Once, in a library not far away, Star Wars delighted fans young and old

With the release of the flim ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi,’ only days away, the Calgary Public Library decided to capitalize the excitement with a new Star Wars based event.

The event was held on Dec. 2nd at three locations across the city, Saddletowne, Central, and Shawnessy.

The event was created to showcase the vast, fictional universe that comes with Star Wars: Films, TV shows, comics and of course books.

The event was free to the public, allowing, young, old or brand-new fans to feel like they were a part of the Star Wars franchise.

“I love Star Wars because there are always good guys like Luke Skywalker to stop the bad guys,” said Aiden Gibbony, 9, who came to the event with his mom.

There was an assortment of activities for guests to participate in, including a build your own lightsabre section.

“I enjoyed building my own lightsabre because it’s what the light sides guys do in the movies,” said Ciaran Wilson, 7, who was eager to take part in more activities.

These included creating a Star Wars snowflake, colouring an Ewok ornament and building a Porg out of paper.

Throughout the day there were scheduled visits to each library from a life-sized R2-D2 and a Stormtrooper from the ‘501st Legion’ for photo ops.

For the Empire: A Calgary Public Library volunteer dressed as a First Order Stormtrooper during the Library Strikes Back event in Calgary on Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017. (Photo by Ty W. Rothermal/SAIT)

The 501st Legion is a section of the Star Wars fan base that is dedicated to creating and wearing screen accurate replicas of Stormtrooper armour and various other costumes from the series at events such as this.

Jarvis Calkins is a lifelong Star Wars fan and was grateful to be able to share his experience of the franchise with his kids Shay, 9, and Dominick, 11.

“We are all pretty excited. We’ve started re-watching all the films in prep for The Last Jedi,” Calkins said.

“An event like this is a nice way to keep the excitement going but also giving us a break from sitting on the couch.”

Calkins and his kids were eager to explore the library and see all of the various activities available.

“I hope there is a BB-8 or a Darth Vader around. They are my favourite characters,” said Calkins, 11.

“I really want to see Rey because she is really cool and powerful. I dressed as her for Halloween, I hope she doesn’t turn bad,” said Calkins, 9.

The library was careful to adversise the proper canon timeline for the Star Wars franchise.

Canon is everything that happens in the universe, not just the movies but the books, TV shows, video games, and comics.

There were charts laying out everything that happens in the Star Wars timeline, which impressed fan Ryan Crowell, 17.

“It’s nice to see even the library paying attention to the canon because there can be a lot of confusion around what is and isn’t canon, especially since Disney wiped the slate clean a few years ago,” Crowell said.

Crowell came in search of an old Star Wars novel titled “Splinter of the Mind’s Eye” which was written as a follow-up to the original Star Wars film in case the film bombed as it was expected to do.

“Splinter of the Mind’s Eye” was written by Alan Dean Foster and was given the exact instructions by George Lucas to write it so it could be adapted as a lower budget film.

“I find it so fascinating that it could have been the follow up to ‘A New Hope,’ instead of Empire,” said Crowell.

“I’ve heard it isn’t great but it’s an interesting part of the franchise’s history.”

I love Star Wars because there are always good guys like Luke Skywalker to stop the bad guys. – Aiden Gibbony

The event managed to bring in people of all ages to share enjoyment of one thing Star Wars.

About Ty Rettger Rothermal 2 Articles
As a writing and communications major in the journalism program at SAIT, Ty Rettger Rothermal worked as a reporter for The Press during the 2017-18 academic year.

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