Anime and Cosplay

Nerd Alert: Eleven of the Best Denver Geek Events of 2018

2018 looks like it's going to be the year that geeks rule Denver.
2018 looks like it's going to be the year that geeks rule Denver. Westword
Nerds, you are far from alone. We are legion, both nationwide and right here in the Mile High. Just look at the success of Denver ComicCon, the Zombie Crawl and the 1up arcade and bar on Colfax. The geeks have inherited the earth — or at least Denver. Want more evidence? Look at the 2018 calendar of major nerd-tastic events, and let your geek flag fly.

Seriously, Dave, stop humming the theme song to Gilligan's Island. - TEAGUE BOHLEN
Seriously, Dave, stop humming the theme song to Gilligan's Island.
Teague Bohlen
Hexacon
January 19 to 21
Ramada Plaza Denver North
10 East 120th Avenue, Northglenn
Denver’s youngest geek event is the newly christened Hexacon, which was created to showcase the best and brightest of tabletop joy, including board games, role-playing, miniatures and train games. In the deep winter, why not stay indoors in a comfy hotel ballroom and break out some games with friends both old and new?

It's not the size of the dice, it's how many natural 20s it rolls. - TEAGUE BOHLEN
It's not the size of the dice, it's how many natural 20s it rolls.
Teague Bohlen
Genghis Con 41
February 15 through 18
Hyatt Regency Aurora
13200 East 14th Place, Aurora
Billed as “the king of tabletop gaming conventions,” GenghisCon certainly reigns in terms of longevity. Now in its 41st year, it’s grown to be an impressive collection of gaming, miniatures, merchandise and cosplay. When Westword covered its fortieth anniversary last year, it was clear that this was an event that brought out the fun in February, and one that's well worth a roll of the dice.

click to enlarge Who's into anime? This gal and her shoulder dragon bazooka. - DANIELLE LIRETTE
Who's into anime? This gal and her shoulder dragon bazooka.
Danielle Lirette
Colorado Anime Fest
March 23 through 25
Renaissance Denver Stapleton
3801 Quebec Street
If you like anime — we mean, if you really like anime — then Colorado Anime Fest is the con for you. Presented in association with the Colorado Dragon Boat Festival, this event combines Japanese cultural panels with martial arts, manga reading and cosplay events that last the weekend. They also sponsor a different charity each year. In 2017, the event was successful in raising $5,000 for Urban Peak, a Denver nonprofit serving homeless youth.


click to enlarge It's contractually mandated that there be a blue bear at every comic con within the city limits. - DANIELLE LIRETTE
It's contractually mandated that there be a blue bear at every comic con within the city limits.
Danielle Lirette
DINK Independent Comics Art & Expo
April 14 and 15
McNichols Building
144 West Colfax

There's a reason that we selected DINK as "Best Comic-Con" last year: because it's the best little con in town that you may not have even heard of yet. And you should, because there are some seriously cool artists and their work here, putting it out there not for the money and the fame, but for the love. (But they won't turn down the money or fame. Just saying.) Bonus: The International Championships of Dog Cosplay is set to take place this year, and it's going to be a barn-burner, worth the price of admission alone. My money's on Pug Vader.

click to enlarge Weird thing is, this dude isn't even cosplaying. - DANIELLE LIRETTE
Weird thing is, this dude isn't even cosplaying.
Danielle Lirette
StarFest Denver
April 20 through 22
Marriot and Hilton hotels
Denver Tech Center
Quick: Kirk or Picard? If you answered that question in any other way than “Huh?,” then you owe it to yourself to check out Denver’s preeminent science-fiction convention, StarFest. Covering everything from gaming to Dr. Who to Horror to comics to Klingons (and more!), the event is nearly round-the-clock and sure to represent the specific geekdom that you hold deep in your beautiful, nerdy heart.

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Teague Bohlen is a writer, novelist and professor at the University of Colorado Denver. His first novel, The Pull of the Earth, won the Colorado Book Award for Literary Fiction in 2007; his textbook The Snarktastic Guide to College Success came out in 2014. His new collection of flash fiction, Flatland, is available now.
Contact: Teague Bohlen