Inner Geeks and Freaks Let Loose at Dragon*Con

Costumes and roleplay are the highlights of Atlanta sci-fi convention and parade.

From left: Elysia Levy, 12, of Tucker, Georgia, minion with a fart gun; Andretta Weaver, 38, of Stockbridge, Georgia as Wonder Woman; White Power Ranger, Kris Lewis, 26, all the way from Las Vegas. (Jonathan Phillips)

The brainchild of four sci-fi superfans in Atlanta in 1986 has snowballed into “the world’s largest fantasy/sci-fi convention.” Dragon*Con, which some fans argue is better than its more well-known cousin the San Diego Comic-Con, descended upon town this Labor Day weekend.

One of the most popular events is the Dragon*Con parade, which draws tens of thousands of costumed revelers from across the country.

In addition to epic costumes and a devoted fandom, these geeks have big hearts. Each year, thousands of dollars from the convention go towards charitable causes. This year, proceeds will go the Lymphoma Research Foundation.

Past Dragon*Cons have seen the likes of convention longtimers George Takei, William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy. This year, as we see a rise in the presence of people of color in the worlds of cosplay and sci-fi, we asked veteran Dragon*Con photographer Jonathan Phillips to capture some highlights at Saturday’s Dragon*Con parade.

Dressed as a storm trooper, five-year-old Kane Bennett (right) asks for a fellow storm troopers' weapon as they march down the street during the annual DragonCon Parade in Atlanta on Saturday, September 5, 2015. (Jonathan Phillips)
Decked out like a colonial marine from the "Alien" movie franchise, Kai Wong marches down Peachtree St. (Jonathan Phillips)
Dressed as a super hero, Claude Hildreth waves to the crowd as he marches. (Jonathan Phillips)
Part of the N7 Elite cosplay group, Jenna Albert (center) marches down Peachtree St. (Jonathan Phillips)
Brandon Clarke, dressed as a super villain. (Jonathan Phillips)
Michael Cook poses for photos from the crowd (Jonathan Phillips)
Dressed as Roland from the "Borderland" video game series, Ryan Green, 28, came all the way from Chicago to be a part of the DragonCon Convention in Atlanta. "I've been coming to DragonCon for the past five years", said Green. "I love it. I save my money all year just to come here and be a part of this." (Jonathan Phillips)
Dressed as "Star Trek's" Lt. Uhura, Tom McKibben marches down Peachtree St. in Atlanta during the annual DragonCon Parade on Saturday, September 5, 2015. (Jonathan Phillips)
Josephine from the "Dragon Age" series, Amber Carlisle marches down Peachtree St. (Jonathan Phillips)
Wearing his "Men In Black" costume, William Parker marches past tens of thousands of people. (Jonathan Phillips)

Jonathan Phillips (Photographer) contributed to this article