On June 18, 2011 I ventured to Fort Wayne, Indiana with Rafael Nieves (and Dan Dougherty, kind of) to the 2nd Summit City Comic Con. Here is a recap on the day.
I am not purposely leaving anyone’s names out of the article, so if you are not mentioned it does not mean I do not love you.
So last year when I went to Kokomo Con I learned my lesson; when you need to get up at 3 am to get to a show, make sure to get some sleep before you go, plus I was driving so I crashed early the night before. So waking up at 3 am was no problem, and I was out the door by 3:30. I met up with Raf at a Denny’s and we loaded up and got on our way. Basically from what it said on Mapquest we were looking at a three and a half hour drive. So we figured we would get there around 9-9:30 (we lost an hour heading into the Eastern Time Zone).
|Welcome to the Grand Wayne Center|
Now let me sidetrack for a second here. Dan Dougherty was supposed to be with us, but due to a few issues he needed to leave later than us and come home sooner than us. So we figured we would just see him at the show. It was about an hour and a half into the trip when that Bearded Beauty passed us on the way there. Luckily we noticed each other and then came into Ft. Wayne together.
|This is the entire show floor|
Alright, so it’s 9:45 when we get to the Grand Wayne Center. Raf and Dan have 15 minutes to setup before the doors open. I found the busy Zack Kruse and got my press badge and was ready to cover me some comic show! My initial thoughts on the room, were that is was a perfect size. You’ll have to check the website for the correct amount of creator guests, but they were there in abundance! This show was about them, not the dealers and sellers.
|Even Vader wants to read comics|
When the show started a nice crowd of people came in the doors. I would have to say that the crowd was steady throughout the day, and never became too much. From what I was able to gather from the guests the room was larger than last year’s show. So there was more space. This can be deceiving on people when you talk how the attendance played out. If you get a high number of entries then it works out, but visually the numbers didn’t seem to be all there.
|View from Raf and Dan’s table|
Now, the show itself had some great organization. Each row of creators had a Row Aide, who would come by every now and then and see if anything was needed. A nice touch. Each creator was given blank sketch cards to possibly sell. Another awesome touch (I got a few myself; see the full photo gallery).
|The Black Rose Crew|
As I walked around the show I noticed a good deal of Dan Con alum and some new faces I needed to introduce myself to. Some of the new people to point out are Tim Baron, Jay Fosgitt, Black Rose Comics, and Jon Kulczar. These names stand out to me for a few reasons. Jon Kulczar did an amazing Iceman picture for me; I can’t thank him enough for that. Tim Baron has a book called The Life and Times of Julius Destructus, which I flipped through and knew I had to buy right away. The same with the copy of Black Rose #1. The book just looked so stunning I have to read it. I also have interviews coming up with all of these guys.
I want to thank Michael Moreci, Eric Adams, Dustin Carson, Mike Hoffman, Ryan Brown, Brian Crowley, Scott Simmons, and Dirk Manning for all the great chats we had throughout the day. Randy Field and Dirk Manning did some sketch cards for me and Amy, too. I also got a sketch card from a boy named Preston.
The day didn’t fly by, either; again that might be due to the low number of attendees and all the time we had to chat with everyone, but it was still a lot of fun. I was able to get my hands on some new books to check out. I got some Iceman stuff for the wall and setup some upcoming interviews. I was also able to add on another new home for Discussions, as it can now be found on the Underground Video Network.
|Hanging out with my Twin Dustin Carson|
When the show came to a close, Raf and I went out to eat with our good friend Gary Reed. We just went across the street to a sports bar called Champions. Good burger, too. After eating, Raf and I began our trek home. Dan had left early to get back to Chicago for a gig his band was playing. The fun thing about coming home was the GPS getting us lost. We figured a shortcut would be shorter, but instead it added more time onto the trip. You can listen to us recap the show on this podcast.
I would say it was about 11:30 when we pulled into my driveway to grab Amy and head to take Raf home, which was an hour away. We got him dropped off at 12:30 and chatted for a few minutes, then headed home. I walked back into the house at 2:30 am. So basically I pulled a 24 hour comic shift in going to Summit City Comic Con.
All in all the day was fun. The downside was attendance at the show, and the people there didn’t seem to be in a big spending mood. So that might add to some people being down about the day. The venue was great, food prices at the show were great, and the people there were…great. I had a good time at the show and might have to make it back in 2012.