Comic Con Happening in Merced this Saturday
September 13, 2017

California Republic Comic Con, Merced’s official comic con, happening at the Merced County Fairgrounds this Saturday, September 16th, 2017 for its second annual show with more celebrities and fun activities for everyone to enjoy.

Appearing at California Republic Comic Con is sci-fi legend and the star of Stanley Kubrick’s timeless masterpiece 2001: A Space Odyssey, Gary Lockwood. 2008 will mark the 50th anniversary of the film that is considered by many to be the best science fiction movie ever made, and the attendees will be able to celebrate early with Dr. Frank Poole himself in this very rare Central Valley appearance.

Gary Lockwood also credited with playing Lieutenant Commander Gary Mitchell in the Star Trek pilot episode “Where No Man Has Gone Before”. At the convention, Gary Lockwood will be joined by Sean Kenney, best known for his role in Star Trek as the crippled Christopher Pike in “The Menagerie”, and as Lieutenant DePaul in “Arena” and “A Taste of Armageddon.”


Star Wars fans will get a rare chance to meet Julie Dolan who has voiced Princess Leia Organa for Star Wars Rebels, Star Tours – The Adventure Continues and numerous Star Wars videogames, and Stephen Costantino who who portrayed one of Jabba’s Gamorrean Guards in Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi.


Also appearing at California Republic Comic Con actors Jimmy Hunt (Invaders from Mars), Alison MacInnis (Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue) and Steven Skyler (Power Rangers Samurai), as well as renowned comic book artists and creators Chris Marrinan (Excalibur, Wonder Woman), Matt Haley (Wonder Woman 77, Judge Dredd, Superman), Tobe Daranouvong (Villain Comic) and Omar Morales (CruZader: Agent of the Vatican).


Attendees will also be able to shop from various exhibitors and creators, meet local cosplayers and fan groups. The program also features Violette Film Festival, the largest independent film festival in Merced County, a cosplay contest with a trophy and $300 cash prize for the winner, a retro video game room with more than 4,000 games to play, free Street Fighter Tournament with prizes, laser tag, and a live concert with performances by Steven Skyler, Stephen Costantino, Mike Werner, and Central Valley;’s favorite band, Diversity of One.


Show open 10 am – 5 pm at the Merced County Fairgrounds Saturday, September 16th, 2017. All ages are welcome. Tickets available online at (adult 13+ $10, kids 5-12 $5, kids under 5 y.o. free) or at the door (adult 13+ $15, kids 5-12 $8, kids under 5 y.o. free).


Daniel Pickett
Daniel “Julius Marx” Pickett has been around toys his whole life. The first line he ever collected was Mego’s World’s Greatest Super Heroes line back in the 70s. He has been surrounded by collectables ever since. In 1999 he was confounded by a lack of information and news about some of his favorite toy lines he was collecting. Since he couldn’t find the information he decided to pursue it himself thinking other people might also be interested in the same news. He started writing a weekly column on the toy industry and action figure for a toy news site and in a years time he tripled the sites daily traffic with his updates, reviews and product features. He built relationships with every major toy manufacturer and many sculptors, painters and mold makers. He grew his hobby into a world wide expertise that the industry has embraced. In 2004 he teamed up with his toy buddy Jason “ToyOtter” Geyer and they created their own website Daniel has been quoted in both industry and mass media press outlets. Over the years Daniel and AFi have been sought out as experts in the field. Daniel was regularly featured on “Attack of the Show” on the G4 network as the primary contributor to their “Mint On Card” segment, and our front page has been linked to from USA Today’s “Pop Candy” Blog twice. Daniel’s content has also been featured on,, The Wall Street Journal, The Saturday Evening Post,,,, Boing-Boing,, Ain’t It Cool News, the Official Star Wars blog, Geekologie, G4, CNet and Toy Fare magazine, among many others. He has consulted on toy lines, books, documentaries and TV shows. But all of that really just sounds snooty and “tootin’ his own horn” – the long and short of it is that Daniel loves toys and he LOVES talking about them.
Read other articles by Daniel Pickett.




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