Having an “ACE” of a time at ACE Comic Con….see what I did there?

Disclaimer: The Fandads were provided with passes to attend ACE Comic-Con. All thoughts, opinions, and tired feet are our own. 
I’ve been going to comic-cons in Chicago since the Chicago Comic-Con days at the Ramada Inn near O’Hare and I have seen a lot of cool things. I remember seeing most of the Image team unite for the first time. That was like seeing your favorite rock stars all in one room. I remember watching as the Chicago Comic-Con became Wizard World and going to the first C2E2 and just seeing the Chicago comic conventions get bigger and bigger. 

Now, I would not call myself an expert at cons, seeing that I have yet to attend New York or the San Diego Comic-Con (one day), but I think I have been to enough to appreciate the good and the bad. With this being the first time that ACE Comic-Con came to Chicago, I had some reservations about a new con, but what I saw and experienced pleasantly surprised me. 
When I saw the news about a new comic convention being started and then started seeing the guests that they were getting, I started saying to myself, “I hope this comes to Chicago!” When ACE Comic-Con Midwest was announced, I was excited and started thinking to myself, “I need to start saving money to go!” Seeing the line up of the actors that were coming to Chicago was pretty mindblowing. Some of the other cons had some big names attend, but to have Captain America, Loki, Scarlet Witch, and Domino all in the same room, now that was something. 
Courtesy of ACE Universe 
I was lucky enough to attend all three days at the con. Usually, due to my children’s weekend activities, I get to attend a day or two days. This time I was able to attend all three days and I think that made me really appreciate the convention. Here’s why I say that; the first day it was pretty empty and it felt like the first C2E2, there was a lot of empty space and you could walk the entire floor in about 10 minutes. I felt like the hype was too much for what I saw. I knew that this was only the first day, but I still was underwhelmed. It was nice to be able to move around without bumping into people and really appreciate what the vendors had to offer. 
One of the highlights of the first day was seeing Brian Posehn perform standup and meet him afterward for a picture and quick autograph. I would love to hang out with him and a few other geek dads and talk about fatherhood and geek culture and have someone record it, but that will be something that I have to add to my bucket list one day. 
Day two was a completely different beast than day one. I think it was due to the Avenger/Guardians panel that I was lucky to attend. It was pretty funny to see Chris Evans squirm as he tried to answer questions and not give away any spoilers. Lee Pace had some great answers, especially when he stated the one moment that was very significant in his life, and Karen Gillian has made me want to watch Barry London again. You can watch the full panel below courtesy of ACE Universe. 
Day three was a family day for me. Sundays are family days at conventions where they have activities for children or costume contests and ACE had what they called Kids Costume Cavalcade. My son participated in this while wearing his Star Wars X-Wing pilot uniform. It was fun seeing all of the kids take their turns walking to the center of the stage, pose for a second or two and then walk off the stage and get a comic book just for participating. I thought that was pretty cool that all of the children got something for participating. My son walked to the center of the stage, flexed his muscles and walked off and got his comic like a boss! 
While walking around with my family, my children and I had fun taking pictures with all of the cosplayers and getting ideas of what we can dress up for Halloween. We took in the Tom Hiddleston and Elizabeth Olsen interview and that was great watching these two actors interview each other and share their insight into the Marvel Universe. It was kind of like eavesdropping while they were just having a chat about movies and making movies. It was a cool way to see a panel being done and it would be interesting to see other pairs of actors do the same thing. 
Every comic-con has its pros and cons and here are a few about ACE Comic-Con Midwest.
  • The Prices: Being a parent and having my son’s medical bills to pay I try to be frugal at events like this. As much as we would have loved to take pictures with some of the celebrities the prices were a little too much for me. I understand that they have to pay the staff, artists, and guest, but the three-day pass seemed a little too pricey for what was offered. 
  • The Vendors: There were not many vendors to choose from…which I guess it is a good thing because it kept me from spending a lot of money. 
  • The Size: I get that this was the first year and there was room for a few more vendors, but ACE can learn from this and probably expand the next time they swing through Chicago.
  • The Guest: I do not know if we will get Captain America, Loki and the like in Chicago again, but for their first event in Chicago, ACE did not pull any punches. With this type of caliber actors being guest for the first show, I can not wait to see who they bring in next year. 
  • The Vendors: Yeah, I know I put it as a con, but the vendors that were on hand had some pretty reasonable prices for the merchandise that they were selling. Plus, throw in Wild Bills Soda and you can guarantee that everyone will take advantage of the free refills all day. 
  • The Atmosphere: Everyone at the con was very friendly and was willing to help you out the best that they can. I am in a group specifically for this convention and hearing the stories about how the staff went above and beyond to accommodate some of the attendees is awesome to hear. I got a quick moment to talk to Gareb Shamus, who is the co-founder of ACE, and I know the man was busy with running the convention, but he still took some time to talk to me. I thought that was pretty cool!
I really enjoyed myself at ACE Comic-Con this year and I am interested to see how it will grow from here. It is nice to have another comic convention in the city because it will make the other shows step up their game and hopefully give the Chicago fans better conventions to attend.

You can see all of the pictures that we did not post here on our Instagram page and share with us below what you thought of the show and what your favorite moment was. 

Thanks for reading. 
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