The fourth annual Great Geekfest was held at the main branch of the Delaware County District Library Saturday and was filled with role-playing games, wizard rock and roll, and a cosplay competition.
Powell Branch Manager Mandy Henning, who organized the event, said last week she wanted to create a free event for the community to experience a comic convention without having to go to a big convention.
The event featured a concert by Tonks and the Aurors, a Harry Potter-themed rock band, along with a variety of local artists and vendors, arcade games, nine dungeons and dragons games, mini-figure paintings, and four different cosplay competitions.
Attendees took photos with one another in costume and cheered each other on during the cosplay competitions, which had categories for staff, children, teens, and adults.
One of the runners-up in the teen cosplay competition was Delaware resident Tony Rodriguez, 13, who came dressed as Dustin from “Stranger Things,” complete with a hat, headset and walkie-talkie. He said the whole costume took him about three weeks to put together.
“Dustin is super crazy,” Rodriguez said. “He inspires me so much. That’s totally me.”
Rodriguez said other attendees had been coming up to him all day asking to take pictures with him.
“I enjoy it,” Rodriguez said. “It lets me express my inner self and be who I want. I like people noticing who I am.”
Many cosplays were from popular anime, films or TV shows, but Keith Ridley, 17, of Delaware, was the only person cosplaying a character from a podcast after she came dressed as the wizard Taako from the role-playing podcast “The Adventure Zone.” Ridley’s cosplay included a hat, wig, custom-made cape, and a light-up umbrella. She said it took her two weeks to make the outfit.
Ridley won first place in the teen category of the competition, which came as a shock to her.
“I was really surprised,” she said. “It’s the first time I’ve won … I’ve entered every year. I love seeing all the costumes, and I like that it’s local.”
One of the most unique cosplays was worn by Jonathan Peterson, 16, of Delaware, who came dressed as a gumball machine. Peterson’s costume involved him essentially wearing a plastic bag filled with a variety of colored balloons.
“I finished this two days ago,” Peterson laughed, adding he enjoyed seeing people react to his outfit. “It’s been really cool. These are the people I like to hang out with.”
The overall winner of the competition was Ostrander teen Xavier Clark, 15, and his cosplay of Overhaul from the anime “My Hero Academia.” Clark said he started working on his cosplay in January, but he procrastinated and only finished it a few weeks ago.
Clark said he bought the jacket and sewed on fur to the top, bought fake contact lenses to change his eye color, and used acrylic paint to change the color of one of his hands to match the character. Clark won first place at last year’s competition for a different “My Hero Academia” character. Both years, however, Clark said he thought there were better cosplays.
“I feel like I didn’t deserve it,” he said.
Clark is already looking forward to next year’s competition, but he’s no sure yet what character he will be cosplaying as.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.