PopLurker would like to thank the Edmonton Collector Con for providing us with Press Passes in exchange for event coverage.
One would think having lived in Calgary for the past 12 years that I would’ve made my way to our neighboring city to the north and Alberta’s capital city, Edmonton by now.
But, truth be told I either haven’t found the time or the reason to make that three hour trek…until now.
A few months ago, an event popped up in my Facebook feed touting itself as Alberta’s premier toy and comic book convention, showcasing both the vintage and the new in pop culture collectibles.
Toys?! Comics?! Road trip?! Sign me up!
Edmonton Collector Con was created by the minds behind the old Edmonton Collectible Toy and Comic Show and the Edmonton Comic and Entertainment Expo (which is the Northern Alberta version of the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo that PopLurker covered last April) and has been ongoing since 2014.
My girlfriend and I fueled up the car and hit the road for Edmonton to see what this small gathering of toy and comic enthusiasts was all about. Small becomes an important detail which we’ll get to in just a bit.
The event was located at the Italian Cultural Center in an industrial area of the northern end of the city and as soon as we walked into the main hall of the center we were greeted with all the toys in the freakin’ room!
Being in a small venue it certainly wasn’t difficult for us to walk right in, introduce ourselves and make our way from the front lobby into the main hall.
Anything a toy enthusiast both new and old may be interested in was there for the viewing and the purchasing from vintage Masters of the Universe and Transformers, to the standard Funko Pop fare as well as rows of comic books to a particular Headmasters Transformers that may or may not have been out of my price range.
Of course while I was there representing PopLurker to get that sweet coverage, there was no way I was walking out empty-handed and found a G1 Starscream; which I was able to bargain the price down for, as well as a G1 Dinobot Swoop and Leech of the Evil Horde that I haven’t seen since junior high.
There was no shortage of enthusiasm among the convention dwellers. Energy levels were high, and the buying, selling and bartering was on full display at this small and quaint event. I mentioned small would become important as this article progressed, didn’t I?
There’s a difference between small and cozy and small and cramped. If I have any legitimate gripe with the show it’s that it was very close quarters throughout, in fact a little too close.
Judging from photos on their social media pages, Edmonton Collector Con has been held at larger venues and has even hosted guests from Mark Bellomo to John de Lancie; better known as Q to Star Trek: The Next Generation fans at past events, and it could have benefited by being at a larger venue this time as well. The event’s doors had only been open for a half hour and one of the patrons exclaimed just how cramped and busy it already was, and this was with another 5+ hours to go.
Convention dwellers were constantly bumping into each other and shimmying past one another down the halls as well as occasionally bumping into and knocking over displays while peeking over each other’s shoulders to get a better look at whichever toys piqued their interest.
Hopefully for future shows the staff will implement wider aisle ways for those of us on the toy hunt to navigate through, or book a bigger room or even multiple rooms to facilitate the number of toy and pop culture enthusiasts who are clearly eager to take part in the show.
Perhaps extending the show from one day to two would be a better means of managing floor traffic as well. This is just me spit balling off the top of my head, but I wouldn’t be surprised if some of the other attendee’s on Sunday felt the same way, and I’m positive those behind Edmonton Collector Con have this in mind as well.
As a whole I enjoyed going on the prowl for a piece of childhood nostalgia amongst like-minded toy and comic nerds and I’m looking forward to seeing what future shows will have to offer and I’m already planning to attend the next show on June 9.
With any luck and some saving between now and then, that Tomy Fortress Maximus will make the three hour ride back to Calgary with me.
PopLurker’s Edmonton Collector Con Image Gallery: