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Comicpalooza 2014 was FANTABULOUS!!! Doing Conventions on the Cheap…

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I was worried that since this was my third Comicpalooza experience, it wouldn’t be as awesome.  I was sooooooo wrong, yay!!!

People Watching

As always, the people watching was just amazing!  This year I went costumed all 3 days I attended (Friday-Sunday), and it was fun to be part of the crazy atmosphere.  😀

On Friday, I was a sexy pirate.  I listed out all of my costume costs earlier this week, but long post summarized, the pirate costume was free for me since I either had what I needed or borrowed it from friends.  How perfect is that hat, right?!  That was from my friend and roommate, H.  I also came across some other fun outfits that first day:

Pirate Costume - $0
Yay for push-up bras and corsets! 😉
Scottish Storm Troopers
So, they are going commando for sure…
Ninjette Turtles
These ladies were awesome, and one of them is REALLY pregnant. Great angle, right?!
Car from Supernatural
For you Supernatural fans – recognize this? 🙂
Supernatural Weapons
And here is the arsenal in the back…

On Saturday, I attended as The Black Widow ($55 of stuff – mainly a $28 cat suit and $15 Flexees, which are affordable Spanx).  Two of my friends were S.H.I.E.L.D agents and the other one used our favorite face painter, Shandi, to get in the spirit (picture further below).  We made a kick butt group.  Another friend went as Dr. Who (the 10th Doctor).  I also had to stop in my tracks at a few other people’s exciting costumes:

Black Widow Costume - $55
I’m not Scarlett Johansson, but it was still fun playing dress up! 😀
The Black Widow and Doctor Who
Yes, that is my friend pointing out my best weapons… 😉
Mystique and Night Crawler
This couple was BAD ASS!
Dalek vs Soldier
The Black Widow and S.H.I.E.L.D.
This is Isabelle, me, and Ivy as the best of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Sunday was the last day I was going to be able to make it (it was open Monday too but I had to skip that day).  That said, I wore a fun Catwoman costume (same main things as The Black Widow plus a $13 cowl) and made sure to have a day to remember!  I spent most of the day with Ivy and Isabelle and most of the evening with B, aka Doctor Who.  It’s nice to have friends as geektastic as me!  😉  Here were some highlights:

Cat Woman Costume - $13
This was the most popular costume of the weekend…I wonder why…
Real Cop
Yes, that is a real cop for the convention who was cool the whole weekend.
Gambit, Jubilee, and the Wolverine – HOW COOL!


I’ll admit it, I didn’t go to as many sessions as I usually do.  It was fun to wander around in my costumes, meet new people, and have my picture taken with all sorts of people.  Heck, I spent 20 minutes playing with children while we waited in lines – they’d leave and say in their cutest voices, “Bye, bye Catwoman.  Thank you.”  So freaking adorable.

Oh, side track, here’s a shout out to the great mom that dressed up her daughter as Wash’s dinosaur from Serenity.  Even if the kid did think she was actually Godzilla…

But I did make it to some fun talks.  Here were my favorites:

  • Steam Punk

The two steam punk sessions that I attended were truly interesting.  My friend, Anne, was even won over to the point that we’ll be getting her into a steam punk costume next year, woot!  The speakers were extremely welcoming and steam punk as a hobby seems all inclusive.

In one session, Ben Hamby drew all of us in with his hilarious stories of being on the road.  Let me just say that he once bribed his was into Germany with Cadbury chocolate (his German accent is laugh-out-loud hilarious).  He also smart-assed his way past the Asian mafia in New York.  Oh, and just ask him about his “Jason” story – hahaha.  He terrorized his poor girl friend on a midnight drive, some on purpose, and a little just on accident.  His sense of humor was contagious and left us all feeling amazing Friday night.

  • John Barrowman and Carole Barrowman

If you’ve seen the newer seasons of Doctor Who, Torchwood, or Arrow, then you know John Barrowman.  His older sister, Carole, is extremely funny and she seemed genuinely sweet.  Their talk was laugh-until-you-cry funny at some points.

My only issue was when John was berating the poor person running the presentation screen.  I understand that screw-ups are annoying, but he became a bully at one point.  Ivy and Isabelle actually got to meet him in person to take official photos, and he apparently is way nicer than he came off to me.  I hope so.  I respect his position as an advocate for gay rights and open-mindedness in general, so I am hoping he is generally a good person too.  🙂

Geek Fun Fact – John bought the dalek that killed him the first time in the new seasons of Doctor Who.  It’s set up in his front hall.  The voice actor of the dalek also taped a bunch of phrases for John, so it can freak out little kids at Halloween or it can be fantabulous before dinner parties.  That just makes me giggle.

  • Cary Elwes

I want to invite Cary to one of our potlucks – he is that kind of guy.  He was witty, humorous, and kind.  He doesn’t take offense (like some actors do) with being associated with their most popular movie all of the time (The Princess Bride).  He also went out of his way to make his fans feel appreciated.

My favorite story of the whole convention was about Andre the Giant.  Andre spent two days convincing the very young Cary Elwes to try out his ATV.  When Cary, young and stupid, finally gave in, he drove a few feet, hit a rock, and smashed his big toe.  It was so very broken.  He was so scared that he would be fired that he tried to keep it a secret from the director (Rob Reiner).  Obviously,  Rob knew.  He chided Cary for not being straight-forward.  To this day, Cary says that the lesson he learned was to always be honest.  Trust me, Cary tells this story WAY better than me.  I highly suggest buying the book that they have coming out in October about the behind-the-scenes of The Princess Bride, As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride.  (Hey Cary – I plugged your book – that’s how awesome I think you are!)

He also covered a bunch about his other roles in Psych, Leverage, Robin Hood: Men in Tights, and a bunch of other roles.  It sounds like wherever he is working is a set that is having a good time.

Music and DANCING

Yep, you put a Catwoman mask on me, and I dance.  🙂  Specifically, there was an area on the third floor where they were playing all sorts of music after the main part of Sunday wrapped up.  I ended up dancing Ice, Ice Baby with a Batman and did The Time Warp with Doctor Who.

We then hit a nearby bar for a quick drink and came back to listen to two live bands.  The Dead Rabbits are an Irish rock band that invited all of the costumed listeners up on stage for their final song.  At one point, Catwoman was moshing next to the main guitarist, a Frozen princess, and Doctor Who!  Yep, I apparently do take advantage of lowered inhibitions when no one can tell who I am, LOL.  TONS of fun!!!  But I did pay the price for dancing in those boots…I was pretty sore for 2 days…

The last show of the night was James Marsters at 10:30pm performing his own music (think Spike the vampire in Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel).  I heard that it burned his head on a regular basis to have his hair bleached as much as it was for that part.  Overall, he has a really smooth voice (he’s American, not British, just in case you didn’t know – I didn’t…).  His songs are about his own personal stories of his childhood, his first marriage, falling in love with his second, yet way younger, wife, and other musings like that.  We ended up having to leave early simply since B and I were exhausted.  I had been dressed as Catwoman for more than 14 hours at that point.  Everything hurt and I needed my bed.

James Marsters
Here’s James Marsters with his best acoustic numbers Sunday night.

Comicpalooza 2014 Total Cost

  • 4 Day Admission Ticket – $35
  • Costumes – $70
  • Food (we packed sandwiches, only ate at a café twice, and I paid for my $5 cocktail) – $20
  • Commissioned Picture – $15
Four Friends
The girls – Isabelle, Crystal, Anne, and Ivy
Commissioned Drawing
This is what we had commissioned using the picture above. Honestly, it’s funnier than it is good…I mean, Ivy now looks like a dude. And Isabelle is mad at us, lol.
  • Parking – $32
  • Total Cost – $172

TOTALLY WORTH EVERY PENNY!!!  I am already planning on adding a leg holster and fake gun for next year.  I am shooting for Anne Hathaway as Catwoman but with the full cowl.

Have you been to a convention or event that was just amazingly worth it?!  Comicpalooza, FinCon, the Board Game Geek Convention, and Lone Star Game Fest are our personal favorites.

FYI:  I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 per year.  I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $70,000-$90,000 through blogging, professional pet sitting, hubby's reffing, and our rental home.  If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you, PLUS a free custom header banner from me!).  Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!
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