Thousands of avid cosplayers and fans came together Sept. 9 and 10 for the 3rd annual Topeka Comic Con at the Kansas Expocentre.
The Topeka Comic Con, commonly referred to as TopCon, was created by The GYPSY, a successful international tattoo artist who wanted to give back to his hometown. He and his wife Debbie take part in multiple local organizations as well, such as Downtown Topeka Inc., Arts Connect, Visit Topeka Inc. and Get Downtown Topeka.
TopCon was originally held in 2014 at the Quincy Street Conference & Event Center in Topeka. It was just 12 hours long and was advertised on social media for only 60 days leading up to the event. It had an estimated 730 people in attendance. The next year, TopCon more than tripled in attendance with over 2300 convention goers. The event has switched its venue multiple times due to the increasing number of attendees before finally settling at the Agricultural Building at the Kansas Expocentre.
TopCon encompasses exhibitors, cosplayers, video and tabletop games, artists, authors and celebrity guests. Celebrity guests this year were Nakia Burrise, Greg “The Hammer” Valentine and Deep Roy.
Roy, Kenyan actor and stunt performer, has been featured in various movies and TV shows like “Star Wars,” “Charlie and The Chocolate Factory,” “Star Trek,” “Doctor Who” and “Planet of the Apes.”
Valentine was a professional wrestler for over four decades. He is an alumnus of the World Wrestling Federation and World Championship Wrestling, and he was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2004 and the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2016.
Nakia Burrise is an American singer and actress best known for her role as the Yellow Ranger Tanya Sloan in “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.” She is considered to be one of the most popular Power Ranger of all time.
TopCon’s most popular event over the years has been a cosplay competition with categories such as Best Female Under 18, Best Male Under 18, Best Female Adult Over 18, Best Male Adult over 18, Best Crossover and Best in Show. The entry fee was $5, and 50 percent of the proceeds were donated to Alzheimer’s research.
To learn more about TopCon and next year’s convention, go to their TOPCON- Topeka’s Original Geek Expo Facebook page, or topcon.us.