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Public Invited to Opening Ceremonies of Wildcat Comic Con

The community is welcome to attend the free opening ceremonies of the Wildcat Comic Con, to be held April 13-14 at Pennsylvania College of Technology’s main campus in Williamsport.

Friday’s opening will begin at 8 a.m. in the Klump Academic Center Auditorium, where President Davie Jane Gilmour will help kick off the convention escorted by the college’s Wildcat mascot and costumed representatives of the “Star Wars” and “Star Trek” universes.

Introductory remarks by event organizers will lead to the keynote address, “Comics and Context,” by Karen Green, Columbia University’s graphic novel selector and librarian for ancient and medieval history. (The original keynoter Michael Bitz, executive director of the Center for Educational Pathways and founder of the national Comic Book Project is unable to attend.)

A 2011 Eisner Award judge and advocate for comics in education, Green writes the “Comic Adventures in Academia” column for the blog ComiXology, which examines issues in comics librarianship. She recently organized a two-day event for Columbia called “Comic New York: A Symposium,” which brought together creators and academics to discuss the intertwined histories of American comics and their New York City birthplace.

She is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art and holds graduate degrees in medieval history and library science.

Unprecedented for the Williamsport area, Wildcat Comic Con will feature two days of activities for fans, artists and educators, all the while intersecting with Penn College academic areas from gaming and communication to business and graphic design.

Presenters include Walter Koenig of “Star Trek” fame, Oscar winner Tom Woodruff Jr., and renowned author/creators such as Barry Lyga, David Small and Emmy Award winner Dean Haspiel.

One-day tickets are $20 and two-day passes are $30; youngsters 12 and under are admitted free with a paid adult. Passes for Penn College students are $10 for Friday or Saturday, $20 for both days. There also will be a “cosplay” competition among intricately outfitted contestants, children’s activities, an Artist’s Alley, book-signings with authors, portfolio reviews and a masquerade ball (with a separate admission fee).

In addition to the presentations, workshops and panel discussions, Comic Con sponsors will offer a number of attractions: The Pennsylvania Army National Guard will provide a climbing wall and multiplayer gaming station; Joe Figured, of America’s Most Wanted Collectibles, will appraise comic books and collectibles; Pepsi/Brisk R2D2 “Star Wars” coolers will be awarded to two lucky attendees; Immix Wireless will run “text to win” promotions; and Variety 97 and KISS-FM will broadcast from the Student and Administrative Services Center.

Other financial consideration was provided by the Lycoming County Visitors Bureau, which awarded a $5,000 grant to market the Wildcat Comic Con to residents of neighboring counties.

Dining Services units will be open across campus, with extended hours at the Wildcat Express and Bookmarks , and CC Commons in the Bush Campus Center will serve all-you-can-eat buffets on Friday ($8) and Saturday ($5). Food and beverages will be available in the Student and Administrative Services Center both days, and student organizations will operate a food court in the Campus Center.

For more about the Wildcat Comic Con, visit online .

For more information about Penn College, visit on the Web , email or call toll-free 800-367-9222.

For more information about grant-funding opportunities, faculty and staff may contact the Grants and Contracts Office at ext. 7562 or through its Web portal.

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