Get your geek on at ETSU-Con

Matthew Lane • Feb 8, 2018 at 6:00 PM

JOHNSON CITY — East Tennessee State University is celebrating all things geek next week with the return of its annual pop culture convention.

ETSU-Con, which embraces comics, anime, fantasy and science fiction, will be held at the D.P. Culp University Center on Feb. 17 and 18. The sixth annual event is sponsored by the Student Government Association, Buctainment and the Buc Anime Club.

“We strive to bring some of the biggest and most entertaining in ‘nerd culture’ to campus, ranging from voice actors to game developers and animators,” said Zack James, ETSU-Con chair. “Additionally, we also shine the spotlight on particular programs of study such as Japanese, digital media and theater, among others.”

The two-day convention will run from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. both days with the vendor hall and artist alley open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. Each attendee is guaranteed at least one free autograph.

The event is free for ETSU students. The public can purchase weekend passes for $25 through midnight on Feb. 15 or for $35 at the door. Emergency responders and active military get in free with a valid ID, and admission is free for children 10 and under.

Around 50 vendors and artists will be on hand, taking up the entirety of the ballroom in the Culp Center and selling a wide variety of comic books, video games, action figures and more. Artists will offer their artwork, handmade jewelry and “nerdy” clothing accessories.

A cosplay contest will include a number of categories ranging from top novice costume to best craftsmanship. Special cosplay guests will include Hanging Zodiac, Sparrow Moose and Crash Candy.

Voice actors Nolan North and Courtenay Taylor will be on hand to meet and greet fans. North was cast as Dr. Chris Ramsey in the “General Hospital” spin-off, “Port Charles.” Today, he is best known for voicing Nathan Drake in the “Uncharted” video game series. Taylor is known for her work as “The Female Survivor” in the video game “Fallout 4.”

Video game tournaments will begin at 10 a.m. on Feb. 17, and will include “Super Smash Bros.,” “Team Smash,” “Overwatch,” “League of Legends” and “Hearthstone.”

“Whether you enjoy comics, video games, or anime, we think you’ll find something to enjoy at our show,” James said. “Our group works hard to bring an enjoyable and memory-filled weekend not just for ETSU, but the entire Tri-Cities community and beyond.”

To purchase tickets, visit www.etsu.edu/etsucon. For more information, email [email protected] For disability accommodations, call the ETSU Office of Disability Services at (423) 439-8346.