Local Store Thrives On Its First Free Comic Book Day
Saturday May 3rd, 2014
Posted at 9:05pm
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As Free Comic Book Day continued its 13 year history, one shop made some of its own.
Opening last November, Paper Heroes – Comic Book Lounge and Collectibles, located at 2857 Howard Avenue, kicked off its first big event in style. With local talents from the industry signing autographs and deals aplenty, the store provided its many customers with something to remember.
Twisted Studios, currently working on a comic about Chief Tecumseh, was represented by artist Paul Reaume and writer Dave Rocha. Author/artist of Glass Monkey Studios‘ Apes In The Woods, April Fawler and Johnny Desjardins (Vampirella, The Green Hornet, Legendary) were there as well. David Finch (Forever Evil, Batman: The Dark Knight) was set to arrive in the afternoon.
Enjoying a steady flow of customers, the store had much more to offer. Cosplayers made it feel like a mini comic convention as two Iron Men and Rachel Summers greeted those entering the building. Both posed for photos with kids, families and adults while their suits glowed and made various noises. In a two hour span Batman, two little Captain Americas, Harley Quinn, a toddler Robin (complete with green tutu,) princesses, and Commissioner Gordon had all been on the scene too. Staff at Paper Heroes even got into the spirit, sporting name badges with different superhero emblems.
Many customers enjoyed their books in the store’s lounge area. Those purchasing something could enter a draw by writing their name and number on the back of their receipt. The grand-prize was a $50 gift certificate for Moxie’s restaurant and $30 for Cineplex.
Despite free comics being the main attraction, Paper Heroes had other deals too. Mini-mates figures were 50-percent off and massive vinyl posters could be purchased as well. Marvel Essentials (including Spider-Man and Hulk) were buy one, get one free and Marvel Masterworks titles cost $10. There was also a wide-variety of t-shirts on hand.
Before entering the building, those with a sweet tooth could purchase cupcakes. Decorated with colourful icing, the swirl designs each symbolized a different comic book character. Patio Palace, Jeff’s Fresh Meats and Tiffany’s Family Restaurant also sponsored a BBQ to celebrate the big day.
Starting in 2002, Retailer/comic book columnist Joe Field came up with the original idea. Looking to capitalize on media attention surrounding Spider-Man opening in theatres the preceding day, Image Comics publisher Jim Valentino suggested the event be held on the same weekend. As a result, it took place on Saturday, May 4th. Although the date changed to July in 2004, it has been held on the first Saturday in May ever since.
Geared towards introducing young readers to comics, bringing back old fans and thanking those who continue reading, Free Comic Book Day is a celebration of the medium. Several publishers take part in the festivities and ship exclusive offerings to give away for the event: Some of this year’s 60 free books included Guardians Of The Galaxy, Futures End (featuring Batman Beyond travelling in time,) Transformers Vs. G.I. Joe, Operation Black Sky and Hello Kitty.
If you missed out on the fun but still want to visit Paper Heroes, information about the store can be found on their facebook page