A member of the 501st Legion, a “Star Wars” fan group, poses with Shelby James dressed as Squirrel Girl at a prior Clinton-Macomb Public Library Comic Con.

A member of the 501st Legion, a “Star Wars” fan group, poses with Shelby James dressed as Squirrel Girl at a prior Clinton-Macomb Public Library Comic Con.

Photo provided by CMPL

CMPL to host in-person Comic Con

By: Dean Vaglia | C&G Newspapers | Published August 5, 2022


CLINTON TOWNSHIP/MACOMB TOWNSHIP — Pop culture fans, rejoice! The Clinton-Macomb Public Library is holding its annual Comic Con at the main branch on Saturday, Aug. 13.

The CMPL’s fifth annual Comic Con will be a whole day of panels, workshops, games and all sorts of all-ages pop culture activities.

The free event starts at 10 a.m. with a Kid Con on the second floor. Structured for children ages 10 and younger, the day starts with a superhero story time and will feature games and crafts, ending with a graphic novel workshop at 2 p.m.

Events and activities for older attendees start at 11 a.m. with Ringo Award-nominated comic book writer Dirk Manning discussing the “10 Commandments of Working with Artists to Create Comics” and a workshop at noon on the basics of cosplay. Panels and workshops will run throughout the day starting about every hour.

For those looking for something to do between the panels and meetings, the artist’s alley will be open to browse from noon to 5:30 p.m.

“We have artists from around the community; everyone is local,” Brittany Wesner, CMPL children’s outreach manager, said. “We have different vendors who are going to come in, and they’re just going to share their original art.”

Vendors will be selling everything from bookmarks to costume accessories, to stuffed animals. Vendors will be located throughout the library.

New events for 2022 include a fan art contest and outdoor activities for the Kid Con.

One of the most common sights are the costumed characters found all around the show floor, and the CMPL Comic Con will be no exception.

“I know this year Cruella de Vil is going to be in the library,” Wesner said. “We have our ‘Jurassic Park’ vehicles that are going to be parked outside, and fans can go and take pictures in front of it. We have some ‘Star Trek’ characters that are going to be throughout the library.”

Attendees are encouraged to dress up, as well, especially if they would like to take part in the cosplay contest. Divided into kids, teens and adult categories, competitors must come to the auditorium between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. to have their picture taken and uploaded to the library’s Facebook. Whoever receives the most likes in each category by 9 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 15, will win a gift card and CMPL gear.

The CMPL’s Comic Con has changed since it started in 2017, beginning as a rather small affair and growing into an all-day event.

“Our first year was super fun, and we had a great turn out, but we went from maybe a dozen local artists and authors to over 30,” Colleen McWhinnie, CMPL teen services specialist, said via email. “We’ve expanded the times for when things are offered like Kid Con, which used to just be from 10-12 or so but is now almost all day, and we’ve had to add time for more panels and actually even turn down some artists and presenters because there literally isn’t enough space in the building or time in the day for them. This community event has really grown to bring in so many local talents, and it’s really awesome to see.”

The COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 threw the CMPL’s Comic Con plans for a loop, but the library was able to find a way to hold the annual pop culture convention during some of the peak pandemic years.

“Obviously, we had to skip the 2020 Comic Con,” Wesner said. “But even last year, we were able to put on a mostly virtual Comic Con.”

While the 2021 Comic Con took place over Zoom, some virtual elements have carried over into the 2022 event. Virtual trivia will run through the day, and new topics will be added every two hours. More information and the link to join the trivia can be found at cmpl.libnet.info/event/6457480.

While doors open at 10 a.m., those attending the Kid Con are encouraged to arrive by 9:30 a.m. for registration. More information and a full list of activities can be found at cmpl.org/comic-con.