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We are fully in the holiday season, and there is one major event you need to have on your advent calendar: Holiday Cosplay Tampa Bay. This winter-themed comic con takes place December 10-11, 2022, at the Tampa Convention Center along the Tampa Riverwalk. The family-friendly event features anime, comics, science fiction, and gaming as well as world-class cosplay.
The event spotlights comics, video games, science fiction, fantasy, and anime as well as world-class cosplay. There also will be more than 50 hours of programming, ranging from cosplay contests and a TikTok Film Festival to back-to-back panels and a Spider Verse Prom.
“Holiday Cosplay Tampa Bay is a way for nerds to celebrate the winter holiday in a geeked-out way,” said organizer Dewey Caruthers, who also is behind St. Pete Comic Con, Anime St. Pete, and Sunshine City Scare. “We expect many attendees to add a winter holiday spin to their cosplays at Holiday Cosplay Tampa Bay.”
Big-name, nationally-known guests
The new convention showcases 20 guests that include 4 big-name voice actors and 5 nationally known comic creators as well as a roster of the nation’s top pro cosplayers. It’s an absolute feast for the eyes as guests are immersed in a world of imagination.
The voice actors at Holiday Cosplay Tampa Bay portray fan-favorite characters in popular anime, video games, and animated series.
- Anime shows such as Sonic the Hedgehog, Naruto, Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, Bleach, Attack on Titan, Fairy Tale, Hunter x Hunter, and Re:Zero.
- Video games including Arcane, Marvel’s Avengers, Genshin Impact, and Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.
- Animated series and shows like Young Justice, The Clone Wars, The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, Green Lantern: The Animated Series, Batman: Hush, and Danny Phantom.
(voice actor lineup includes Jason Spisak, Patricia Summerset, Sean Chiplock, Colleen O’Shaughnessey, Laila Berzins, and R. Bruce Elliott)
Also, the con features big-time comic artists who have worked on major Marvel and DC titles.
- Marvel titles like Spider-Man, Black Panther, Iron Man, The Avengers, X-Men, and Venom.
- DC titles such as Superman, Batman, The Flash, Green Lantern, and JLA.
- Indie titles like Star Wars, Mass Effect, and Predator.
(artists include Alex Saviuk, Sam de la Rosa, Omar Francia, Tom Nguyen, and Austin Jancowski)
Panels, contests, an idol group, and a Spider Verse prom
The con features a wide range of activities that includes more than 50 hours of panel discussions as well as 5 contests with $2,000 in cash prizes – two cosplay contests (Craftsmanship on Saturday and Runway on Sunday), a lip sync contest, a fan art competition, and a Tiktok film festival.
Also, Winter Wonder Fest Idol Festival is headlined by RESO, a Florida-based group. “Fans can watch dynamic performances up close as well as meet the real idols,” Caruthers said.
And if your Spidey-sense is tingling, it’s the Spider Verse Prom all weekend that features music, games, and prizes, hosted by Spider Verse of FL. Fans are encouraged to attend in their favorite Spiderverse characters.
The best holiday shopping in the universe for geeks and nerds
Additionally, Pro cosplayers include a dream team of 8 of the biggest names in cosplay who are nationally-recognized specialists in prop construction, armor crafting, painting, makeup, sewing, and wig-work, as well as unique costume elements like large wings and light effects. All are hosting panels that are better described as master-class instruction. And the pro cosplayers will be judging both cosplay contests: Saturday is Craftsmanship and Sunday is Runway. (lineup is Evil Ted, Tock Custom, Casey Renee Cosplay, Ginoza Costuming, PlexiCosplay, Avera Cosplay, Tiara Bree Cosplay, and Gremmcos)
Moreover, Johnny Rico from Starship Troopers will be there to get rid of any large insects. (aka live-action actor Casper Van Dien)
And the event offers the best holiday shopping in the universe and the most unique holiday photos anywhere in the multiverse. “We have nearly 200 genre-specific vendors as well as several geeked-out holiday photos spaces,” Caruthers said.
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