Free Comic Book Day 2012

Photo by Cara Vescio

I was going to title this post “Where I’ll Be,” etc., but the truth is, while it would be great to see you all at the Arts Factory this Saturday, May 5, from 5 to 10 p.m. for HellPop!‘s Free Comic Book Day celebration, I’d be happy if you just went to any local comic book store that day.

And you’ll probably be happy, too, because — as the name suggests — the first Saturday in May, comic book retailers everywhere give away free comics. All you have to do is walk in. Yep. Free Comic Book Day has been going on for a decade now, as a way to encourage new readers, provide added exposure for stores, and just plain celebrate the awesomeness of comic books. Publishers of all types produce special editions to offer for free, and most participating retailers host sales, parties and special events.

Here in Las Vegas, we’re lucky to have some amazing comic book shops, and they’re going full-bore this year. Cosmic Comics is, among other things, giving away a copy of the original Avengers #1 from 1963. Alternate Reality Comics will have local artists such as Warren Wucinich, Brice Gilgens and Sam Gorrie, the Sausagefest food truck, and costumed helpers. MaximuM Comics will also have costumed guests, free tacos (it IS Cinco de Mayo, after all) and other refreshments. Friend and occasional collaborator F. Andrew Taylor writes more about local FCBD action in the View Newspaper.

Anyway, let’s get back to where I’ll be. HellPop! will be throwing down all day, starting at noon, offering free comics and collecting food donations for Food Not Bombs Las Vegas. But HellPop! is going to pick up where some other shops leave off, getting going at 5 p.m. with a line-up of punk and underground bands on the Arts Factory’s back stage (including The Mapes, Pigasus, Fred Ward, My First Rodeo, and more), artists Heather Mulvey and Joseph Garrison, and labels GeyKido Comet Records, Think Speak Publishing, and of course, Pop! Goes the Icon. I’ll be manning the PGTI table with (I believe) Warren Wucinich (doing double-duty that day!) and Deryl Skelton. We’ll be doing sketches, signing comics, and, um, other stuff. Probably enjoying libations from Bar+Bistro. Who knows.

So, yeah, even if you’re going to another store with your kids or whatever earlier in the day, come by the Arts Factory later that evening to say hi, have a drink, watch some bands, and hang out. It won’t be the same without you.

(Photo of me at MaximuM Comics for last year’s FCBD nabbed from Cara Vescio on Facebook. Hope it’s OK, Carla!)

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