Before we dive into a year of way too many Mayan calendar jokes, let’s look back over an amazing year in the Arizona geek world, shall we?

2011 boasted some crazy events here in the hotness that is Arizona. I was going to skim the Lightning Octopus calendar for the year and try and count up a rough number of events it had, but my eyes glazed over after a while of scrolling and I kept losing count. There were a lot.

It’s hard to see sometimes, but we have a lot going on here every weekend.

I’m not able to go to everything, but here are my favorite 11 events that I was able to make it out to in 2011.

(And think of your own while you read. I’d love to hear what some of your favorite geek experiences were this year.)

Nerd Walk

Not only was I able to sit in a freaking DeLorean (yes, it did have a flux capacitor), I was able to meet Bob Beard who now writes for Jackalope Ranch, and march with my fellow nerds.

After the march, everyone got together and talked Trek for a while.

Good times.


When it came to video game tournaments and conventions, nothing is bigger than Devastation ’round these parts.

This event was wall-to-wall tournaments, booths, consoles, arcades, costumes, and gaming machines.

Lightning Octocon

An actual lightning octopus

Wow, remember when I decided to throw a party to celebrate one year of Lightning Octopus?

For as much as I stressed about this thing, it ended up being pretty dang awesome thanks to friends, family, Gangplank, and HeatSync Labs.

Not only did we have good company, liquid nitrogen ice cream, and sweet tunes, HeatSync actually electrified an octopus.


Ignite Phoenix

From Ignite Phoenix Flickr

Where else can you hear people share their experiences raising geek kids, outlining the economic implications of a zombie apocalypse, and ranting about all of the RPGs better than Dungeons & Dragons?

I’ve enjoyed every Ignite Phoenix I’ve been to so far, though a large part of that may have been the company I was with.


Despite taking place at an awkward hotel, this Anime convention turned out to be pretty fun.

Plus they let me be their blogger so I got to sport a Media and a Guest badge, which made me feel super duper fancy.

Video Game Trivia Night

Did I get pwned? Yes.

Was it way fun? Very yes.

I miss The Cade Gallery mostly because I only got to participate in one of these.

Mesa 2nd Fridays

Lightning Octopus, Zombie Killer

During it’s high point, 2nd Friday on Main Street was almost always filled with steampunk, zombies, robots, and sometimes even steampunk robot zombies.

(No, really.)

I’ll miss Evermore Nevermore and hope they continue influencing this monthly mini-geek-fest.

Retro Video Game Night

HeatSync Labs, please do this again. It was awesome.

I’d never seen so many old consoles together. Actually, I don’t think I’d ever seen half of the consoles that made an appearance that night.

Thanks to this event, I was able to Hunt The Wumpus for the first time since I was 8 years old.

(Or did the Wumpus hunt me!?)

Phoenix Comicon 2011

Few events can stack up to Phoenix Comicon. It was an inspiration for me to start this little blog in the first place.

Like I said last year: it’s just the biggest, geekiest, and comicon-iest event around.

Just look at the picture I caught up there. Huge.

Video Games Live

Video Games Live - Photo by: Brenderous

Jayson of Nerdvana scored some tickets and asked if I wanted to tag along to Video Games Live.

I said yes, yes I would.

For fans of live music and FFVII like me, hearing an orchestra and choir perform One Winged Angel is pretty memorable.

The Horror Sci-Fi & Phoenix Film Festival

Jonathan At The Phoenix Film Festival [Lightning Octopus] 3

This year I learned that film festivals are pretty fun!

I got to see The People vs George Lucas and a few other nerdy flicks, as well as meet The Midnight Movie Mamacita for the first time.

So what about you?

What did you do this year?

Any glorious geek memories of 2011?

Please share!