WhidbeyCon draws crowds for cosplay event

There were jawas, stormtroopers and wand-wielding wizards among the more than 1,000 attendees at WhidbeyCon 2019.

A WhidbeyCon 2019 attendee smiles during one of the classroom sessions at the April 13 event hosted by Oak Harbor Library. Photo gallery

The April 13 cosplay fest at the Oak Harbor Library is in its third year and growing, according to organizer and librarian Jessica Aws. “We continue to receive a ton of positive feedback from everyone involved, including our presenters and exhibitors,” Aws said. There is no fee for attending WhidbeyCon.

Noted comic-book expert T. Andrew Wahl’s presentation at the event was sponsored by Humanities Washington. Wahl is also head of the Journalism & Media Communication program at Everett Community College where he recently curated a show of comics art at the college gallery.

Wahl said that one attendee said she’d always wanted to go to a convention, but struggled with the crowds at larger conventions like Emerald City Comic Con in Seattle. “She said, ‘I’m so happy to have discovered such an awesome, supportive event in my local area! I’m enjoying all of the panels and activities, and hope to find my own geeky tribe,’” Wahl said.

WhidbeyCon included activities for a full range of ages and interests in cosplay and used spaces in the library as well as much of the co-located Skagit Valley College campus. The event was supported by the Friends of the Oak Harbor Library and Skagit Valley College.