I’ve always been considered a bit more eccentric than the other women in my life. Growing up, very few of us were heavy into gaming, anime or even movies. In high school, I found my girl group, and they got me. We had sleepovers where we binged on horror classics until 4am, nights where we played Mario Party non-stop, and even a very special Fatal Frame night where we woke up my mother by screaming about machetes in the middle of the night. As I got older, the friend group went their separate ways, but our love of these different fandoms grew with us.
Cut to my mid-twenties, and Niagara Falls got their first Comic Con. I was born in Niagara Falls, and grew up in St Catharines. Cons were always in Toronto, or worse, San Diego, and not really reasonable for me to head to, especially because I didn’t drive back then. But 10 years ago, we got our very own, and you know I was there, waiting in line to get in.
My brother and partner braved the line with me back in 2012, shortly after I got married. The first year was small, but we still made great use of our time. We saw the Delorian, met The Nasty Boys, Brett Hart, and even lurked The Walking Dead’s Chandler Riggs from a distance. He was so young back then! We had a great time, and it became our family tradition.
The first year my sister-in-law came along was 2014, the family tradition was growing. This was the year of great cosplay, and it even started a new tradition of photos with a giant hulk. The next year, 2015, I had just had my first child, and this was my first Niagara Falls Comic Con as a mom. I bought my little guy his first nerdy gear, a Marvel and a Ninja Turtle bandana bib, and, of course, he and Dad needed matching t-shirts.
Every year has great memories, all of which involve my favourite hobbies and my family. In 2016, Henry Winkler told me I was cute in line, and we got to hang out in Ferris Bueller’s bedroom. We also got Mario inspired mystery boxes that live in our living room as decoration to this day. Oh, we also met Sean Astin that year too!
Our last full NFCC experience was in 2019, the last one live version before the pandemic hit. The old gang was there, with some new faces. This was the year I was pregnant with my daughter. I cosplayed for the first time, if you can call it that. I was 8 months pregnant, and huge, so we painted my giant belly like a Poké Ball. People were snapping pictures all day and though I was slightly embarrassed, it was still a ton of fun.
Last year, though it wasn’t an official Niagara Falls Comic Con, I got to attend Niagara Falls Fan Fest 2021 and Frightmare in the Falls as media for CGMagazine. It was my first time at the Scotiabank Convention Center as a member of the press instead of a fan. In the last 10 years, I’ve managed to meld my fandoms, family and work all into one.
My family and I have been itching to go back, especially since our children are so much older now. This year, my brother will be bringing his whole family. My now 11-year-old niece is getting excited about getting autographs and can’t wait to see the voice of Ghost Face from Scream, Roger L. Jackson. Our littles are walking in our footsteps, and the best part is, we are getting to do it with them.
Niagara Falls Comic Con has been a part of my life from the year I got married, to the year I had each of my kids, and now the year I’ve set off on a brand-new career. It has grown with me through all of my adulthood, and now my family is starting to grow up with it too. NFCC is not just a staple part of my life, but a massive part of our community in the Niagara Region.
“This year, I am at Niagara Falls Comic Con as the Executive Editor at CGMagazine, with our very own booth.”
CGMagazine found our area a few short years ago, and I found a place to really embrace what other people considered different about me. This year, I was at Niagara Falls Comic Con as the Executive Editor at CGMagazine, with our very own booth. Those same two family members I started going to NFCC with are beside me worked the booth too, along with some of the most important people in my life that I have met in the last 10 years.
Things have come full circle, and I couldn’t be prouder celebrating 10 years of NFCC with our magazine, my family and other “eccentric” new friends.
Thank you for 10 amazing years, Niagara Falls Comic Con. I look forward to the next 10.