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The City Journals

Dads, Daughters flock to Jordan Ridge Comic Con

Mar 28, 2017 10:06AM ● By Julie Slama

Jordan Ridge Elementary held a Comic Con to provide activities and games for their daddy-daughter event. (Julie Slama/City Journals)

By Julie Slama | [email protected]

Gru and a minion from the animated film “Despicable Me” spent time together at Jordan Ridge Elementary’s Comic Con where they could draw their own superhero, identify famous castles or train to be princesses.

The two were actually Ryan Campbell and his first-grade daughter, Tatum, who were dressed up to participate in the school’s annual daddy-daughter activity on March 9.

“We spend a lot of time together, so this was something we’ve been planning,” Campbell said, as Tatum chimed in listing recent activities they’d done together, such as watching movies, going to Scheels and exploring the Clark Planetarium. “I took her to McDonald’s for dinner and asked what the best part of her day was. She told me, ‘it hasn’t happened yet.’ She was really looking forward to the Comic Con.”

Tatum’s favorite parts of the Comic Con were the games and the Frozone Freeze Dance, where they tested their dancing and freezing moves.

That was also a favorite of first-grader Brooklyn Nokes, dressed as Princess Aurora, and her grandfather, Tom Holbrook, also known as Mr. Incredible.

Both first-graders completed eight different activities to win a prize. Other activities included a photo booth with superhero props, hidden photos located in several hallways, superhero dad libs, superhero trivia quizzes, and a chance to save Captain America’s shield. Participants could also make their own tiara, smash villains with a wall ball, match spaceships to stories, and participate in a game called superhero hullabaloo.

The superhero hullabaloo was a favorite of sixth-grader Rebecca Waters and her father, Richard. They dressed as Mavis and Dracula from the Hotel Transylvania movies.

“It’s a good movie, and they’re good daddy-daughter costumes,” she said.

Through the years, the two often attended the daddy-daughter activities at the school. Last year, there was a “Star Wars” theme with Chewbacca at the event, and Rebecca drew Yoda, created a Yoda origami and received Jedi training. Two years ago, there was wand making and various food potions with the “Harry Potter” theme.

“It’s fun to support my daughter and just have fun here at the school,” Waters said.

Parent-Teacher Association volunteer Maria Tegtmeier, who was dressed as Mary Poppins, was co-chair of the event along with Michelle Spens.

“Three years ago, we started changing up the traditional daddy-daughter dance we’ve had for 15 to 20 years, and from there, it’s just grown,” Tegtmeier said. “With Comic Con, it’s such a broad subject we could incorporate superheroes, fantasy, science fiction, princesses — something for everyone and it’s really open for costumes.”

Older siblings of the elementary school students also dressed in Disney costumes for the event. Tegtmeier’s daughter dressed as Cruella de Vil. Others dressed as Cinderella and Anna and Elsa from “Frozen.” Several participants posed with the characters for photographs.

“We like being able to give dads, grandpas, neighbors or someone special in the girl’s life a chance to spend time with her. Many don’t have the one-on-one time with their child, so this gives them that opportunity,” Tegtmeier said about the 400 Comic Con participants.

In April, many of the same activities will be used or slightly adapted for the Mother-Son Comic Con.

“This is beginning to take on its own feel where kids are looking forward to coming,” Tegtmeier said. “Jordan Ridge has a lot of rich traditions to offer students.”