Convention Review - SuperStar Comic Con 2023
~* Date: September 23-24th ~*~ Status: Exhibitor/Artist *~
~*Located: Savannah GA, USA, Savannah Convention Center*~
SuperStar is not a new convention, having actually been called Savannah Comic Con prier then renamed this year. Likely to not be confused with the multitude of other 'Savannah Comic Cons' that happen within the year in the same convention center. With my experience of being a paid attendee and handful within the artist alley itself, this time around was definitely different. Let's get into it!
| Cost for Table | $185+ | +2 badges, 8ft table; 10ft square of room |
|Can use their 8ft table or bring your own, we had our 6ft |
The convention is still under construction for a major expansion, meaning a lot of the parking is cut off and that includes for exhibitors. That didn't take away from the smooth flow laid out in the email sent to us. Showing maps with highlighted areas and notes detailing what to do. Which helped when trying to navigate the different roads to where exhibitor parking was and attendee parking for overflow. Not to fret if you end up far away, they have shuttles for that very reason driven by very friendly people who'll love to chat with you.
*Instructional Map sent to us*
What about the inside however? They have three exhibit halls, sadly I am unsure which we were in as we arrive via back entrance, their sizes ranging from 96,110 to 42,223 square foot depending which is rented. I can only assume we were in the mid range size one which is 53,887, since SuparStar seemed to have had no issue paying a bit extra. We'll get to that soon. Having attended Savannah Conventions for three straight years I can say they put their brains to work on the layout for the artist. They had rows with at least five artist lined up facing each other, there was large open walk ways with 10feet of space for tables and a black curtain separating the rows. The guest were lined against the wall while bigger vendors were up front at the doors. Refreshing compared to past conventions!
*I was 1411, Hiya!*
Just to give a picture why this was a major plus compared to other Savannah conventions, here is why: Normally the conventions would aim for a large open front and back space for wandering attendees to stand around. Not bad right? Only it takes up a lot of space when trying to organize in the small and mid size exhibit halls, normally giving the bigger exhibitors the larger middle space then artist in a small cramped corner. Artist alley having barely 10feet with tables so close to each other it's hard to get around without knocking over your neighbor's merchandise. That's one corner, the other corner being used for either sprinkled food vendors or cramped makeshift maid cafe. I get it, the space is limited, but SuperStar showed with good planning artist don't have to be squished together and further helps us to be seen.
It would be no surprise if other artist were put off over the years due to how they typically planned their layouts at Savannah conventions, though this one may restore some trust in that.
I need to highlight the amazing staff organizers that are being spotted this year for these conventions. Superstar had high security walking around keeping everybody safe and staff members going around checking on things periodically. Having spotted a few checking booths making sure they followed the rules even stop to chat for a bit, which I did chat with only for my Dad to point out who they were.
~*Cost and Earnings*~
When applying to get my application the price was shown as $169, though due to fees it jumped to $185. A bit of a high roller price for smaller artist like myself, though a gamble and investment to make. Was it worth it however? Past conventions having shown high volumes as of last and this year, myself having earned basically double for what I paid. This time around wasn't the case. The attendance was much thinner even for such an open space venue, nothing to do with the convention itself who did their best to advertise. In their emails encouraging us to advertise as well! At the same time hearing from the grapevine was a SCAD event and with great weather we all knew where the customers were. Outside attending a the college event with their family. When counting what I made what I paid was earned back, sadly only about $50 in revenue. I'm unsure as to how everybody else did, though asking it was agreed how disappointing it was for the price paid.
Something to note: The convention can't control if they end up on the same day as another event, it happens. Though if you're coming to Savannah that has SCAD just across the way, check for seasonal events ahead of time and if it may fall around the convention. Heres to fingers crossed they host it earlier or later next year!
Due to strict rules upheld this time around, bringing in your own food and drinks wasn't allowed. We had to rely on the concessions within the venue, which was great food in itself with a delicious cookie, but we're not here for food review. Two chicken tender baskets, two drinks and two cookies costed us $45+. The drinks near close $5 each if you needed soda or a coffee. This is no fault with SuperStar, more over with the center and likely to help pay for the construction going on. Keep that in mind when considering coming to Savannah to sell while the expansion is still being built.
Thanks to open space for the artist alley it wasn't overly hot from cramped people, so keep in mind bringing a sweater or jacket during AC blasting seasons. The second day we had forgot and left freezing! With the space we had bring a fold out mini table to place extra side things to keep off your table, came in super handy to keep our food and drinks off the main table.
If you're in this business for the long run I suggest getting a Ozark Trail like many of us have started doing. They're about $50, lightweight and durable. The wheels have made it heavenly for any terrain hauling our display and merchandise. I was seeing more and more artist having one when setting up early in the morning, it's the thing to have.
So far this year they've been offering open hours a day before the convention to set up your booth. I highly suggest taking that day to go do that. It meant less for us to haul in on the day of, only needing to take back our merchandise while leaving our display covered up by a bit sheet.
~*Featured Favorite Cosplays*~
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