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Lake Effect Comic Con 2017

ConmanI dashed forward , camera at the ready when I saw the 17554224_1075542492576460_7746665918391120333_nshaggy red “yep, yep” Muppet walking down the aisle. My Doc Ock suit hindered me a bit, but I met him just as we arrived at the corner of the room.
“I’d love to get a photo with you,” I exclaimed.
Through the black mesh of the mouth I saw him smile.
“You did. Remember back a few years ago? I was Doctor Hugo Strange!”
I think I may have just come full circle.

While I’ve been dressing up since long before I ever heard the word “cosplay” (I was an actual clown before I hit Jr. High. Star Trek conventions at 12. Haunted houses in high school. Theater through it all), you could probably trace the 100_1448beginnings of my modern cosplay career to Lake Effect Comic Con around 2012. It was the first time I ever pulled out my Doc Ock costume (one of the first of my more complicated suits) – very different at the time too! It was the first time I entered a costume contest. It was very much my entry into the scene. It was cool to return to the show where it all started (albeit in a different location) and discover that the suit was still memorable, and to show how much it has grown.

It’s grown so much that I now require a handler to help me with doors and carrying things and stuff! I picked up my friend Rhonda, who agreed to be my hands for the day. She appeared dressed as Lydia from Beetlejuice (Because if I can’t bring my little Lydia, I 18839016_1075542529243123_1290475328772481046_nmight as well take a full grown one with me!) and we headed off to Mentor.

I was running late so I missed the cosplay panel I wanted to hit, but we still managed to get in before one. There was some concern about me making it through the dealers room, but we needn’t have worried. The aisles were more than big enough for me and the place wasn’t crowded. I’m curious if the show grew from last year. We arrived about halfway through so that may have accounted for the lighter attendance.

I have to admit, now in the second year at the hotel, the layout has really grown on me. It feels like Russian nesting dolls, with one dealers room leading to another, adding to that 18892929_887338388072245_1893944626838673547_ndelightful feeling of exploration that I love at some of the more obscure bazaars in Cleveland. Lake effect is an excellent representation of the dealers and shops around the Cleveland area with every comic and toy imaginable littering the rows and corners.  Around a corner I found more tables set up in a narrow hallway. I don’t know if this corner was set up last year or not…the theater Lake Effect used to set up at was selling movie posters next to a table set up for the R2 builders and Heroes United, both welcome additions to the show. The deals are still waning, but I was pleased to spot a single fifty cent bin to plunder, and managed to walk away with a stack of Civil War era Spidey as well as a nice chunk of Groot and Rocket Racoon  solo series, but the real find of the day was Marvel’s Zombie Christmas Carol in the $5.00 Hardcover bin. I’ve never seen this before, but I couldn’t leave without it – especially at that price.

I saw Lake Effect dipping it’s toe into the celeb waters, bring in a18835541_1561355777242173_7918076935831398497_n zombie from the Walking Dead (I don’t know if I forgot, or just didn’t know- either way, I didn’t have my poster) as well as a starlet who had done a couple movies and been a playmate. It’s a direction I hope they veer away from. It didn’t really add much to the show other than the novelty of a few unfamiliar faces…and I get it. After eight years, you have to try and shake things up a bit.

The costume contest seemed a little smaller this year as well, but those that did arrive were still excellent. I was enchanted by the Terminator girl (all the robot parts, painted on – she looked like she stepped right off an 80’s VHS cover) and the little Starlord. More and more I see video game characters, and I feel so bad that I don’t recognize them! But there’s another trend I see popping up – it’s an interesting 2-d style, where your costume and features appear sketched in. It’s a really cool look and the more I see it, the more I’m enchanted by it. I dig the open area in the lobby where they hold this contest – it 18839216_1561356817242069_8450739580311332965_nfeels more intimate, more personal than the theater always did. I feel like I can better hobnob and chat with the other contestants…and that’s really the point of it all for me. I had to move around a bit to be able to see all of the people parading by and nothing made me happier than when the Yep Yep Muppet received a special prize.

I still really like Lake Effect. My only hope is that it doesn’t stagnate in this location – it grew every year at the theater untill the seams of the walls were bursting trying to contain the throngs of people. That seems to have leveled off since the move and that worries me. I dig this con and really hope it’ll be around for years to come.

 

 


Lake Effect Comicon 2015

Conman

Another weekend has gone by, and another convention in the can.

Lake effect is a long drive, but usually worth it. We enjoy it because It’s a great place for deals and I love the screenings. Panels have really expanded, though it’s actually very much cut into the movie screenings and I kind of miss that. Still, starting the day off with Scott Pilgrim is absolutely a good thing.

11148686_977704705607286_4468493182877343847_nWe jumped headfirst into the costume contest. Maddie was always planning on wearing her new Supergirl outfit and Lydia was planning on breaking out her Mermaid costume from the monster walk a month or so ago, but at the last moment (less than a week before the event) Lydia changed her mind and asked if I could create her a H.E.R.B.I.E. costume. Herbie is a little robot that was in the Fantastic Four cartoons and has since been integrated into the comic canon, frequently appearing in more lighthearted fare. I whipped up a quickie costume out of foam and spray paint, with a few finishing touches – button made out of pill boxes and eyes made out of soda bottles.

I asked the girls what I should wear. It was a choice between Mr. Freeze, Voltron…or Spider-Ham. I was kind of shying away from Freeze – I was expecting to see on of my friends show up in that costume and didn’t want to compete with them. I also would king of like more mobility…then again , Voltron is pretty constraing to. It didn’t matter. Both girls voted Spider-Ham. I haven’t had the costume out in a while and that’s who they wanted to see.

10731153_977703508940739_2873571587990379236_nGood choices on the girls part it turns out. Lydia won the kids costume contest with her Herbie! and to my even greater surprise, Spider-Ham won the Adult contest!

prizesBest in show went to a giant Frankenberry, which really was heads above all the other costumes, but I had fun playing around with him, Spider-Ham looking terrified of him and fighting him off.

11014622_977695198941570_4342743147989018041_n

11021118_977694738941616_6238077123028522947_nDeals. Seriously, I keep saying this, and I mean it. Quarter bins, 3 for a dollar, fifty cent bins. You’ll always find cheap reading comics here. But it’s other stuff too. maddie found a Wonder Woman/Star Sapphire heroclix from the Blackest Night set and that just about blew her mind. She immediately dropped a bunch of her con allowance on it. Across the room, we found a vintage Frosta from the She-Ra line for $3! Sure it’s been well played with, but that’s exactly what my girls are going to do with it too. They were already playing with it before we got to the car!

11136712_977749112269512_684202137267703766_nFinally, becasue it’s in a movie theatre, there’s also an arcade. The girls love thier games, and we all got into the act a bit. It’s another one of those fun things that make this con uniquely fun.

11393012_977689718942118_2179833819736376022_n 11392879_977693752275048_2990481855816919585_n 11391216_977690188942071_2974991160330020535_n 11377335_977691435608613_360286259047508812_n 11377274_977691672275256_5637366017232569163_n 11350651_977689508942139_680431105860827100_n 11329965_977692072275216_6796947725636602931_n 11209636_977688828942207_5858581405153749043_n 11148364_977690318942058_5563038690360536796_n 11011943_977690798942010_4298069393651857555_n 10494640_977692745608482_8611708721596296455_n 1794631_977689982275425_204723197403112119_n 551505_977692475608509_9201295844940141660_n

Just a great day. It’s the small shows we really love and this is one of the best out there. We’ll be back next year!

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Lake Effect comicon this weekend!

lke effect

I love this con! movie screenings, creators, heroclix tournaments, and admission is free! you’ll find the best deals here and really, it’s always a great time! I’ll have the girls with me (They both got new costumes and I have to recycle my old Spider-Ham outfit. Somehow I don’t think that’s fair) so if you see us, tap me on the shoulder and say hi!

Lake Effect Schedule of Events

  • 7:00 – Dealer Setup Begins
  • 10:00 – Show opens for general admission
  • 10:30 – Scott Pilgrim movie begins
  • 11:00 – Door Prize
  • 12:00 – Door Prize
  • 12:30 – Panel One begins – Small Press discussion
  • 1:00 – Door Prize
  • 1:15 – Panel Two begins – Original Comic Art discussion
  • 2:00 – Door Prize
  • 2:15 – Costume Contest
  • 2:30 – Panel Three begins – Cosplay discussion
  • 3:00 – Door Prize
  • 3:15 – Sherlock Holmes Smarter Brother movie begins
  • 4:00 – Door Prize
  • 5:00 – Show closes

Lake Effect 2015