The Mid-Ohio Con was founded in 1980. In 2010, the convention was acquired by Wizard Entertainment. Wizard hosts thirteen annual conventions, including in Chicago, Philadelphia, Anaheim, Austin, and New Orleans.
The Mid-Ohio Con was founded in 1980 by voice actor and announcer Roger A. Price. Over the years, Price used the show to raise money for various charities (frequently the March of Dimes), raising a total of over $1,000,000. (Price himself was a polio victim.) Initially, the convention was held in various venues throughout central Ohio before settling in Columbus, where it has been located since 1993.
The 1985 show, held at the Richland County Fairgrounds in Mansfield, Ohio, featured the announcement of John Byrne's relaunch of the Superman books. (Byrne made regular appearances at the convention from 1981–2004.) In 1988 small press publisher Bob Corby premiered the first issue of Oh,Comics!, a 40-page minicomic featuring the work of twelve Ohio small press artists. Corby produced new issues of Oh, Comics! in conjunction with the Mid-Ohio Con for the next twenty years, ultimately publishing the work of over 100 creators ranging in age from ten to sixty.
By 1993, the show had moved to the Hyatt Regency and Greater Columbus Convention Center. The 1994 show featured an auction and a costume contest/dance party, both benefiting the Columbus Ronald McDonald House. The 1996 show featured a "Small Press Expo." The 1997 show moved to Columbus' Adam's Mark Hotel and featured a Tony Isabella roast. The 1998 show was promoted in the panels of Tom Batiuk's syndicated newspaper strip, Funky Winkerbean, in which one of the characters journeyed to the show to search for a long-lost Hopalong Cassidy comic book.
In 2000, the show expanded and moved to the Hilton Columbus Hotel at Easton Town Center. The 2002 and 2003 conventions featured special karaoke parties hosted by actor Andy Hallett. Both parties raised money for the American Diabetes Association.