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Phoenix Comic Fest security gets boost from Tempe’s Pride Group

Phoenix Comicon 2017 – photo by Bob Leeper
Phoenix Comicon 2017
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Phoenix Comic Fest 2018Square Egg Entertainment has hired an outside partner to provide security at its flagship event Phoenix Comic Fest.

Pride Group, based in Tempe, describes itself as an event services company, and offers a wide variety of services such as event planning, vehicle outfitting, disaster relief and other logistical matters.

Tight security at Phoenix Comicon 2017 (Photo by Bob Leeper)
Tight security and long lines at Phoenix Comicon 2017 (photos by Bob Leeper)

Last year, Phoenix Comicon (Phoenix Comic Fest’s former name) experienced a close call when a heavily armed and body-armored man was arrested after threatening to kill officers and convention guest Jason David Frank, and entering the Phoenix Convention Center. After that security breach, Phoenix police initiated enhanced screening and tightened access to the convention center, and costume prop weapons were banned from the premises.

For 2018, Phoenix Comic Fest will require RFID wristbands and allow only inoperable, dull-edged and lightweight prop weapons aside from realistic or replica firearms and nonmetal, light costume armor. (Complete details on what is and isn’t allowed now can be found here.)

Square Egg says Pride will work alongside its own Phoenix Comic Fest operations department and will offer “central command of security procedures, prop check stations, and MAG readers at all entrances. Each entrance will have dedicated ADA, costuming, and VIP lines. Every redemption station will have customer service, purchasing, and exchange capabilities.”

Phoenix Comicon/Comic Fest, once an all-volunteer-run operation, switched to a paid staff business model last year after considering a system that would have continued to use volunteers who would have been required to pay dues.

After the security breach last year, safety is on everyone’s mind, even as the event that began life as Phoenix Cactus Comicon in 2002 continues to undergo rapid change. We’ll try to keep up with it all and let you know the latest news about Phoenix Comic Fest security and more.

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