By: Jyllian Roach, Guest Writer
Time to pull out the leather masks and shiny capes – the Third Annual Albuquerque Comic Expo is on its way.
Scheduled for June 21 through 23 at the Albuquerque Convention Center, ACE will be focused more on free events and less on getting patrons to part with their cash, Greg Derrick, former student, said.
“Something I dislike about the idea of conventions in general is that your average attendee pays the convention organizer to go to a show and the only option they have for something to do at the show is to spend more money with other people,” he said. “I really don’t like that and it’s a paradigm we’re going to try to shift.”
This year’s expo will feature many of the staples of conventions past, such as Kids Day, celebrity guests and the ACE costume contest, but will also feature many new and free activities, Derrick said.
The organizers of ACE, in conjunction with Quelabs Makespace, have built a life-sized starship bridge where attendees can work as a team to complete missions using the Artemis Starship Simulator game, he said.
Albuquerque Scale Modelers will be offering free workshops and classes for those interested in learning to build models. TromaDance Film Festival will be showcasing local films and Supercon2K will offer gaming tournaments, Derrick said.
ACE will also be selling a hardbound exclusive Sketchbook for $25 which will allow attendees to get free sketches from many artists at the show, he said.
“I really love bringing awesome stuff to Albuquerque for people to do,” Derrick said.
John Sumrow, a local artist whose artwork has become well known nationally, said he is excited to return to ACE for his third year.
“The con has a great vibe, lots of Geek Culture, lots of my friends attend and it’s like family,” he said.
ACE has been supportive of local artists and creators, and attending the shows has even gotten him attention from some of his own celebrity heroes, he said.
“Last year, my girlfriend met Adam Baldwin [Jayne Cobb from “Firefly”] and they just happen to start talking about bacon. He’s a huge fan of bacon, but, really who isn’t? The next thing I know, I’m talking with Adam Baldwin and giving him one of my original t-shirts, “The Shirt of Infinite Bacon.” It was surreal. I’m a huge Firefly fan and to meet a great actor from one of my fandoms and talk about bacon, movies, and bacon was awesome. I smiled for a week. I have pictures,” Sumrow said.
Albuquerque Comic Expo will run from Friday, June 21 through Sunday June 23 at the Albuquerque Convention Center located at 401 Second Street NW. For tickets and a list of events, go to abqcomicexpo.com.
ACE 2013 Celebrity Guests
Here is a sampling of guests attending this year’s ACE.
Giancarlo Esposito – Gus Fring from “Breaking Bad”
Steven Michael Quezada – Steven Gomez from “Breaking Bad”
Nicholas Brendon – Xander Harris from “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”
Veronica Taylor – Voice of Ash Ketchum from “Pokemon”
Sean Becker – Director of “The Guild”
David Yost – Billy Cranston from “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers”
Walter Emanuel Jones – Zack Taylor from “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers”
Neal Adams – Comic book artist best known for defining the modern incarnations of Batman, the X-Men, Green Lantern and more
Brian Pulido – Co-founder of Chaos! Comics and creator of Lady Death
Melinda Snodgrass – Screenwriter for “Star Trek: The Next Generation”