Conventions in the Age of COVID
Less than a month until New York Comic Con! Are people ready?
Should be interesting to see what this is like, as I can’t find any information on publishers setting up there. Guests — of whom the biggest names are William Shatner, George Takei, John Cena, and Chris Claremont — are appearing, but photo ops have no touching. Guest and attendee will be separated by plexiglass.
Proof of vaccination is now required for attendees. Under 12 years of age will have to provide negative test results daily. Everyone has to wear a mask at all times — which may include during photo ops.
This is an expensive show to attend — badges are $60 a day, and hotel rooms are $200-300 a night. Is it going to be worth the effort for travel? It certainly won’t be the kind of show we remember. I’d love to see friends, but … it’s a difficult question.
In other convention news, Wizard World is leaving the business. After the last Wizard World Chicago, to be held October 15-17, all the rest of the shows will be run by Fan Expo. Wizard will instead keep its collectible and NFT business.
The six biggest — Chicago, Philadelphia, New Orleans, Portland, St. Louis, and Cleveland — will go to Fan Expo, who runs MegaCon in Orlando and shows in Toronto and Vancouver, among others. Any of the others are over. Fan Expo, with this acquisition, will operate 17 conventions.
Meanwhile, someone is very optimistic. The Twin Cities Con is a new show launching in Minneapolis October 2 and 3. Proof of vaccination or negative test is required to attend. Everyone over the age of 2 must be masked. Guests include John Barrowman, Catherine Tate, Amanda Conner, Peter David, and Dan Parent. Tickets are $20-35.