Aw Yeah Comics celebrates its grand opening in Skokie

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  • Photo: Web Behrens

    Free Comic Book Day 2012 marked the grand opening of Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie, and Wolverine paid a visit.

  • Photo: Web Behrens

    Spider-Man also swung by Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie on Free Comic Book Day.

  • Photo: Web Behrens

    Fans dressed like Wonder Girl and Batgirl spent part of Free Comic Book Day 2012 at the grand opening of Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie. The store is co-owned by award-winning comics creators Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani.

  • Photo: Web Behrens

    Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie, co-owned by award-winning comics creators Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani, celebrated its grand opening on Free Comic Book Day 2012.

  • Photo: Web Behrens

    Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie, co-owned by award-winning comics creators Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani, celebrated its grand opening on Free Comic Book Day 2012.

  • Photo: Web Behrens

    Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie, co-owned by award-winning comics creators Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani, celebrated its grand opening on Free Comic Book Day 2012.

  • Photo: Web Behrens

    During the grand opening of Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie, co-owners Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani gave away free Tiny Titans temporary tattoos.

  • Photo: Web Behrens

    Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie, co-owned by award-winning comics creators Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani, celebrated its grand opening on Free Comic Book Day 2012.

  • Photo: Web Behrens

    Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie, co-owned by award-winning comics creators Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani, celebrated its grand opening on Free Comic Book Day 2012.

  • Photo: Web Behrens

    Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie, co-owned by award-winning comics creators Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani, celebrated its grand opening on Free Comic Book Day 2012.

  • Photo: Web Behrens

    Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie, co-owned by award-winning comics creators Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani, celebrated its grand opening on Free Comic Book Day 2012.

  • Photo: Web Behrens

    Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie, co-owned by award-winning comics creators Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani, celebrated its grand opening on Free Comic Book Day 2012.

Photo: Web Behrens

Free Comic Book Day 2012 marked the grand opening of Aw Yeah Comics in Skokie, and Wolverine paid a visit.

This past Saturday marked the annual Free Comic Book Day, which celebrates everyone's favorite four-color sequential-art form with lots and lots of giveaways. But one new shop had two reasons to celebrate: Super-kid-friendly Aw Yeah Comics in downtown Skokie (4933 Oakton St, 847-423-2916), also held its grand opening. In addition to the free comics, everyone who attended got to enjoy hot dogs, cake, Batman buttons, Tiny Titans tattoos—and, best of all, autographs and free sketches from Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani, the Eisner Award-winning duo behind DC Comics' best titles for little ones.



In fact, the artistic team are co-owners of the new shop on Oakton Avenue (a short five-minute walk from the brand-new Oakton CTA station along with Yellow Line). Baltazar, a South Side Chicago native, and Aureliani, who lives and teaches high-school art in New York, teamed up with partner Marc Hammond, who brings retail experience to the mix.


When we arrived mid-afternoon Saturday, the two artists had already been ensconced behind a table for several hours, sketching up a storm and chatting with their fans. Meanwhile, the comic-book party raged: Kids of all ages zoomed around the brightly-painted shop, picking out comics and toys, and eyeing Spider-Man and Wolverine, who'd managed to find some time off from crime fighting to stop by. Adults chatted as they milled and waited in line with (or without) their kids for sketches (the new Avengers movie was a popular topic of conversation). All the while in the background, a geektastic soundtrack filled the air, wafting familiar notes from The Lord of the Rings and John Williams's iconic score to Superman.


And when the shop's phone rang, Hammond got the crowd to quiet down until he could answer, at which point we all yelled in unison, "AW YEAH COMICS!" No doubt about it: Life in Skokie just got a lot more fun.


 



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