Can’t Con? Try KantCon at JCCC

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KantCon is a new gaming convention for tabletop hobby gamers in the Kansas City area, created by Ethan Parker in 2009.  The summertime non-gambling gaming convention created by Kansas City gamers for Kansas City gamers is scheduled to take place on July 8 – 10 at the Johnson County Community College.

“I’ve been living in Kansas almost all my life, and I’ve always wanted a summertime gaming activity that I could do with friends, family, and meet new people in the Kansas City area who share my love of tabletop gaming,” Ethan Parker said.

Parker, a student at the University of Missouri Kansas City and a Johnson County Community College alum, wants to bring the business generated by conventions like Gen Con and Dragon Con to the Kansas City area.

“Gen Con is held in Indianapolis, and brought over 30,000 people there at the beginning of August. It’s the second largest convention in Indianapolis, and dumps millions of dollars to their economy every year. I want that for Kansas City,” Parker said.

When Parker couldn’t go to Gen Con in 2009, the first time in 13 years, he decided to throw his own convention with a small gathering of friends for three days. The event was so successful that he decided to open it to the public in 2010, moving it to the new Regnier Center at Johnson County Community College.

“The venue is perfect. Since we run KantCon in the summer, the facility is mostly unused, so it brings business to JCCC. They also have ample parking and are happy to accommodate a local event like this,” Parker said.

KantCon is run strictly as a non-profit event, charging those who pre-register only $10 a day to attend, or $25 if you buy a three-day pass. You can get in at the door for $12 a day, or $30 for a three-day pass. This revenue goes towards the cost to run the event. The event is run by volunteers and Parker, himself.

KantCon organizers worked with gaming companies like Wizards of the Coast, publishers of Dungeons & Dragons, and other companies to generate over $3,000 in prizes to hand out at KantCon 2010, and this support will continue for KantCon 2011.

“We provide many prizes, and raffle off a lot of gaming and comic merchandise. We also give out free stuff to those who attend, and we offer refreshments to convention attendees. We’re really trying to make this a family-event that gamers can come to every year and enjoy this hobby,” Parker said.

About Gamer’s Haven: Gamer’s Haven, Inc. is a nonprofit, Kansas City-based corporation dedicated to providing gamers of all kinds with a place where they can feel welcome and feel comfortable sharing views on gaming. It was formed to promote and organize KantCon as well as additional gaming events for the Kansas City community. More information is available at Gamer’s Haven.

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