WATCH: The ultimate convention for super fans of science fiction and fantasy is coming to Victoria. Ceilidh Millar reports.
The self-proclaimed nerds of Victoria are no longer hiding in the shadows.
“I’ve always said it’s a great time to be a nerd,” said Gavin Hanke, dressed in his TK48367 custom-made Stormtrooper outfit.
The world of fandom is preparing to storm the streets of Victoria in March 2018.
“We’re bringing to Victoria the largest Comic Con that we can make,” said Capital City Comic Con organizer B. Woodward.
Victoria is joining the list of other cities to host a Comic Con event.
The widely popular multi-day conferences draw thousands of super fans from around the world to mingle, attend panels, nab autographs and cosplay.
“You build your own costume,” explained Hanke as he described his costume.
“You can custom fit it to your body. Inside the helmet, there are some projector fans and a battery pack so you don’t get too hot.”
Victoria has hosted other fandom festivals in the past, but organizers say the three-day event will provide the ultimate platform to “geek-out.’
“We have collectors coming from all around,” said Woodward, who also owns Victoria’s Cherry Bomb Toy Store. “Now they’re realizing there is another reason to come to Victoria.”
Over the past decade, Comic Con events have grown in popularity.
In 2003, the Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle drew less than 3,000 people to its debut convention.
Now, the annual affair attracts nearly 100,000.
In 2015, the San Diego Comic Con generated $17-million in revenue.
“The influx of people coming in and the money that they are spending in the city is really a direct economic benefit to everyone” explained Miranda Ji of Tourism Victoria.
“Everyone is dressed up and it’s a really fun vibe,” said Kerri Milton of the Downtown Victoria Business Association. “That’s the kind of thing we’re looking for downtown Victoria.”
Organizers hope to attract at least 20,000 people from across North American to the event which will take place at the Victoria Conference Centre next year.