What Was Your First Comic Book Convention?
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106 posts in this topic

21 hours ago, Larryw7 said:

The first one I went to was the Creation Convention on Kennedy Blvd in Philly in 1978. I was 12, and I took the El into the city. It was Labor Day Weekend, and smoldering hot. When I went to the hotel and found the con room, it wasn't air conditioned and half of the dealers had taken their shirts off because of the heat.

Sparkle City dominated the room. I think they were the biggest dealers at the time. I snagged low grade copies of Batman 29 and Star Spangled 91. Total cost 35 bucks which seemed like a lot. Jay Maybruck was there and seemed friendly. Sparkle had lots of the hot books of the time, like Reform School Girl, loads of GGA books, Blood is the Harvest and The Devil Would Talk, all at prices WAY over the OSPG. I think they created the market for those books. I went to every Creation con until they stopped having them.

I think Creation Con 1984 was my second or third convention. I still have the Brochure because Archie Goodwin was there and I didn't have a comic for him to sign at the time so he signed one of those for me. 

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23 minutes ago, N e r V said:

As a fan the 1974 San Diego Comic Con  at the El Cortez Hotel.

As a dealer the 1989 San Diego Comic Con at the performing arts center. The Batman craze was in full swing and I bought I believe my second copy of Detective Comics #27 that year...

I bought my Flash #1 at that 1974 show. El Cortez...:x

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On 9/1/2020 at 6:01 PM, Robot Man said:

Wow, quite the ride. Not many people can say that. I know a few dealers set up at every one just up until a few years ago but you got them beat. My first was the 3rd one and I only missed one due to a motorcycle accident when I was hospitalized and one when I had to go to my father in law's funeral. I quit about 5 years ago. I really missed it at first but realized that it just wasn't the same show for me. I hope you hit everyone until you are dead or un-able!

I hope to keep going even if I'm wheeled in on a gurney with an IV in my arm :bigsmile:.  I really like it, even with the huge crowds and the dwindling old comic book presence. Every couple of years a long-time dealer will drop out because of the hassle and expense but there are still a lot of comics to be found and I enjoy the panels too. My wife says it's like going to Disneyland four days in a row and she runs out of steam but I don't. It's energizing for me.

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1979 New York Comic Art Convention at the New York Statler Hilton Hotel (now the Penn Hotel).  I knew about the show from an advertisement in an ASM comic from the Spring of '79.   I showed the ad to my dad and begged.  My dad took me and my brother, we flew in from Miami (my dad worked for an airline so the airfare was comped; otherwise, we couldn't have afforded air travel in those days) and stayed in my aunt's apartment along Queen's Boulevard in Elmhurst.  The Convention was incredible.  I picked up a Captain America 100 which i still have.  I still remember the ballroom with wall-to-wall dealers.  Breathtaking.  My only regret is not having photos of any sort.  If anyone has photos of the '79 show, i would love to see them.

Never met the man, but a big thank you to Phil Seuling (RIP) who was architect of these big New York cons of the 1970s that got the train rolling.

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There are other people who can offer you a selection of comics and posters, but can they offer you arrogance?”  

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My first convention was the 1996 San Diego Comic-Con (see program attached). The Con was wonderful in those days, big enough to have everything, but not unmanageable and still relatively affordable. I got Stan Lee to sign a few Marvel comics, Dave Gibbons drew a Rorschach caricature in my graphic novel of The Watchmen, and science fiction author David Brin signed one of his books for me. Saw a copy of Action #1 for the first time at the Metropolis booth. Really a great time!

 

San Diego Comic-Con 1996 Prigram.jpg

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On 9/1/2020 at 5:33 PM, thecollectron said:

I've gone to plenty of comic conventions over the years but my first was San Diego Comic-Con #1 (or #0 depending on how you count them). A one-day show in March 1970 at the U.S. Grant Hotel. It was in a basement room and if I recall correctly, when it was time to show a movie they just dimmed the lights on one side of the room and projected it while the comic book wheeling and dealing continued. It was called San Diego's Golden State Comic-Con back then and the organizers started with that one-day show to raise funds for a three-day show in August, and over the years it thrived and continued to mutate into Comic-Con International: San Diego. I've been going ever since it started. Each year I provide my family members with the SDCC "blackout dates", joking (but not really) that I'm not available for vacation trips on those days, no family reunions, and no one can get married or buried.  I still look forward to it every year and was extremely bummed that it was canceled this year. I watched some of the panels on-line, which was very cool of SDCC to provide, but of course it's not the same as being there. I enjoy comic conventions and I hope it's safe to have them in 2021.

 

 

I Wasn't there, but I sure envy you getting to participate in such a seminal event in comic book history! Attached is the program for the August show.

San Diego Comic-Con 1970.jpg

San Diego Comic-Con Program 1970.jpg

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I recently got in touch with Bernie Bubnis, who was one of the main organizers of the first ever comic book convention, the 1964 New York Comicon. Bernie was only 16 years old when he accomplished this feat, along with his friends Ron Fradkin, Art Tripp and Ethan Roberts. Professional guests were Steve Ditko, "Fabulous" Flo Steinberg (Stan Lee's secretary), Marvel intern David Twedt and Tom Gill (artist on the Lone Ranger for Dell and Gold Key). Dealers like Bill Thailing, Phil Seuling, Howard Rogofsky, Malcolm Willets, and others came from as far away as California to attend the convention. Bernie produced a program of the convention to send to attendees after the event (see attached). Comic fandom historian J. Ballmann wrote a book on the convention in 2016 (see attached). Bernie is still going strong and has a remarkable memory for early fandom events. It's great that he is so open and willing to talk about the events of those early days, which would otherwise be lost to present day collectors.

1964 New York Comicon Booklet 1.jpg

1964 New York Comicon Book.jpg

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3 minutes ago, Turtle said:

I'm a newbie by all accounts it seems. 

My first comic con was Wizard World Texas in 2008.  I was living in Texas at the time and it was about 30 minutes from my house.  The highlight of the show for me was John Cassaday.  I was reading his run on Astonishing X-Men at the time (which I don't think had quite finished by that point).

He had such a long line that they positioned him out in the hallway outside of the show floor in order to control the crowd of people.  We were waiting in line for an hour or so and they capped the line a little bit behind us.  The guy in front of us had a VERY large stack of books to be signed and he was very chatty.  When that guy was done, some handlers pulled John away for a scheduled panel that he was already running a few minutes late for.  There were only a few of us left in line.  As he's getting pulled away, John looks at the few of us still in line and shouts "I'll be back in an hour.  If you're still here, I'll do sketches!".  

When he returned, he seemed genuinely flattered that we'd wait for him and happily did a few quick sketches for us.  Here's one that I consider a memento of not only my first con, but also my first time interacting with CGC Signature Series stuff in person (shout out to Frank who still helps CGC out at shows from time to time).  The book evokes a lot of positive memories.  :cloud9:

1159591880_AstonishingX-Men_01SS.thumb.JPG.cf8a73aefe41f9702e014fb8cc09a356.JPG

Wow, that's a awesome story and lesson in patience, kindness and cheerful generosity! Thanks for Sharing :)  

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3 hours ago, Turtle said:

I'm a newbie by all accounts it seems. 

My first comic con was Wizard World Texas in 2008.  I was living in Texas at the time and it was about 30 minutes from my house.  The highlight of the show for me was John Cassaday.  I was reading his run on Astonishing X-Men at the time (which I don't think had quite finished by that point).

He had such a long line that they positioned him out in the hallway outside of the show floor in order to control the crowd of people.  We were waiting in line for an hour or so and they capped the line a little bit behind us.  The guy in front of us had a VERY large stack of books to be signed and he was very chatty.  When that guy was done, some handlers pulled John away for a scheduled panel that he was already running a few minutes late for.  There were only a few of us left in line.  As he's getting pulled away, John looks at the few of us still in line and shouts "I'll be back in an hour.  If you're still here, I'll do sketches!".  

When he returned, he seemed genuinely flattered that we'd wait for him and happily did a few quick sketches for us.  Here's one that I consider a memento of not only my first con, but also my first time interacting with CGC Signature Series stuff in person (shout out to Frank who still helps CGC out at shows from time to time).  The book evokes a lot of positive memories.  :cloud9:

1159591880_AstonishingX-Men_01SS.thumb.JPG.cf8a73aefe41f9702e014fb8cc09a356.JPG

Awesome story.  I'm actually reading this run right now and am thoroughly enjoying it.  I think John Cassaday (Star Wars, Planetary) doesn't get enough love.

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Was just getting back into the hobby I hadn’t touched for 20 years since I was a kid. Went to a small NovaCon or something in a firehouse in Northern VA at the beginning of 2015.  Bunch of dealers and 1 artist named Herb Trimpe. Didn’t know who he was and was too nervous talking to artists and sounding stupid so walked by his table twice but didn’t stop. Was real nice though and seemed happy to meet with people. Tried learning from that missed opportunity and actually making myself be more outgoing to talk to artists but usually still get pretty nervous. 

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The first one I ever went to was around 75 or 76 in Wichita Kansas. I was 11 or 12 at the time. My mom dropped me and my brother off and said she would be back in a couple hours to pick us up. I am not sure the name of it but I know it was at a Holiday Inn on highway 54.        
I was really into the Fantastic Four and would buy any book with the FF in it. I remember looking thru some boxes when I come across a Strange Tales 114 , Captain America vs the Human Torch. It was so cool I had never seen this book before. I bought it for the outrageous price of $3.00. I few minutes later a man came up to me and ask if I had just bought a Strange Tales 114 . I said yes and he ask if he could see it.  He had gone to that show to look for that specific book. He had a brief case with him and opens it up to pull out his copy. Which wasn’t as nice as the copy I bought. He then pulled out a copy of Strange Tales 118 and said I will trade you these 2 books plus a $1.50 for yours. I ended up doing the deal but never really felt good about it. He was a guy about 10 years older than me and felt intimidated. The guy was Roger Hill. I ran into him about 20 years ago and reminded him about our trade. He then looks at me and says that’s the nicest copy he had ever seen and still had it. Anyway sorry about the long post. Here are the 2 books from the trade and a third I picked up while I was there.

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33 minutes ago, jayhawker said:

The first one I ever went to was around 75 or 76 in Wichita Kansas. I was 11 or 12 at the time. My mom dropped me and my brother off and said she would be back in a couple hours to pick us up. I am not sure the name of it but I know it was at a Holiday Inn on highway 54.        
I was really into the Fantastic Four and would buy any book with the FF in it. I remember looking thru some boxes when I come across a Strange Tales 114 , Captain America vs the Human Torch. It was so cool I had never seen this book before. I bought it for the outrageous price of $3.00. I few minutes later a man came up to me and ask if I had just bought a Strange Tales 114 . I said yes and he ask if he could see it.  He had gone to that show to look for that specific book. He had a brief case with him and opens it up to pull out his copy. Which wasn’t as nice as the copy I bought. He then pulled out a copy of Strange Tales 118 and said I will trade you these 2 books plus a $1.50 for yours. I ended up doing the deal but never really felt good about it. He was a guy about 10 years older than me and felt intimidated. The guy was Roger Hill. I ran into him about 20 years ago and reminded him about our trade. He then looks at me and says that’s the nicest copy he had ever seen and still had it. Anyway sorry about the long post. Here are the 2 books from the trade and a third I picked up while I was there.imageproxy.php?img=&key=c846ed7a40be7761

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image.jpg

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Holy smokes.. what a world it was back then to casually  purchase silver age gems 

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