, there was a discussion about the Cosplay Rules as we people watched. Most people, surprisingly, seemed to follow the rules- i.e. most shoes were good for walking (and fit the character), most costumes fit comfortably, not too many extra pieces had to be carried, etc. Though we did see a few women who needed some Dr. Scholl’s insoles based on how uncomfortable they appeared as they walked.

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Plenty of gaming was available- from an old school group video game that none of us recognized to HeroClix and Magic. Just needed to pick your poison and grab a table. I would’ve enjoyed a round of giant Jenga, but I did not see that one sadly. There were also numerous panels available. Ranging from important topics like “bullying” to how-to’s for building a costume. It would’ve been nice to have a few guest panels that were more… relevant isn’t the word, but OK. The problem there was that it appeared the biggest “guests” were cast members from Power Rangers. Do they still make that show? Not important. Next year, we hope to see a few more- perhaps larger fame- guests at the event. Yes, it’s a convention in Fresno (a city that had it’s own primetime mini-series in the 80s, but still gets namechecked in TV and films…), but back in the day major genre names came to events there. So it can happen again.

All in all, we enjoyed our time at ZappCon and look forward to next years event. We’ll give it a solid B as there’s room to improve and grow, but we definitely want it known that it was a good little convention and we look forward to watching it grow.

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One Response to “ZappCon, Year One”

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  1. ZappCon Year 2 | NerdLush - October 24, 2015

    […] past weekend we had the opportunity to attend a local conventions second year event. We were able to attend last year and so were able to see how the event had grown. ZappCon, year 2, took a solid step into growing as […]

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