Comicpalooza Helps To Put Houston First

Annual comic/fantasy conference means about $20 million yearly to the city of Houston economy


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To many, it is simply a gathering of boys and girls who will never grow up, people who love to play dress up and watch sci-fi. But to those in the know, Houston’s Comicpalooza is so much more.

Started in 2008 at the Alamo Draft house in Katy, this now yearly convention has grown into Texas’ largest pop culture festival, focusing on animation, science fiction, and everything in between. And of course there are the folks who love to dress as their favorite characters, a practice referred to as “cosplay.”

Along the way, these fans of fantasy create a major financial impact on the city. Michael Heckman, Sr. Vice President for Houston First explains:

“It's a big event every year, and so over the last 2 years, we've provided 30,000 room nights which equates to about $20 million a year.”

Last year alone, nearly 44,000 people visited the convention, now held at the George R. Brown convention center, making Comicpalooza one of Houston’s largest consumer conventions.

This year, fans are looking forward to robotics exhibits from NASA, an appearance by Chuck Norris, a film festival and dozens of workshops on everything from gaming to ice sculpting.

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Ernie Manouse

Ernie Manouse

Senior Producer / Host

Ernie Manouse, a native of Binghamton, NY and a graduate of Loyola University Chicago, launched his broadcasting career with NBC News before working at Chicago radio station WLS-AM. In 1996, Ernie joined HoustonPBS (now Houston Public Media), and as an anchor and producer, he has garnered eleven Emmy Awards, five...

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