IDAHO FALLS — It may not be as big as a typical convention, but the Idaho Fandom Con Mini-Con aims to satisfy the “inner-nerd” of eastern Idahoans.
This Saturday, the mini-con will be held from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Snake River Landing in Idaho Falls. The event will offer east Idaho nerds, geeks and members of all different fandoms an afternoon to get together with fellow fans and check out wares from various vendors.
“It’ll be just a little fun thing to bring together the fandoms of Idaho,” mini-con organizer Mathew Jensen said. “It will be a nice family event, real inexpensive. Just come and hang out with like-minded people.”
Jensen said a wide range of vendors is expected.
“We’ve got everything,” he said. “We have people that sell T-shirts, that do merchandise, we have people that make toy weapons. You know, anything that you would see at a typical comic-con.”
The Mini-Con will also feature a costume contest. Jensen said that the nature of this event mandated that they come up with a unique way to stage their costume contest.
“We have (our event) spread out throughout the day and we don’t expect people to come and stay all day,” he said. “We’ll have a photo area where you take a picture of you posed in your costume. Then we’ll take all of those to a panel of judges, and the winner will get a prize.”
Along with providing a chance to pick up some cool merch and show off their cosplays, Fandom Mini-Con also gives local fans an event that helps dull the sting from the loss of the Snake River Fandom Con earlier this year.
“We knew that with the loss of Snake River Fandom Con, everybody wanted something,” Jensen said.
Logistics prevented Jensen from staging a full-scale convention this year, but Jensen said this weekend’s event is a stepping stone to a bigger one.
“We can’t do a full convention,” he said. “So we’re doing something mini, and we’re using the money that comes from the mini-convention to put towards a big convention because that’s expensive.”
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Jensen said his experience staging other similar themed events in east Idaho has proven that events like this are needed in the area.
“It gives people an outlet,” he explained. “Sometimes, people need an escape from reality because reality stinks sometimes. It’s nice to be able to escape and be in a fun place.”
Jensen also stressed that the mini-con isn’t aimed exclusively at nerds. He also hopes families will attend.
“Everybody loves comics,” he said. “Everybody loves superheroes, so get up on a Saturday, come out, dress your kids as superheroes and let them run around and have fun. It’s something that everyone can enjoy.”
Tickets are $4.
You can find more information on the Idaho Fandom Com Mini-Con on the event webpage or on its Facebook page. Admission is $4 and a portion of the proceeds will go to the Bonneville Youth Development Council to help battle teen drinking and drug use.