ComicReaders strives to be a positive presence and an industry leader in the community. We work hard creating and maintaining a relationship with our customers both inside and outside of the store. Regina and its inhabitants have been important to us over the years so it is important to us that we give back to them and the city.
Here is a list of some of our more recent endeavours:
Free Comic Book Day (Annual): One of the busiest days of the year in terms of people through the doors. We stock the free comics, of course, at both stores, but also expand the customer experience with things like: local and guest creators, cosplayers, information tables for local community groups like roller derby. We also work with the Regina libraries, providing all of their branches with comics (at no cost to them) so they, too, can have Free Comic Book Day. In 2015, we once again played host to a number of local artists.
Halloween Comic Fest (Annual)
Hellboy Day (2014)
Batman’s 75th Birthday (July 2014)
Doctor Who Day (July 2014)
Captain Canuck Day (July 2014)
Several of these events are used as fundraising events for local charities.
24 Hours to Play With Your Food: This 24-hour gaming event to raise money for Soul’s Harbour Rescue Mission has raised nearly $50,000 in its three years. ComicReaders has been involved each year with a team of fundraisers, but also as members of its organizing committee.
Fan Expo Regina (May 2014 – 2015): We were exhibitors at Regina’s first ever professionally run entertainment expo, but also did our part to promote the event leading up to the big day, including in-store and social media promotions and providing interviews for television and radio media. In 2015, we were the venue for a panel discussion of local media leading up to the event.
Regina Comic Fair (2013 and 2014): We attend the locally run comic fair and provide in-store and social media promotion. (It ceased operation in 2014.)
Library and School Visits: Over the years, we have visited schools and libraries to talk to children, teens and adults on a variety of comic related topics, including collection development, comics writing, self-publishing, and comics for children.
Chewsday Challenge: We partnered with a local restaurant and a community organization that promotes gaming in the province and created a weekly board gaming night that is now entering its third year.
Prairie Game Expo: We took the success of Chewsday Challenge and used that as a platform to launch an all-day gaming event that occurs three times a year. Our first was in January 2014. We had 158 participants. It is a free event made possible by a charitable donation made to the Al Ritchie Community Association. Food services are provided by Food for Learning, another charitable organization that feeds kids in community schools. Money raised through food sales at the first event provided snacks to 2000 children in community schools in Regina. Our next Prairie Game Expo is September 19, 2015.
Artist Visits / Book Launches: We host local artists on Free Comic Book Day, but at other times of the year, too. In 2015, we had David Slade in when he released Modo: Ember’s End. We also partnered with Coteau Books for the launch of The Lake in the Clouds, a novel written by local writer Edward Willett. Mr. Willett signed books and did a reading.
Judges / Prize Support / Ticket Sales: We have judged a costume contest at Cinema Under The Stars in downtown Regina (2013), provided prize support for Otakupalooza, and sold tickets for the Saskatoon Blitz (anime / manga themed convention) and the Saskatoon Entertainment Expo. We’ve also provided support and promotion for many other local groups and organizations including Zombie Obstacle Challenge, Nerdcore Cabaret, University of Regina students’ events, various concerts, writing groups, etc.
Sidewalk Sale and Charity Fundraiser (July 2014 – 2015): This event raised money for Soul’s Harbour Rescue Mission. We partnered with our neighbouring business, Zippity Zoom Toys and Havok Clothing.
20th Anniversary Party (April 2014): We had a huge weekend celebration for our 20th anniversary. It launched with an after hours party where cake was served, presents were given away—all tied into sales and special deals. Image artist Owen Gieni had a signing.
Regina Group Art Show (December 2013): A hand-picked group of local artists created original pieces of comics inspired art for the show. The show ran for a month and the artists were in attendance to talk about their work. Saskatoon artist / comic creator Elaine Will was there for the opening to launch her graphic novel, Look Straight Ahead, too.
We host hundreds of gaming events and tournaments every year. Our downtown shop runs events throughout the week (Magic: The Gathering, Warhammer, Yu-Gi-Oh, and other card and miniature games). ComicReaders also hosts a weekly board game event called ChewsDay Challenge at a local Boston Pizza location. This event averages 40-50 people every week.
Due to the popularity of our board game events we also run a full day of games three times a year called Prairie Game eXpo. This event brings between 120-160 people and is also a charity fundraising initiative. We donate money to a local community outreach program (Al Ritchie Community Association) and we bring in an organization called Food for Learning or Street Culture Kids to run our canteen.
Gaming Event Links
We must confess that we are terrible archivists. We work with the media a lot but we don’t keep links or footage. Our shops are constantly in the media; we do television, radio, and print. When the media calls we make ourselves available. They also come out to our charity and gaming events. Here are a few links:
Leader-Post article from October 22, 2014: No longer online. Read the PDF.
CBC Saskatchewan Weekend (20th Anniversary) (2014): http://www.cbc.ca/saskweekend/2014/04/05/dana-tillusz-is-celebrating-twenty-years-of-owning-his-own-comic-store/
Staff member interviewed at Fan Expo Regina by University student newspaper (2014):
ComicReaders (Downtown) voted Best Comic Shop by Prairie Dog Magazine readers for 2013:
ComicReaders (South) voted Best Comic Shop by Prairie Dog Magazine readers for 2012: