Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version


2018 WonderCon Anaheim Masquerade

Calling all costumers … Get ready for your big event!

For a look at last year’s WonderCon Anaheim Masquerade, including all the contestants and winners, click here!


WonderCon Anaheim Masquerade

Dr. Strange—Worn and made by Nina London; Winner of the Best Workmanship Award. Photo: S. Oson © 2017 SDCC


If walking around in costume inside WonderCon Anaheim and posing for large group photos at the outside fountain isn’t enough costuming for you, then reserve a contestant spot in our Saturday night major event, where you can present your impressive costume creation to an audience of 3,000 on the same Arena stage we use for major film and TV presentations, and have a fun time. We’ve reserved our big stage that evening just for you, as WonderCon Anaheim once again celebrates the art that touches near all other popular art forms with our on-stage costume show, returning for its 15th year. It’s an evening of fun, surprises, and great costumes crafted by our attendees. Why call this a Masquerade instead of an exhibition or fashion show? Simply put, “to masquerade” means to portray someone other than yourself, and our contestants bring to the stage as much imagination as they do skilled workmanship, by portraying characters and creating inventive presentations with drama, humor, a storyline, and sometimes a mock battle or two.

Not a dance or party as the name might imply, each entry is allotted their own time on stage, and we use our giant high-definition video screen and multiple cameras to display great close-up views to the audience. Most of the costume presentations are accompanied by specially prepared music, and some with elaborate choreography. Some will be impressive re-creations from the genres of comics, film, television, anime, fantasy, stage shows, video games, and history; others will be completely original designs from the imaginations of our attendees. Some will be solo entries, others will be groups with a shared theme. If you've crafted a costume you think our audience would enjoy seeing up on the stage, we encourage you to sign up and share your work, create lots of smiles, and perhaps take home a trophy or other prize. All genres are welcome, but costumes must NOT have been purchased or otherwise commercially obtained, and be of original construction or show significant modification of pre-existing materials.

The Masquerade event will be 8:30 PM Saturday, March 24, in the Anaheim Convention Center Arena.

The event is free to participate in, or to be in the audience, only a WonderCon Anaheim attendee badge valid for Saturday is needed. Doors will open for audience seating at 8:00 PM, and the event will run about 2 and 1/2 hours. Special seating will be available for the disabled, selected press approved in advance, and for special guests. Audience tickets are not used for this event since our large venue has plenty of seating.

For complete information, rules, and an Advance Entry Form click here

or you can e-mail the Masquerade Coordinator at to request a copy e-mailed to you. A limited number of contestant slots are available, so interested costumers should obtain the rules and entry form as soon as possible. A photo of the costume or costumes you are entering will also be required for confirmation of eligibility. Entries are now being accepted and it’s smart to enter sooner than later. The Deadline for advance entry is March 9, 2018 (two weeks before WonderCon Anaheim 2018). After that date contestants can sign up at WonderCon on Friday, IF any slots are still available. Once we fill up there will be a Waiting List to fill openings from cancellations. Our volunteer staff has been running Masquerades for over 20 years, and we’ll do our best to provide you with a great time.

WonderCon Anaheim Masquerade

Hawkman and Hawkgirl—Worn and made by Andy Holt and Julia Jenkins. Photo: R. Manahan © 2017 SDCC


No flash photography is allowed at the event, and any photos or video taken are intended for non-profit personal use only. There will be a flash-allowed posing area with a backdrop in a nearby room where the contestants will go after their stage presentations, but spaces are limited, and photographers who wish access to the Photo Area should reserve a spot in advance by writing to the e-mail above. Credentialed press that would like front section seating in the audience should also write to the Coordinator in advance.

Remember that the convention attendee badges sell out fast, and you’ll need a Saturday badge to participate in, or just attend, the WonderCon Anaheim Masquerade, so click here to purchase your badges now!


Trophies will be awarded by our panel of guest judges to outstanding entries in the following categories:

  • Best in Show
  • Judges’ Choice
  • Best Re-Creation
  • Best Original Design
  • Best Workmanship
  • Most Humorous
  • Most Beautiful
  • Best Young Fan

Winners in these trophy categories will also receive complimentary 3-day badges for WonderCon Anaheim 2019 as an added thank you for all their hard work and talent!  If a group entry wins a category, up to 4 free badges will be bestowed to that group.

In addition to the trophies given by the WonderCon judges, several organizations and companies will present their own generous cash, collectibles, and other prizes to winners they select. Those will be added between now and the convention so be sure to check back regularly for the latest award additions to include:

Frank & Son Collectible Show of the City of Industry, California, “The first and last stop for ALL your collectible needs”, will present a generous $500 cash prize to the costume entry they deem to be the audience favorite.