First Saluki Comic Con opens on Family Weekend

By Austin Phelps, Staff Reporter

Saluki Comic Con happened over the Family Weekend. It was a two day event filled with virtual reality, guest speakers, presentations and vendors while attendees dressed in cosplay.

“[Saluki Comic Con is] a way for us to express what we love without anyone judging us,” Greta Grimmer, an attendee dressed as Ruby Rose, said.



The event had over 180 tables that featured different vendors selling different comic con themed items such as comic books, action figures and horror movie merchandise.

Some vendors were selling their own published books and works of art.

Kenny Sills, a published author from St Louis and vendor at the event, was selling copies of his book, “Tattoo: A Beautiful Sin.”

“It’s about this guy who dresses up as a surgeon and knocks people out,” Sills said. “When they wake up they’re tied down naked to an autopsy table and he cuts their tattoos out of them before he kills them.”

Lacye Lembcke, a writer and vendor at the event, was featuring a web-series called “Dope Bunny and Clive.”

Lembcke said what inspired her to create the show was the fact that her and her co-creator Adam Long wanted to get a show on adult swim.

“After so long of [wondering what it was] going to be we [decided] to settle on this idea of a toy bunny that comes to life,” Lembcke said.

Zac Atkinson, an artist and vendor at the event, was selling art work mixed with 3-D graphic design and illustration.

Atkinson said for him, comic con is part-time work and a vacation.

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  • Brian K. Morris, 62, Lafayette, Ind. talks with Becky Brown, owner of Cakes Reanimated, 30, Cape Girardeau, Mo. at her station during Saluki Comic Con, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018. (Allie Tiller | @allietiller_de)

  • Chris Stewart, 46, of Shelbyville, Jim Marriott, 43, of Champaign, Jeff Siegle, 42, Indianapolis, Ind. and Ellie Winthrop, a senior studying English education, 20, Elkville, pose for a picture at Saluki Comic Con, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018. (Allie Tiller | @allietiller_de)

  • Steve Walden, of St. Louis, Mo. paints a 3-D picture of Chewbacca and Han Solo from Star Wars at Saluki Comic Con, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018. "I have been blown away by how helpful the staff has been, how readily available they have been, and the size of the scope of the event," Walden said. "This is a real Comic Con. It's not just like a garage sale." (Allie Tiller | @allietiller_de)

  • Rheanon Bartey, 20, of Lake of Egypt plays Gorn on the virtual reality simulator at Saluki Comic Con, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018. (Allie Tiller | @allietiller_de)

  • Leo, Mikey, and Shawna Pennock of Carterville pick out themed cake pops at Saluki Comic Con, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018. (Allie Tiller | @allietiller_de)

  • Actors Alison MacInnis, Brennan Mejia, and Bruno Gunn pose for a picture at the Saluki Comic Con, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018. "The town, the school, and the people here are amazing and I hope to come back again," MacInnis said. (Allie Tiller | @allietiller_de)

  • Figurines for sale at Southern Illinois University's Saluki Comic Con, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018. (Allie Tiller | @allietiller_de)

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There were a variety of costumes at the event that ranged from a Transformer to a bad-mouthed Harley Quinn and everything in between.

Alex Apgar, a sophomore studying geology was dressed as a female version of Obi-Wan Kenobi.

“Purely because I didn’t have enough time to make the beard,” Apgar said.

There were attendees dressed as characters from Game of Thrones, Final Fantasy X and even Jason from Friday the 13th walking around with a mutilated face and no mask on.

(Editor’s note: The Daily Egyptian reached out to Jason for a comment but he would not speak.)

Cosplay Parade and Contest

The entrants for the Cosplay Contest lined up outside of Steak ‘N Shake for the Cosplay Parade.

Entrants marched up the stairs to the second floor of the student center as they were led by a man playing bagpipes.

The Cosplay Contest featured approximately 50 entrants from children 12 and under, adults and groups. The contest was led by Brian K. Morris and four judges.

Kelsea Bourland, a judge for the contest, said the criteria was based upon handmade costumes, detail and entrants that stood out were those who acted in character.

A stand out moment was when Morris asked an entrant dressed as Harley Quinn, who was very much in character, why she chose the costume she did.

“Are you saying I look like a clown mister?” the Harley Quinn entrant said.

Another stand out moment featured an entrant dressed as Sonic the Hedgehog approaching the judges.

“I expected you to be here faster,” Morris said.

Winners of the Cosplay Contest

In the kids 12 and under section, the first place winner was an entrant dressed as Harley Quinn. The second and third place winners were an entrant dressed as Wonder Woman and two entrants dressed as Power Rangers.

For the groups section the first place winners were entrants dressed as characters from a video game Danganronpa. The second place winners were entrants dressed as characters from Game of Thrones.

For the adults section the first place winner was an entrant dressed as a Transformer. Entrants dressed as Sin and Jason took the second and third places respectively.

Staff reporter Austin Phelps can be reached at or on Twitter at @austinphelps96.

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