Local comics featured at event

Kimberly Valle , Staff Reporter

It’s time to search through your closets, dust off your old comic books and action figures, because a comic book convention will be hosted at 6 p.m. on Oct. 18. The event will take place at the Joe Vinny & Bronson’s Bohemian Café, located at 824 N. Piedras St.

“You always hear, there is nothing to do in El Paso, that’s why I’m here at the bar. Actually there’s a lot to do in El Paso, but people don’t tell you about it,” event coordinator Juan Gaytan said. “What we do is try to make events that people can actually go to and we try to surround them with other closer events. We make our own dates.”

Gaytan has been collecting books since he was 10 years old. The idea to gather all comic book fanatics in El Paso came about with a simple conversation at the Persian Inn Hotel between Gaytan and Ben Perez.

Perez, UTEP alum and a former army engineer, along with his partner Matthew Rothblatt, also UTEP alum,  will be special guests at this event and they will showcase their comics to the public. Family and friends will also have the chance to experience action figures and five comic books featured by Gaytan, Rothblatt is the co-founder of Phi3 Comics and co-creator and co-writer of “Spiralmind.”

“They will be in a clear box, you will be able to see the front and back of the books, not the inside,” Gaytan  said.

Although the comic books will be locked in a clear box, you will still have the chance to see what is inside of each comic book. Gaytan will showcase the pages through a projector.

Children are encouraged to dress up as their favorite characters. The Ninja Industry, one of the many comic book stores in El Paso, will bring comic books and action figures to sell.

You don’t have to be child to enjoy this event.  Students such as John Robledo, junior theater arts major, is looking forward to this event, as he enjoys reading comic books and is a fan of the characters.

“It is important for the community to recognize graphic novels and comic books as literature,” Robledo said. “For people who think it’s important to read comic books and are complete nerds, we’re just going to have a good time.” 

Guillermo Gomez, senior criminal justice major, said he will invite friends and spend some quality time with them.

“I love reading comic books, I look forward to attending this event with friends that also enjoy comic books,” Gomez said.

Gaytan’s goal is for everyone to enjoy themselves and have a good time with others. He encourages everyone to bring a comic book that they could sell or trade with another comic fanatic.

“Usually at most comic cons there is an entrance fee and they have rules, we don’t have set rules to sell,” Gaytan said.

Free “Spiralmind” pins from Perez and Rothblatt’s comics series will be given away to the first 25 people who show up. In addition, Perez will be raffling one of his own comic books at the end of the convention.

“I want to show them some old comic books that they have never seen or even heard of,” Gaytan said. “I would like to invite all comic enthusiasts for a night of sharing and dis-covering comic books.”

This event is free and open to all ages. For more information, call 915-449-6969.

Kimberly Valle may be reached at [email protected]