Cosplay group ‘Vader’s 501st’ hits Pearl Con II


Rachel Bullock

Staff writer Steven Guzman poses in costume with members of the 501st crew.

Juliette Tafoya

Pearl Con II has come and gone and the legendary “Star Wars” cosplay organization, “Vader’s 501st”, made a galactic appearance at the comic book and gaming convention. The group is an organization that seeks to promote interest in all things “Star Wars.”

“They are a reenactment group who dress up as imperial characters to help charities and donate time to benefit communities and hopefully make ‘Star Wars’ more interactive and fun,” science teacher Jim Morrison said.

They are coming for this year’s Daniel Pearl Magnet High School comic and gaming convention after convention co-host Morrison contacted the organization.

We applied and they liked us,Morrison said jokingly, “I was in contact with two volunteers who are involved with the organization. One said they would sponsor us and present our event to others who would be willing to come represent the 501st.”

The 501st is an all-volunteer organization consisting of costume enthusiasts spreading joy not only by being costume fans but by doing charity work and fundraising. Because the PTSA is considered to be a charitable organization, Vader’s 501st agreed to be a part of Pearl Con II by providing donations to benefit DPMHS.

“Last year we raised over $3,000. This year we are expected to raise $5,000-$10,000,” Morrison said.

Alongside Vader’s allegiant, the Rebel allegiant will be attending as well. The Rebels are considered the “good guys” of the Star Wars universe (consisting of the Jedi and the Republic), whereas Vader’s group is the opposing enemy. Characters representing Vader’s allegiant are stormtroopers and bounty hunters.

Star Wars fans will have even more to enjoy this year at Pearl Con II since the 501st were not able to attend last year’s convention. Eight  members are confirmed to make an appearance, however Morrison has claimed it is possible for more to attend.

“This year’s convention is going to be bigger than last years. Not only do we have more presenters and costume enthusiasts, but now we have more volunteers than we’ve had before, plus double the amount of turnout that is expected to show,” Morrison said