Once a year, New York Comic Con brings together the best and the brightest in comics, film, anime, gaming and toys under one giant roof. Uber-fans flock to the pop culture extravaganza, located at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, to scope out the latest trends, but families can also have a blast—if they know how to handle the scene.
All adults and kids aged six and up need badges to enter the convention (kids five and younger are free). Preshow, single-day tickets range from $35 to $50. Save by purchasing three-day ($65) or four-day ($95) passes. Be advised that tickets sell out quick, so get yours as far in advance as possible. Tickets can be purchased online or, for those families who want to get a head start on their required reading, at a number of city comic book shops, including Midtown Comics Times Square. 200 W. 40th at 7th Ave (212-302-8192, midtowncomics.com).
Sunday, October 12 is Kids Day, which means fans aged six to 12 get into the convention for $5. Kids Day tickets are limited, and they tend to sell out fast, so book yours early.
The convention's Show Floor opens at noon on Thursday and at 10am Friday through Sunday, but hard-core fans and comic collectors line up hours earlier for the chance to buy show exclusives. Unless you count yourself among those die-hards, we would recommend arriving slightly later to avoid getting caught in the morning rush.
The miles of aisles that make up the main exhibition floor will be packed with fans young and old shopping, swag-grabbing and checking out sneak previews of some of Hollywood's newest flicks. Older kids will enjoy watching illustrators in action in the Artists Alley area, while adults may be persuaded to buy a few souvenir pieces to take home. Don't forget to snap a photo of your little one posing with his or her favorite costumed character.
Hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy, ice cream and other kid-friendly snacks are available throughout the exhibit hall, generally along the perimeter. Visit the lower-level food court to satisfy caped crusaders with bigger appetites. Remember to bring cash: Not all vendors accept credit cards, and on-site ATMs have sizable fees (and lines). Families looking for a change of venue can head to a nearby restaurant: At Hudson Station, kids can choose from several slider varieties. 440 Ninth Ave between 34th and 35th Sts (212-244-4406, hudsonstation.com).
New York Comic Con takes place Oct 9-12 at the Jacob K. Javits Center, 655 W. 34th St (212-216-2000, javitscenter.com). NYCC Kids Day takes place on Oct 12.