Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Rancho Cucamonga "Star Wars Reads" 2017

Last Saturday, CAVSWCC  had another display at this year's annual "Star Wars Reads" event at the Rancho Cucamonga Public Library. Set up within the main library and on the way toward a special meet and greet with none other than Emperor Palpatine himself (picture Santa Claus at the mall flanked by Royal Guards instead of elves), there was a constant stream of curious youngsters and nostalgic adults discovering and remembering vintage toys and memorabilia of all shapes and sizes. As a "Library School" alum and advocate of the public library as an integral community institution, getting to be a part of an event like this is particularly meaningful for me.

Just as it was last year, the Super 8mm MovieViewer was a hands-on hit. Working perfectly after nearly 40 years, it is sincerely one of the best manufactured toys ever produced. Several parents referred to it as the iPad of their generation. It captivated everyone from BB-8 to local law enforcement.

There were cosplayers and droids aplenty, including an impressive life-size and fully puppeted K-2SO (missing his head here).

A contingent of astromechs make their way from the "dressing room" to the outdoor festivities.

Visitors take a break from the sun and bustling activity outside to take a look at vintage wares.

The booth next to ours was occupied by a local high school's 3D printing club which was procuring small Yoda heads, as well as a handful of larger renditions of Darth Vader's mutilated helmet from The Force Awakens. Kids these days...

Demonstrating how an Italian Harbert "Give-a-Show" projector or "proiettore festacolor" would work.

Huge thanks to Allen Callaci for inviting us back, and to Tessa, Darren and Jeff for coming out and taking all of the awesome photos. Looking forward to returning next year!

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

A La Biblioteca! - CAVSWCC Meeting Under the Barrios Big Top

This past Saturday, the club had its first SoCal member-hosted meetup in quite awhile at the home of Phidias Barrios, where his amazing collection "La Biblioteca" resides. Phidias and his family have always been the personification of hospitality, and this get-together was no different. With a full bar and BBQ spread, no collector went hungry or thirsty. To top it off, the proceedings took place on the driveway under the canopy of a gigantic tent, saving us (and the vintage wares) from the intensifying San Fernando Valley sun.

We had several newcomers attending their first meetup, including Brian Angel, Tom Corrigan, Darren Thomas, and Nico Lombardo -- all of whom took part in the indoctrination err...flag signing ceremony.

Clockwise: Brian, Darren, Tom, and Nico signing the club flag.

While there were some very nice items laid out, the majority of the get-together was geared more towards hobby conversation. It was great for old friends catching up and getting to know the new members. I  came home with a couple of personally significant items because of the ridiculous generosity of Phidias and Mark H. Back at the very first CAVSWCC meeting at Skye Paine's in November 2008, I sold Phidias my Lili Ledy B-Wing Pilot, and I'd had regrets about it in the years that followed. Phidias let me know that it had gone into his storage soon after and had been there ever since -- and that he'd find it for me and bring it to the next get-together. I didn't expect to have it back free of charge!

Early Bird Mark Huber eyes the long lost Lili Ledy B-Wing Pilot

Mark -- who has been assembling an awesomely creative vintage Sandtrooper focus over the past few years -- brought a 20th Century-Fox Star Wars Campaign Book that has a two page spread of the iconic Sandtrooper and Dewback. Another item right up my collecting alley (and an increasingly tough one to find at a reasonable price), Mark kindly offered it to me as a gift. I seriously can't thank either of you enough!

Brian Angel continued the charitable activity with a donation of a really nice ROTJ 65B Back Chewbacca with Coin Offer for Skye's Chewseum.

Some more photos of the meetup are below, including shots of Phidias's jaw-dropping collection.

Vintage Cardbacks and Long Island Iced Teas...A perfect pairing.

Some of Brian's wares.

From Left to Right: Tom, Ryan and Mark E. enjoying the shade of the Barrios Big Top.
Trio of cabinets displaying some of Phidias's prototype and pre-production collection.
Additional prototypes
Prototype Angels

The source of the collection's name is Phidias's extensive run of Bib Fortuna items, ranging from figural prototypes and packaging items to various vintage and modern items.

Vintage Bib Fortuna Prototypes & Misc.

Vintage Bib Fortuna Continued

Modern Bib Misc.

All in all, it was an awesome day. Thanks again to Phidias and his family for taking us all in and to all of those that attended. We'll be getting the ball rolling for another meetup following Celebration Orlando. Until then...