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Teacher shares comic book connections

Gale Rose
grose@pratttribune.com
Surrounding by comic books, St. John-Hudson students Corey Blue, Jon Lyon and Ryan Eulenstein pause a moment to take it all in. The three, along with about 10 other students are members of the St. John Comic Book Club.

ST. JOHN — They are the predecessor to video games and TV cartoon shows. The classic comic book still has an avid following.

For a group of students at St. John-Hudson high school, comic books or graphic novels, are an important part of their lives.

The St. John Comic Book Club provides students with a forum to share their interest in comic books, graphic novels, animae (Japanese film and television animation aimed at children and adults), "Star Wars" and more.

Mark Bryant, Comic Book Club sponsor, said the club started five years ago. A group of students at the school weren't involved with clubs or other group activities. But there was a common interest in comic books, so the Comic Book Club was born.

When Bryant was in school, comic books were a form of entertainment for him. It broke the monotony of school.

The students at St. John Hudson were doing the same thing.

As Bryant got older, he had a love for comic books and also got into superhero movies. He said the values of the super heroes is beneficial and he teaches it to his students. The club also watches super hero and science fiction movies.

Besides sharing their interest in comic books and so on, the group takes field trips and gets to experience activities and events unavailable to them in St. John. They have traveled to Wichita to Prairie Dog Comics and Wizard Asylum, where they could browse and purchase comic books and collectable items. The club has also traveled to Hutchinson and Wichita for the Air Capital Comic Con.

The club has become active at school. They host a Star Wars Day with games and prizes and refreshments including Wookie cookies and Yoda soda.

They also have a free comic book day featuring Marvel, DC and Image Comics. The club partners with Wichita Prairie Dog Comics. The club purchases comic books then bring them comic book day and distribute them free of charge, Bryant said.

Other club activities include creating videos with the audio club and attending a video gaming tournament in the future.