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DRAGON CON :: Day 1

Still one of the nation’s biggest gatherings for genre-fans, sci-fi aficionados and cosplayers galore DRAGON CON boasts one of the largest crowds taking over downtown Atlanta!

Arriving into the Atlanta Airport almost immediately you get the sense that something special is going on. The foot traffic leading to the baggage claim area is often decorated with hanging banners featuring colorfully crafted cosplayers as their favorite comic book characters. The dragon inspired logo reminiscent of one of the more popular houses on Game of Thrones can be seen emblemized across many of the most popular brands indicative of sponsorship opportunities, increasing the credibility of Dragon Con now in its 30th year.

Every year around this time, the last week of August into Labor Day Weekend, Atlanta’s sprawling downtown area (often the backdrop for the first season of AMC’s The Walking Dead) is turned into the region’s largest mecca for sci-fi fans and genre enthusiasts looking to meet the likeminded and cozy up to their favorite television and movie stars! Dragon Con easily shapes up as one of the country’s most popular gatherings and its grown to a spectacular degree since it was initialized in the fall of 1987.

Something for Everyone

While Comic-Cons were springing up all over the country, the progenitors of the latest fan-gathering felt that there existed a vacuum among convention experiences. While most specifically targeted comic book fans and/or science-fiction enthusiasts like trekkers, their was a lack in the market of conventions that nurtured all appetites, including fantasy followers and gamers. Soon cosplayers would emerge on the scene and this uniquely eccentric audience was also in search of an audience.

Dragon Con blended the best of all worlds and was the first to put front-and-center the many creatives that launched the success of life-long brands like Dungeons & Dragons as well as role-playing copycats, while including sci-fi celebrity writers and comic book artists. It wouldn’t be long before celebrities began to gravitate to the con, and before long the convention itself became a hub for unique interactions like when it was selected to be the home of the Origins Games Fair in 1990.

3 Decades Later

Cut to today as the crosswalks across the downtown city streets become lined with the various and colorful interpretations of gaming favorites like the forces of Halo or Gears of War and the latest Hollywood blockbusters inspire incredibly accurate recreations of the heroes from the upcoming Justice League or Marvel Film’s Infinity War and you can’t have too many Wonder Women now can you? All will be on parade Saturday morning and covered by the local news which will also feature some of the con’s celebrity guests including The Flash John Wesley Shipp.

The guest-list of featured celebrities attending Dragon Con has expanded to one of the circuit’s most varied and abundant and include current favorites from The CW DC Comics adaptations including Danielle Panabaker who stars on The Flash as “Caitlin Snow/Killer Frost” and Michelle Harrison joining Shipp as the other half of the Allen Family. They will also be joined by Arrow favorites Katie Cassidy, John Barrowman and Willa Holland as well as DC’s Legends of Tomorrow own “Rip Hunter” and Doctor Who alum Athur Darvill.

The con will also bring together the stars of Star Trek The Next Generation including Jonathan Frakes, Marina Sirtis and Brent Spiner who will also be joined by the legendary William Shatner. With the Star Trek franchise preparing to embark on a new discovery, this gathering of some of its biggest stars will no doubt excite the dedicated to support the new venture. And that’s only a few off the top! A galaxy of guests really will be on hand to meet with their biggest fans, as well as interact in many of the star-studded panels scheduled throughout the weekend.

Thought Dragon Con is only beginning it’s already generating a lot of energy as hundreds descend upon downtown Atlanta hopeful that this time the zombie apocalypse is only a cosplay fantasy and not an inevitability, but with so many superheroes also on hand, guests can rest assured — justice will prevail!

Dragon Con schedule of events and ticket information are available at www.dragoncon.org.

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Writer | Producer | Personality. Pop-Cultural Agent. Music | Entertainment & Genre Enthusiast. I knew comics were cool before primetime. The National Nightlife Editor for www.edgemedianetwork.com and the voice of "Out Loud & Live! with JC Alvarez" on Internet Radio.

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