What do you picture when you think of a library? Maybe it’s lofty, ancient, and dusty, with creaky stairs and volumes of neglected books. Maybe it’s a dim space with flickering lights and a stodgy, shush-ing librarian. What the image in your mind probably isn’t is an Anythink library—where the Dewey Decimal System and overdue fees are relics of the past, librarians are trained in hospitality. This month, you can take a class on how to create a video game, design cosplay costumes, and illustrate your own comic book.
In anticipation of the Denver Pop Culture Con (May 31-June 2), Adams County libraries will host the Pop It program, a month-long series of pop-culture themed classes. The classes will be taught by comic and culture experts, such as Brian Essig-Peppard, the creative director of DiNK Denver, a creative venue near Civic Center, who will help participants make realistic and riveting comic illustrations and characters. Pop It isn’t just for kids—in fact, the program is intentionally geared toward all ages. Teens, for example, will be able to learn how to invent villains fit for a Marvel movie (and the heroes to serve as their foils) from Denverite and young adult novelist Colleen Oakes. A storytelling and screenwriting class for adults, taught by actor and screenwriter Chris VanDijk, will have budding screenwriters leaving the session ready to be the next M. Night Shyamalan. Other classes include lessons on digital art, making Fortnite-themed piñatas, painting in the style (and notoriously laid-back attitude) of Bob Ross, and a Game of Thrones lesson, during which you’ll learn more about the show’s use of embroidery.”
The programs explore a large swath of fandoms, from Disney to deejaying to pop art to Harry Potter. Many of the Anythink’s librarians are super-fans themselves, and well-versed in the world of fandom. Similar to pop culture, which is meant to be enjoyed by the masses and extremely accessible, Anythink libraries are keen on breaking down barriers. This is why, aside from scrapping overdue fees and the Dewey Decimal System, the libraries have launched experience-driven programs, like Pop It. Plus, the classes are free, and the library plans to raffle two three-day passes to the Denver Pop Culture Con in an effort to give those who might not be able to afford it a chance to attend the conference.
If you go: The Pop It program runs from May 1 to May 30 at various Adams County library branches. Classes are free. To find the program schedule, visit this link.
To enter the drawing for a free 3-day pass to the Denver Pop Culture Con: Visit your Anythink branch between May 7 and May 17 and fill out an entry form. One winner will be drawn at random, and will be announced on or before May 24. Or, on May 22, you can visit Anythink on Facebook and Instagram, to answer a question and be entered in the drawing for a pass.