Lexington Comic Con: Saturday

Lexington Comic Con is an up and coming convention that has been growing yearly for the last few years. It originally started out as an idea as a Power Rangers convention for the creator’s son, though it developed into something more. While it brings in a lot of Power Ranger guests, including those from the original Japanese version, Lexington Comic Con also brings in a multitude of other talent from movie stars to voice actors to comic artists. Lexington Comic Con works to entice the crowd in every way possible.

I attended this event last year for my first time. It’s in the same convention area as one of my favorite local conventions, ScareFest. While last year, Lexington Comic Con brought in amazing guests such as George Takei and Curtis Armstrong, it didn’t seem very organized. This year, the guests I was thoroughly excited for had to cancel, though the organization was done great. They certainly improved by bringing the registration area outside of the food court and main entrance area up to a much more open area where they could set up more than three lines and have it organized based on type of registration. This made moving people through registration and easier process.The staff also seemed more knowledgeable and helpful than the previous year with addressing where people needed to go to get what they needed.

Sadly, I didn’t get to enjoy any panels. I didn’t make it in time to go to the only one that had me interested. A lot of the panels were Q&As with the guests. The panels were not hosted in the same area as the main floor, which is good and helps prevent the flood of people going in and out of the rooms into the hallways. Trust me when I say, it gets very intense moving in that hallway when people are trying to get into a panel room there. By moving the panel rooms to a completely different floor, it has greatly eased up on the chaos.This move is a change in the best way possible for this convention.

The vendor area is a bit strange, in my opinion. First of all, it’s split in two. There were a lot of vendors in the main hall. Then they had a handful of other vendors on a completely different floor, off the side of the registration area. This wasn’t just a place for vendors, but there were also guests there, including Ernie Reyes Jr (Keno from TMNT2, for you TMNT fans). If you didn’t know to look in this location, you might have missed them entirely!

The amount of vendors were amazing and the variety was even better. You were not getting a repeat of just comics and toys, but you were getting a lot of vintage items, crafts, t-shirts, arts, books, and more. The artists alley area is just mixed in with the vendors for the most part, though they have a lot of very talented artists in this mix willing to sell what they have there as well as do personal sketches on site.

My problem with the vendor area is that it is the gateway to the guest area, meaning you have to cross through the vendor area to get to the guests.  This is a shuffling of feet area as you have people wanting to view what the vendors and artists have brought, but you also have people wanting to get to the guest area in the main back and sides. This is a common practice for a lot of the small to mid-sized conventions. Given the space they have, it could possibly be the only way to have everything a convention needs. The way they work the guest lines once you get there, works very well, even routing some fans into the back passages to help clear up space. The lines are also clearly marked with tape and even metal railing. This really helped once you got into the guest area.

The nice thing about this convention, they provide areas where people can step off to the side for photos. The convention staff try not to allow photos in areas where it blocks traffic flow. There’s even a nice big area with a Lexington Comic Con backdrop so you can take pictures of cosplayers and yourselves without having people walk in front of your cameras. I also like how they took out the vehicles from the main floor, and placed them out in the sitting area with the bands. It certainly helped open up the main area for more stuff.

My biggest problem with the convention is the timing. Lexington Comic Con is the same weekend as the St Patty’s Day Parade and Festival, which is just a block from the civic center, and also included a 3K run event. On top of that, the civic center has an arena attached to it. Rupp Arena hosts a lot of events and this weekend was Disney on Ice. There were two showings during convention hours on Saturday. So, parking became an issue and was costly. Also, if you’re not a local, you might not know the back routes to take to avoid the parade and festival.  Guess I should be thankful that there wasn’t a University of Kentucky basketball game going on instead of Disney on Ice. There would have been true chaos then.

Overall, I found the convention mostly enjoyable this year, just really crowded (great for the convention!). I’m hoping that maybe they can expand the area again inside the civic center to help with the increase in attendees. They do an amazing job for a little con with bringing in guests, especially last minute guests after they had some cancellations. I can see this con growing each year, though I’m just not sure where they can grow into and stay in Lexington.

Definitely check out their website, http://www.lexingtoncomiccon.com, to see what is coming up next year. Their website is a very informative site and they keep it well up to date and they do even more updates on their Facebook page.

If you’re near the area and want to check out Lexington Comic Con next year, do it, especially if you’re a Power Rangers fan. It’s a lot of fun overall, and Lexington is a growing little city that has a lot of neat stuff to do. Will I be there again next year? Quite possibly.

Michele should be providing a write up for day two of the convention soon. She should also have a lot more pictures thanks to Miki and her awesome photography skills.

Entertainment Earth