Prizm News / May 6, 2019 / By Ken Schneck


Youngstown is about to play host to a new LGBTQ comic con

By Ken Schneck

Break out your best Captain Marvel butch haircut. Grab your partner and channel your most amazing Netossa-and-Spinnerella-inspired looks. Or embrace that Norman Bates energy you have always wanted to access. No matter what your baseline of cosplay and fandom, you will be able to level-up at Ohio’s newest LGBTQ pop culture convention that is going to convene this month in Youngstown. That’s right: Youngstown! 

Queer Avengers, get ready to assemble at InQlusion Con on May 25 from 11am-6pm at the Jewish Community Center in Youngstown. The event is most certainly a first for the tri-counties. 

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“I went to Flaming River Con in Cleveland and Flame Con in New York and thought, We need that here!,” says Carlos Rivera, the creator and organizer of InQlusion. “The goal is to have a mix of science fiction, comics, and horror, all with an LGBTQ bent.” 

Naomi Grossman as Pepper from FX’s smash hit American Horror Story.

Rivera started planning the event six months ago, making calls to possible speakers, setting up the venue, and beginning the advertising that will kick into warp drive this month. His hard work has already resulted in a slew of incredible speakers, including:

  • Naomi Grossman, best known for her portrayal of Pepper, a fan-favorite character on FX’s smash hit American Horror Story
  • Dee Fish, creator of Finding Dee, a weekly web comic about the trials and tribulations of a 40-something cartoonist trying to make it in the comic industry while coming out as transgender
  • 42nd Street Pete, the King of Grindhouse, who is widely known for his encyclopedic knowledge of cinema both mainstream and distinctly more niche

With cosplay contests, tons of vendors, and unique presentations, there will be no shortage of entertainment for LGBTQ nerds, geeks, dorks, and their allies visiting the eastern edge of Ohio. The result will be a day where the LGBTQ community can be their authentic selves within a larger comic con community can sometimes be less than welcoming. 

42nd Street Pete, the “King of Grindhouse.”
Dee Fish, creator of Finding Dee

“If you’ve ever been to a Wizard World or large convention, you know that there isn’t always a space for LGBTQ people to gather or bond,” says Rivera. “With InQlusion Con, you will be able to meet people who share your interests in a space that is very safe and very gay.” 

InQlusion Con takes place on May 25, from 11am-6pm at the Jewish Community Center of Youngstown. Admission is $10. Visit https://inqlusion.org/ for more info.