When you think about conventions and trade shows, your mind probably conjures images of charged up supercars or twisting lines for celebrity autographs. You might picture the vast convention centre floor, filled with booths and stations, halls lined with breakout rooms for educational talks or even cosplay contests. There’s typically a badge swinging from a lanyard around your neck– this is your ticket inside.
While this type of convention is pretty standard, you may be surprised to find out that some of these events just don’t look like the others.
From mass gatherings of clowns to an oasis filled with exotic plants and the pluck of ukulele strings, we’ve found some of the most unique conventions from around the world.
Pull out your Hawaiian shirts and get ready to dance the night away while sipping cocktails with colourful umbrellas. Tiki Oasis celebrates the influence of the Caribbean Islands and Polynesian culture with five nights of dancing, drinking, and a celebration of all things Tiki. As the largest Tiki celebration in the world, you’ll be invited to explore a bustling marketplace with over 150 artists, enjoy a sunset meal with live music, and even get the chance to learn more about the cultures that inspired this vibrant style.
World Clown Convention
Not for those with coulrophobia (a fear of clowns), this convention is hosted by the World Clown Association and brings together professionals and hobbyists to share their skills and their clown personas. You’ll see jugglers, acrobats, balloon artists, ventriloquists, and many more talented individuals all dressed up as their unique clown characters. Hopefully Pennywise won’t be in attendance…
Vent Haven International Ventriloquist Convention
If you’re looking to see ventriloquism without the clown makeup, you’ll need to head to Kentucky for the Vent Haven International Ventriloquist Convention. With their dummies in hand (or on hand you could say) nearly 500 ventriloquist performers of all ages attend this convention to put on shows, share their skills, and leave you wondering if your toys really do come to life when you step out of the room.
The Association of Lincoln Presenters Conference
As the Blue Ridge Scenic Railway train car rolls in, you may be surprised to find not one, not two, but over a dozen Abraham Lincoln’s leaning out of the train car window. They’ve arrived for the annual conference hosted by the Association of Lincoln Presenters. Dozens of performers dressed as the 16th President of the United States gather together over the course of four days for a series of events centred around Honest Abe.
Cooper’s Hill Cheese Rolling Competition
While not a convention per se, we just couldn’t leave the weird and wonderful tradition of cheese rolling off this list. It’s a tradition dating back to the 1800s, welcoming contestants to line up at the starting line, eyes on a large wheel of cheese. The objective? To chase that cheese wheel down a rather precarious hill, racing against others to be the one to snag it. As it turns out, it’s not only a wacky tradition but a bit of a dangerous one, with bruises, scrapes, and other injuries incredibly common.
There’s plenty of other interesting and unique conventions out there? Which one would you like to go to?
Looking for a convention filled with artists, celebrities, and all things geek culture?
If you’re in the Toronto area this weekend (August 25th - August 28th 2022), we invite you to visit us at Fan Expo Canada. You’ll find our team at the Storm Crow Alliance booth – South Building - Table 938.