Since its launch in 2013 Geekfest has quickly become South Africa’s largest celebration of all things geek related. This weekend people from all walks of life once again came together at Geekfest 2015 to celebrate every aspect of geek culture.
This year’s Geekfest was held at Huddle Park, which is not only a beautiful venue but had enough space to accommodate the myriad of stalls and activities at the festival.
Upon entering the venue, I was greeted by the Ghostbusters car (also known as the Ecto-1), 80’s supercar KITT and the Interceptor from Mad Max. I found myself feeling like a kid again as I snapped some photos with these iconic vehicles that defined my childhood (all the while humming the Ghostbusters theme).
After reliving my childhood, I found myself getting lost amongst the large amount of stalls at the festival. The variety of geek merchandise available at these stalls was mind-blowing, and I found myself going home a lot poorer than I was when I first arrived.
A special mention should be made of the huge variety of tasty food and snacks that kept me and the rest of the festival goers going throughout the day. From the great craft beer to the old fashioned ice cream cones, my taste buds were in a constant state of excitement.
Some of the highlights of the festival was the cosplay competition- which included some of the best cosplay outfits that I have seen in recent memory- and the board gaming area (which was conveniently situated next to the bar and snacks area),where you were able to play any of the huge selection of board games available.
Festival-goers could also test their bravery by jumping off a catwalk suspended high in the air, onto a huge airbag below. I was even able to practice my sword fighting prowess against a fully armored knight; I did however not fair very well.
Those who wanted to embrace their undead side while also getting some exercise (working off all the tasty food they ate), could join the zombie run that took place later in the day.
What surprised me the most about Geekfest was just how inclusive it was, it didn’t matter if you loved Sci-fi, Anime or board games, you were bound to find something that would peak your interest. The huge variety of people at the event was also really impressive, from three-year-old kids and their parents, 30 something’s (like me) and teenagers. Geekfest just once again proved that it was a festival for all ages.
As it was my first time attending the event, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised with what I discovered. Geekfest is not only a celebration of geek culture and what it means to be unique but, also a celebration of family, good food and not to mention awesome cosplay.
I am really looking forward to seeing how Geekfest will grow and evolve, and I hope to be there every step of the way, enjoying all the great things the festival has to offer.
Before I left Geekfest I was fortunate enough to get the chance to do a short interview with Richard Harman (the owner of Dark Carnival and Organizer of Geekfest):
Q: When did Geekfest start, and how would you explain what the festival is?
A: Geekfest was started 3 years ago (2013) as an opportunity for geeks to get together and celebrate what they love.
Q: What are some of the challenges associated with organizing an event such as Geekfest?
A: The biggest challenges has been finding the correct venue (one that would be large enough and have all the needed facilities available) and finding the right things to offer the festival goers. Through the past three years, we have found that some things work and some just don’t. We have kept the ones that work and ended up with what you see here today.
Q: What has the feedback from the public been?
A: It’s been overwhelmingly positive. People love the festival and are excited to see it grow more and become even better.
Q: With geek culture growing in South Africa at a steady pace, how do you see the future of Geekfest?
A: Currently we are in the process of having Geekfest taking place over two days instead of one. We also hope to have a bigger and better festival next year.
Q: One last question I just have to ask. What universe is your favorite and why, Star Wars or Star Trek?
A: Star Wars, because what is cooler than lightsabers?