This post is a follow-up to a previous edition of The Great Stampede, which provided a back-to-basics guide to Free Comic Book Day. This latest edition of The Great Stampede is taking a look at a similar event – Halloween ComicFest: What it is, when it is and what it means for comic book readers.

As previously discussed in past 101 guides (for toys and comics), the point of these posts is to get everyone up to speed and on the same level moving forward. If you’re already familiar with Halloween ComicFest and you know exactly how it works, then this post is probably not for you.


Comics 101: A guide to Halloween ComicFest

What is Halloween ComicFest?

Halloween ComicFest is an annual event whereby comic book shops give out free comics! The purpose of the event is to promote the comic book industry by offering a good ol’ freebie! Using Halloween as its inspiration, the event offers up free comics instead of sweet treats!

When does Halloween ComicFest take place?

Halloween ComicFest takes place every October, on the Saturday closest to Halloween (either just before or just after). Always check in store for the correct date if you’re unsure.

Where does Halloween ComicFest take place?

The event takes place at participating comic book stores around the country and throughout the world! The event is less well known and not so heavily promoted as Free Comic Book Day (more details on FCBD below), so while not every store takes part in the event, many do!

What comics are on offer on Halloween ComicFest?

On average, 30 titles are offered as part of the event. The titles are broken down into full-size comics (regular editions) and mini comics (smaller comics for kids). The comics on offer include a real mix, designed to appeal to a broad range of readers, from children’s titles through to more grown-up books.

The comics on offer during Halloween ComicFest tend to be reprinted material, taken from previously released books, but they often feature great stories. The comics are certainly worth picking up if you get the opportunity.

Should you want a list of what is on offer, check out the Halloween ComicFest website for a list and a preview inside selected books.

Do the free titles include comics from Marvel and DC?

Yes; Marvel and DC are participators in Halloween ComicFest, alongside Dark Horse, IDW, Archie and numerous other publishers.

How can I get the comics that are given away for Halloween ComicFest?

All you need do is turn up at your participating store and choose from the titles available. If you’re unsure if your local store is participating, simply ask them in advance!

Top tip: A poster or sign is often displayed in store to promote Halloween ComicFest, but if in doubt always ask. As noted above, Halloween ComicFest is not as heavily promoted as Free Comic Book Day and in some cases, stores will only offer comics to those customers who enquire about the event – so make sure you ask!

How many comics can I have on Halloween ComicFest?

Each store has a set amount of comics you can take and you will be told (in-store) how many comics you can have. As the event tends to be smaller in scale than Free Comic Book Day, some stores package all the comics together so that customers can take away comic packs rather than individual issues.

Do you have to make a purchase during Halloween ComicFest?

No – not at all. Halloween ComicFest is a day of FREE comic books. If a retailer tells you that you have to purchase something in order to get your free comics, then refuse and simply go elsewhere. Halloween ComicFest is all about treats, not tricks!

Are there any other freebies on Halloween ComicFest?

This will depend on your local store. As the event is designed to coincide with Halloween, some stores will offer a few other freebies (sweets, discounts, deals etc) to encourage customers into stores.

Are there any other days where comics are given away for free?

Yes! Free Comic Book Day is an annual event whereby comic book stores give out free comics all day. The event – which takes place on the first Saturday in May – is set up by the comic book industry, is backed by all the key publishers and is designed to offer a range of great freebies on one specific day every year. See the previous post for more details.

Is there anything else I need to know about Halloween ComicFest?

Halloween ComicFest is a great event which promotes reading and offers up a heap of freebies in the process! If you’re a fan of Halloween and reading, attending Halloween ComicFest is a no-brainer!

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