What’s the story?
Fort Collins Comic Con has donated $120,000 over the last five years for the Poudre River Public Library District by bringing together thousands of geeks, pop-culture enthusiasts, gamers, fans, artists, writers, creators, cosplayers, and more into the Northside Aztlan Community Center.
Led by a team of super-geeks who love to build community and help fellow nerds, Fort Collins Comic Con brings the full convention experience to a small-scale event (average attendance is around 3,000 and more than 150 vendors set up in the Vendor Hall and throughout the event space).
What’s the goal of the Con?
Simply put: A fun, locally-organized, affordable Con experience in Northern Colorado to encourage children’s literacy and increase access to art, culture, and local creators in our community.
Fort Collins Comic Con is meant to encourage youth literacy through comic books and other pop culture mediums. We also created the Con to fill a void for Northern Colorado geeks, who normally have to drive 2+ hours to attend huge events like Denver Pop Culture Con and StarFest, typically at great cost for attendees and vendors alike.
Our goal is to bring together geeks of all ages and types into an affordable Con experience. Whether you appreciate comics, Star Trek, Star Wars, Firefly, Buffy, Harry Potter, zombies, gaming, steampunk, or something else – we’ve got something for you and you can have a great time near your hometown.
How has FC3 grown over time?
- September 12, 2015 at
the Northside Aztlan Community Center
- A sell-out crowd of
1,800 and $15,000 raised for Poudre River Public Library District
- Featured on 9News, CTV, in the Coloradoan, in the Wyoming Tribune, the
Loveland Reporter-Herald, podcasts like Thinking Outside The Long Box and even
some vlogs – including InvestComics and EVE DRAWS!
- Fort Collins Mayor Wade Troxell showed up and declared
September 12 “Local Heroes Day”!
- August 27-28, 2016 at the
Northside Aztlan Community Center
- A sell-out crowd of
2,500 and $30,000 raised for the Library District.
- Three guest stars in
attendance: Gigi Edgley, Richard Hatch, and Robert Meyer Burnett.
- Fort Collins Mayor
Wade Troxell showed up and declared August 27 and 28 “Local Heroes Weekend.”
- Other geeky events
held: First annual Kessel Run held on 5/4 with 150 attendees raising an
additional $1,000 for the Library District, along with Nerd Prom and Teen Nerd
- August 26-27, 2017 at the Northside Aztlan Community Center
- A total crowd of 3,200 and $30,000 raised for the Library District.
- Fort Collins Mayor Wade Troxell showed up and declared August 26 and 27 “Local Heroes Weekend.”
- A revamped costume contest into a Cosplay Catwalk with record participation.
- Notable guests included Disney animators Greg Guler and Michael Toth and showrunner Victor Cook.
- A T.A.R.D.I.S. was built on-site by the Local Makerspaces!
- Other geeky events in 2017: The 2nd annual Kessel Run was held on 5/4 with 300 attendees, 1st annual Harry Potter Weekend, 2nd annual Teen Nerd Prom, and 1st annual Back To The Future Geekend for a Cause.
- August 25-26, 2018 at the Northside Aztlan Community Center.
- A total crowd of 2,800 and $20,000 raised for the Library District.
- Fort Collins Mayor Wade Troxell showed up and declared August 25 and 26 “Local Heroes Weekend.”
- Notable guests included Disney animator Greg Guler, Erin Macdonald PhD, Val Hochberg, Gordon Purcell, and Rob Davis.
- The Con’s very first wedding ceremony during the Cosplay Catwalk
- Other geeky events in 2018: The 3rd annual Kessel Run on 5/4 with 350 attendees, 2nd annual Harry Potter Weekend, 3rd annual Teen Nerd Prom, 1st annual Create Your Own Superhero Day, and the 1st annual Kessel Runners Couch-to-5K Program.
- August 17-18, 2019 at the Northside Aztlan Community Center.
- A total crowd of 2,800 and $25,000 raised for the Library District.
- Fort Collins Mayor Wade Troxell showed up and declared August 17 and 18 “Local Heroes Weekend.”
- Notable guests included Robin Shelby, Disney animator Greg Guler, Erin Macdonald PhD, CC Petersen, Thomas Estrada, Nicki Rapp, Rich Fogel, Cachet Whitman, and more!
- Other geeky events in 2019: The 4th annual Kessel Run on 5/4 with 300 attendees, 3rd annual Harry Potter Birthday Bash, and the 2nd annual Kessel Runners Couch-to-5K Program.
Who’s behind Fort Collins Comic Con?
In August 2014, Nick Armstrong and Nathan Scott met over at Crooked Cup and began plotting. Nick’s background in organizing events like TEDxFoCo, Ignite Fort Collins, and Fort Collins Startup Week combined with Nathan’s background as Director of the Fort Collins Zombie Fest fueled the desire for a large-scale pop-culture event for geeks.
Paula Watson-Lakamp (Communications Director
for the Poudre River Public Library District) joined in shortly thereafter – with
serendipitous timing; the statewide Summer Reading Program theme was
Superheroes! They began to organize Fort Collins Comic Con in earnest.
The next step was to hold a volunteer
meeting to figure out interests, needs, and abilities. A team quickly assembled
– Candice joined us as the Vendor Coordinator, Nathan and Jenny as the Cosplay
Coordinators, Ali as the Programming Coordinator, James as the Volunteer
Coordinator, and Chalice as the Hospitality Coordinator.
In 2016, Mary and Mayette joined us to
coordinate Programming, Todd joined us to coordinate Vendors, and Rachel,
Amanda, and Kelsey joined us to help coordinate volunteers. Stephen joined us
to help coordinate cosplay events.
In 2017, Yvonne and Jakki joined us as a Volunteer Coordinator and Social Media Coordinator, respectively. In 2018, Brianna, Michael, Megan, Nyla, and Jeph joined the organizing team. In 2019, Ben joined to lead the Kessel Runners and expanded his role along with Kira and Mathew on the organizing team.
Additional helpful heroes include: Tony
Raymond, Elaine Bueno, Bill Tucker, Jami McMannes, Amanda Armstrong, Jayme
DeLoss, RJ Bindi, Kimberly Gonzales, Dave Graham, and every single one of our
How do the Poudre Libraries benefit from FC3, beyond the monetary donation?
The Library District sees immediate and
sustained impacts on library services that benefit library customers and the
- A boost in overall circulation (materials checked out) immediately following the Comic Con each August which is maintained for the rest of the year.
- An increase in the number of comic books borrowed via hoopla specifically. For instance, from 2016 to 2017 the Library District had a 41.5 percent increase in comic book circulation through hoopla.
- New comic books and graphic novels purchased each month and added to the in-library reading racks.
- Multiple books added to the collection featuring do-it-yourself costume design and cosplay.
- The purchase and addition of self-publishing tools and content discovery resources to support local creatives: SELF-e, Pressbooks, and Biblioboard with “Indie Colorado.”
- Unique “geek-friendly” events and programming at the libraries with mixed audience interest and all-ages participation.
- New partnerships and collaborations with local businesses and organizations that began at the Con and evolved into other capacities like summer reading sponsorships and our Flash Your Card program participation.
- When is FC3?
FC3 2019 is August 17-18th at the Northside Aztlan Community Center from 9AM to 8PM on Saturday and Sunday, with Vendor hours from 10AM to 6PM.
- Are there any special guests?
Watch our homepage for ongoing updates.
- Can I take pictures with guests or get them to sign things?
This varies on a guest-by-guest basis.
- How much are badges?
Ages 13+ Badges: $20 advanced purchase / $25 day-of-event purchase
Ages 6-12: $10
5 and under: Free
- When do badges go on sale?
Monday, July 1. Badges can ONLY be purchased on the Fort Collins Comic Con website but can be picked up from a geek or comic book store of your choice.
- When can I pick up my badges?
Badges should be ready to pick up from the comic book store you specified within 48 hours of your order, if not earlier. If you purchase your badge after 8/14, you will have to pick up your badge on the day of the Con. Take your receipt with you and TREAT YOUR BADGE LIKE CASH. Badges will be available for pickup from the store until ONE WEEK BEFORE THE CON, after which point you must pick up your badge from the Attendee Check-In booth at the Con.
- Will badges be available at the Con?
- Can I volunteer to get a badge?
Yes, absolutely. As long as there are volunteer spots open.
- When does Cosplay registration begin?
No registration required!
- Have the Cosplay rules changed?
- Can I buy my badge at the store or another website? Can I buy additional badges from the store or another website?
No, all badges have to be purchased from the Fort Collins Comic Con website. Anyone trying to sell you a badge other than us is most likely scamming you. Our badge prices are: $20 for ages 13+ (advanced purchase; day-of purchase is $25), $10 for ages 6-12, free for ages 5 and under.
- What happens if I don’t pick up my badge?
Badges will be available for pickup from the store until your venue of choice closes on WEDNESDAY AUGUST 14TH! You can pick it up on the day of the Con. We don’t recommend this, as you’ll probably have to wait in line. We’ll have it at the Attendee Check-In booth for you on the day of the Con.
- Can I pick my badge up on the day of the Con?
Yes, just come straight to the Con and pick up your badge from the Attendee check-in booth. We highly recommend advanced pick-up, as you’ll probably have to wait in line the day of the Con.
- Will there be child-friendly activities?
Absolutely! For our youngest superheroes, there will be a Ghostbusters and superhero training camp hosted by the Fort Collins Ghostbusters and other great groups. For older kiddos, we have a video game lounge and table top gaming area, and panels specifically for kiddos who want to learn how to create something of their very own.
- Will there be panels and vending hours on Friday?
No, here’s the rough schedule:
Friday: No panels or vendor hours.
Saturday: Vendor Area + Panels + Cosplay Catwalk
Sunday: Vendor Area + Panels + Cosplay Catwalk
- Is there going to be food at the Con?
Yes! Our list of food trucks can be found here.
- Is there alcohol sold at the Con?
No alcohol will be sold or allowed at the Con.
- I’m coming from out of town, is there a hotel rate?
Not yet. Should we look into that? Let us know.
- Will there be an ATM?
Not on site. The closest ones available are in Old Town.
- Where do I need to park?
That’s tricky, as with any event in Old Town we have very limited parking. We highly recommend parking in the Old Town parking structures.