Every comic book geek (comic book nerd, comic book collector, whatever) has been to those sales masquerading as “shows” you get there and it’s a ton of crappy books in water-stained boxes and you can’t help thinking wait I paid to get in here?
Not so at a Superheroes For Hospice event! Now don’t get me wrong it wasn’t jam-packed with celebrities and the publishers weren’t throwing swag to the crowds but that’s not the kind of thing this is meant to be.
What is it? It’s thousands of comics in good to great condition all alphabetized in boxes, row upon row of tables. It’s held in the administration building of St. Barnabas Children’s Hospital which is bright, clean and air-conditioned. And it’s free. Yup, no admission, no tickets. This last one had a great pricing scheme as well. The first 20 comics were $1 a piece, the next 20 were $.50 each, and I believe everything after that was $.25, trades were $4 for the first five, then $2 each, hardcovers were $8 for the first five then $4 each. Needless to say people were strolling the aisles with boxes!
That coupled with the fact that the monies raised benefit the hospital should be enough to drag any comic fan close enough out to see what’s what. But that’s not all, friends and supporters of Spiro Ballas (Volunteer coordinator for Barnabas Health Hospice and Palliative Care Center) come out to help. This last event boasted a bunch of professionals (and amateurs) signing, sketching, and some even participated in the The Get Into Comics lecture series.
I attended with my lovely wife and crazy kids and we were joined by Rosemary Kiladitis and Nancy Joyce (who were two of the people strolling around with boxes overflowing!) from What’cha Reading, along with their families. Since Roe and Nancy were there I asked if they had anything to add about the event.
What a great way to raise money for such a good cause! I got to check in with Mindy Indy (wish I’d gotten a new sketch from her when I first got there), and had the nicest conversation with Dodgeball Teens‘ creator Emilio Velez, who gave me activity sheets for my kids when I bought issue #1. I managed to fill some gaps in my collection, and got a few t-shirts and novels, too. I can’t wait to go back in November!
I was impressed with the organization and size of the event and what a great way to fill in those holes in my collection without guilt. I’m a great supporter of hospice care having had two parents who it benefited from it in different ways at the end of their lives. It was nice to be able to give back and have a fun time while doing it.
My daughter and I happened across Paul Castiglia‘s (Writer and Editor at Archie) table and had a great conversation about Archie Comics from the 60’s and 70’s (which I’ll go into further in a future review)
We also met a host of other fun and talented creators, who I’ll introduce to you as we post about their work!
The most important thing about the event? They raised over $5000! Bringing the current total of funds raised to just under $55,000! All from comic books. That is freaking cool.
The next event? Well that’s November 9th, I’ll be there, probably with most of the What’cha Reading crew, spending way to much money and having lots of fun. If you’d like more information, to make a donation (of money, comics, or your time) please contact Superheroes For Hospice here and we hope to see all our NY-NJ area friends at this free to attend event on November 9th!