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FanCon attracts more than 650 diehard fans

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2016-06-23 Chicago Tribune.jpg


Library draws crowd with pop culture icons

The Arlington Heights Memorial Library's June 18 FanCon event attracted more than 650 visitors who joined forces in celebration of comics, superheroes and a plethora of pop culture icons.

While hundreds of those who attended FanCon had registered in advance for the event, about half of the inaugural event's visitors were families who happened to drop by the library, "and decided to jump into the day's many activities;' the library's programs and exhibits manager Jennifer Czajka said. "We couldn't be happier about this organic reach." Reflecting themes popularized by the iconic Comic-Con International in San Diego, the library's Fan-Con celebration — which offered programs for kids, as well as adults and teens —featured more than a dozen activities, including a morning "Superhero Storytime," and drawing workshops with a live model dressed as a superhero.

Among the highlights of the free, family-friendly event, which was held at the library at 500 N. Dunton Ave., was a visit from Storm-troopers from the 501st Midwest Garrison.

"(They) were a huge hit, and particularly appreciated by guests wearing 'Star Wars' costumes of their own," Czajka said. "One boy, about 7 years old, and dressed as Kylo Ren, reminded the Stormtroopers he is their boss, and they obliged by calling him 'boss' the rest of the day."

In addition to kids having the chance to make their own homemade slime at the event's "Ectoplasm with Ghostbusters" activity, tweens and teens crafted DIY dragon eggs, with some saying they planned to give them to their "Game of Thrones" fan dads for Father's Day, Czajka said.

"We started planning for FanCon last fall, but it's been on our radar for years;' Czajka said. "We thought holding it in the summer would be perfect, because all of the kids are out of school, and we didn't want it to interfere with their other activities."

Czajka said it dovetailed with the library's summer reading program, "Up, Up & Away: Superhero Summer at the Library."

For Alice Son, a teen adviser at the library, the FanCon celebration resonated with the conversations she has each day with young patrons at "The Hub;' who she said are wildly passionate about pop culture icons like Star Wars, Harry Potter and Dr. Who.

"Our graphic novel and comic collections are immensely popular;' Son said. "When I interact with the teens every day, I hear them

talking about all things fan-dom, so they're really excited that the library is giving them something a little extra this summer."


Jason Thompson, dressed as Deadpool, and Megan Maier, dressed as Kaylee Frye, play a video game June 18 during FanCon convention at the Arlington Heights Library.

Six-year-old Joshua Wood (and his twin brother, Justin) catch a glimpse June 18 of the Stormtroopers at FanCon.

Alex Gasey, 11, gets some tips June 18 from some professional Stormtroopers at FanCon comic convention at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library.

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  • APA 6th ed.: Cullotta, Karen Ann (2016-06-23). FanCon attracts more than 650 diehard fans. Chicago Tribune p. 6.
  • MLA 7th ed.: Cullotta, Karen Ann. "FanCon attracts more than 650 diehard fans." Chicago Tribune [add city] 2016-06-23, 6. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: Cullotta, Karen Ann. "FanCon attracts more than 650 diehard fans." Chicago Tribune, edition, sec., 2016-06-23
  • Turabian: Cullotta, Karen Ann. "FanCon attracts more than 650 diehard fans." Chicago Tribune, 2016-06-23, section, 6 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=FanCon attracts more than 650 diehard fans | url= | work=Chicago Tribune | pages=6 | date=2016-06-23 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=24 June 2024 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=FanCon attracts more than 650 diehard fans | url= | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=24 June 2024}}</ref>