Inaugural Toys on the Hudson Show Draws Hundreds to Jersey City
Comic book and Toy show draws hundreds to Jersey City waterfront hotel
Held at the Westin Hotel at Washington Boulevard and Sixth Street, the three-day event had everything a comic book and toy junkie could dream of, including thousands of collectibles, panel events, several celebrities, the Batmobile and an auction.
The show is the brainchild of Phil DeMario and Mike Spino, business partners, long time friends and toy collectors who for the past 21 years have organized similar shows in Wayne, NJ www.waynenjtoyandcollestiblesshow.com and decided, this year to bring a larger event to Hudson County.
“Everything that’s in here is about family,” said DeMario, whose passion for the trade began when he was a child collecting Toys & Comics in the Jersey City area.
In all, 100 dealers participated, DeMario said, and crowded the entire 18,000 square foot second floor of the luxury hotel with 173 tables topped with various action figures, comics, toys, movie memorabilia, collectibles and even original works created by local comic artists and authors.
“The entire family can get together and enjoy this hobby,” said DeMario, adding that some of the profits from the fair will be donated to the New Jersey Relief Fund, the Red Cross, the ASPCA, and Autism Speaks.
Among those in attendance was Geri Reischl, the former television star who played Jan Brady on the classic show “The Brady Bunch.” She posed for pictures with fans and promoted her pop album, “1200 Riverside.”
Former WWE wrestler and St. Peter’s University alumnus Andrew “The Reinforcer” Anderson was also at the fair talking up his upcoming championship match against Greg “The Hammer” Valentine to be held Friday at Hudson Catholic High School in Jersey City.
Anderson, a 43-year-old toy fanatic, was staffing a table of collectibles he picked up over the years while traveling on the road, including a “giant Godzilla everyone is drooling over.”
For fans of vintage superheroes and classic DC comics, the fair brings back memories of younger days.
“I love it, this is great,” said Chris Santiago, 33, from Passaic. “I’m just being brought back to my childhood.” With him were his two sons, 6-year-old Christian and 14-year-old Nick, who were excited about the Power Ranger action figures and showed no interest in their father’s favorite 1980’s GI Joe.“I’m just trying to introduce the old to the new,” laughed Santiago.
Attendees are welcomed to submit feedback about the show to Phil at email@example.com