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MTU hosts fifth annual Geek U.P.

The Geek U.P. mini-convention is an annual event “bridging fandom with discovery” for geeks in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, and was hosted on Saturday, Sep. 9. This year, Michigan Tech hosted voice actors Colleen O’Shaughnessy, Roger Craig Smith, and Patricia Summerset, known for their roles in “Sonic the Hedgehog,” “Arkham Origins,” and “The Legend of Zelda,” respectively. While in attendance, the actors hosted question-and-answer panels regarding their work, hobbies, and general geek culture. First-time Geek U.P. visitor and panel attendee Malcolm Benedict said he greatly enjoyed the panel. “It was interesting to get a look behind the scenes,” he said, “and I’m excited to see what they’ll have next year”. 

Also found at Geek U.P. were vendors selling everything geeky from comic books to crochet, an artist’s alley where talented MTU students and community members displayed their work, gaming tournaments for attendees to show off their skills, and a silent auction where guests could bid on paraphernalia from popular media, as well as a cosplay contest where over a dozen artists competed for the best costume. 

Several of MTU’s student organizations were also in attendance. Husky Amateur Wargaming hosted demonstrations of the Battletech tabletop war game, and for those interested in a less strategic experience, Gamers Anonymous ran a variety of other board games from their 

collection. Also in attendance were the Houghton Anime Review Organization, hosting a reading room, and the Pokemon League at Michigan Tech, which ran Pokemon tournaments all afternoon. 

Geek U.P. isn’t just for fun; each year profits from ticket sales are donated to a local charity. This year’s event partnered with unitē Mental Health & Wellness, a local non-profit that provides therapy and other mental health services to the Houghton area. For those who missed out on Geek U.P. this year, the event is expected to return for its 6th year next fall, so be on the lookout for more information as the fall 2024 semester begins.

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