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Dragon Con invades Atlanta
Batman and his coterie march in Dragon Cons costume parade through Midtown Atlanta on Sept. 3. - photo by Photo by Lewis Levine

There was no shortage of superheroes over Labor Day weekend in Atlanta as the popular fan fest convention called Dragon Con had its 30th convention.

It wasn’t unusual to run into numerous Batmen, Harly Quinn’s or Spider-Men on the the streets of downtown Atlanta. Festivities kicked off Saturday with a parade through Midtown Atlanta. Celebrities from film and television waved to fans who lined the streets to watch their favorite superhero march by.

Dragon Con, Atlanta’s international pop culture, fantasy, and sci-fi convention, announced a record attendance of more than 77,000 people for its 30th anniversary.

Fans came from around the world and all 50 states, with this year’s convention attracting people from as far away as Japan, New Zealand, and Fiji.

Anime director Shinji Aramaki, one of some 400 actors, artists, authors and other creators, also travelled from Japan to be a part of the celebration.

In its fundraising efforts, Dragon Con raised about $98,000 for its 2016 official charity, the Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency, which helps put homeless individuals on a path to healthy independence. The money was raised through auctions and other charity events, plus a $50,000 match from Dragon Con. Over the last five years, since 2012, Dragon Con has raised $440,000 for its official charities

Dragon Con’s annual Robert A. Heinlein "Pay It Forward" blood drive attracted about 3,000 attendees donating some 6,000 units of blood and blood products this year. The annual drive benefits LifeSouth, which serves more than 40 hospitals in the Atlanta area and 110 hospitals in the Southeast.

Atlanta’s Dragon Con is held each Labor Day. It features more than about 3,500 hours of comics, film, television, costuming, art, music, and gaming over four days.

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