Batman models at the Comic-Con Museum in Balboa Park. Photo b Luis Monteagudo Jr.

The Comic-Con Museum, which will celebrate the magic of Comic-Con year-round, is announcing its soft opening to the public on Nov. 26 at noon. Located in San Diego’s iconic Balboa Park the Museum is featuring six diverse, entertaining, educational, and interactive exhibits. Special programming, screenings, and a variety of special nighttime activities will be offered leading up to the summer of 2022 grand opening.

The soft opening of the museum will occur while Comic-Con Special Edition – the first in-person gathering for San Diego Comic-Con fans since July 2019 – begins at the San Diego Convention Center. However, while Comic-Con Special Edition ends on Nov. 28, the museum experience will continue throughout the year.

Tickets for the museum, available at https://museum.comic-con.org, will also be sold at the museum; reservations are encouraged as attendance may be limited.

“When Comic-Con began as a tiny gathering of fans in a hotel basement in 1970, no one could have imagined that one day the convention would have its museum dedicated to comics, Science Fiction, movies, cosplay, video games, and other popular arts,” said David Glanzer, Comic-Con’s chief communications and strategy officer. “We are both proud and excited to announce the opening of the Museum and its inaugural exhibits.”

The Comic-Con Museum will open with six exhibits covering a wide range of the popular arts:

Gene Roddenberry: Sci-Fi Visionary
This exhibit highlights the career and far-reaching legacy of Gene Roddenberry, best known as the creator of Star Trek.  Gene’s fans will gain an even deeper understanding of his accomplishments and lasting impact on society, while new audiences will be inspired by the power of his vision and philosophy. Featuring historical memorabilia, costumes, props, rarely seen documents and letters, and a few surprises, the exhibit will inform visitors about the story of Gene Roddenberry’s life and his lasting impact on popular culture.

Chas Addams … Family and Friends
Loved by millions worldwide, Charles “Chas” Addams is primarily known for his creation of a fictional, multi-generational household of characters who starred in cartoons, The Addams Family television series, and multiple films. But he also illustrated more than 1,300 cartoons throughout his life and is remembered for his rare gift of creating ghoulish, bizarre, and weird cartoons that are simultaneously charming, humorous, and enchanting. This exhibit features more than 50 original Addams works of art.

Eight Decades of Archie
This world-premiere exhibition celebrates both the vast cultural legacy of Archie Comics over its 80-year span and the enduring appeal and history of its ever-evolving cast of typical American teenagers. Attendees will be welcomed to Riverdale through vintage comic books and original art, unique props. and other memorabilia, all built to delight the most ardent Archie fan and casual fans alike.

PAC-MAN Arcade
With a worldwide brand recognition of more than 90 percent, PAC-MAN is one of the most recognizable images and brands on the planet. Introduced as a video game in arcades in 1980, PAC-MAN continues to entertain and delight audiences young and old. The PAC-MAN Arcade is unique to the Comic-Con Museum. Guests are sure to enjoy this nostalgic showcase of the star of the 2020 addition to the Comic-Con Museum Character Hall of Fame.

Cardboard Superheroes
Your favorite pop-culture characters come to life in exceptional and intricately designed cardboard figures. Come see Iron Man, C-3PO, Wonder Woman, Groot, Black Manta, Baby Yoda, and other characters brought to 3-D life. The museum’s opening weekend will feature a special appearance by the Cardboard Superheroes makers, Connor Lee and Bauer Lee, a “makers lab” in the museum’s educational center where guests can follow along in a demonstration video to construct and keep the life-sized iconic shields of Captain America or Wonder Woman, and a special effects action video workshop to become your favorite superheroes such as Captain America, Thor, and Wonder Woman by shooting lightning bolts, dodging lasers, and wielding the power of Mjölnir!

Out of the Darkness: Comic Art in the Times of COVID
This exhibit is the result of a special collaboration conducted during the height of the pandemic between Comic-Con Museum and A Reason to Survive (ARTS), a creative youth development nonprofit serving young people across South San Diego County. Sponsored by Kaiser Permanente, the exhibit showcases how through comic illustration and visual storytelling, young people look inside themselves and within their communities to explore the experiences of the past eighteen months and their effects on individual mental health and collective well-being.

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