BEHIND THE SCENES AT MINNESOTA FAN FUSION!
Talent Relations Director
Jen & Lee Palmer
Programming Director Joe Boudrie &
Programming Manager Anthony Fuentes
How did Minnesota Fan Fusion come to be?
The Founder and Owner of Minnesota Fan Fusion, Matthew Solberg, grew up in Ham Lake Minnesota and as a teenager in the late 80’s and early 90’s attended many of the comic book conventions in the Twin Cities. Years later, after college and a career on political campaigns, he found himself living and working in Phoenix, Arizona seeking to do something different, not politically related, and something that harkens back to his childhood hobby of reading (and selling) comic books. He founded Phoenix Comicon (now Phoenix Fan Fusion) in 2002 and over the next decade built it into one of the largest comic book and pop culture conventions in the country.
During this time he got to know DC Comic Creator Dan Jurgens, a creator whom Matt has been a fan of since his teenage years. (Someplace there is a photo of a 16-year-old Matt Solberg with Dan Jurgens at FallCon at the Thunderbird hotel). Dan attended Phoenix Comicon for a number of years and approached Matt about providing assistance with or directly organizing a modern pop culture convention at one of the convention centers in town. Intrigued to return to his home state, Matt and his team at Square Egg Entertainment (the parent company of Phoenix Fan Fusion) did some research, talked to facilities in the area, and created Minnesota Fan Fusion!
Why Saint Paul and why the first weekend in August?
During site selection for Minnesota Fan Fusion, we spoke with multiple facilities, including the Minneapolis Convention Center and the Saint Paul RiverCentre. We found the reception, pricing, and facility at the Saint Paul RiverCentre to meet our needs in launching Minnesota Fan Fusion. It’s important for us to provide an affordable show for our attendees and we are able to do so within the Saint Paul RiverCentre.
Finding dates to hold a convention is a process of elimination with available dates and space at the facility. We knew we didn’t want to hold the convention during the Winter months, and we tried to avoid weekends with other large-scale popular events, such as the Minnesota State Fair or the Renaissance Festival. As we need a large amount of space to hold an event such as ours, we have to find a weekend when all the space is available and doesn’t conflict with other events. The best weekend we were presented is August 3-5, 2018, and thus, the magic of our show will take place on that weekend!