September 29, 2013
There was non-stop play this weekend at Charlottesville's first gaming convention.
OmegaCon brought out games, art and costumes to the Holiday Inn in Charlottesville.
“A lot of people are into a lot of nerdy geeky things in the community of Charlottesville,” says OmegaCon co-founder Mindy Farrell.
Officials say 564 people came out throughout the course of the weekend to play with fellow gamers.
“We only expected 300 as our optimistic number and 500 was definitely our dream come true, and we surpassed that,” says Farrell.
Not only did OmegaCon bring hundreds of gamers and artists, but it also brought two boys out of their shell.
Mera Babineaux has two autistic sons who participated in the costume contest this year.
“One of the hardest things was trying to teach them how to socialize and interact,” says Babineaux. “They love the games and being able to disappear in them and that kind of thing.”
Both of them came in first place in the costume contest as Lego Star Wars characters.
Babineaux says the costumes really allow her sons to come out of their shells, but winning was just icing on the cake.
“They wander around here with all of these people in costumes and they see that it's OK to be different, and they just really embraced that and adopted this culture and come into their own,” says Babineaux. “They're interacting with people and talking with people.”
Nearly 30 vendors and artists displayed their work throughout the weekend with local bands coming out for a chance to jam with fellow gamers.
But OmegaCon is more than a place where people can dress up as their favorite characters, it allows gamers and artists to come together, make lasting relationships and become anything they want to be.
The OmegaCon founders hope this convention will help with more game development on the east coast.
For more on the convention, check out the link below.