Fandom Con 2016 is the Emerald Coast’s largest celebration of anime, comic books, and all things sci-fi! This annual event highlights the key facets of “fandom” through celebrity meet and greets, concerts, expert panels and more. Unlike most sci-fi conventions, Fandom Con organizers not only encourage audience participation, but require it! Costume contests and era-spanning video game rooms are among the incredible activities set up for ticket holders. With the help of John Ricks, head of PR, I was able to get an inside scoop on the top events, guests, and what makes Fandom Con 2016 the convention of the year!
Fandom Con 2016 Events
With a wide variety of all-ages things to do, Fandom Con bills itself as both a “conventional” and “unconventional” convention. The buck doesn’t stop with panels and cosplay, Fandom Con strives to make the convention all-inclusive by offering comedy shows, trivia contests, vintage video games and more!
Costume/Cosplay Contest & Catwalk
In the past six years, the Fandom Con Cosplay Contest has grown into a top-tier competition. The most talented cosplayers in the Southeast face off for numerous accolades including Best in Show, Best Character Likeness, and The Thingy-Majigy Award (yes, according to the official website that is a real award).
Also taking place for the first time this year is the Fandom Con Cosplay Catwalk Contest! This brand new event allows participants to strut their stuff in a more traditional costume contest setting. The catwalk contest is based on character likeness and charisma, so contestants should be ready to entertain! For more info on these events visit Fandom Con Cosplay Contest and Fandom Con Cosplay Catwalk Contest online.
Most people wouldn’t think of it, but live music and sci-fi go together like Klingons and blood wine (it’s a star trek thang)! All forms of talent are featured and appreciated at Fandom Con, and with special performers gracing the stage, ticket holders are in for a treat! The accomplished Eric Stuart will perform a set of music for the Fandom Con crowd. Having famously toured with Ringo Starr, Peter Frampton, and Buddy Holly, Stuart is not only an amazing artist, but a legendary voice actor. With credits including Brock and James in the original Pokemon series, and Seto Kaiba from Yu-Gi-Oh, Stuart’s voice has brought joy to millions across the globe.
Stop by the Fandom Con 2016 Rave for an all-ages dance party! DJ Ryudo will be rockin the house along with special guest DJ’s that will get the room moving! This rave isn’t like your typical underground dance party, the Fandom Con Rave is a family-friendly affair where everyone can join the fun.
Cherished vendors at Fandom Con 2016 bring anime and sci-fi culture directly to the people! 10,000 sq feet of vendor space will hold 30 artists and over 35 vendors! Authentic Japanese products and unique hand-made goods barely scratch the surface of vendor offerings.
Perhaps one of the most intriguing aspects of the vendors room will be artist commissions. Professional animators will create an original piece of artwork by customer request! Artists from all different backgrounds will offer their services including Philo Barnhart, a special guest animator from Disney studios, who worked on such films as The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast!
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Fandom Con 2016 Special Guests
A convention isn’t complete without a few celebrity guests. Fandom Con handpicked some of the industry’s top celebs to meet, greet, and entertain convention goers. Actors, artists, cosplayers and more famous folks will be on-hand to sign autographs, take pictures, and share stories of their craft. The following are a few fan favorite Fandom Con 2016 guests!
*Visit Fandom Con online for a full list of Fandom Con 2016 Special Guests
Kyle Hebert (Voice Actor) – This veteran of the voice acting community has an extensive resume in anime and video games. Perhaps Hebert’s most prolific role has been the voice of the narrator from Dragon Ball Z, but his distinctive voice can be recognized in several popular series like Naruto, Bleach, and Fullmetal Alchemist. Adding to his expansive resume, Hebert has also lent his gold-plated pipes to such video game franchises as Street Fighter, Warcraft, and Resident Evil.
Steve Geiger (Illustrator) – Steve’s vast history of comic book artistry make his appearance at Fandom Con 2016 a very special treat for fans of the trade. Starting as an apprentice to the legendary John Romita Sr., Geiger has illustrated titles including The Incredible Hulk, X-Men, and The Fantastic Four. Using his various artistic talents, Steve Geirger is now launching his own enterprise, The Evilgeiger Empire. The Evilgeiger Empire is an entertainment development company devoted to the creation, implementation, and production of original content and creator-owned concepts and characters.
Geiger’s current projects include The Henchman with Devil Hylton and Gabriel Damascus; Cutter!
Bill Blair (Actor) – A versatile character actor, Bill Blair holds the Guinness World record for ‘most special effect make-up characters portrayed by one person’! With a late start in the entertainment business, Blair has been able to achieve more success than most life-long actors. Starting with small roles across the southwest, Bill finally landed a role in the Sylvester Stallone film “Demolition Man”, which snowballed into parts spanning genres and generations. Bill worked on all five seasons of Babylon 5, several reincarnations of Stark Trek including the the 2013 film Star Trek: Into The Darkness, and such popular TV series as Friends, How I Met Your Mother, and Mad Men.
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What’s New To Fandom Con 2016
Traditionally Fandom Con has catered to fans of anime, but Fandom Con 2016 has expanded to bring all sci-fi and entertainment fans into the fold! The cosplay costume contest, traditionally dominated by professionals, now includes a Catwalk Contest. The Catwalk competition widens the playing field to encompass all cosplay skill levels! Comic book animators, actors, musicians and more are sure to provide a fresh face to this beloved event.
Worried about the change? Ricks is confident past fans of the 3 day celebration will not be disappointed. Major anime voice actors from Dragon Ball Z, Pokemon, Fullmetal Alchemist and more legendary series will meet, greet, and entertain guests. Throw in artists and cosplayers specializing in anime, and repeat convention-goers will realize Fandom Con’s commitment to its core fans.
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Fandom Con 2016 Additional Info
This year’s Fandom Con is sure to be an exceptional experience for the whole family. All ages will find enjoyment in the convention’s various attractions, activities, and events! Some of the event highlights include…
- Over 30 special guests including Bill Blair, Kristen Hughey, and Eric Stuart.
- Comedy shows catering to both children and adults.
- Autographs and photo ops with special guests (addt’l charges may apply).
- 36 hours total in entertainment.
- FREE ADMISSION for children 5 and under.
- The only event of its kind in the region.
Fandom Con 2016 Admission Info
When: November 11-13, 2016 | Friday: 11:00am – 11:00pm, Saturday: 9:00am – 12:00am, Sunday: 9:00am – 7:00pm
Where: Emerald Coast Convention Center @ 1250 Miracle Strip Pkwy SE, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548
Rates: Children 5 & Under: FREE, Friday: $15.00, Saturday: $25.00, Sunday: $15.00, 3-Day Pass: $40.00 | Pre-register online @ Fandom Con 2016 Tickets for discounted tickets.