OLPL Fan Fest: Year One on Saturday, May 2
#OLPLfanfest is a celebration of pop culture and Free Comic Book Day
Calling all nerds, geeks and fans (including aspiring ones). Get ready to celebrate pop culture and Free Comic Book Day with OLPL Fan Fest: Year One on Saturday, May 2 from 9am to 5pm at the Oak Lawn Public Library.
Free comic books will be available for every kid, teen and adult, courtesy of Chimera’s Comics in Oak Lawn (while supplies last). OLPL Fan Fest is an all-day event, held in partnership with Chimera’s Comics, and features fun for all ages, with a variety of activities. Whether you’re a veteran collector or new to comics, Fan Fest is the perfect environment to discover the fun and adventure of graphic novels.
Free Comic Book Day is celebrated nationally each year on the first Saturday in May. Started in 2002, the first event coincided with the theatrical release of “Spider-Man.” The superhero film based on the Marvel Comics character of the same name then resulted in two sequels. This year, the call to battle is “Avengers Assemble.” Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron” – the cinematic event of the summer - is hitting theaters the day before Fan Fest. That weekend, fans from far and wide will assemble to revel in all things comic and graphic novel.
At Fan Fest, wander through the Exhibit Hall on the Library’s lower level where local artists, creators, comic retailers, vendors and social groups will showcase their latest custom wares, toys and nerdy apparel - like steam punk jewelry, embroidery, My Little Ponies and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Exhibitors include: Comic Wreck, David Curbis, Nerdtastic, Phantom’s Plushies, King Bone Press, Maneki Neko Con, Twisted Jewelry, Custom Embroidery, Steve Palenica Studios, Inc., dorkabout art, Chicago Extra Life Guild, 501st Midwest Garrison and Rebel Legion Nar Shaddaa Base. In addition, take a break with some vintage superhero movie clips and trailers, or play some board games.
Attend panels on pop culture, anime, Doctor Who and comics. The lineup includes some great subjects and presenters:
11am to Noon: "From Luke Skywalker to Harry Potter: A Nostalgic Journey Through Pop Culture" with Local History Coordinator Kevin Korst
12:15-1:15pm: "Exploring Anime and Manga: The Art of Animation of Japanese Comic Books" with Claire Faulkner and Lucy Welsh
1:30-2:30pm: "The Wibbly-Wobbly Timey-Wimey Guide to Doctor Who" with Gordon Dymowski
2:45-3:45pm: Getting Into Comic Collecting with Anthony Molinaro
Kids can stop by the Youth Services Department for Stormtrooper Storytime, crafts, treasure hunts and more. The Children’s Museum in Oak Lawn will provide face painting.
If you’ve never seen a Wookie belly dance, prepare to watch Raks Geek at 4pm. This cast of professional belly dancers and trained fire spinners share original takes on their favorite geek subjects. Part art, part comedy, you won’t want to miss this performance.
Wear your costume and participate in our all ages Cosplay Showcase. Judging occurs at 4:30pm. Prizes will be available and one winner will receive a weekend badge for Anime Central (ACen) – Chicago and the Midwest’s largest anime, manga and Japanese popular culture convention.
Don’t forget to take some pictures in the photo booth, which will be complete with props and different backgrounds. There will even be cardboard cutouts, so you can strike a pose with your favorite characters like Thor, Captain America, Legolas (The Hobbit), Princess Leia, Rose (Doctor Who), Chewbacca and more. Guests will be able to view their photos online on our Flickr page.
Teens are invited to submit printed medium artwork on the subjects of art, pop culture and comics through Thursday, April 30 for a Teen Art Exhibit to be on display in the lobby.
Following the Fan Fest, after-hours trivia will be held at the Homestead Barr, 9306 S. Central Avenue in Oak Lawn, at 7pm.
About This Year’s Theme:
OLPL Fan Fest: Year One is an homage to DC Comics. “Year One” is a frequently used term for character origin stories in the DC Universe. It’s a fitting theme since this is the Library’s first year venturing into comics, pop culture and anime with something for everyone to celebrate.
The Oak Lawn Public Library is located at 9427 S. Raymond Ave. For additional information, call 708-422-4990 or visit www.olpl.org.