Spring is a season often celebrated for being the time of year when nature comes back to life and people embrace warmer weather.
It’s also known in cosplay circles as the time of year when people can showcase the costumes they’ve been working on throughout the winter months and participate in Halifax’s Spring Geequinox.
“It’s a bit of a fandom convention. People who love all different kinds of fandom so comic books or TV series bordering on sci-fi, fantasy, fiction,” Marina Smith, an organizer of the Spring Geequinox, said.
The annual event brings fandom lovers from all across the Maritimes to Halifax.
While many people dress up in handmade costumes, others are just keen to partake in a convention dedicated to the things they love.
Smith says the surge in popularity over the years can be linked to people who just want to enjoy a break from the challenges of everyday life.
“We are dealing with people losing their jobs, people who are having terrible things happen in their life. This is an opportunity to lose yourself in something else for a while, not worry, be yourself and do something that makes you happy without being judged,” she said.
It’s hard not to have your head on a swivel when you walk through the fandom doors. Most people are in character, and there is an overflow of smiles as people get lost in their surroundings.
“We make our costumes so my costume is all handmade from scratch,” Nikki Brown, one of the Geequinox attendees, said. “Some people buy costumes, which is also amazing. It depends on how much you want to put into it. I love being able to make something, and people ask me like, ‘Oh, my goodness, where did you get that?’ and I’m like, ‘I made it, this is all by hand.'”
Brown is part of a group of friends who often make costumes together.
It’s a bond strengthed by a growing community that’s overcome stigma throughout the years.
“A lot of the community, we grew up being the geeky, the outsiders, and now, through something like this, we’ve all come together as a giant family. We support each other, we’re inclusive and we make sure that everybody feels wanted,” Matt Aucoin, another attendee, said.
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The Spring Geequinox grows larger each year, and for those on the front lines of “geek” and “nerd” culture, that’s not surprising in the least.
“We are the geeks and nerds of the world. We span every culture, every strata of society, every colour, every religion, there are geeks,” Andrew Dorfman, host and producer of Geeks Versus Nerds, said.