Phoenix Comicon Fan Fest is in just a few months, being held at the University of Phoenix Stadium, December 4-6. I recently got to fire off a few questions to the marketing director of Phoenix Comicon & Fan Fest, Jillian Squires. To check out the activities from last years event, you can see our coverage right here!
LoS: How nice is it to have a cold weather alternative with Fan Fest being held in December?
JS: It is Fantastic! We love the cooler weather and the amazing costumes it allows our attendees to wear.
Did attendees give positive feedback based on the time of the year or did it not matter to attendees? We got a lot of positive feedback, it was not ideal for everyone, but it is always difficult to find the perfect weekend that works for everyone that wants to come, we try to get a weekend that works for most people. Working with the Stadium is very different the Convention Center, we have to work around the Cardinal schedule which really limits what weekends we can get.
LoS: Obviously, Fan Fest can only happen a handful of weekends out of the year because of the schedule of the Arizona Cardinals as well as other events the stadium hosts. With pop culture conventions exploding in Arizona to the point where you can find one almost every month, is there any worry of conflicting with another local convention at the same time?
JS: Yes in fact we wound up on the Dec 4-6 dates for 2015 because we were avoiding conflicting with other shows. It is possible that one year that wont be possible and we will have to be on a weekend with another show. Unfortunately that is bound to happen one day just due to the amount of events out there. We will put out our dates as soon as we secure them to help other shows with their scheduling.
LoS: My favorite thing about Fan Fest last year was that it wasn’t chaotic. Very laid back vibe from an attendee point of view. Was that the same feeling from guests and vendors?
JS: Yes! Staff, vendors and guests talked about how relaxed and fun the whole weekend was. I think part of that feeling was the stadium itself, sound seemed to just dissipate so it never sounded crowded even with 11,000 people there.
LoS: Now that word is out on Fan Fest, do you expect that the more attendees, the less that vibe continues?
JS: Actually I think we will keep the vibe, the event even if it sells out, will remain fairly small. It was never intended to be a 2nd Phoenix Comicon, it was designed to be the smaller more intimate show that some attendees were missing.
LoS: The City of Phoenix is a great partner from my understanding when it comes to Phxcc, do you think you’ll see a partnership on any level with Glendale or because of the uniqueness of the location of Fan Fest, you won’t see a partnership with the city.
JS: It will take some time to build a relationship with Glendale but they have been very welcoming. It took time to build what we have downtown and we knew that going into Glendale, we are excited to find more ways to work with them in the coming years.
LoS: Fan Fest had a solid line up of media guests last year as well as a nice mix of local artists and big name artists such as Neal Adams. How hard of a challenge is it to get the same level of guests without going bigger than last year?
JS: I think we all naturally look for making things bigger but Fan Fest is meant to stay small. SO yes we will have a great line up this year but look for something similar, we will try some new things out but again we want to keep the show small. We will sell out before making it huge, we want it to keep its vibe, feel and intimate experience.
LoS: What are you most excited for from Phoenix Comicon Fan Fest this year?
JS: Costumes!!! I am a huge costumer and I have this White Mage from Final Fantasy (my husband has a matching Black Mage) but the wig is made of yarn and its pretty hard to wear at the summer show. We did wear them for about an hour at Comicon 15 but it was just too much, so getting to wear that costume and see all the ones brought out is my favorite part.