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Downtown Tampa Transforms with Thousands of Creatures and Characters

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creatures and characters in Downtown Tampa

Creatures and characters filled the streets of Downtown Tampa over the weekend as more than 15,000 anime fans came together for MetroCon.

At a convention like this, costumes are key.

We saw several amazing costumes at the Tampa Convention Center, including Elphaba from “Wicked.” One girl wore green gloves with black nails attached so she didn’t have to spend time painting her hands green.

Another person dressed as Blitzo from “Helluva Boss.” Their costume caught our eye with the details of red and white face paint and long horns.

A woman teaching a panel on Lolita fashion showed us her Mario Party-inspired “Boo-zette” costume.

“The crown was 3D printed and then glued onto a clear headband,” said Lisa Morgan.

“The details are everything because you never know who might recognize you and want a picture,” said Jamez Wade, dressed as Blitzo.

People spend months, and some all year, getting ready for MetroCon.

“I started this back in August,” said Emma Mahon, dressed as Elphaba.

Once inside, there’s a whole world of possibilities.

MetroCon attracts people from all over.

“We offer a lot of live events that many other conventions don’t have,” said Heidi Craddock, MetroCon Operations Manager. “So we have a fight show, we have a fire show, we have an interactive masquerade ball on Friday night.”

Millions of dollars are pumped into the local economy from this event, which more than 15,000 people attended this year.

“We are a PG-13 con so everyone is safe to come,” said Craddock.

Instructive panels, games, and character contests were all part of the fun.

If you missed this year’s MetroCon, don’t worry. Craddock said they have already started planning for next year.

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