Gaming for good: Fundraiser for Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital set for Tampa Bay Comic Con

Hillsborough County

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – A local group is hoping Tampa Bay Comic Con attendees will fire up a video game controller for some friendly competition and a good cause this weekend.

Gamers on The Edge raises funds for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

The group takes care of the game rooms and all video game consoles at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital.

“And there they have eight game rooms and just over 40 gaming consoles at this moment in time. We just want to make sure that those games and consoles are up and running for the kids because these kids are dealing with real life issues, whether it’s cancer or just a broken leg,” said the group’s founder, Angel Miranda.  

“For them to be able to play a game and be a kid while they’re in there is a big difference.”

Gamers on The Edge deals with Xbox, Playstation and Nintendo systems. They take the time to make sure the devices have parental blocks are turned on and everything is kid-friendly.

One hundred percent of funds raised by the group at Comic Con this weekend will go to efforts to keep those consoles up and running and to purchase new games.

They have a fun weekend planned with a ton of variety.

“Our friends from Microsoft are going to be there to help us a lot, too. So we’re going to have like 10 Xbox Ones. We’re going to have a bunch of PCs on the other side. We’re going to have a section just for retro games. That’s right, retro games for us old folks, so we can play the Genesis and the Segas and some of those other games we grew up playing,” Miranda laughed.

He is excited about one game and system in particular.

“We’re also going to have VR [virtual reality]!”

“So we’re going to go from retro all the way to the newest things that you could possibly have. We’re going to have some VR with ‘Beat Saber,’ which is an amazing game, it’s so much fun. If you haven’t tried it, you’ve got to show up and just take a hack at it.”

Miranda says everything in the game room is free to play, but they do ask if folks donate when it comes to the virtual reality game.

“If anybody can make a donation, we will literally just have a mailbox in the front, people just drop a donation and get in line. We don’t even look at it. Listen, it all makes a difference,” he said.

Gamers on The Edge will also have a table where Comic Con attendees can purchase different knick-knacks, like the popular Funko! Pop figurines.

To date, Gamers on The Edge has donated over $70,000 to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

They are now in the process of working to help other hospitals, having just returned from Atlanta Comic Con and meetings in Puerto Rico.

“The Grid: E-Gaming” fundraiser event will take place all three days of Comic Con in room 18 of the Convention Center:

Friday: Noon to 10 p.m.
Saturday: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Sunday: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For more information about Tampa Bay Comic Convention, including a full schedule of panels and events, click here.

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