The fifth annual Comic Book Mania Convention drew large crowds (with a few people in costume) to the Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin Saturday.
More than 20 comic book illustrators and writers met with fans and autographed artwork. Among the artists were well-known figures in the field such as Art Baltazar of Streamwood (Tiny Titans), Angel Medina of Montgomery (Spiderman and Incredible Hulk) and Scott Beaderstadt of Chicago (Marvel, Disney and Trollords).
A "How to Make Comics" class was offered by writer and illustrator Justin Castaneda and writer Russell Lissau.
The convention had been on the "to-do" calendar for weeks for the Reinheimer family of Elgin, according to Heather, mother of Aiden, 7, Caleb, 6, and Hunter, 2.
Caleb donned his Batman suit and completed his outfit by having his face painted with the superhero's iconic yellow and black logo as a mask at a booth at the library. Although Batman is his favorite character, he also likes Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtles "because Batman needed friends."
Jamie Sarno of Huntley brought his family for the third year. His father, Joe Sarno, was one of the founders of Chicago Comic Con in the mid-1970s and owned comic book shops in Chicago.
Jamie grew up knowing a lot of the artists and enjoys coming to conventions to visit longtime friends, like illustrator Scott Beaderstadt, who was a customer in his father's shop.
"For me it's more about the community of it than the comics themselves," he said. His children, Liliana and Ian, both 5, are fans of Marvel's Spiderman and Disney's Frozen. Jamie's favorite character? It's Batman, just like for little Caleb Reinheimer.