This year’s Garden State Comic Fest kicked off with a bang, filling up two auditoriums with tons of comics, books, art, games and memorabilia. The 2016 edition dominated the William G. Mennen Sports Arena during it’s two-day run. Cosplayers and comic fanatics alike lined up outside the arena bright and early on Saturday, July 9, to get a head-start on the first day of festivities.

The arena encompassed both a “heroes” and “villains” auditorium, where the respective artists, vendors and exhibitors set up shop for the weekend, displaying their heroic/dastardly merchandise. Patrons flooded the aisles to admire the innovative artwork, browse through the exclusive toys and rummage through boxes of new and vintage comics.

With numerous vendors in attendance throughout both days, the event offered a vast number of different books and comics, ranging from popular DC and Marvel characters to old Disney favorites. Given the impressive selection available, the Garden State Comic Fest was the perfect destination for either the seasoned comic book enthusiast trying to complete a rare set, or the comic book novice looking for a starting point.

Alongside the wide array of art and merchandise were classic 1980s and ‘90s-themed arcade games, like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Terminator and Jurassic Park.

Garden State Comic Fest

While the countless amounts of comics, collectibles and art that the Garden State Comic Fest possessed was incredible, it was the cosplayers who helped make the event unique. These enthusiasts clearly spent a great deal of time (and money) crafting very impressive and authentic costumes.

The Garden State Comic Fest is an annual event right here in New Jersey. Whether you’ve been a comic book fan your entire life or are just looking to get started, you’ll want to keep an eye out for next year’s festival when it comes back around.

Want to see more highlights from the best New Jersey events? Catch up on our recap series, The Best of!

Hero (Top) Feature Image (& Additional Images): © Patrick Lombardi / Best of NJ

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