SPECIAL

THE OSCARS. The Grammys. The Emmys. The VMAs. The Geek Awards? You're reading right. Local geeks - as in nerds, dweebs, dorks and brainiacs - walk the red carpet and take home engraved plaques tonight at the first Philly Geek Awards. The sold-out event takes place, not surprisingly, at the Academy of Natural Sciences. It was dreamed up by the guys behind Geekadelphia, a local blog for - you guessed it - geeks. Blog co-founder Eric Smith noticed his fellow, um, technophiles getting cred nationally for their tweets, podcasts, viral videos, science festivals, etc., and asked himself, "Why was no one honoring our local comic artists, video-game developers, Web designers . . . ?" So, like the hardworking geek he is, he took it on himself.

Among the nominees: A hilarious blog by a stay-at-home dad, a video-game app pitting a bike messenger against Philly traffic and 24/7 marketeer Annie Heckenberger. Heckenberger calls geeks "the new-ish hotness, because they're changing our world and getting rich while doing it." What does one wear to a geeky gala? "I'm hearing murmurs of tutus and tuxes," she says. "I hope Tim Quirino from Geekadelphia wears his Storm Trooper costume."

Tonight, red carpet at 6:30, awards at 8, Academy of Natural Sciences, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, 215-299-1000, www.phillygeekawards.com. Sold out.

- Lauren McCutcheon