Houston’s answer to Comic-Con won’t be happening anytime soon.
The organizers behind the pop-culture convention known as Comicpalooza announced on March 26 that this year’s festivities, which were supposed to take place on Memorial Day Weekend at George R. Brown Convention Center, are canceled.
Needless to say, this decision was made due to ever-growing concerns regarding COVID-19 which, as of March 26, has affected at least 68,534 people nationwide and caused at least 990 deaths, according to a New York Times database.
“Canceling was a difficult decision made in the face of extraordinary circumstances,” said Michael Heckman, president of Comicpalooza and senior vice president of Houston First Corporation, in a statement, “but we’ve exhausted every feasible option, and given the uncertainties this is the best path forward. We are, however, turning our efforts towards next year’s Comicpalooza and creating a superior fan experience.”
This will be the first time since its inception in 2008 the annual event has not occurred. This year, the festival was expected to draw more than 50,000 attendees and more than 600 merchants. All ticket buyers and exhibitors who have already registered for this year will receive full refunds, with no action required from the purchaser.
“Not only does this decision impact the fans, it also affects the vendors who depend on Comicpalooza, and the hospitality community who serve the high volume of visitors attending from around the country,” added Tom Segesta, chairman of the board, Greater Houston Conventions and Visitor’s Bureau. “The health and safety of everyone involved in this wonderful event is our highest priority. We are so thankful to all of the event partners and loyal fans and look forward to making next year’s convention even bigger and better.”
Comicpalooza is now expected to return to Houston on May 21-23, 2021. At the moment, management is working on several ways to highlight the artists and dealers who sell their merchandise at the show, in an attempt to offset the unfortunate burden caused by the cancelation.
For more information, visit the official Comicpalooza website.