Harrisburg Comic and Pop Con aiming for safe and triumphant return this weekend

Arts & Entertainment

(Image Courtesy: Andrew Melius)

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Comic fans here in the Midstate have had quite a few challenges in getting out to express and share their fandoms recently. The international Comic-Con in San Diego has been canceled for two straight years and the New York Comic-Con was canceled last year, both due to the pandemic.

Fortunately, a con is happening soon in a location not too far, far away. The Harrisburg Comic and Pop Con is making its return on Saturday, September 18, and Sunday, September 19 at the Harrisburg Mall. For those of you wondering, “Harrisburg has its own Con?” Yes, it does, and it’s still pretty fresh. “This will be our second show in Harrisburg with our last one being in 2019.” Andrew Melius, Co-Owner of Four State Comic Con LLC said.

The convention aims to be just like any other with celebrities, vendors, artists, cosplay, panels, and much more. “This convention focuses on comics and also pop culture genres like tv, movies, gaming, anime, wrestling, crafts, and more,” Melius said. “This year we are happy to have replica vehicles from the Ghostbusters and Jurassic Park franchises. We will also be having a large Star Wars experience area with life-size dioramas and costumed actors.”

(Image Courtesy: Andrew Melius)

One of the biggest groups to attend conventions is artists and the Harrisburg Comic and Pop Con is welcoming them with an opportunity to attend a class at the Con. “We will have a local art class from Ooowee Art and Gamin Cafe. This is a weekly art program that will be teaching students best practices and how to sell their art at other conventions. This will help to prepare them to make a living in the art industry by also meeting and talking with professional artists in the comic and non-comic industry,” Melius said. “Our conventions focus heavily on the arts and we are proud of that.”

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Another focus for this year’s Con will be on safety. Last year’s edition was canceled due to COVID concerns. Melius assures this year, they’ve taken proper steps to ensure safety for all. “This year we have obviously had to make some safety changes because it is just the right thing to do. We have introduced masking regulations, social distancing, and created more spacing. We had to get rid of some of our hands-on activities and programs along with some other changes to help protect against the transmission of COVID,” Melius said.

(Image Courtesy: Andrew Melius)

All these measures to get as many people through the door this weekend. For Melius, it’s come one, come all. “This con is open to everyone! This is a family-friendly event and is open and inclusive to all,” Melius said because it’s the people that make up his favorite part of the Con. “It’s the people it’s the fans, and it’s the families that attend. As you walk through the convention you just notice all the smiles, laughter, and enjoyment. I believe this will be a very emotional show for all of us involved because we haven’t seen these vendors, artists, staff, and attendees for nearly two years. COVID kept us all away and we finally get to come back together again.”

Tickets are sold at the door and come with the free admission of one child 10 and under. A weekend pass is $22 and gets you in for both days. Saturday tickets are $15 and Sunday tickets are $12. Any additional children are $5 per ticket. You can get more information including, guests, panels, vendors, and more through the link here.

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