They're men. Who like "My Little Pony." And they aren't afraid to show it, gathering for the annual "BronyCon Summer 2012" convention in New Jersey this past weekend.
The event drew more than 4,000 boys and men -- and some girls and women, too -- to the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus to celebrate the cartoon series "My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic" and the values and positive message they say it promotes.
Many wore colorful wigs and costumes, dancing and singing along to songs from the show being blasted from loud speakers outside the convention center as the show's characters were broadcast onto a video screen, The Associated Press reported.
Inside, vendors sold stuffed ponies, pony accessories, pony signs, pony hats and just about every pony item imaginable. Stars who do the show's voices signed autographs and gave speeches, the AP reported.
Dale Fjordbotten, a 25-year-old college student from Staten Island, said the group is misunderstood and has gotten a bad rap.
"I thought about what people would say. 'It's creepy. It's weird. It's a ... show for little girls,'" he said. "It's just a great show ... the story line, the plot, the beautiful animation."
Zac North, a 26-year-old Sam's Club worker from Ohio dressed as his favorite show character, told the AP he likes the cartoon because, "it's colorful and innocent, which is something I don't have in my life."