Portland, OR, April 26, 2017 --(PR.com
)-- Wizard of Oz enthusiasts from across the USA and several foreign countries will gather in Portland from Friday, June 30 to Sunday, July 2, 2017. The 53rd annual OzCon International will be held at the Sheraton Portland Airport Hotel on NE Airport Way. The 3-day event is an opportunity for Oz enthusiasts to share their love for the world created by L. Frank Baum in all its many forms.
Attendees of all ages join in to discuss Oz books and movies, swap Oz collectibles, display Oz crafts, listen to guest speakers, and share their love for all things Oz. Many attendees have been making the pilgrimage to OzCon for years.
A highlight of OzCon will be a live performance re-creating the 1933-34 Wizard of Oz radio program originally sponsored by Jell-O. Actors drawn from the Pacific Northwest will help to transport the audience back to NBC radio studios in the 1930s to record episodes of the radio show complete with music and sound effects.
OzCon will include an Oz Masquerade. Cash prizes will be awarded for the best costumes. The Oz auction will feature rare books and collectibles to the highest bidders. New and unique Oz items will be for sale in the dealers room. Oz quizzes, Oz treasure hunt, presentations, and performances will fill out the weekend of Ozzy fun. The convention opens each day at 9 am. A Columbia River cruise will close the activities on Sunday afternoon.
Doug Aberle, a Washington-based director/animator, will be a special guest at OzCon this year. Aberle will share his experiences working on the 1985 Disney motion picture Return to Oz as part of Will Vinton Productions. Using cutting-edge clay animation techniques, Aberle helped bring to life the villain of the story, the Nome King. Aberle’s other projects include music videos, theme park projects, Emmy award-winning TV specials, and numerous television commercials, including the California Raisins. His personal films, Wire We Here (1994) and Fluffy (1995), won awards world-wide. Currently he directs CG features for Aberle Films.
New York City-based John Fricke is another special guest. He is widely regarded as the preeminent Judy Garland and historian of the 1939 MGM motion picture The Wizard of Oz. Fricke will speak about the history of Oz on radio and be available to sign his books. He has written seven books and won Emmy Awards for co-producing television documentaries on those topics. Seven Judy Garland movie video releases feature his commentary tracks. He regularly speaks about Oz and Judy Garland on television and radio, as well as in person.
Portland, Oregon’s Inanna McGraw is the sole surviving author from the original Oz series. She co-authored the book Merry Go Round in Oz with her mother Eloise Jarvis McGraw. On Saturday afternoon, July 1, Inanna will be on hand at OzCon to sign autographs and meet Oz fans.
For more information and to register for OzCon, see the website at http://www.ozconinternational.com
OzCon International was founded in 1964 as The West Coast Oz Convention by four southern Californians: Blake Maxam, Judy Pike, C. Warren Hollister, and Peter Hanff, as a west coast gathering of members of the International Wizard of Oz Club. That first convention was held at the home of nineteen-year-old Peter Hanff. It was a one-day affair, but proved popular, with more than eighty registrants showing up from not just the west coast, but from across the USA. Eventually the West Coast Oz Convention would expand beyond the USA and the Oz Club to become a truly international convention. Today OzCon International welcomes Oz enthusiasts of all stripes and interests from around the world. It is the longest-running annual Oz event, and regularly features authors, actors, scholars, researchers, and Oz experts of all sorts, who share their knowledge and love of Oz with attendees.