SARATOGA SPRINGS — From grabbing your favorite comic book to making slime, there will be a bit of everything for pop culture and comic fans at the 8th annual Saratoga Comic Con at the Saratoga Springs City Center Saturday.
The show’s organizer Samuel Chase said it will be even bigger this year and expects a minimum 8,000 people to attend.
“The last show was 7,400 plus, so we’re only growing bigger and bigger,” Chase said. “We’re the largest comic con in upstate New York and most of New England besides the mega shows.”
He said people can expect more vendors, includes the Hudson Valley Ghostbusters, who will be raising funds for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
Group co-founder Matthew Bennett said several group members have a friend who lost her brother to suicide who asked if they could raise the funds.
Bennett said they will have a slime lab set up at the event, one of the vehicles on display, merchandise for sale and people will be able to take photos.
He said he’s looking forward to seeing some of the other cosplayers at the event as well.
“Seeing other people’s creations is great,” he said.
Johnstown-based store Toying Around is covering two comic cons this weekend – co-owner Emily McCallum will be at the one in Saratoga, while her husband Vincent McCallum will be at one in Philadelphia.
Vincent McCallum said they usually bring various items to sell such as Funko Pop Bobble Heads, decorative pillows, posters and action figures.
One of the great things about a comic con, he said, is, even if the business doesn’t sell anything, they use it for marketing their shop.
“So people know if you’re looking for a place when there’s no convention going on you can come to our store,” he said.
Vincent McCallum said some of the popular items are related to anime, TV series “Stranger Things,” “My Hero Academia,” “Dragon Ball Z” and “Pokémon.”
But he said anyone can find something they like and relate to at a comic con.
“It’s definitely a thing that’s never going to lose its culture, it’s been around for so long,” he said. “It has something for everybody. A grandfather can relate to Star Wars, a father can relate to the things he grew up with in the ’80s or the ’90s, so there’s something for everyone to conversate about, to buy, to refresh their memories on things.”
Celebrity guests will include actor Tom Sizemore, with credits from “Saving Private Ryan,” “Black Hawk Down” and “The Relic,” Dwayne Cameron, from Power Rangers series including “Operation Overdrive,” “S.P.D.” and “Dino Thunder,” and former WWE wrestler Fandango. Guest cosplayers will include Chelsea Brickham Cosplay, Jennard Cosplays, Lorraine Toth, Harley Nox Cosplay, Thespookydarling and GMX Cosplay.
Chase said the Super Smash Bros. tournament is also one of the popular features of the event.
“Everything pop culture is at the show,” he said.
He said he’s looking forward to seeing the vendors, especially some of the new ones.
“They’ve been trying to get into the shows for years,” he said, “and they’ve just been on this waiting list of over 300 people.”