Louisville Public Libraries show why representation matters with a Black Superheroes Showcase

The Black Superheroes Showcase gave kids a chance to see heroes of all shades.
Published: Feb. 24, 2023 at 6:42 PM EST
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - As a part of their Black History Month initiative the Portland Public Library hosted a Black Superhero Showcase.

The event had graphic novels featuring black superheroes, arts and crafts, cosplay and a showing of Black Panther Wakanda Forever.

The event showcased that there are different shades of heroes.

To understand why this Black Superhero Showcase is needed you must first meet 13-year-old Heith Griffin.

He got his love for comics from his big sister and his favorite character is Miles Morales, AKA Spider-Man.

“There’s something about the way he’s still learning how to become a Spider-Man so he’s still learning a little bit about the stuff and he’s also a musician like me,” said Griffin.

Griffin says he feels a connection with Miles Morales he doesn’t feel with other superheroes and wanted to be in a space where he can share that passion.

“You want different people to have someone that looks like you and someone you can relate to,” Griffin said. “Then you’re like oh I want to be like them when I grow up so they’re like an inspiration in a way.”

That’s why Children and Teen Library Assistant William Sutton, wanted to put this event together.

To showcase heroes can be from all walks of life not just for Black History Month, but every day of every year.

“Not only do black kids need to see these superheroes and these characters but kids of all colors and ethnic groups need to see and be able to recognize that hey not all superheroes are one color,” Sutton explained.

In the event’s eighth year, Sutton wanted to give kids of all ages a great experience.

From arts and crafts to superhero bios, to the playing of Black Panther Wakanda Forever, he let the kids know even though they may not have supernatural powers, they can still be heroes.

“They certainly have some type of ability, some type of superhero power and something that makes them unique that they can use to be that hero and that savior and that person to look up to,” said Sutton.

The event gave kids like Griffin a chance to see they can be more than just an athlete or a musician to be successful.

“We want kids to learn new things so in the future they can figure out what they want to be,” Griffin said. “So like for instance if they wanted to make comics and be an artist they can come here and learn something about that.”

The Public Library’s event was free to all and they say they hope to continue to put on events like this for kids.