NEW YORK (WABC) -- New York Comic Con has returned to Manhattan's Javits Center with a full slate of in-person events for the first time since 2019.
Amid the coronavirus pandemic, the 2020 event was held virtually, while in 2021, organizers held a scaled-down event with fewer participants.
For this year's event, attendees are being required to wear face masks on the convention floor, but a full-capacity crowd is expected.
"We're expecting 200,000 attendees through the door this weekend. Masks are going to be required through the event on all four show days and we're expecting a really big turnout," event manager Chris D'Lando said.
On day one, the mask requirement, and any lingering concerns about COVID-19, didn't seem to deter anyone from attending.
"It's a sign the city's opening back up again. And what do I get out of it? Having fun, again in the city," attendee Louie Cruz said.
Adding to the flair and excitement of the event, many attendees dress in cosplay, wearing elaborate costumes of the characters from their favorite media franchises.
"It's just fun to be someone else for a little while. Like, the world is annoying most of the time so you get to be somebody else," attendee Riot Diaz said.
For many, it's a chance to meet those who create the comics and those who bring those comics to life.
"We work on these cartoons. We're behind the camera drawing and writing and to come to an event like this and meet people face-to-face, it's so rewarding," Chris Houghton said.
He's the creator and executive producer of "Big City Greens" which airs on the Disney channel, owned by the parent company of WABC-TV.
What began as a convention for comic book enthusiasts broadened out long ago, and vendors of all kinds see a captive audience at the event, which is back now to full strength.
The convention runs through Sunday, October 9.
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