Planning for the second annual GrandeCon is underway. The three-day event is described as “the superhero brainchild” of the Odyssey House Women’s Shelter board of Directors, originally started as a social enterprise for the community. Odyssey House Executive Director Lisa Watson says the idea was to create an event that was new and different for the community but inclusive for all.
“They really took the time about five years ago to get the idea of Grande Con off the ground,” Watson says. “They had settled on this comic book style conference and trade show.”
The focus of the event shifted from a social enterprise to a fundraising event over the five years. The funds generated during GrandeCon go to Odyssey House to help cover the cost and sustain some of the operations for the emergency women’s shelter.
After five years of working and planning the first Grande Con took place last July and was considered to be a success. Those in charge of the comic expo now have their sites set on July 2023. Three of the guests for next years event have been announced, including storyboard artist Jeremy Simser who has worked on projects like The Flash, Supergirl, Deadpool 2, and Legends of Tomorrow to name a few. The second guest is podcaster Ming Chen. Chen is the co-host of I Sell Comics! and has also worked on projects like AMC’s Comic Book Men, and the Silent Bob reboot. Watson says the name most people in Alberta will recognize is this year’s third guest.
“Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart will also be in attendance, which I know will hit a few of the demographic that watched the WWE. We are excited to have him because he is local to Alberta, and he really makes an impact to for a lot of people.”
Tickets for the event range anywhere from $37.75 to $266. Tickets include admission into Bonnetts Energy Centre and access to guest interviews. Watson says she suggests people buy tickets ahead of time after seeing last year’s turnout.