Interview and Photo by Jason Setnyk
Cornwall, Ontario – Get your cape on because the 2023 edition of the Cornwall and Area Pop Event (CAPE) takes place on Saturday, April 22nd (10 am-6 pm) and Sunday, April 23rd (10 am-5 pm) at the Benson Centre in Cornwall. CAPE is an annual comic book and pop culture convention held in Cornwall. First launched in 2015 by Carol Sauve and Randy Sauve, the event has quickly become a popular gathering for fans of comic books, sci-fi, fantasy movies, TV shows, and more.
Carol and Randy strive to bring affordable family entertainment to the City of Cornwall one weekend every year and showcase celebrity guests, exhibitors, artists, cosplayers, panels, and more. This year’s celebrity guests are Ed the Sock, Cooper Andrews, Margot Bingham, Harley Quinn Smith, Scott Schiaffo, and Andrew Thomas. Randy is the frontline of CAPE, but Carol does much of the work behind the scenes. Together they are the superhero couple behind CAPE.
FIVE QUESTIONS WITH THE SEEKER
1 – What inspired you to organize this comic convention, and how has it grown?
“While Randy has been at the forefront of the comic realm for almost 40 years, the inspiration came from Carol initially. Seeing how many fans enjoyed comic conventions around the world and never having been to one, she thought it would be a great addition to the City of Cornwall to host a show. As interest in pop culture continues to grow, so does CAPE. Growth in the show is fueled by growth in the industry.”
2 – What are some of the biggest challenges you face when organizing a convention of this size and scale?
“A show of this size and scale definitely involves many challenges. Keeping the interest of fans, changing and adapting to current trends, and dealing with pandemic issues are all factors. Most people just show up to CAPE, and it’s all pretty and organized and ends there, but they don’t see all of the logistics behind the scenes that get us to that point, such as booking the talent, flights, hotels, supplies, equipment, marketing, advertising, volunteers, and so on.”
3 – Can you tell us about some special guests and events attendees can look forward to at this year’s convention?
“Fans can meet Cooper Andrews from the hit movie Shazam! He played Jerry on The Walking Dead and will be joined by Margot Bingham, who played Max. For Kevin Smith fans, his daughter Harley Quinn Smith will join us with Scott Schiaffo from Clerks fandom. CAPE will throwback to the ’90s as ED the SOCK joins us. He will also headline the evening’s After Party Comedy Show with host Dan Allaire. Guest artist Andrew Thomas rounds out the guest lineup.”
4 – What do you think sets this comic convention apart from similar events, and what do you hope attendees will take away from their experience?
“CAPE is set apart from other such events by offering an affordable family event with free admission to children 12 and under. Most of CAPE’s guests offer personable experiences and no “cookie cutter” photo ops. Crowds tend to be smaller and not as overwhelming as the huge conventions. Many vendors, exhibitors, and cosplayers are local, and a local couple runs CAPE, so the show offers a “Mom & Pop” mentality, creating a pleasant experience for attendees.”
5 – Finally, what are some of your favorite moments and memories from previous conventions you have organized, and why do they stand out to you?
“Carol & Randy’s wedding at CAPE 2016 certainly tops the list of favourite moments from previous conventions. That same year also boasted the first Canadian appearance from Clerks guests, the 50th Anniversary of Star Trek featuring a reunion of Trek stars and Sally Kellerman no longer with us. Degrassi guests visited, Gilmore Girls cast was featured, celebrity artists were showcased, epic cosplay groups had their humble debuts, countless friendships were formed, and incredible memories were made throughout the years.”
In conclusion, the Cornwall and Area Pop Event is a fun and exciting celebration of comic books and pop culture and a great way for fans to connect. With its focus on local talent and community engagement, the event has become a beloved fixture in the Cornwall area and a must-attend event for fans of all things geeky and nerdy.
Advance Tickets are on sale now at Fantasy Realm (227 Pitt Street, downtown Cornwall, Ontario). Payment can be made by cash, Debit, Visa, or Mastercard at the store) or purchased online through the website at cornwallpopevent.com. Tickets for Saturday are $15 each, tickets for Sunday are $10 each, and children 12 and under are FREE when accompanied by a paying adult.