Wizard World Des Moines – It’s a Wrap

Jaxson and I attended the Saturday show and it was a blast.

We woke up early and drove in from Omaha, stopping by Burger King for some grub and getting outta Dodge.

The drive was only a couple hours long and nothing but rain… there was some excitement when a State Trooper flipped his lights and came up on us like a bat outta hell. I kept my cool, got behind a semi on my right and he pulled the semi over ahead of us. Not gonna lie, I was a bit concerned… Heart rate up, but that was enough to keep my going the rest of the way.

We arrived at our hotel, just a block or two away from the event center to be greeted by the entries blocked by cars and signs saying guest parking only, violators will be towed… I couldn’t for the life of me figure out just how guest were supposed to get in… So Jaxson and I drove around the block and boom, there was a gap just large enough for us to get through and we were in. We got parked, dropped stuff at our room and off we went to the Iowa Event Center.

On our way over, Jaxson and I talked about the event and I had been trying to imagine what we would encounter upon getting into the event center. I had wild expectations of a line wrapped around the building and people doing cosplay and seeing all sorts of cool costumes. We were also excited to see Stan Lee and I was personally on a mission to meet John Cusack and get his auto. As a fan of his, I was looking forward to meeting him… I had a lot of questions swirling in my noggin that I would ask if I had a chance…

There was no line wrapped around the building and there was minimal cosplay but what we did see were from extremes on the spectrum, you had halloween costumes and then you had the cosplayers that really did it up and I enjoyed those. One thing I like about these cosplayers is the willingness to go all out, dressing and playing it up like the character they are portraying. It didn’t matter your body type, I think most people were just in awe of the effort and their ability to buy in and go for it. I applaud all of them.

I was very impressed, once we got in line, to be greeted by the CEO of Wizard World, John Maatta. He was awesome. He took the time to stop and shake the hand of all of the attendees and letting them know that we could call him, his number was on a poster in the event, should we find anything we didn’t like or if we needed his assistance. How cool is that. I have never seen this happen before and I think it should happen at every event now… ha.

Once in we were greeted by a few cosplayers, you can see the video here of our walkaround the event.

After the video, we did another walk through and stopped by some of the vendors to grab a couple fidget spinners, some dungeons and dragons dice and then it was on to what Jaxson was drawn to once we saw it… the Gaming area. He signed up to play in the free Smash Bros. tournament for a chance to win $100. He played it out, but lost in the double elimination rounds. He said it was fun and that had he known he would have played that game more before the event. We don’t have the system or the game mind you… I was glad he gave it a shot though. He played games there as a lead up to the tournament and got his fix in before I pulled him away to check things out again.

In all I think we did about 13 – 14 laps around the entire event getting photos of Jaxson with some cosplayers. Photos below and another video of the mainstage this time with some dance/something… Catwoman was in a suspended ring… I don’t know… check the video out too.

Oh and the auto area was interesting…

On my mission to meet John Cusack, I was curious to see that lines weren’t really forming anywhere. I noticed around 11:30a or so that John Cusack was at his booth and I made my way there. I was able to quickly search through the available photos for one that I liked, got his auto, shook his hand and the question I had queued up for him? Are you still kickboxing?… lol. I was trying to think of questions he may not get often. I thought about asking him about the Cubs World Series win, you think I would since this is a sports card site… He even had a Cubs hat on… Nope, I went for something not obvious…

Yes by the way, he says he still kickboxes.

We did catch a glimpse of Stan Lee as well but he was surrounded by handlers all loading him up with photos that he signed like a machine and just being able to see the man was cool. Maybe someday we will be able to catch him again and get to shake his hand.

Anyway, a great show, hope you enjoy the photos/videos.

Ryan