Costume Contest

Costume Contest

photo/Truong Lam

Each Grand Rapids Comic-Con show will have a costume contest to reward the best costumes on the Saturday and Sunday of the event. This is one of the highlights of our–oh heck, virtually any comic book convention. Make sure to join in on the fun and parade your cosplay in front of hundreds for a chance to win cash and a trophy!

Sign Up

Interested participants in all three costume contests will need to sign up at our registration booth which will be in Grand Gallery D the day of the contest they wish to enter. All cosplayers must register for the contest they wish to enter, no last minute entries. Hours for signing up for the costume contests are the following:

  • Saturday, November 9 from 8 am until 2 pm (Adult)
  • Sunday, November 10 from 8 am until 1 pm (Kids and “Star Wars”)

There is no costume contest sign-up on Friday, November 8.

You will need to fill out a short form upon registering and will receive a lanyard with a  number that you will need at the costume contest. People who are entering Saturday’s adult and Sunday’s Star Wars contest will be pre-judged at sign up, so make sure you are in full costume including make-up at that time.

Contests

Saturday, November 9: Adult Costume Contest

All participants 13 and over are welcome to enter our main costume contest, which will be held on Saturday on the main stage toward the end of the day. Any costume of any genre that fits the rules of the show are welcome to enter!

How To Enter

  • photo/Truong Lam

    Sign up at designated table in Grand Gallery D the day of the event starting at  8 am until filled on Saturday. Only 100 individual and 25 group participants will be taken for this contest so sign up early!

  • People who are entering Saturday’s adult contest will be pre-judged at sign up, so make sure you are in full costume including make-up at that time. If you are entering a group contest make sure the entire group is present.
  • When signing up you will be asked for your real name, the character you are cosplaying, and the series in which the character is represented.
  • Sign up closes one hour before 2 pm or when all slots are filled, whichever happens first.
  • Costume must be at least 50% handmade or re-purposed materials.
  • Contestants may sign up as groups as well. Each group counts as one participant in the group competition. Groups need to be centered around a specific theme (Marvel, DC, Star Wars, etc.).

The categories for the contest for Saturday, November 9 will be the following:

  • Best In Show
  • Best Male
  • Best Female
  • Best Craftmanship
  • Best Group (2 or more people)
  • 3 Judges Choice/Honorable Mentions

Prizes For The Winners

  • Best In Show: Trophy plus 2 Weekend Passes to next year plus $200
  • Best Male: Trophy plus 2 Weekend Passes to next year plus $100
  • Best Female: Trophy plus 2 Weekend Passes to next year plus $100
  • Best Craftmanship: Trophy plus 2 Weekend Passes to next year plus $100
  • Best Group: Trophy plus 2 Weekend Passes to next year plus $200
  • Judges Choice: Certificate plus 2 Weekend Passes to next year

All second and third place winners in each category will receive a small trophy.

Sunday, November 10: Kids Costume Contest

photo/William Christopher Burgess

All kids ages 3-12 are welcome to join in the fun with our annual kids costume contest on the main stage on Sunday towards the end of the day! Any costume from any genre that fits the rules of the show are welcome to enter. A great chance for the kids to show off their costumes and have some fun!

How To Participate

  • Sign up at designated table in Grand Gallery D the day of the event starting at 8 am until 2 pm. Only 100 individual entries will be taken for this contest so sign up early!
  • When signing up you will be asked for your real name, the character you are cosplaying, and the series in which the character is represented.
  • To be eligible for the kids contest the child’s costume must be at least 20% handmade or re-purposed.
  • All children who wish will be allowed to march in a costume parade beforehand on the main stage.
  • Sign up closes at 1 pm or when all slots are filled, whichever happens first.

Winner Categories

One kid will be picked as Best In Show and three Judges Choice/Honorable mentions

Prizes

  • All kids will be able to pick a toy from the prize table and receive a participation button.
  • Best In Show: Trophy
  • Judges Choice: Certificate

Sunday, November 10: Adult Themed Costume Contest: “Star Wars”

All participants 13 and over are welcome to enter our annual themed costume contest. This year we will celebrate the Star Wars universe, so any costumes themed around that specific franchise are welcome to participate. Costumes for this one are to be judged based on the accuracy to that specific franchise. So whether you prefer the Dark Side or not, get those costumes ready for some sci-fi fun!

How To Enter

  • Sign up at designated table in main lobby the day of the event starting at 8 am. Only 75 individual entries will be taken for this contest so sign up early!
  • People who are entering Sunday’s Star Wars contest will be pre-judged at sign up, so make sure you are in full costume including make-up at that time.
  • When signing up you will be asked for your real name, the character you are cosplaying, and the series in which the character is represented.
  • Costume must be at least 50% handmade or re-purposed materials.
  • No group entries in the “Star Wars” themed contest
  • Sign up closes at 1 pm or when all slots are filled, whichever happens first.

Winner Categories

  • Best in show

Prizes

  • Best in show: Trophy plus 2 Weekend Passes to next year plus $200

Rules For Best Costume from “Star Wars”

  • Costume must be or inspired from Star Wars. Movie, television, video game, and literary characters are all eligible for the contest.
  • Costume must be a faithful adaptation of the charter being cosplayed from Star Wars. No mash-ups, steampunk/homestuck/alternate history interpretations, etc.  are allowed in the contest.
  • Your character must be a proper representation specific to Star Wars. You may not portray different interpretations of the character; for example, you can’t do a Harley Quinn version of Princess Leia, etc.
  • You may NOT enter the other adult contest with the same costume.
  • Costume must be at least 50% homemade or re-purposed.
  • Judges may ask you about the costume while on stage.
  • Any skit must be 30 Seconds or less
  • Must have FUN!!!

Costume Contest Rules

photo/Jacky Petters

  1. All contest participants must have a Grand Rapids Comic-Con badge good for Saturday, November 9, the day of the Adult Costume Contest.  All Children’s Costume Show participants must have a Grand Rapids Comic-Con badge good for Sunday, November 10. All participants in the Best Costume from the Star Wars contest must have a valid badge for Sunday, November 10. Badge must not be a complimentary or discounted badge so dealers, panelists, volunteer, press, and special guests are ineligible.

photo/Jacky Petters

2. Staff members of the Grand Rapids Comic-Con are not eligible for the costume contest. Invited costume group members (501st, GBMI, League of Enchantment, etc.) attending under a discounted or complimentary ticket are no longer eligible for the  costume contest.

3. Costume contest will be judged according to the categories posted for their own day.

4. Each person attending the show will be allowed to enter one (1) costume into one (1) category of the contest. If you enter a costume into the group contest, you cannot enter that same costume in other categories.

5. You may not enter a costume that you have entered at a previous year’s Grand Rapids Comic Con.

6. Adult costume contest will be for participants 13 years of age and older. Members that enter group contest may be any age.

7. All costumes must abide by the rules of the convention’s dress and weapons policy. You may find those policies here.

photo/William Christopher Burgess

photo/William Christopher Burgess

8. No glitter, confetti, pyrotechnics, live flames, fireworks, projectiles, or smoke generators of any kind are permitted.

9. Any props brought onstage must leave the stage with you within your allotted time or you will be disqualified.

10. You may use a model for the costume, but the person who created the costume must be present for the judging and costume contest. Group entries may be made by either a single member of the group or multiple members of the group.

11. No electrical connections will be provided. If your costume requires power it must be self-contained within the costume.

photo/Jacky Petters

12. Costumes are judged based on craftsmanship, detail work, accuracy, and overall presentation of the costume.

13. We have the right to reject an entry based on inappropriate, unsafe, or illegal behavior and/or violations of the family friendly nature of the convention.

14. All judges’ decisions are final.

15. Certain circumstances may require the rules to be changed without notice.