Geekery might be mainstream now, but it has always depended on dedicated communities of fanatics. There’s no better place to find your people than one of these iconic geek conventions.
1. IndieCade (Los Angeles, CA)
This niche festival is for people who are passionate about designing and playing independent games. Attendees get to preview new indie games, experience workshops, and interact with indie game creators. IndieCade puts a spotlight on lesser-known games and the active community that surrounds indie gaming.
2. San Diego Comic-Con International (San Diego, CA)
Founded in 1970, this massive four-day event is known to draw directors, genre authors, screenwriters, producers and more big names in the world of comics. It unites fans and creators with the big companies that make it all happen.
3. Salt Lake Comic Con (Salt Lake City, UT)
Utah’s largest convention is a star-studded celebration of all things sci-fi and fantasy geek. There is no shortage of celebrity guests–Christopher Lloyd, Chris Evans, and Val Kilmer have attended, for example. But there is also a plethora of panels, parties, and workshops.
4. PAX West (Seattle, WA)
Originally named “Penny Arcade Expo,” PAX is for gamer geeks of all stripes: video gamers, tabletop gamers, and arcade gamers. Major game developers and industry insiders show up to share their secrets. Throughout the convention, there are gaming tournaments and free play video game areas.
5. Anime Expo (Los Angeles, CA)
This is the largest anime convention in North America. The four-day festival is packed with over 800 hours of programming for anime enthusiasts. There are contests, concerts and performances, and of course, expert-level cosplay. Los Angeles is one of the most popular travel destinations on the west coast, so start planning your trip early to make the most of Anime Expo.
6. GeekGirlCon (Seattle, WA)
Women in STEM, gaming, and comics unite during this two-day convention. Attendees experience gaming workshops, panels led by industry experts, a DIY science zone, and much more.
7. Dragon Con (Atlanta, GA)
Dragon Con is a multi-media, multi-genre geek fest that’s all over the map. All manner of nerds, DJs, puppeteers, wrestlers, burlesque performers, and others comprise the proudly eclectic crowd.
8. Comicpalooza (Houston, TX)
As the biggest comic-based convention in the South, Comicpalooza does not disappoint. It’s a mecca for comic books, gear, and merch, and a magnet for geeks’ favorite celebrities. Chuck Norris and the Power Rangers cast have attended.
9. Gen Con (Indianapolis, IN)
This four-day convention has been going strong since 1968. It was founded to celebrate analog gaming: card games, board games, tabletop RPGs, etc. Hundreds of new games debut at Gen Con every year.
10. New York Comic Con (New York City, NY)
New York Comic Con is a tremendous pop culture event. Attendance has grown every year since the convention began in 2006. Past guests include Stan Lee, Bill Nye, Patrick Stewart, Lucy Liu, and many more.
One of the best parts of being a nerd is the bond you share with other nerds. In elaborate cosplay, deep in a tabletop tournament, or sitting beside you at a panel–you’ll find them all at a convention. In the meanwhile though, check out our homepage for some more geeky content.