Home Business & Economy Arts & Entertainment Inaugural Island FanCon contributes $750K to local economy

Inaugural Island FanCon contributes $750K to local economy

Fandom and pop culture celebration provides local economic benefit.

island fancon, cosplay, langford
Fun at Island FanCon - main stage on April 14, 2024. [Island FanCon]

Friday May 17, 2024 | LANGFORD, BC

by Mary P Brooke | Island Social Trends

It was a first for Langford! A cosplay convention for the enjoyment of cosplayers and community alike.

Held April 13 and 14 at City Centre Park in the Westhills area of Langford, the two-day weekend Island FanCon event attracted more than 3,000 attendees and showcased the vibrant community of fans and local businesses.

island fancon, langford, crowd
Cosplay fans on Day 1 at Island FanCon in Langford on April 13, 2024. [Mary P Brooke / Island Social Trends]

As a celebration of fandom and pop culture, cosplay events can be significant economic drivers.

Island FanCon generated over $750,000 in economic activity for the City of Langford and the surrounding area, says Island FanCon founder. organizer and businessman Lonnie Eckardt.

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Island FanCon was inaugural for Langford in 2024. Eckardt has also organized a FanCon in Prince George for several years [see FanCon.com].

Positive economic impact:

Eckardt expressed his excitement about the event’s economic impact, stating, “We are thrilled to see the positive impact that Island FanCon has had on Langford and the Capital Region. Beyond being a gathering of fans, it’s rewarding to know that our event is contributing to the local economy and supporting the growth of local businesses,” said Eckardt.

“Events like Island FanCon play a crucial role in driving tourism and economic activity in our city,” said City of Langford Mayor Scott Goodmanson in a news release from Island FanCon. “We are proud to host such a dynamic and inclusive event that brings together fans from across the region and beyond,” said Goodmanson.

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Grant funding:

Through the BC Fairs, Festivals and Events (BCFFE) Fund, the BC government provided a grant of $21,900 to Island FanCon ahead of the event this year, helping the organizer to achieve success.

BCFFE funded events must demonstrate community-wide economic benefits, tourism value and community engagement.

island fancon, arriving
Arriving for another day of fun at Island FanCon on April 14, 2024. [Island Social Trends]

Recap of the event:

The event featured a diverse lineup of programming, including panels, workshops, cosplay contests, and opportunities to meet special guests and celebrities from various fandoms.

celebrity tables, island fancon
Celebrities meeting their fans at Island FanCon in Langford, April 13, 2024. [Mary P Brooke / Island Social Trends]

With over 100 vendors, exhibitors, and local businesses participating, Island FanCon provided a platform for artists, creators, and enthusiasts to showcase their talents and products to a dedicated audience.

Cultural impact:

In addition to its economic impact, Island FanCon fostered community engagement and cultural enrichment, providing a space for fans, artists, gamers, and performers to connect, share their passions, and celebrate the diverse world of the creative arts.

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Youth, young adults, and now older adults who may have shared the fandom and cosplay experience with their children in previous yearscan still enjoy the cosplay experience. Families with kids toured about at the April 13-14 Island FanCon in Langford.

Fandom impacts more of us than might be realized … through the cultural impact of comics and science fiction.

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Looking to 2025:

Island FanCon looks forward to continuing its partnership with the City of Langford and the capital region to further promote economic growth and cultural vitality through future events.

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===== RELATED:

April 13 & 14: Island FanCon brings cosplay to Langford (event coverage / April 13, 2024)

Island FanCon brings cosplay fun to Langford (event preview / April 7, 2024)