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El Paso gets fantastical with the Sun City SciFi Expo

The+Sun+City+SciFi+Expo+will+take+place+at+the+Camino+Real+hotel+from+10+a.m.+to+7+p.m.+on+Oct.+17+and+from+11+a.m.+to+6+p.m.+on+Oct.+18.
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The Sun City SciFi Expo will take place at the Camino Real hotel from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Oct. 17 and from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Oct. 18.

Sci-fi fanatics will have the chance to celebrate their passion with an event that will showcase art, movies and celebrities, and bring El Pasoans a weekend full of science fiction fantasy.

The Sun City SciFi Expo will include activities such as gaming, Q&A’s, exhibitors, along with the appearance of celebrities, cosplayers and comic book artists.

“We decided to bring a sci-fi convention to El Paso after spending over a decade attending conventions around the country,” said Ean Puhlman, organizer of the event.

“The borderland has not had many pop culture conventions in the past, so we decided to bring a quality, professional event to El Paso.”

As part of the event, sci-fi fans will be able to have question and answer sessions with the participating celebrities and cosplayers at the convention’s panel room. Photo opportunities are also available for a small fee.

“We are very excited to be welcoming two pop culture icons to Sun City Scifi Fan Expo,” Puhlman said. “Verne Troyer, who portrayed Mini Me in the Austin Powers films, and Nichelle Nichols, who is known for her role as Lt. Uhura in ‘Star Trek’–the original series.”

Other celebrities who will be attending the event are Karan Ashley from the “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers,” Clive Revill from “Star Wars” and “Batman: The Animated Series,” and Jim Tavaré from the Harry Potter films.

Nadyasonika, Blue Destiny, Andy Perez and Christina Dark will be among the cosplayer guests who will be attending the expo.

Game Stop will be running a video game room for attendees to have a good time and socialize while playing video games.

“We will have our costume contest at 5 p.m. on Saturday Oct. 17 that will be hosted by the Coyotes Fortune Steampunk group,” Puhlman said. “These are just a few of the highlighted events at our convention.”

Puhlman said fans from El Paso tend to be very diverse. While some of them like “Star Wars” and “Star Trek;” others prefer anime, cosplay and comics.

“We have to put on a very diverse show–that way we have something for everyone to enjoy,” Pulhman said.

Medardo Barrera, senior studio art major, said he really enjoys the sci-fi genre and that it had to be of great quality in order to be credible and make people believe that something that comes from fantasy can be real.

“Sci-fi is a really cool genre because, as a producer or cinematographer, you are capable to do a lot of things,” Barrera said. “You basically do magic when incorporating sci-fi to a movie. The problem is when sci-fi effects are low quality it looks false­­­­—when sci-fi is supposed to bring fantasy to look credible.”

Barrera said he believes that having a sci-fi convention in El Paso would be helpful for people who may not be considered fans of the genre, but who are also interested in cinematography.

“I really like the idea of the Sun City SciFi Expo,” Barrera said. “Maybe an El Pasoan who is interested in the genre and in cinematography can find these types of events very helpful.”

A convention such as the Sun City SciFi Expo usually takes many days of planning in order to have everything prepared in time for opening day.

“It usually takes about six months to plan an event like this,” Puhlman said. “There are so many different things that go into a convention that you need to be very organized and give yourself enough time to do everything.”

Prices for the event are $12.50 plus tax for single day entrance, and $22.50 plus tax for weekend tickets. Children tickets begin at $2.

The Sun City SciFi Expo will take place at the Camino Real hotel from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Oct. 17 and from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Oct. 18.

For more information about the Sun City SciFi fan expo, visit www.suncityscifi.com or call (915) 873-4294.

Fernanda Leon may be reached at [email protected].

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El Paso gets fantastical with the Sun City SciFi Expo