Must-knows about VA Comicon Saturday, Nov. 20

A pre-pandemic look at Va Comicon, comic stand with a dozen people.
A pre-pandemic shot of Comicon, featuring a wall of comics. | Photo provided

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VA Comicon returns to the Richmond Raceway tomorrow, now on its 35th year celebrating comics, artists + fans of all things superheroes, fantasy, and beyond.

We spoke with Dan Nokes, a Maryland-based comic book creator, graphic novel artist + vendor liaison for VA Comicon. He says this twice-a-year Richmond event — once populated by mainly comic book traders, guest creators and die-hard fans — is now visited by thousands of families + cosplayers, in addition to old school fans.

Dozens of convention attendees check out the comics section of Comicon
A pre-pandemic shot of Comicon, featuring a wall of comics. | Photo provided

Dan told us there’s usually a line of visitors waiting at the entrance when the dozens of talented artisans, vendors + guests start setting up around 7 a.m. But don’t worry, the convention doesn’t open until 11 a.m.

Tickets are only available online, not at the door. Adults are $10, but kids 12-and-under are free. VIP tickets are around $15. Parking is also free. 

Pro tip: Proof of vaccination is required for anyone over 12. For those younger, make sure to bring a negative COVID-19 test approved within 72 hours.

For convention beginners, check out the floor map ahead of time. The Artist’s Alley is spread out throughout the facility, organized by creator. There’s comic book authors, collectors, tattoo artists, photographers + even retro video game sellers

You can also find costumed cosplayers in one area and a dining spot to take a break and sort through your wares.

Several Spiderman cosplayers pose for the camera
Remember 2018’s Into the Spiderverse? That’s the inspiration for these costumes. | Photo provided

If you’re a comic book connoisseur, Dan recommends stopping by the Comic Book Certification Service booth. They can teach you how they certify + grade some of your classic issues of comic books, graphic novels and even some original art if you have the signature. Did you know some of the most well-graded comic books have sold for thousands of dollars? 

Be sure to stop and say hi to Dan while you’re exploring, or check out his published work here. 

He’s usually accompanied by a plush chicken, you can’t miss him. 🐥

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Photo via unsplash.com.