Over this past weekend I got to attend my first Great Lakes Comic Con in Warren, Michigan. My fellow Barzinga host Rich Henn has spoken extremely highly of this show, and as I came to find out for good reason! Mike Desantis started the con 7 years ago and has watched the con expand to the point where they take up the entire basketball court of Macomb Community College as well as one room for panels, and two green rooms. This year they had roughly 5,000 attendees, and I predict this con will likely outgrow it's current location within 4-5 years. The only downside to that is there really is no large expo hall in the area.
The con prides itself on being a family friendly event, and it really is. Mike and his family help run the show, and he even has some of his own student's there as volunteers too! From my own table at the con I got to watch a number of kids and young teenagers enjoy themselves and the con while in cosplay. Parent's were bringing smaller children as well, many of whom came dressed up as their favorite princess or super hero! I was honored to help judge the children's costume contest along side Lydia Graber and a member from the 501st. Every single child was charming and adorable, and I couldn't be prouder of our winners!
The theme of this years show was Spider-Man thanks to guests such as Nicholas Hammond, Jim Shooter, Alex Saviuk, and Paul Soles. There were a number of other artists there as well, making this a perfect con for anyone trying to collect autographs or get sketches. Henn and I were there as CGC reps for the weekend, and we were constantly busy! CGC may want to consider a bigger presence at future shows, as the demand is there.
I appreciated how this con had a little of everything. There was a small arcade set up with pinball machines, a tabletop gaming section, and the panels were good. Sadly I didn't get to see any, as I heard the Tom Cook and Jake The Snake Roberts panels were a lot of fun! Currently the show is only Friday evening and Saturday, but I sincerely hope it expands to a three day show soon. If you haven't been to this show before, I urge you to visit next year. This is a con to keep your eye on!