SAN JOSE (KPIX) — Silicon Valley is rolling out the red carpet for your favorite superheroes, villains and sidekicks this weekend.
On Friday, the fourth year of the Silicon Valley Comic Con kicked off at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center with organizers expecting more than 70,000 throughout the three-day event.
“This is maybe like my fourth time at Silicon Valley Con,” said Geovany Martinez.
The 11-year-old, who dressed up as a Hogwarts Hufflepuff student, traveled from Los Angeles to attend. He has seen the Silicon Valley Comic Con grow over the years.
This year, organizers decided to keep the show inside the convention center instead of expanding activities outdoors as they did in the past. Trip Hunter, chairman of the event, said it was important they keep the energy centered in one location rather than spread out.
This year, a long list of celebrities is expected again, including Aquaman’s Jason Momoa, former “Terminator” (and California governor) Arnold Schwarzenegger, as well as Lou Ferrigno, well-known for playing the Incredible Hulk.
“The fans are great, the people are great and I feel like a kid again because everybody wants to be a superhero,” Ferrigno said. “San Jose is a great town, because of all the technology.”
The Silicon Valley Comic Con is, of course, heavy on tech. After all, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak is the man behind it all.
“We are the convergence of technology and science and pop culture. Where else does it make sense to do that than right here?” Hunter said.
Although the convention center is filled with super powers, light sabers and tridents, Hunter said they have stepped-up security this year, following several recent mass shootings.
“You want to have the best security that you can have to guarantee everybody’s safety without making people feel scared,” he said.
Bianca Hankins, who is Martinez’s nanny, said she noticed security was tight.
“He went to the bathroom and he was waiting outside for maybe only a minute and a half and security instantly came up and asked where his mom was,” said Hankins.
Hunter said they increased security at the entrances, which includes metal detectors and bag checks. They also have very specific rules about costumes and fake weapons.
It’s still not too late to purchase tickets to the Silicon Valley Comic Con for this weekend.
“It’s unbelievable that I’m actually able to see these people that were on a screen that I watch all the time,” Martinez said. “I just think it’s kind of amazing.”