By Lauren DeJoise
Fans congregated to the Pinellas Comic and Maker Con, the biggest annual comic con in the county, on October 17th at the library of the Seminole campus of St. Petersburg College. From 10AM to 5PM, the event hosted colorful panels, tabletop gaming, free photo ops, characters and props from your favorite movies and shows, shop venders with collectibles, and candy from Japan. It also featured special guests such as Sergio Cariello, Nicola Cuti, Chuck Dixon, and Austin Janowsky.
Doctor Who Panel
The first panel of the day took place at 10:15am in one of the library rooms where fans of Doctor Who had a passionate discussion on the show. Many attending the panel dressed up as their favorite characters from the show, particularly companions of the Doctor. Heading the panel was Ken Spivey as ultimate Doctor Who fan, Leo Martin as the High Council Time Lord, Caitlin as Amy Pond, Daisy as Ace, Carl Booth as The Master, and Steven Shuey as The Doctor . The panel mainly discussed show possibilities and favorite characters.
Game of Thrones Belly Dance
At 12:15pm, belly dancers lit up one of the library rooms. Lady Darjuxena from Treasure Island headed the show cosplaying as Daenerys from Game of Thrones. Other cosplaying dancers also joined her, dressed up as Daenerys’s dragons. Nancy put on a Celtic dance and Lady Darjuxena also danced to hip hop arrangements and used staffs and light sticks to add to her dancing.
Paranormal Pets Panel
At 1:15pm, Dr. Brandy Stark spoke on Paranormal Pets. Stark is a Humanities professor and paranormal investigator with the Spirits of St. Petersburg. She discussed the history of pets in mythology and superstition in different countries. and talked about pets having a conscious mind that can allow them to “transcend death” like ghosts. She told the audience about the different ghostly experiences many people have had with their deceased pets over the years. She also talked about photos that have been claimed to be of deceased pets. She recommended many resources for ghost pets such as books; she advised against TV shows. She also answered questions from the audience, who wanted many of their ghostly-pet experiences clarified.
Pinellas Fan Fest Extravaganza
The last event of the day was held at 3:30 pm in the Digitorium of the UP building . Ken Spivey hosted the event, and his band The Ken Spivey Band headed a Doctor Who-themed concert. The biggest part of the event was the costume contest. Spivey called up cosplayers in different categories: comic book characters, anime, and everything else. A ring of judges decided the winners of each category before they all eventually competed for the ultimate win. Spivey also gave out prizes.
Cosplay and More!
Although most of the bumbling activity in the Comic Con was in the library, many of its counterparts went campus-wide. Rooms were delegated to special guest booths and shop owners in different buildings on campus, and many were also outside. Activities also lit up every area. Students, adults, and children alike cosplayed as their favorite characters and posed for pictures. Cosplaying will always be the most prevalent aspect of Comic Cons.