Tips for Planning Your Gen Con Adventure With Kids
Hiya gaming families! Kristen, Gen Con Marketing Manager here. Some of the common questions I see on social media are, “Can I bring my kids to Gen Con?” and “Are there things for my kids to do at Gen Con?” — and the answer to both is a resounding YES! While there are games and events at Gen Con that are adult-oriented, we have plenty of programming appropriate for kiddos of all ages.
Before I review all the fun activities we’ve got for families, I’d like to share some important details: Children 10 and under can get into Gen Con free with a child wristband. The wristband is helpful in a couple ways – first, it helps us reconnect parent and child should you ever get separated and second, it allows your kids to register their spot in KID games and events (more on that below). If you’ve got a mature nine or 10-year-old who would like to participate in games and events that are not KID-designated, they will need a regular badge to register. Anyone older than 10 will need a regular badge to attend.
Now, on to the fun stuff!
Family Fun Pavilion
The Family Fun Pavilion is a section of the Exhibit Hall dedicated entirely to kid-friendly exhibitors and games. Check it out to find your new go-to for family game night! You’ll find the location on our maps on the website and in the Gen Con program book.
We’ve dedicated a large ballroom in the Indiana Convention Center completely to gaming and events for kids. You’ll find a selection of kid-friendly games to play together, along with a host of other activities including crafts, box fort building, face painting, and structured RPG and gaming sessions. Please note that kids may not be left unattended in this or any other area.
KID Games and Events
One of the amazing things about Gen Con is the amount and variety of things to do! Last year, we had over 20,000 ticketed events. We have specific games and programming just for children, designated in the Event Catalog as KID events. You’ll want to register early (Event Registration opens May 17) because some of them are quite popular and fill up fast! KID events include: intro to RPGs, minis painting for mini gamers, “magic school” classes such as wand creation and potions class, puppet shows, crafting, boffer combat, and more!
In April, our Event Catalog will be published, and you can filter the events by the KID type. Most KID events are in the Kids Zone.
If you’ve got a kiddo who’s a budding cosplayer and loves the spotlight, then you may be interested in the costume contest! We have a category for kids up to 13 years old, where they can experience the thrill of participating in a contest in a fun and supportive atmosphere.
Moms, we know that it’s not always easy to feed your little ones at public events, so we have a couple quiet, private nursing stations available. Find one in the Kids Zone, and the other in the Crossroads Concourse women’s restroom, located across from security and first aid offices. If you’d just like a quiet space to relax with your sweet babe, I’d recommend heading up to the second level of the Indiana Convention Center. There are games and events happening on this level, but it’s typically less crowded than the main floor.
If you have any questions, we’re here for you! You can either email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or send us a tweet or Facebook message. Looking forward to seeing you and your mini gamers at Gen Con!