Friday, November 28, 2014
FanFare moves from Dearborn to Sterling Heights in 2015
After missing 2014, the convention will move from October to February in 2015 for its fifth incarnation.
For the last three shows the convention was held at the Hyatt or Adoba Hotel in Dearborn, this year the show is moving to the Best Western Sterling Inn Convention center and Indoor Waterpark. The show will be Feb. 6-8.
According to co-promoter Dennis Barger--who also co-owns Wonderworld Comics in Taylor--FanFare is a throwback to the Detroit Triple Fan Fair which was the nation’s first ever annual comic convention beginning in 1965 running through 1978.
“2015 is the 50th anniversary of the comic convention,” Barger said. “And it was originally founded right here in Detroit.”
According to Barger, it’s unclear exactly who had the idea first, but the first two conventions were both held in 1965, one in Detroit and another in New York. The New York show happened first, but there is murky history as to who was promoting their show first.
The big guest at this year’s FanFare will be comics legend Denny O’Neil, who famously worked on Batman, and The Green Arrow along with Neil Adams for DC Comics.
O’Neil also had runs on Spider-Man and Daredevil while working at Marvel Comics, and oversaw Daredevil and G.I. Joe as an editor.
He has created characters of note such as Ra’s al Ghul, Talia al Ghul, Killraven, Hydroman, John Stewart, and the Earth 2 versions of Batman and Superman. Not only is he known for adding more depth to Batman/Bruce Wayne, he also became known for creating deep and complex stories for characters such as The Shadow and The Question. He also came up with the name for Optimus Prime when the Transformers line first launched.
Now retired, O’Neil has not left the comic book industry behind him. He sits on the Disbursement Board for the Hero Initiative, a non-profit organization which helps comic book creators in need.
New for Fanfare this year is a Kickstarter campaign to allow people to earn special perks while at the show, or to buy some perks even if they can’t make it to the show.
“It’s not about raising money,” Barger said. “It’s about letting people have a unique experience at the show.”
Barger said what makes his show special is that it’s still primarily focused on comics, not being dominated by media guests like most bigger shows.
“We keep prices down, and we focus on comics,” he said. “Even when we’ve brought media guests in, we make sure they are one degree of separation from a comic book.”
The Kickstarter can be found at http://goo.gl/DwSYb3.