Superheroes, comic books, cosplay… it’s all become very mainstream. Regardless of whether you celebrated your fandom before or you are just dipping your toes in geeky fun, Canada is a great place to get your geek on. From coast to coast, there are communities of people that celebrate all different fandoms. Here are a few hot spots to consider when you are planning your next trip.
FAN EXPO Canada
Just because you can’t make it to San Diego Comicon or any of the other mega fandom events in the world doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all of the fun. FAN EXPO Canada is the largest event of its kind in Canada and the third largest Pop Culture event in North America. Around 130,000 fans descend on the city – some in their best cosplay – in August for a celebration of both obscure and mainstream Pop Culture. Meet your favourite celebrities, pick up the hottest toys, the most obscure comics, hop in to an eSports tournament, and celebrate local artist talent at the marketplace.
If you can’t make it in August, don’t worry, because FAN EXPO even does a holiday market in December!
You don’t have to wait until the fall to celebrate all things geeky in Toronto at FAN EXPO Canada. An event for fans of comics, games, cosplay, special guests and more. If you’re in town in March, be sure to check out Toronto Comicon.
If you are in Montreal in July, be sure to check out Montreal Comicon. Like other pop culture events, Montreal Comicon has meet & greets with your favourite celebrities, panel discussions, cosplay competitions, shopping, fan favourite experiences, and so much more. There is even a rousing Disney Karaoke event. While they are still securing their guests for the 2020 event, you definitely don’t want to miss it!
Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo
In April, the city in Canada best-known for its cowboys, Western heritage, and oil industry developments gets taken over by the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo and all things geeky and wonderful. Next to FAN EXPO Canada, the Calgary Expo is Canada’s second largest Pop Culture event. From panels to celebrity appearances and so much cosplay, the Calgary Expo popularity in the region also led to the development of an Edmonton Expo and Saskatoon Expo.
Video Games Expos and Esports Tournaments
Avid gamers have known all along that video games were the next big industry, but if you ever have a chance to check out a live event you should. The Enthusiast Gaming Live Expo (EGLX) is Canada’s largest celebration of video games, industry creators, and esports players. Whether you are competing in a tournament or you are there as a spectator, it’s the place to be for video games in Toronto in October.
In December, esports fans are hoping that Red Bull AdrenaLAN returns to Toronto. They just held their second event in December with multiple gaming tournaments. From prize money to panels and hackathons, it’s a gamer’s paradise.
Everyday Esports Excitement
Regardless of whether you are a gamer or a fan, you don’t have to wait for a big tournament or event to enjoy what you love most. Esports arenas and hubs are popping up all over the country. In Richmond, BC, The Gaming Stadium was the first of it’s kind in Canada. From viewing parties to opportunities to play on the main stage, there is 8,000 square feet to celebrate your love of esports. If you prefer to take in major events, they hold tournaments throughout the year.
In Montreal, the 14,000 square foot Esports Central (ESC) is Montreal’s first Esports Entertainment Complex. They have a number of different types of gaming experiences on site as well as food, drink, and even retail where you can talk to a specialist about your hardware needs.
People love to be scared – and they love to scare others. Most years, you can find a Zombie Walk to participate in right around Halloween. Don’t call it a Halloween parade, though. It is a gathering of the undead. Participants go all in with their zombie cosplay for these events. Major Zombie walks have been held in Toronto, Calgary, Montreal, and Halifax.
Whatever your geeky pleasure, Canada has you covered. You can plan your trip around a major event or find the local community where smaller things are always going on in every city.