Gen Con draws nearly 70,000 to Indianapolis, event officials say

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Organizers of the Gen Con gaming convention held Thursday through Sunday downtown say the event broke several attendance records in its 17th year in Indianapolis and 52nd overall.

The event broke its records for exhibitors, total ticketed events and for sales of four-day and Sunday badges.

Overall, nearly 70,000 unique attendees attended the event at the Indiana Convention Center, organizers said, without providing a more specific figure. More than 60,000 people attended the event a year ago.

Gen Con said 538 exhibiting companies took part in the convention, up from 520 a year ago.

A turnstile count, which counts total number of people who enter the doors of the convention center over the four-day period, including repeat visitors, was not immediately available. Last year’s event set a turnstile record of 223,326.

Gen Con, consistently one of the biggest convention events of the year for downtown Indianapolis, takes place in the Indianapolis Convention Center and Lucas Oil Stadium.

Through its philanthropy efforts, Gen Con raised more than $35,000 for the convention’s charity partners—Game To Grow and Special Olympics Indiana. Gen Con has raised more than $335,000 for local charities since 2003.

Gen Con will return July 30-Aug. 2, 2020. It has an agreement with Visit Indy to host the event in Indianapolis through at least 2023, in part due to the efforts to build at least one new hotel convention center at Pan Am Plaza.

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4 thoughts on “Gen Con draws nearly 70,000 to Indianapolis, event officials say

  1. The scooters were well-received by attendees; many were quite enthusiastic about them and being able to move further away from the convention center easily. I heard lots of concerns about Indy’s “homeless people” last year. (I noticed lots of different faces than we see normally, so I wonder if some of the panhandlers are opportunists and not local Hoosiers.) Last year, we had one armed robbery I heard about. This year, someone broke into cars at the Embassy Suites. The I-70 closure from the airport to downtown was poorly timed from GenCon’s perspective. And, there were LOTS of complaints Sunday about getting out of the Mall parking garage (2 friends wrote on Facebook about waiting an hour without moving – one guy reported a 2.5 hour wait when it was all said and done). But, overall, a good reflection on Indy.

  2. GenCon is a great event. Definitely seeing a lot less negative feedback on social media this year for GenCon. The car break-ins at Embassy Suites is out there as are issues with the scooters on sidewalks. The one question that would be interesting to see IBJ cover is the impact on GenCon that will happen as a result of construction of the new hotel. Rumor is that Georgia Street might be closed or inaccessible to Food Trucks at next year’s GenCon. That would have a pretty big impact.