The Virtual Comic Mini-Con was a family-friendly celebration of comic books, movies, graphic novels, anime, comic art and more. Our virtual event featured a variety of activities for all ages.
The event was a collaboration between Bridgeville Public Library and South Fayette Township Library. Videos are accessible through the libraries’ YouTube channels .
We started planning the Mini-Con toward the end of April 2020, shortly after the COVID-19 pandemic struck and the libraries closed. Some of the elements, like the D&D panel, had already been in the works for our in-person Mini-Con, so it was a matter of reworking them.
At a virtual meeting, programming staff committed to doing one video or activity per person. At this point, staff had been doing virtual programming for several weeks with recorded and Facebook Live videos. Assistance was given to anyone who needed help editing or uploading their videos.
We held a separate virtual meeting to come up with a marketing strategy for the Mini-Con and to decide how to present the content the day of the event. Programming content staff were Ms. Karen, Ms. Judy, Nicole H., Carrie, Nicole S., Erin and Bree. Marketing staff were Pam and Kristen.
We marketed this program two weeks in advance through Constant Contact (email marketing) and social media. The week of the Comic Mini-Con, we sent out a Constant Contact email that was specific to the event. We also posted about the Mini-Con on our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts. This event was family-friendly and inclusive to everyone.
This program came at no cost for either library.
Our marketing and digital engagement specialist scheduled the YouTube videos to become available the morning of the event.
We decided to make all the videos available at once so people could access them whenever it was convenient. We did the same for the CON-Quest, which was a series of riddles and puzzles, created using InDesign and Google Forms by our youth services coordinator. We made them accessible to the public on Forms.
We scheduled posts to go out on social media throughout the day to drive people to the YouTube content.
The Dungeons and Dragons Zoom panel was our only live event in the afternoon. Attendees could tune in live or view the recorded session later. The panel was moderated by our youth services specialist but ultimately led by two high school teens.
We had a total of seven pre-recorded videos that ranged in target age from pre-K to teens/adults.
The structure of the Comic Mini-Con was such that viewers could pick and choose what they wanted to view and when. Among the videos were a STEAM video for children, a paper star video for all ages, and two videos for young children featuring superhero-themed crafts and book recommendations.
The CON-Quest operated in a similar manner. Since it was for fun and not competitive, participants didn’t have to solve all the puzzles. They could challenge themselves to complete as many as possible.
It definitely helped to divide up this project among our staff members. If you don’t have a large programming staff, I would recommend looking to your part-time folks. One of our clerks made a really creative video for the Mini-Con.
About This Library
Bridgeville Public Library and South Fayette Township Library serve their communities as well as the surrounding towns. While each library offers a robust individual programming calendar with something for all ages, the libraries partner together for events such as the Comic Mini-Con, Local Author Fair and virtual programming.