We’re excited to finally announce the plans for our Jack Kirby Centennial Event!
While Jack’s actual 100th Birthday was on August 28th, we’ve decided to hold our event on Saturday September 16th from 10am to 7pm.
The two big things we have to add involve other businesses in the plaza:
First up, Working Class Brewery next to the shop will have two beers available on the day, a Devil Dinosaur Red Ale and a ‘King’ Kirby IPA. Stop by between noon and 8pm and try them out, get a free comic, and they’ll donate 10% of the sale to the Hero Initiative! We’re planning on going down to the brewery as a group after the day is done between 7pm and 8pm to enjoy our first taste of the beers, so stop by and hang out with the CNJ Crew for awhile!
Second, the Kamm’s Corner Ice Cream Company will be doing the same with their Kirby Krackle Ice Cream, so please consider engaging them on the day as well.
We’re excited that both of these businesses have opened up in our plaza, and we hope you’ll check them out on Saturday!
We’ve also added a lot of great raffle prizes, so think about buying buying some tickets! You’ll get one free with a purchase and you can buy more for $1 each or 6 for $5. We’ve included some hardcovers, Omnibuses, Original Kirby Back Issues and more. All proceeds go to the Hero Initiative.
We’ll pull the winners at 7pm so if you stop by the brewery after that we’ll be able to tell you if you’ve won! You’ll also be able to see the final Rust Belt Monster Mural!
WHO IS JACK KIRBY
First off, who is Jack Kirby? I’ll let Fred Hembeck explain it for us:
In a nutshell, Jack Kirby is the greatest comic book illustrator off all time and the true King of Comics. That’s something we don’t take lightly here at the shop. Jack’s work was one of the first times I started to distinguish between artists as a kid. There was just something different about his work, even from the perspective of a six year old. Jack’s 100th is a huge benchmark for both the industry and the our shop personally. We’ve put together a day that’s about appreciating Jack’s work, showing his impact on local artists, raising some funds for the charity Jack’s family has chosen, and giving you some incredible free and exclusive merchandise to commemorate the day. We hope the day helps to introduce people new to the hobby to just what Jack Kirby means.
Beyond the artwork, I think that Jack Kirby lead the quintessential American life, through hard work and determination. It wasn’t just Captain America who punched Nazis.
Jack’s granddaughter Jillian Kirby has taken it upon herself to honor her grandfather’s legacy by raising funds each year for Kirby4Heroes, an organization that benefits the Hero Initiative.
In their own words, “The Hero Initiative creates a financial safety net for comic creators who may need emergency medical aid, financial support for essentials of life, and an avenue back into paying work.”
This will be a day to give back to all the creators who have contributed so much joy and inspiration to your life.
These are the wishes of Jack’s family and we will honor them.
Marvel has made twelve reprints of classic Kirby material that only cost $1 each. We will donate the entire dollar for all of the books purchased on the day to Kirby4Heroes to benefit the Hero Initiative.
These books include: Iron Man, Ant-Man and the Wasp, Devil Dinosaur, Nick Fury Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D., Captain America, Black Panther, The Inhumans, The Mighty Thor, Groot, The Avengers, Thor Vs Hulk, and the Inhumans.
Buy them all, $12 bucks go to charity, and you get yourself a history lesson in the King. (We’re even proud to say we suggested the idea of Kirby $1.00 reprints to Marvel, and they went for it.)
THE FREE STUFF
We’ve decided to give you a few gifts to celebrate Jack’s birthday, and they will be FREE with ANY purchase. (Seriously, I don’t care if you come in and buy a button for a dollar, you’re getting loaded up with some stuff. Try and make sure our charity gets a bit though, if you can afford it.)
First is an 11×17 cardstock lithograph by local artist Tim Switalski featuring Devil Dinosaur in front of the Terminal Tower in downtown Cleveland.
We’ve got 500 to give away and the first 100 will by signed and numbers by Tim. (The original painting will hang proudly in the shop.) If you’d like a second one please throw $5 in the charity bin, or even better, just bring a friend.
Second, we’ll be giving away 400 graphic novels, including 200 copies of The Origin of the Inhumans by Lee and Kirby ($40 value), as well as 200 copies of the Complete Devil Dinosaur ($25 value). You even get to pick which one you’d like.
The Inhumans are due to hit the silver screen as well as television in September, and the material is quintessential Kirby. Plus, there’s nothing better than a big red 70’s Dinosaur.
(If you do the math, we’re giving away about $13,000 worth of graphic novels in honor of Jack’s 100th birthday.)
Every year on Free Comic Book Day, local art group The Rust Belt Monster Collective paints a mural live outside the shop. They’ll be returning on the 16th to honor Jack’s legacy by painting a sixteen foot mural staring around noon.
The mural will feature Kirby Monsters from the 50’s and 60’s attacking the City of Cleveland! Jack created an incredible amount of memorable creatures
The crew will wrap up the mural around 7pm and watching the final touches go on these pieces of artwork is literally one of my favorite things. The mural will hang in the shop upon completion.
Take some time to watch their process, then stop on over to the Kamms Corner Ice Cream Company (located about 200 feet from the shop) for a special Kirby Krackle Ice Cream created just for the day! (I’m pretty sure this will be your only chance to ever get a Kirby inspired ice cream. Maybe.) Kirby Krackle Ice Cream will be a vanilla base with Rice Krispies dipped in chocolate added in for the perfect energy signature.
We’ve got a few other things going on to make if worth the trip if you’re coming in from out of town. We’ll have a raffle for prizes such like the $200 King Size Kirby Hardcover, the Nick Fury Agent of SHIELD Omnibus, as well as some original Kirby Comics, including my personal copy of Captain America #109.
Everyone will receive a ticket with a purchase, and you can also buy extra tickets for $1 each, with all the funds collected going to Kirby4Heroes. Winners will be drawn at the end of the day.
We’ll also be giving 50% off all back issues in the shop, so you’re got all day to do the fun digging and bargain hunting that makes collecting comics fun.
And that’s it! We hope to see you on the day! This is a great time to bring a friend or family into the shop to show them the positive aspects of your hobby. When you think about it, for just $12, all going to charity, you can walk away with some pretty great stuff and know you paid a part of your debt to the great comic creators who have affected your life! Thanks as always for your continued support of our endeavors! Long live the Legacy of Jack Kirby! Here’s a final article from Forbes Magazine on the importance of Jack’s Birthday. Excelsior!