Denver Comic Con: Who’s Joining Me?

Image credit:
Image credit:

Well, it’s been a while for my family, but we’re looking forward to getting a chance to attend another con in a couple weeks! This time, it’s Denver Comic Con!

During my interview with Erin Gray at Dragon*Con in 2012, it came up that I was at Dragon*Con with younger children. She told me that of all the cons she’s attended (and that would be many), among her favorites was Denver’s, expressly because it is so kid-friendly.

My family is very excited to be able to join me while I cover DCC for GeekMom. The con is May 22-25 at the Denver Convention Center and (unlike the bigger, more commercialized events), there are still tickets available!! There are only day-passes remaining, but that sure beats getting shut out of the event altogether. That’s awesome, isn’t it? While the venue is just as big as some of the larger events such as NYCC, the organizers work pretty hard to keep it down-to-earth. With an all-star lineup of film, comic, and gaming celebrities, it doesn’t appear to be too overwhelming.

Here are some of the things my family is particularly looking forward to at Denver Comic Con:

A Truly Family-Friendly Con

How do I know? Well, two things jumped out at me. First of all, the cost for children to attend can’t be beat! At $5 for one day or $10 for the entire event, you can attend this Comic Con for less than the cost of a movie or even a trip to our local zoo! DCC clearly wants children to be there.

The second thing that indicates how family-friendly this event is can be seen in the cosplay rules. “Denver Comic Con is kid-friendly. Keep it PG.” The website requests that all “bits” be covered and that all costumes have proper undergarments.

We have several friends in our neighborhood with young children who make a family weekend out of DCC, and we look forward to collaborating with them on costumes and what panels they’ll be attending.

The Animaniacs Celebration

Okay, okay, okay… this one has our entire family excited! DCC announced in March that they’ve confirmed the four voice actors from Warner Brothers’ hit animated series, Animaniacs! Wakko, Yakko, Dot, Pinky, and the Brain will all be featured in an “unplugged” style music event. This is at the top of our family’s “to do” list while at DCC.

While my husband and I enjoyed the original series run in the mid-1990s while we were in college, we were pleased to share the show with our sons when it aired in syndication on Hub Network between 2012 and 2014.

Weird Science Cast Reunion? Yes, Please!

While most people will think of The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, and St. Elmo’s Fire for 1980s pop-culture films, sometimes Weird Science falls in between the cracks. It’s a classic as well, topping off Anthony Michael Hall’s string of mid-1980s roles as the awkward geek archetype.

To celebrate Weird Science’s 30th anniversary, DCC announced a cast reunion panel on May 23, featuring Hall, who played Gary, Ilan Mitchell-Smith as Wyatt, and Kelly LeBrock as the stunning Lisa.

My husband and I are interested in this reunion panel, and we’re curious if they can get Bill Paxton—Chet—to make an appearance.

Image credit: Breckenridge Brewery
Image credit: Breckenridge Brewery

DCC’s Official Microbrew, “Hulk’s Mash”

I can’t speak for other cons, since we haven’t been to many others, but no event in Colorado is complete without a microbrew! Breckenridge Brewery designates an official DCC beer every year with fun comic-inspired names (such as “Brews Wayne” and “The Fantastic Pour”). This year’s “Hulk’s Mash” was the winning name from over 700 entries, featuring a 6.0-percent ABV pale ale. While in years past the label has been designed by comic book artists, this year they looked to a local Breckenridge, Colorado, art student for the design.

The beer will be for sale at venues throughout the Denver Convention Center area, and my husband and I are looking forward to giving it a try. We had Breckenridge Brewery’s Christmas Ale at our family’s Christmas party last year and it was very popular.

DCC’s Local Scene

One of the things I’ve grown to love since moving to Colorado in summer 2013 is this state’s pride. DCC is very proud of the local talent in literature, music, and comics. I’m looking forward to hearing some of the geeky bands that have been announced so far, such as The Stubby Shillelaghs and Hello McFly, which is a consolidation of numerous Northern Colorado bands to play Back to the Future-inspired tunes at the DCC May 24 Cosplay Shindig event. The Stubby Shillelaghs particularly caught my attention because they bring together two things near and dear to my heart: Celtic music and geeky goodness!

Getting Back into Cosplay

My family hasn’t done much cosplay since we moved here—unless you count my younger son’s Adventure Time birthday party from 2014.

Since we immensely enjoyed the last time our family cosplayed altogether, we decided to give it another go this year. It turns out my oldest son bears a not-so-bad resemblance to Hiro Hamada, so you can guess what direction we’re taking. We are now working on the loose ends for the Big Hero 6 theme (I’ll keep my husband’s and my costumes a surprise); here’s a sneak peek of what we’ve finished so far. Now…where can I find a toy Megabot??

Fred's knit hat and mullet wig are forthcoming, but right now I couldn't be more pleased. Image: Patricia Vollmer.
Fred’s knit hat and mullet wig are forthcoming, but with what we have so far, I couldn’t be more pleased. Image: Patricia Vollmer.

Emily Jones at wrote up a great A-to-Z post about how to make the most of DCC with kids in tow (except for the 21+ after-party). We will be sure to check out the tween/teen STEAM and craft areas with our sons.

Even if you can’t join us, you can still follow along! Be sure to keep in touch with me on Twitter at @vollmerdp, where I will be using the hashtag #DCC2015 to let you know what my family and I are enjoying during the event.

Patricia Vollmer is a geeky meteorologist mother of two emerging geek sons, ages 11 & 14. Patricia blogs about her family's nomadic military life at Ground Control to Major Mom. Home is always where the Air Force sends her family, which for now is in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Hobbies include running, despite no one chasing her, and exploring the world with her boys. Ask her why the sky is blue at your own risk.