Superheroes, villains descend on Portland for first Maine Cosplay Extravaganza

From Batman and Batgirl to Dr. Doom and the Joker, superheroes and villains swooped into Portland this weekend – with hundreds of elaborate equipment – for the Maine Cosplay Extravaganza at Thompson’s Position.

Cosplay is the practice of dressing up and actively playing fantasy people, which has grown in level of popularity considering the fact that the 1990s. Participants generally develop into heroes or villains to increase smiles and guidance for charity.

The event’s organizers, partner and wife Keith and Mollie Dinsmore of Limerick, performed Batman and Batgirl. Their costumes seemed like they could be straight off a Hollywood set.

The Dinsmores reported they have been drawn to the strength of Batgirl and the character of Batman, who was orphaned as a boy and endured soreness expanding up.

“I experienced a relatively challenging childhood (far too),” explained Keith Dinsmore.

He started out finding “a actually, genuinely good costume,” and performed Batman going for walks all-around the Previous Port as the bars shut. “We figured we’d get the most reaction there,” he mentioned. “We had been right.”

The couple have appeared routinely at birthday parties and charity occasions due to the fact 2013, but also don costumes to assistance causes like “Aiming for Zero,” which performs to reduce suicide amid armed forces veterans.


Cosplay’s increasing attractiveness prompted the Dinsmores to manage the event. They ended up delighted with the turnout, approximated at 1,000 individuals and spectators in excess of two days.

Among them was Jeno Bianchi of South Berwick, a Ghostbuster. He wore the familiar tan Ghostbuster uniform total with gadgets, like a “neutrona wand” that Bianchi developed with a 3-D printer. “Ghostbusters is a single of the very first huge things I grew up with, Ghostbusters and Ninja Turtles. It just trapped with me,” he stated. “One day I observed out I could be a Ghostbuster, and there I am.”

Markus Steelgrave laughs when accomplishing magic methods for a team of young girls at the Maine Cosplay Extravaganza, a two-day event at Thompson’s Position. From remaining to appropriate, Zayn Albert, 14, of Portland Ashton Sylvain, 13, of Portland Drew Weaver, 12, of North Yarmouth and Dev Perrin, 13, of North Yarmouth. Derek Davis/Employees Photographer

When Bianchi is not a Ghostbuster, “I’m a trainer. I educate science. Pretty fitting, right,” he mentioned with a chuckle.

With him was Dr. Doom, a villain from the environment of Spider-Man, performed by Lisa Speropolous of Lee, N.H.

“Dr. Doom is a guy, but I put my personal spin on it,” claimed Speropolous, a higher education professor at the Southern New Hampshire College. “I instruct justice experiments,” she stated, smiling about the actuality she performs a villain.


Amanda Walker of South Paris came as Marvel Woman, total with the accommodate, cuffs, tiara and boots.

Her brother, Dustin Holmes of South Paris, was Spider-Gentleman. He established up in the conference hall with his Honda sedan protected in flashy pink and blue Spider-Guy colors with a black spider on the hood and “SPID3Y” on the license plate. “Spiderman is one particular of my most loved superheroes,” Holmes claimed. “This is my day to day auto,” other than for the winter season.

When questioned for a photo, Holmes crouched down, just like Spider-Male.

Mollie and Keith Dinsmore as Batgirl and Batman. The few organized Maine Cosplay Extravaganza. Photograph by Steven Palmer

Walker and Holmes are section of HONOR, Heroes of Norway/Oxford Regions, whose customers assist raise cash for charities with their hero appearances.

Chris Robley of Lewiston, a marketer for a tunes distributor, attended with his 9-yr-outdated daughter, Esme. He was the Joker, she was Harley Quinn, the Joker’s sidekick. “It’s pleasurable dressing up,” mentioned the fourth grader.


Shut by was a Dr. Who admirer team from the Lewiston-Auburn spot.

Dr. Who was Bud Santos, who made use of to operate a toy retail store in the Auburn Shopping mall. Santos showed off what looks like a blue, British law enforcement box, a bit even larger than a mobile phone booth.

“I designed it,” Santos stated. “This is the only TARDIS that is handicapped geared up,” he said, exhibiting a ramp at the rear of the box letting wheelchairs to enter. “The TARDIS stands for Time And Relative Proportions in Area,” he said, detailing how Dr. Who travels in time.

The event also captivated a team of specialist cosplay actors from Quebec, ranging in age from 9 to 69. They mentioned they have enjoyment, and that when having into costumes they turn into a little bit like the characters. An introvert can grow to be far more animated, folks who slouch stand up tall like a superhero.

For Dinsmore, the event’s organizer, placing on his Batman go well with suggests “my voice quickly drops an octave,” he stated. But he doesn’t seize all of the actions.

Batman broods and never smiles. Dinsmore said he is a Batman who smiles.


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