North Texas Daily

Denton women express love for nerd culture through Geek Girl Brunch

Denton women express love for nerd culture through Geek Girl Brunch

August 2016 Disney Karaoke Brunch (Big Brothers Big Sisters Geek girls do better brunch)

Denton women express love for nerd culture through Geek Girl Brunch
January 30
18:46 2017

Darth Vader and mimosas are a much better pairing than you may think.

At least that’s what nerd culture lovers at Geek Girl Brunch Denton believe.

GGB Denton is an organization of women who geek out and fangirl together, typically when alcohol and food are involved. Every month, the members of GGB Denton meet up for brunch, usually an official yet casual meetup, to talk about all things Star Trek, Dr. Who, Sherlock, Star Wars and more.

“When we get together, it’s really about the food and the fellowship and the fandom,” GGB Denton officer Victoria Campbell said. “It’s about the fellowship of all the girls talking about how nerdy they really are.”

Geek Girl Brunch launched in 2014 from a circle of women in New York who began to have geek-themed brunches together.

“We wanted a space for women to feel safe and nerd out about things,” GGB co-founder Jamila Rowser said. “We just wanted a place where we could meet in person and talk about this stuff without fear of trolls and things like that.”

Their brunches began to garner social media buzz, and eventually blossomed into something bigger than they ever imagined.

“We didn’t know that it would blow up the way that it did,” GGB co-founder Yissel Ayala said. “It was completely unexpected. We didn’t realize how necessary Geek Girl Brunch was and so we were getting all these requests from all over the state and nationally.”

Now, GGB is comprised of 115 chapters and over 7,600 members across numerous cities, including Denton.

Current GGB Denton officers Taylor DeLozier and Seana Epley first opened the chapter after wanting a local community of girls who shared the same love of nerd culture.

DeLozier saw the GGB branch for DFW and wanted to start a branch of her own.

“Once I got Seana involved, we actually launched it,” DeLozier said. “I searched a bunch of social media sites and started putting money toward the ads to get stuff started and people interested.”

The interest poured in. Now, GGB Denton has 526 members in total, not even a complete year after their launch.

“There’s a rule in society to what’s cool to be geeky about and what’s not,” Campbell said. “I feel like there is sort of a stigma, but that’s what Geek Girl Brunch is for.”

GGB Denton consists predominantly of women in their 20s and 30s, but women well into their 40s, 50s and 60s have also joined the organization. A member has even arrived to an event with two of her granddaughters in tow.

As long as you’re older than 18, there is no age cap.

“If you’re never too old for Disney, then you’re never too old for us,” Campbell said. “I believe Walt Disney on that one.”

GGB Denton members strive for a community of women of all ages, Gryffindor or Slytherin, to geek out together with no judgement.

“Age plays a role in it because when you’re an adult, they say, ‘You still like Mario?’ or ‘You still like Superman?’” GGB Denton officer Lora Ridl said. “When you’re an adult, you’re supposed to act like an adult, but this gives us an excuse to not act like one.”

Loving Star Wars, Marvel or DC Comics puts you in an interesting crowd.

GGB Denton member Bonnie Stufflebeam said she is glad the group exists among the masses because it provides a place for mutual fangirling.

“There’s definitely somewhat of a stigma associated with it in some circles,” Stufflebeam said. “For instance, I have a lot in common with [my nephews, who are 6 and 4,] and they see me as one of them, which is cool. But it’s sometimes not the best feeling in the world, so it’s nice to find actual adults who share the same interests.”

Being a female within the nerd community also has had its negative effects.

“There is a huge nerd culture community, but a large portion of that community is male,” GGB Denton member Andrea Slattery said.  “A lot of females in the community aren’t necessarily as open about their interests, and GGB brings us together and shows us that there are a lot more geeky women out there than we thought.”

Denton’s mix of young college kids and older entrepreneurs bring together a unique yet cohesive blend of people to the organization.

Rowser said it is a type of diversity that geek culture embraces.

“I think there’s a lot more nostalgia that we have that’s a little different from some of the younger folks out there,” Rowser said.  “But what’s really amazing about geek culture is that everybody’s always watching things that are new and old so we can still connect.”

For the officers here, the city’s local mom-and pop-shop culture has become a huge benefit for operating their various themed events and brunches. Killer’s Tacos, Orbit Press and The Bearded Monk are just some of the businesses they’ve worked with.

“We’re very lucky to be in Denton, a college town and a very community based city that’s very willing to work with us,” DeLozier said. “Bigger cities have a huge struggle with finding locations that don’t charge a thousand dollars for a venues.”

The link between Denton’s pro-local element and its ranges in geeky women has proven to be a win-win for everyone in GGB.

“It creates an environment that people really want to know more about,” Campbell said. “It creates an environment of safe gathering and it’s for women, by women.”

Featured Image: August 2016 Disney Karaoke Brunch. Courtesy

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Amy Roh

Amy Roh

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