The Ultimate Minnesota Guide to Free Comic Book Day 2017

Free Comic Book Day is an annual extravaganza that takes place on the first Saturday in May, when comic stores around the country offer up a variety of free comics specially provided by publishers. I have been participating for two years now, and I always have a great time! Lisa Olson of Source Comics & Games in Roseville says, “The size and enthusiasm of the comic book community in Minnesota is amazing. We also see a lot of people who have never been in a comic shop before. Their excitement and the degree to which they’re overwhelmed by this world they didn’t know existed helps us stay excited all 12 hours that the whole staff spends working.”

Comic artist Dave Wheeler, who will be signing and drawing at Hot Comics & Collectibles, states that he is excited about “encouraging the next generation of young readers to pick up some comics and give them a chance—for some it will be their first comic, and others it will be continuing a healthy habit of reading!”

Free Comic Book Day can be slightly overwhelming, especially with the amount of comic, book, and gaming stores in Minnesota alone, and I hope this guide helps you find new stores to visit and meet local artists. Except as noted otherwise, all of the stores listed below are taking part in the official Free Comic Book Day giveaways. Additional sales, author appearances, and other happenings are detailed here.

One additional note: comic shops do us a good service by providing freebies, so I urge you to support your local store buy spending a little money in at least one of the shops you visit as well!

Free Comic Book Day 2017 header

In the Twin Cities Area

Captain Jack’s Comics (Minneapolis)

Captain Jack’s is having a massive sale, with random giveaways for prizes along with 50% off back issues in boxes, 40% off trade paperbacks, 40% off toys, and so much more. Click here for the store’s Free Comic Book Day event page on Facebook.

Cedar Cliff Collectibles (Eagan)

Cedar Cliff is participating in Free Comic Book Day but will not be hosting artists or running any special sales.

Comic Book College (Minneapolis)

Comic Book College (which, sadly, will soon be leaving Uptown) will be running a sale of 30% off back issues and 20% off almost everything else.

Dreamers Vault (St. Louis Park, Burnsville, and Minneapolis)

The Minneapolis and St. Louis Park locations of Dreamers Vault will both be having 15% off regular comics and trade, 50% off previously discounted graphic novels, 99-cent back issues, raffles for signed posters and other goodies, and costume contests with prizes. The Burnsville store is not participating.

Hot Comics & Collectibles (Jordan, New Hope, and Richfield)

This is your chance to meet local Minnesota talent! Hot Comics will be hosting comic artists Clara Meath and Dave Wheeler at their Richfield location, Christopher Jones in New Hope, and Brad Perri and Keegan Cahanes in Jordan.

Hot Comics creator appearances

Issues Needed Comics (Apple Valley)

Issue Needed Comics is really bringing its A-game to Free Comic Book Day with two separate events. At the store, there will be a huge buy-one-get-one sale plus select graphic novels for $5 and “more surprises” to come. Meanwhile, the store will also be co-hosting an event nearby at the IMAX theater at the Minnesota Zoo—to celebrate the release of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, the first 500 fans to attend will receive an exclusive movie mini poster. Reservations are needed.

Click here for the in-store sale’s Facebook event page. Click here for the IMAX event.

Level Up Games (South St. Paul)

The first 75 people in line at Level Up Games at 9:00 a.m. will receive a free mini poster and a chance to win free advanced screening passes to Spider-Man: Homecoming. Also there will be a buy one get one 70% off on graphic novels and 30% off on single-issue comics.

Mead Hall Comics & Games (Minneapolis)

Mead Hall will be hosting local artists Brando Hughes, M. S. Harkness, and Peter Faecke starting at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, and you can also get any two single issues for $1. Click here for the Facebook event page.

Mind Eye’s Comics (Eagan)

In case you are busy for Free Comic Book day this year, Mind’s Eye Comics is having a sale that starts on Saturday but continues through Tuesday: the more you buy, the bigger the discount you get. from 10% off up to 10 items all the way up to 90% off if you buy over 150! If you really need to stock up on a certain series (for me it’s Nailbiter from Image Comics), this would be the store to do it.

Mind’s Eye Sales Description

Source Comics & Games (Roseville) and Uncle Sven’s Comic Shoppe (St. Paul)

The Source will have “comics just for kids as well as snacks and special guests,” with details to be announced closer to the day. Follow the store’s Facebook event page for updates.

World of Games (Lakeville)

It’s buy three, get one free on everything except graded comics at World of Games, and the store is also giving 10% off purchases of $50 or more.

Other Twin Cities Area Stores

The following stores will not be participating in Free Comic Book Day but will be open:

Outside the Twin Cities

Book Review (Rochester)

Book Review is participating in Free Comic Book Day and will have “savings throughout the store.”

Collector’s Connection (Duluth)

In addition to free comics, Collector’s Connection will be running a sale that has yet to be finalized as of this publication.

Dork Den (Mankato)

Dork Den will be running a deal of buy two, get one free on grab bags plus 10% on back issues and all novelties. Click here for the Facebook event page.

Granite City Comics & Games (St. Cloud)

At Granite City, get 25% off back issues and 15% off everything else. The store will also be hosting local guest “the Fabulous Patrick.”

Jimmy Jams (Winona) and River City Hobbies (La Crosse, WI)

Jimmy Jams and River City Hobbies are sister stores, one here in Minnesota and one across the border in Wisconsin. Jimmy Jams won’t be holding any creator signings, but River City Hobbies will feature Mark Stegbauer, who will be doing free sketches for kids 12 and under. Stegbauer is excited to participate in Free Comic Book Day because it “brings new readers to comics and also brings people together in a shared love of a great art form.”

Rainbow Comics, Cards & Collectibles (Sioux Falls, SD)

If you’re across the border on the other side, Rainbow Comics in South Dakota will be having a special sale to go along with the free comic books available, including 50% off comics and 25% off board games. If you’re in the area, definitely hit up this store. Click here for the Facebook event page.

Rivertown Comics & Games (Red Wing)

This store in the heart of downtown Red Wing is a great option for Twin Citians who want to explore somewhere new and maybe beat some of the crowds in the cities. Rivertown Comics is doing runpack bundles, which include several issues in one package. This is a great way to get single issues, but the complete story. They will be doing giveaways and prizes throughout the day as well. Click here for the Facebook event page.

Roy’s Comics & Games (Bemidji)

Roy’s is the place if you’re looking for gold-level free comic titles.

Other Stores

The following stores will not be participating in Free Comic Book Day but will be open:

So there you have it!

And if one day of comics goodness isn’t enough for you, the Midwest Comic Book Association (MCBA) has its annual Spring ComiCon on May 20th and 21st at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds. I went last year and I can’t wait for this year’s show. Until then, come up with an organized game plan and collect as many free comics as you can. And of course, don’t forget to spend some money at your local shops!

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