Awesome Con 2021 – Review, Recap, and Write Up

August 23, 2021 By

A couple of years ago, I discussed the great diversity that I saw at Awesome Con. This year proved to be even more uplifting than that. Awesome Con certainly went all out to ensure that all areas of interest were covered and all people felt represented. With tables like BlerdCon and the Museum of LGTBQ Culture and History, there was an atmosphere of tolerance and acceptance.

Awesome Con offered a great variety of entertainment and areas of interest. While roaming the Exhibit Hall, you can find a section dedicated to Science, Books, Pride, and even a whole area for children called Awesome Con Jr. Not only did the convention score amazing panels for adults to go to, but they created panels for children too.

Panels included things like lightsaber training, how to create your own comics, creating your own superhero, and more. This was an amazing opportunity for all of the younger nerds out there to explore their talents and get pointers from famous authors like John Gallagher (Author of Max Meow). Awesome Con Jr. was set up with tables for the children to draw, create paper crafts (like a cut-out Pikachu), and a separate stage where panels were held. There were also free giveaways.

The “Backlot” section of Awesome Con dived deeper into our favorite series, like Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, and Aliens. These booths were dedicated to fan groups, like the 501st and Colonial Marines. These groups were able to showcase their love for these classics along with display different props and special effects. The Star Wars group was complete with a working R2-D2, and BB-8. There was an opportunity to take pictures with Star Wars cosplayers with a beautiful backdrop and speak with them regarding where they purchase their lightsabers and other props. When speaking with the Colonial Marines group, they were kind enough to show me and my son all of the different working equipment that they have. They had created a working hatching Face hugger egg, along with numerous heavy-duty weaponries designed after the series.

Awesome Con featured a “Destination Cosplay” section of their layout which was laden with different booths representing cosplay, backdrops and cosplay repair. Awesome Con had multiple backdrops set up for people to use for pictures. This was something that I have never seen at another convention before. While cosplay is a large part of conventions, I’ve never actually seen it represented amongst booths before. Sure, I’ve seen booths with clothing that you could use for cosplaying, but not booths dedicated to cosplaying.

“Fanthropy” was dedicated to different groups where fans could merge their fandoms with great causes. One of the booths that stood out to me was the Suicide Prevention booth. With their “Out of the Darkness” charity walks, I thought that it was a great booth to have featured at a convention. Mental Health is something that I know a lot of fellow nerds struggle with, as I do. The National Institute for Mental Health reports that suicide rates are higher in men than they are in women. Traditionally, geek culture is thought to be demographically a male dominated interest. Given the history of bullying and feeling of being outcast, this makes the prevalence of a suicide awareness group at a nerd culture event very important.

Aside from all of the different exhibits that could be explored, there were numerous vendors and artists to explore. Dragon Pets (www.mydragonpets.com) are makers of little pet dragons that wrap around your wrist. You can purchase different armor for them, along with cages that they can sleep in. Tyra Terry refers to them as “like Build-A-Bear, but with Dragons.” Some of them glow in the dark, and some are shaped like notable characters, such as the Ender Dragon from Minecraft.

To name all of the vendors would be a task and a half, so I leave you with the recommendation of making it to the next Awesome Con to check them all out. This year you could purchase ramen, play video games, purchase classic games, board games, 3D models, Steampunk clothing, plushies, Kigurumis, etc. It is phenomenal the diversity of vendors and booths. I may have seen over 4 minifigure booths, but there was only maybe 2 long-box comic booths.

Out of all the conventions that I have been to, Awesome Con’s atmosphere is definitely my favorite. The acceptance, tolerance and overall relaxed aura of the crew, special guests and visitors sets a bar for all other conventions. I appreciate the diversity in genres in nerd culture, along with the acceptance of all minority groups and age groups.