Masquerade & Cosplay: Information and Participant Registration

Thanks for your interest in the DemiCon 27 “formal” Masquerade and Cosplay! Unlike the Friday night “Hall Costume” contest, the Saturday evening event gives you a chance to strut your clever and cunningly-crafted attire in front of a captive (although voluntarily so) audience. Prizes will be awarded for the costumes deemed by our judges to be the best of the best.

If you’ve participated in masquerades before, then you’re already familiar with the thrill of hearing the “oooohs” and “aaaahs” of an audience eager to appreciate your handiwork and presentation skills. If you’ve NOT tried your hand as a contestant in the past, then get ready for one of the biggest endorphin rushes one can experience at an SF con. Once you’ve walked across that stage in your jaw-dropping Renaissance garb, or Steampunk finery, or as your favorite anime character, or wherever your creative muse has taken you, you’ll be hooked — we promise!

Looking for Masquerade and Cosplay registration? Click HERE to go directly to the form.


We’ve continued our work to improve our Masquerade/Cosplay experience for everyone — for example, we’ve eliminated the rule barring hall costume entries from the MainStage event, and relaxed the registration paperwork deadline, pushing it back so that folks can enter as late as two hours before the show. Here’s the latest news about what to expect for this year’s “Spectacular Spectacular.”

Last Year:

  • We added workmanship judging to our event — which is a separate “area” from the stage presentation and awards. While optional, there’s no reason not to give it a go, as our workmanship judges often give awards for special costume elements of note — props, creative use of materials, etc. — along with the overall “Best Workmanship” award. Winning a workmanship award does not disqualify you from winning awards for your MainStage presentation.
  • We also expanded our greenroom space, so that our preparation area is not quite so claustrophobic.
  • Finally, we set up a FaceBook page and a blast mailing list, for anyone who wants to keep up on the latest exciting news about DemiCon’s premiere MainStage event. You can “Like” the DemiCon Masquerade and Cosplay on FaceBook at this link: To be added to the email blast list, send your subscription request to

This Year:

  • We’re looking once again into the possibility of handing out ballots for an “audience choice” award.



  • The masquerade will be held at 8 p.m. Saturday evening. Adult participants should report to the green room (Ballroom D) by 7:15; junior participants (ages 13 and under) should report to the green room by no later than 7:30.
  • You must have a DemiCon 27 membership to take part in the Masquerade and Cosplay. If you have not registered for DemiCon27 yet, please visit the Registration page.
  • There is no private dressing facility in the green room — so if modesty is an issue, you’ll need to don at least your lowest layer either in your hotel room, or in the nearby hotel restroom facility, before reporting in. Both the men’s and women’s restrooms have a large “handicapped” stall suitable for clothing changes.
  • DemiCon recognizes three entry categories: Apprentice (a.k.a. Junior — for contestants aged 13 years and younger), Artisan (ages 14 and up), and Exhibition (for show only; not entered for judging consideration). There will be “Best of Apprentice” and “Best of Artisan” awards presented, as well as a “Best of Show” that can be selected from either category. In addition, the judges will be given leeway to present a few “honorable mention” awards, which may include things such as: Best Presentation, Best Media Recreation, Best Use of Materials — or whatever else they deem fit in order to recognize our contestants’ outstanding work. There will also be a “Best Workmanship” award bestowed by a separate panel of judges, who will examine costumes up close and personal in the greenroom area. The workmanship judges may also elect to give out some honorable mention awards for special detail work, as they deem appropriate.
  • For those opting to avail themselves of a tech rehearsal, you will be granted a 10-minute slot to practice with the emcee and tech crew on Saturday afternoon. You can sign up for your tech rehearsal time when you submit your entry paperwork — but in order to be granted tech rehearsal time, we will need your paperwork no later than noon on Saturday. (Remember: if you like being super-efficient, you can get your “paperwork” to us in advance by including it in your Masquerade and Cosplay registration.) It is not necessary to come to your rehearsal in your full costume — but for best results, we do recommend bringing along any special props, headgear, and/or footwear that are part of your ensemble, as those are the items most likely to cause unexpected challenges during a presentation.
  • Persons scheduling a tech rehearsal should bring any special music or audio files with them if the presentation requires it. Preferred format is .mp3 or .aif files on a flash drive or CD. Our sound crew may or may not be able to accommodate other formats, so deviate from these guidelines at your own risk. With or without a tech rehearsal, however, we can provide you with some kick-ass background music if you need it. Just let us know the general type of mood you want to set, and we’ll select something great for you accordingly.
  • We will have a photographer available to take studio-quality pictures of you in your masquerade garb. You should plan to be prepared for your photo shoot during the pre-event green room time, although our photographer MAY be available for a brief period after the conclusion of the masquerade if you don’t get around to having your portrait snapped earlier.
  • After your time on stage, we recommend that you remain in costume until all entries have been presented (although you can certainly temporarily remove pieces if some “breathing time” is required), so that you may participate in the post-masquerade “photo run” across the stage for the photographers in our audience. This is optional — but after having gone to all that hard work to make the costume, don’t you want to give everyone else as much opportunity as possible to enjoy it?
  • After the photo run (or sooner, for those who opt not to do the “catwalk” thing), participants may remove any or all portions of their costume, and are invited to sit in the audience to enjoy the halftime show, and to be present when the judges return from deliberation to announce the awards.



Questions? Suggestions? The sooner you contact us, the better. Please direct all masquerade-related correspondence to Jeannette Roth — your humble DC26 masquerade/cosplay director — at

And once again, if you’ve decided to join us with an onstage presentation – and we hope you have – you can help yourself and help us to make things run more smoothly and efficiently by registering online.


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Registration Form

Primary Contact

First Name:

Last Name:

Phone (555-555-5555):


Entry Information

Name of Entry:

Entry Claissification:

Complete Name(s) of Entrant(s):

This entry uses masks or otherwise limits the vision of one or more entrants

This entry includes oversize/tall elements or limits mobility

I/we do not want to participate in tech rehearsal and will simply do a walk-on

I/we have an audio file to accompany this entry

If you declined the opportunity for a tech rehearsal, or you are not providing your own audio file for your entry, and you would like us to provide you with one of our pre-selected background music tracks, select your desired music style:

If you have other special needs, please describe them here (remember: surprise the audience, NOT the masquerade staff!):

Emcee Script IMPORTANT: If you forgo a tech rehearsal, the emcee will only read your script in ADVANCE of your entrance.

I/we do NOT want the emcee to read the entry name before entrance

Anything else you want to tell us or ask us? Type it here:

IMPORTANT: You must read the following waivers and check the boxes below to indicate your acceptance of the masquerade/cosplay terms. Failure to accept the terms and mark the checkboxes will disallow your participation in this year's event.

** I have read the rules and procedures, and agree to abide by them.

** I understand that participants in the DemiCon Masquerade/Cosplay will be photographed and filmed. I agree to hereby waive all rights associated with the publication and distribution of such photos and videos, and grant the Des Moines Science Fiction Society and/or DemiCon permission to use my Masquerade/Cosply likeness for editorial and promotional purposes. I further agree to hold harmless DemiCon and the Des Moines Science Fiction Society LTD in all aspects relating to my participation.

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