Galaween at Rancho Obi-Wan

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This October, SARLACC made its now annual trek to Rancho Obi-Wan to participate in the fundraising gala and auction. This year, the theme was ‘Galaween’ and there were plenty of Halloween themed activities to participate in.

SARLACC members Curt, Gus, Tom, Michal and Amy flew to San Francisco the day of the event. We had just enough time to meet up with Cathy from StarWarsCards.net at the airport before going directly to the party. We drove up, parking right next to Dave Feloni as he arrived.

The Rancho was festively decorated for the occasion.

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There were fantastically carved pumpkins by The Pumpkin Geek. The pumpkin below features the event’s logo which was designed by SARLACC’s own Curt Hanks. Read more about the logo here.

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As in previous years, there plenty of items for collectors to bid on and win in raffles. SARLACCian Amy donated this crochet set of Rey and BB-8.

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Steve was the master of ceremonies and this year special guest C3PO (Chris Bartlett) joined in the fun.

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Many of us were thrilled to talk with special guests like Don Post Jr. who was a wealth of knowledge on casting and its processes. Here Don stands in front of a display of original Don Post licensed merchandise advertisements from the collection of Pete Vilmur.

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After the auction we spent some time in the collection looking at all the new items on display. Including one of the SARLACC action figures made by Earl.

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Towards the end of the evening we just hung around the library keeping an eye on the silent auction and conversing with collectors that we don’t get to see often enough.

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All too soon the night was over. But we knew we’d be back (the next day in fact).

We met up with collectors Ross and Ryan from Canada and Dave from Ohio at the Rancho the next morning. The day began with a trading session of American and Canadian Star Wars food packaging.

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As some collectors went off for their annual board meeting, the rest of us went inside for more trading. This time Journey to the Force Awakens Topps trading cards.

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There was also plenty to see in the back aisles as usual. Shhhh… Don’t tell Steve!

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We set off for San Francisco in a caravan with a pitstop at California fast food staple, In-N-Out. Next stop Super 7 studios for a tour with its owner.

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The Super 7 studios was a delight and we all got to marvel over the collection of items and their fantastic display. We even learned some new things about Japanese toys and Italian movie posters.

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The next stop was the airport. We bid fellow collectors Ross, Ryan, Cathy and Dave goodbye until next we meet at another Star Wars gathering not too far away.

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Sarlacc Events Summer to Fall 2015

As we await the premiere of The Force Awakens, SARLACC members have had plenty of reasons to get together and celebrate. Here are just a few things that we’ve been up to in the past few months.

The Ewok builders joined Garrison Titan and Alpha Base at the Seattle Mariner’s Star Wars night. Visiting collector Ryan Dukes from Canada joined us.

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We had another fantastic 4th of July at the Stewart’s house on the lake. Dave Brott from the Ohio collecting club came to visit.

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We got to share in the experience that was San Diego Comic Con. Including the Star Wars panel and surprise concert with the cast.

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We had our new annual tradition “SARLACC Camping” in August with a weekend spent near Mount Adams. Of course this included Star Wars crafting and a special merit badge designed by Mike Demaine.

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Mount Adams

Mount Adams

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Another local collecting group STARS meets monthly at the Southcenter Applebee’s at 7pm on the last Tuesday of the month. Summer brings the best attendance and August was no exception with over 25 attendees.

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The Ewok Builder’s club grew over the summer with 10 new ewoks currently being built.

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Force Friday we met up to shop at Toys R Us and Target together. Everyone found at least something to take home.

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Our regular SARLACC meetings continued with a recent meeting at Curt Hanks’ house.

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Rose City Comic Con found caravans of SARLACCians traveling to Portland. This trip included Carrie Fisher sightings, ice cream at Cloud City and cool collectible stores including Dr. Tongue’s I Had That Shop.

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Bonfires continued at the Stewart’s celebrating the beginning of fall.

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And we said goodbye to the fantastic Star Wars in Costume exhibit at the EMP closing party.

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The Force Was Strong At San Diego Comic Con 2015

SARLACC members Gus, Pam, Ryan, Stephanie and Amy were in attendance at this year’s San Diego Comic Con.

What began as a typical exciting weekend at the convention quickly became an experience none of us will ever forget.

We started the convention at preview night. The typical Star Wars sights were to be seen on the show floor, Hasbro, Lego, and the Lucasfilm Pavilion. Of note was the incredibly detailed Hot Toys Millennium Falcon model on display at the Sideshow booth.

Preview night as over all too soon and the next day was spent at the Hasbro breakfast and in line.

Thursday was the day before the much-anticipated Lucasfilm panel in Hall H. Thankfully we had a team that was willing to trade-off time in line so that one or two could leave for food, Starbucks, and sleep. We felt right at home at the neighboring Hilton Starbucks this year as it was decked out in a Star Wars motif and playing the movies.

Later that night, our group secured our wristbands and we were set for Friday in the largest panel hall at San Diego Comic Con the 6,500 seat Hall H.

JJ Abrams had donuts and coffee delivered in the morning and we were all in pretty good spirits despite the lack of sleep. After a day’s worth of panels featuring stars from Walking Dead and Game of Thrones we finally got to the moment we’d been waiting for.

During that magical hour, we saw new clips, actors, puppets, and a behind the scenes trailer that made me teary eyed.

And, once we thought we’d had our fill they threw in a surprise, a 2 hour concert of Star Wars music by the San Diego Symphony Orchestra with video introduction by John Williams. Topped off with a collectible lanyard, lightsaber, and an eye popping fireworks show.

And that ended only day 3 of 5 days at Comic Con. We still had Saturday and Sunday ahead of us which some of us spent at the Disney Infinity offsite playing the new Star Wars game and getting figures in advance of the games release.

The rest of the time was spent on the show floor taking in as much new information on upcoming Star Wars collectibles as possible.

But as with any San Diego Comic Con, then best moments were the ones shared with friends and meeting friends that you usually don’t see anywhere else but a convention. By Sunday, as much as we love Comic Con, we were all ready to take a much-needed break. Until next year, ‘stay classy San Diego.’

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SARLACC visits the Sarlacc
(Buttercup Valley, CA)

Shirt design by Mike Demaine

April 20, 2015
(or SARLACC participates in Earth Day by cleaning up desert ‘trash’ )

This year’s SARLACC road trip was added on to our Star Wars Celebration festivities. The day after celebration a dozen SARLACC members departed Anaheim by car for the 4 hour drive to the Imperial Sand Dunes in California. This was the filming location of the Sarlacc pit and Jabba’s sail barge in Return of the Jedi. After filming of these scenes, much of the set was scrapped and left on the desert valley floor. With a little digging and determination, you can find pieces from the set.

(photo by Jake Stevens)

We arrived at the dunes just before lunch. The temperature was a warm 95 degrees and the sky was a picturesque blue. The parking lot was the central meeting place for our caravan. There we loaded up on water and were interviewed by a visiting film crew from Lucasfilm on hand to document the trip. The film crew stayed behind while the majority of us hiked the dunes.

(photo by Ryan Beise)

Of course a trip to the dunes would not be complete without the appropriate themed collectibles.

After a strenuous walk we saw the valley floor below.

(Jake has discovered the valley)

We were looking for the original fence posts located on the valley floor that would provide clues as to where the Jedi set was filmed.

(fence post spotted by Ryan Beise)

After finding the fence, we set our shovels to work. Much of the set remains just below the surface of the sand, broken into small pieces and preserved in the arid desert climate.

Earl starts to dig near a rocky outcropping just inside of the fence line.

Michal is indicating that she ‘ain’t found s#!$.’

By the time the film crew arrived we were very successful. We had found plenty of the sarlacc set including painted foam (part of the sarlacc pit), wood nails, wood boards used for scaffolding, plywood remnants and pipes and pipe clamps including scaffolding bases.

Krister places found items in ziploc bags as Chris, Earl and Jim continue to comb the desert.

After a brief time digging, and nearly 7 full ziploc bags full of items, we surveyed the filming location once last time before heading out on ATV. Honorary SARLACC member and collector from Canada Ross Cuddie was a tremendous help ferrying folks across the dunes on ATV.

Next time we’ll have to make a button to say that we visited the sarlacc and weren’t digested 1,000 years. Smilie: ;)

As many members caught flights home that evening, the rest of the SARLACC crew went to the Angels Star Wars night at the ballpark. New York collector Mike Ritter arranged for this special surprise to show up on the reader board.

The perfect end to the perfect day. Another successful SARLACC adventure spent with friends.

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SARLACC Vintage Collectibles Cups

Members of SARLACC sponsored this set of eight Star Wars Vintage Collectibles Cups as swag for Star Wars Celebration Anaheim. The cups were designed by Curt Hanks and inspired by vintage Coca-Cola cups of the ’70s.

Promotional poster inspired by a vintage Frozen Coca-Cola advertisement.

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