Lexington Comic & Toy Convention 2016

Lexington Comic & Toy Convention 2016

by Matt McCloud

The Lexington Convention Center was a writhing miasma of random fandom on March 11th-13th at the biggest event of the year, the Lexington Comic and Toy Convention. Three floors of nerd mayhem rocked throughout the weekend as caped cosplayers mingled with gamers, comic fans, celebrities, and more. Stars like Karen Gillan, three former Doctor Who actors, AMC’s Comic Book Men, and many others got up close and personal with their favorite geeks and gawkers in a thrilling weekend of revelry.

There were two, count ‘em, two packed dealers’ rooms on two different floors; aisle upon aisle, reeking of comic books, boxes, backboards, and bags, along with a plethora of plastic playthings. All stacked next to comic greats, Neal Adams and Bob Layton, and across the aisle from cosplay queens, like Yaya Han, Jessica Nigri and AniMia!

The cast of Z Nation at the convention.
Check out other videos from the convention on Lex Con’s channel

In addition to the many visiting celebrities and vendors, local nerds also had their wares out for display. Acriss Crabb, owner of Crabb Creations makes headdresses both feathery and leathery and even made a TARDIS backpack in anticipation for the convention. It’s a striking resemblance to the familiar, blue call box, with a zipper top and plenty of room to store your con swag. Acriss had a bustling day with all the convention madness, but said she was having a great time at her second appearance here.

“I’ve met a lot of nice people and just really enjoy the atmosphere,” Acriss said. “We have some amazing celebrities, including three of the original Doctors. I mean, oh my gosh. I make a TARDIS backpack.”

Acriss wasn’t the only local nerd showcasing her wares. Meredith Thornton, who owns Nerdy Things and Geeky Dreams, had the most visual display. It featured old school comics made into geometric collages, drum heads, and even a plastered acoustic guitar, most of which she finds from thrift stores and then uses in her art.

“I decided I might as well take what I learned in art school and combine it with my passion for weird and nerdy things,” Meredith said. “Part of the reason I came here as a vendor was because the first time I came I had so much fun.”

Meredith should know. She’s been going to conventions since her dad took her to a Star Trek convention while she was still in a stroller. She compared Lexington Comic & Toy Convention with others she’s gone to, like Fandomfest.

“I feel like this is a bigger convention and there is more variety here,” Meredith said. “The guest list here is insanely long. And, you’ve got people from Doctor Who, Star Trek, Z Nation, Power Rangers, and Yaya Han shows up. So, the guest list is really good.”

Nerdy Geeks & Things
Meredith Thornton's display for her Nerdy Geeks & Things booth.

Nerdy nicknacks and celebrities weren’t the only thing attendees could check out. The gaming room at the convention was a semi-darkened ballroom with table after table of casual and not-so-casual gamers hunkered over games of Splendor, Magic: The GatheringSentinels of the Universe, and many more.

Kimberly Aileen, a convention attendee and fan of Magic, Everquest, and Dungeon & Dragons (her cousin, it turned out, is Jeff Grubb of D&D fame), was among the gamers in the hall and played a game of Exploding Kittens (don’t ask). Kimberly said she was happy to see such a busy game room at the convention and taught some other nerds (us) the merits of fireball being the first and last answer on being an elf mage.

Cosplay at Lexington Comic Con
Brittani and Josh Ginoza showing off their winning costumes for the cosplay contest. Photograph provided by Dodge This Photography.

Straight out of a game, two cosplayers in detailed, hand-made Borderlands cosplay were also at the convention. Brittani and Josh Ginoza, spouses, found the hobby together and often travel to conventions together in costume. They both participated in and won the cosplay contest at the convention.

All in all, the Lexington Comic & Toy Convention has thrown down the infinity-jeweled gauntlet in showing they lead the way in huge, nerdy events that happen in Kentucky. The convention gave locals an opportunity to meet the Paragons of Nerdom, interact and game with other nerds, dress up as their favorite characters, and buy some nerdy treasures. If this year’s turnout is any indication, next year should be another amazing event.

Did you miss the Lexington Comic Con but want to go to an upcoming convention? Check out our list of conventions in and around Louisville.

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Matt M

Matt McCloud is one of the Old School Gamers in Nerd Louisville and loves revisiting his favorite RPG's of the 80s and 90s. A convention goer for years, Matt has worked in just about every venue of the gaming convention business; fan, roadie, volunteer, track manager to producer of the first Tabletop Game Day in Louisville, Nerd Louisville's roaming reporter and podcast producer is always looking for that something shiny.