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updated: 6/6/2013 9:55 AM

Sears employees dress up like Superman, set world record

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  • Video: Super Day at Sears

  • From left, Ron Boire, executive vice president of Sears Holdings Corp., Sears employee Vitaly Demin and Philip Robertson, adjudicator with Guinness World Records, show off the certificate.

       From left, Ron Boire, executive vice president of Sears Holdings Corp., Sears employee Vitaly Demin and Philip Robertson, adjudicator with Guinness World Records, show off the certificate.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Sears Holdings Corp. employees -- 566 of them in all -- helped set a Guinness World Record.

       Sears Holdings Corp. employees -- 566 of them in all -- helped set a Guinness World Record.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Sears Holdings Corp. employees set a Guinness World Record Wednesday.

       Sears Holdings Corp. employees set a Guinness World Record Wednesday.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • A Guinness world record was set in Hoffman Estates on Wednesday.

       A Guinness world record was set in Hoffman Estates on Wednesday.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Mike Ullrich of Lake in the Hills was among the 566 employees participating in the Superman record.

       Mike Ullrich of Lake in the Hills was among the 566 employees participating in the Superman record.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Mike Ullrich of Lake in the Hills was one of 566 Sears Holdings Corp. employees participating in the setting of a new Guinness World Record.

       Mike Ullrich of Lake in the Hills was one of 566 Sears Holdings Corp. employees participating in the setting of a new Guinness World Record.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Employees are counted as they arrive in the atrium.

       Employees are counted as they arrive in the atrium.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Sears Holdings Corp. employees -- 566 of them in all -- helped set a Guinness World Record at the company's Hoffman Estates headquarters.

       Sears Holdings Corp. employees -- 566 of them in all -- helped set a Guinness World Record at the company's Hoffman Estates headquarters.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Jan Somers of Lake Zurich, Jamie Becker of Wheaton and Kim Lachman of Lake in the Hills strike a pose as Superman.

       Jan Somers of Lake Zurich, Jamie Becker of Wheaton and Kim Lachman of Lake in the Hills strike a pose as Superman.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

 
By Mackenzie Dye
and Reema Amin
mdye@dailyherald.com
ramin@dailyherald.com

Ryan Sherwood has read comic books his whole life and has written two novels in the magical realism genre, but Wednesday was the first time he actually got to be a superhero.

Sherwood and 565 other Sears Holdings Corp. employees dressed as Superman on Wednesday, determined to break the world record for most people dressed as the Man of Steel in the same place. The old record was 437 people, held by Nexen Inc. in Calgary, Alberta.

But when Sherwood saw an email from Sears about a week and a half ago asking employees to dress up as Superman, he said his participation was mainly about helping the company make it into the Guinness World Records.

At 11:30 a.m., the 566 Supermen and Superwomen gathered in the main atrium of the company's Hoffman Estates headquarters.

"We brought together two iconic American brands: Sears and Superman," company spokesman Brian Hanover said.

To qualify, each costume had to feature red boots, a blue bodysuit, a yellow belt, the signature Superman "S" and a red cape, said Philip Robertson, Guinness World Records adjudicator, who came to the event.

Each Sears Holdings participant was dressed in the same one-piece cloth suit, red cape and red boots in order to meet the guidelines. The costumes were supplied by Sears, employees said.

Each Superman had to check in so Robertson and Sears moderators could get the correct count. The group had to stand in place for five minutes for verification before being awarded the Guinness World Records certificate.

Nancy Beyer, another Sears employee, said she's a Superman fan but thought the gathering would be fun for anyone -- superhero lover or not.

"This is definitely one off the bucket list," said Beyer, category manager of IT procurement at Sears.

This event was a tie-in to "Man of Steel," the newest Superman movie coming out June 14. Sears is featured in the film, Hanover said.

"In the film, Superman catches a locomotive and is thrown into a Sears store," Hanover said. "And Superman's Earth mom, Martha Kent, works at Sears."

The cape-clad and blue-suited participants said the gathering was successful, but Sherwood had one complaint as he pointed out sides of his costume.

"It was pretty fun, except Superman really needs pockets for his cellphone."

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