[Editor’s note: When we ran the op-ed Whatever Happened to Comic Con? by a veteran vendor, the post went viral and got a ton of attention. MiniWorld also posts regular con review on his FB page, and with his permission we’ll be reprinting these. We’ve covered cons from many angles here, but the vendor’s view is one that most comics guests don’t follow. However it’s essential to the ongoing expansion of con world, as making money at these shows is what drives a lot of the activity. While the details of load in and out aren’t always exciting stuff, we hope that by running these The Beat will offer a window into a key element of the comic con ecosystem.]
A little behind here, (3 shows to be exact) so it will be a few days before I’m caught up.
Motor City Nightmares is a very cool family(ish) run horror convention in Novi, Michigan. It is held 2 times a year, with this particular show being the “larger” of the two.
Load in: Fantastic. The show itself was held in 2 rooms for vendors, and a hallway; along with various screening areas.
I was placed in the “side room”, which is slightly cramped, but after so many years of doing conventions, I have learned to work in any area I am given to work with. I must state also I “slid” into this convention just a few weeks before the show when some tables opened up. So any space Ii was given was appreciated.
Load in occurred thru a set of glass automatic doors which were mere feet from the convention rooms. There was no push and no panic like at huge shows to move your vehicle and get setup.
Setup ran for about 6 or so hours before the show opened. I even had time to go get lunch which almost never happens.
Load in 10/10. It does not get better.
The show began on Friday afternoon to a steady crowd, which lasted thru the night.
Horror shows tend to have “weird” hours compared to comic cons, so if you decide to vend one, please keep this in mind. Later hours are usually the norm.
Friday was good for sales, and the crowd was fun. 10/10 for 1st day.
Saturday and Sunday were just the same. The staff at MCN is top notch and fun to be around. As a vendor they treat you like family, which is always a plus. Some shows do not go the extra mile to check on the vendors. We were checked on CONSTANTLY. Was a beautiful thing.
My only real complaint is in the side room people milled about past “closing” so we could not leave right away. It’s not much to complain about, but I had to say it.
Saturday/Sunday 9.5/10. Just the issue with the people not leaving when i was hungry. haha.
Load out was the same as load in. Same glass doors. No issues. People were very polite (vendors).
If you are a horror fan, or are looking for something different, this is a great place to go. The staff is beyond friendly, and you can see some great home grown horror movies to boot. Many great vendors and people to chat with.
The Elite Beat Staff is a trained squad of ninja masters.