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Star Wars Celebration Chicago

The 2019 Star Wars Celebration
This April, I attended my first Star Wars Celebration; it is a massive fan convention that is held annually.  Every year the location changes to a different place, one year it was held out of the U.S. in the U.K. This year it was located in Chicago at the McCormick Place. It goes for multiple days and attracts people from all over the world. I went on Monday, the last day for it. There were still quite a few people there. Being my first time, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I had only been to a couple of pop culture/comic book conventions in the past.

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Boba Fett themed Toyota FJ Cruiser.

                             

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The large banner at the entrance to the convention.
            Coming from Northwest Indiana, I took the South Shore train line. It dropped me off right at McCormick Place. A short walk later and I was there. Outside of the main hall, there was a large banner depicting characters from each of the Star Wars movies. Once inside the main hall I saw a group of Star Wars themed cars, Including a Ford Raptor (complete with Han Solo frozen in carbonite under the bed cover) and a Volkswagen Beetle made to resemble the Droid BB-8. There was also a Hyundai Tiburon made to look like an X-Wing fighter, and a Boba Fett themed Toyota FJ Cruiser. Just past those were a life-size X-Wing and Tie Fighter. I couldn’t believe the amount of detail in them, given that they would have to be taken apart and moved in a short amount of time. The Tie Fighter even had lights inside its cockpit. 

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BB-8 themed Volkswagon Beetle.

                                        

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The Lifesize X-Wing on display.
         Not far were several Star Wars pinball machines (all set to free play) that a company had brought. There were rows and rows of vendors, selling everything from art to collectibles. I saw quite a few vintage Star Wars toys for sale. There were several LEGO sets on display, as LEGO was celebrating their 20th year of making Star Wars LEGOs. LEGO had even created a massive Stormtrooper helmet made out of Stormtrooper LEGO mini-figures. They had been attached to the board they were on and not glued. There were also a lot of plastic model kits from Bandai for sale. They had some that were convention exclusives. Also on display was a large diorama depicting the planet Scarif from the Star Wars movie Rouge One.
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The Tie Fighter viewed from the back.
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Hyundai Tiburon made to look like an X-Wing.

                                        

            There was a chance to try out the upcoming Star Wars VR game Vader Immortal. I wanted to try it; however, the line was really long for it. Another pinball company that makes pinball video games called Pinball FX had brought full-sized digital pinball machines, complete with touch screens. There were a bunch of photo ops available. Several of which were run by the Star Wars costuming club The 501st Legion. They were raising money for the Make-A-Wish foundation. Disney also had a photo-op set up promoting their upcoming Star Wars-themed theme park.

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Star Wars themed Ford Raptor.

                                     

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Stormtrooper helmet made out of LEGO mini-figures.
                                          
            There was also stage with interviews throughout the show consisting of actors and behind the scenes people. The seats were packed, but I was able to watch some of it projected onto a large screen over the stage. I was able to watch some interviews with people involved in Star Wars: Episode 1 as it was the movie’s 20th anniversary. Around the convention, there were kiosks where you could scan your badge for the chance to win a prize. Each location was a different chance to win, making it like a scavenger hunt. There was also some merchandise exclusive to Celebration. It was just announced that badge holders would be able to buy it online. I had a great time, and am looking forward to going next year when it is held in Anaheim, California.
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Part of the giant Scarif diorama.
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The X-Wing style Hyundai Tiburon from the back. Complete with R2 droid.

                                     
                                        

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