The last time I attended San Diego Comic-Con it was 2013. I was living in Southern California about to finish my undergraduate program and with the help of a couple of friends managed to snag passes. There were a lot of cool things happening that year but there is one highlight that sticks out to me even now: Nerd HQ.
I’ve written about the history of Nerd HQ before as well as my love for it. Even though I have not made it back to sunny Southern California in recent years I was still bummed when I learned that Nerd HQ seemed to have run its course. It was such a unique event in the midst of the convention chaos and I got a lot out of seeing other people enjoy it as much as I had.
Well good news: there is a possibility Nerd HQ may make a triumphant return this year at San Diego Comic-Con. During a live video Q&A on his Instagram, Zachary Levi shared that he was looking at a couple of venues for Nerd HQ this year. This is refreshing news for fans who enjoyed the Nerd HQ programming, which included panels (“Conversations for a Cause”), spontaneous photo ops, and crazy post-convention dance parties.
It also brings with it the promise of an oasis in the wild waters of San Diego Comic-Con, a place to rest your weary feet and check out cool sponsored content away from the hustle and bustle that is the San Diego Convention Center. This was the number one draw for me when I attended in 2013. The comfortable couches, air conditioning, snacks, and outlets lured me in and had me spending more time at Nerd HQ than at the convention center.
One of the other things I appreciate about Nerd HQ is its ability to encourage spontaneity in a convention atmosphere that often requires a lot of detailed planning to cultivate the “perfect” convention experience. I have always been a fan of leaving room to be spontaneous at conventions even though I am aware it sometimes means missing out on bigger events for smaller, more intimate experiences.
For me, Nerd HQ is one of the greatest providers of intimate experiences in an otherwise large and cumbersome convention.
Finally, the return of Nerd HQ means the return of a powerful fundraising venue for Operation Smile. In the past, Levi and his team have given away the price of tickets for panels and photo ops to Operation Smile, an organization that provides access to surgery for children with cleft palates all over the world. All the fun attendees like you and I get to have ends up fueling a really great cause, which makes the whole thing a much deeper experience.
With hope in our hearts for the epic return of Nerd HQ, we will continue the San Diego Comic-Con countdown and let you know when more news hits.