Costumed heroes of all sorts converged on the Boyertown Community Library for its first-ever Comic Con.

A comic con is a pop culture festival celebrating characters and stories from popular games, movies, books and television.

“Libraries are places where people can find many kinds of stories, whether novels, films, or comics. I personally love the comic con experience because it celebrates imagination and passionate fans. Many teens I know through the library enjoy various forms of cosplay, and I wanted to make an opportunity for that type of creativity. Tickets for the larger Comic Con events can be very expensive, and I wanted to make the program more accessible,” said Boyertown Community Library’s Youth Services Coordinator Lisa Rand.

The Boyertown Library gave away uncorrected proof books, comics, tote bags, capes, and masks to Comic Con visitors.

Cosplayers from groups like the Mav Oya'la Clan of the Mandalorian Mercs Costume Club, WeDiscoverGeeks, and Heroes for Heroes were available for fan photos.

“We love coming out for edutainment,” said Kat Mahoney, owner and creative visionary director of WeDiscoverGeeks. “Edutainment is educational entertainment. Our group is from Macungie and have been doing cosplay for the past two years. We do a lot of (character) mashups.”

Local artists Craig Schaffer and Jean Esther were on hand to explain their art.

Esther walked guests through the steps for drawing eyes and encouraged kids to try their hand at sketching.

Craig Schaffer describes how he uses a non-photo blue pencil when drawing images for his original comic “Backdraft.”

Non-photo blue pencils are used by artists because the color is not often picked up by copiers and scanners.

Deal Me In Games provided a gaming table and offered guests instructions on how to play card and board games like Munchkin.

“Jason from Deal Me In Games in Boyertown helped oversee games,” said Rand. “My goal is to introduce our circulating games collection, which includes Exploding Kittens, Ticket to Ride, Settlers of Catan, Sushi Go, Forbidden Island, Tsuro, and several other games.”

“Lady J is my cosplay name. It's not a character; it's my public figure name. I put on my first cosplay in 2011. I cosplay multiple characters from my love of different fandoms,” said Philadelphia Avengers’ Lady J. “I show a bunch of tips to help beginner’s cosplay. I teach hand sewing, using different materials and glues — how to do cosplays from regular clothes in your closet.”

“I tried to learn (to crochet) on my own, but had trouble following along,” said Boyertown High School’s Mia Stefchek, 15, as she practices a single crochet stitch with the guidance of Amy Seiden and Lady J of the Philadelphia Philadelphia Avengers.

“This was such a fun opportunity to see people of all ages come together and share their love of comics, the characters and the stories,” said Kristy Brown of Exeter Township.

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