Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

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October 2, 2011

Con to showcase comics, pop culture, gaming

Show expected to draw hundreds to Kokomo Event Center Saturday

The draw of comic books might be that they have no age limit.

“I actually know more 40-year-olds reading comics than 14-year-olds,” said Comics Cubed owner Shaun Hilton, with a laugh.

And comic book lovers of all ages are invited to Saturday’s Kokomo Con, a comic book, gaming and pop culture convention at the Kokomo Event Center. Last year, in its first year, the convention saw between 350 and 400 visitors. This year, the beefed-up event is expanded and organizers hope to draw 1,000 guests.

The brainchild of Hilton, comic book fan Austin Meissnest and a few others, Kokomo Con will see a host of comic-related exhibits, speakers and vendors and more. From role playing to card games to pop culture to video games, it will all be there Saturday.

“We tried to take the whole ball of geekiness and combine it into a great melting pot of nerd-dom,” said Hilton.

Writers such as Jeremy Dale and local author Paul Allor, who recently published his first comic, “Clockwork,” will be on hand to meet with fans, answer questions and be part of a panel discussion.

Hilton says the guest of honor, Art Baltazar, is a great representation of the event as a whole.

“He’s got a very cool, all-ages style,” said Hilton, a feat that’s pretty hard to achieve. Being able to appeal both to kids and also to hard-core comic book fans is quite the achievement.

But that’s the draw of Kokomo Con, said Meissnest.

“There’s literally something for everyone. If your boyfriend is a fan and you’re not, there’s literally something that will catch your eye,” said Meissnest.

Tattoo artists from around the area will also be on hand showing off their artwork. There will be several card and gaming tournaments throughout the evening. The Magic: The Gathering tourney will be qualifier for the San Diego tournament. Organizers say they hope for more than 100 players.

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