Thank you!

June 3, 2017

The organizers of the Chicago Alternative Comics Expo would like to thank the following individuals and groups for their assistance in making CAKE 2017 a successful event: Leila Abdelrazaq, Izzy Adams, Meghan Ansbach, Oscar Arriola, Rachel Bard, Monte Beauchamp, Sarah Becan, Andrea Bell, Ben Bertin, Katie Bourgeois, Tony Breed, Patrick Brower, Jeffrey Brown, Scott Bufis, Kevin Budnik, Andy Burkholder, Lauren Burke, Ryan Burns, Dal Bush, Tyrell Cannon, Scott Cederlund, Mike Centeno, Kelsey Choo, Sage Coffey, Jacq Cohen, Heather Colby, Paul Courtright, Gabi Cracraft, Kitty Curran, MK Czerwiec, Matt Davis, Vanessa DellaMorte, Nick Drnaso, Raphael Espinoza, Joshua Farnum, Susan Farnum, Sarah Ferrick, Adam Fotos, Elliott Franklin, Tim Gagne, Marnie Galloway, Michael Gebel, Megan Rose Gedris, Terry Gant, Henry Guerra, Tim Gurnig, Christine Gutierrez, Corinne Halbert, Cathy Hannah, Paul Helfen, Erik Huntoon, KT Hawbaker-Krohn, Beth Hetland, Clay Hickson, Amber Huff, Emily Hutchings, Nick Jackson, Forrest Jove, Gene Kannenberg, Tom Kaczynski, Megan Kirby, Eric Kirsammer, Sean Kleefeld, Alex Kostiw, Chad Kouri, Anne Koyama, Beck Kramer, Davey Krofta, Yewon Kwon, Matthew Landvogt, Angee Lennard, Sheika Lugtu, Sacha Lusk, Darick Maasen and Grotesque Burlesque, Ben Marcus, Ed Marsziewski, Liz Mason, Ian McDuffie, Todd McGill-Rusynyk, Bernie McGovern, Caitlin McGurk, Tom McHenry, Duncan McKenzie, Sophie McMahan, Megan Metzger, Rebecca Mir Grady, Johnny Misfit, Max Morris, Corinne Mucha, Sara Murphy, Alex Nall, Pranas T. Naujokaitis, Samuel Nigrosh, Alicia Obermeyer, Molly Colleen O’Connell, Kyle O’Connell, Sarah O’Neill, Turtel Onli, Onsmith, Laura Park, Andy Pates, Anna Pederson, Travis Pedroza, Chloë Perkis, Caroline Picard, George Porteus, Ashly Powley, Jason Price, Josh Reinwald, Andy Rench, Keiler Roberts, Scott Roberts, Eric Roesner, Brad Rohloff, Isabella Rotman, Marian Runk, Johnny Sampson, Erik Schneider, Emily Schulert, Chad Sell, Bobby Sims, Alyson Sinclair, Harrison Smith-Mooney, Dena Springer, Conor Stechschulte, Tyler Stoltenberg, Wesley Sun, Sam Szabo, Joe Tallarico, Lizzy Tiritilli, Hiromi Ueyoshi, Manuel Velasco, Sarah Wenzel, Emme Williams, Gina Wynbrandt, Jessi Zabarsky, Larissa Zageris, the Zwirek family (Emily, Van, Asa, and Sydney), and of course all the special guests, panel participants and workshop leaders, exhibitors, volunteers, sponsors, and attendees.


Farewell to Friends

June 3, 2017

CAKE would like to thank our emeritus organizers who stepped down in 2016:

A jack-of-all-trades, Ben Bertin served as an organizer from 2014 to 2016, focusing on show logistics and support. He tackled all his tasks, even the most thankless, with excellence and enthusiasm to make the show the best it could be. Ben’s good nature and connections to the community were crucial to the success of CAKE; he always knew just the right person to recruit for much-needed help. Since he stepped down to plan a cross-country move, we have missed his intelligence, wit, and sensitivity. We thank Ben for everything he’s done for the festival and wish him well in his future ventures.

CAKE co-founder Max Morris stepped down in 2016 from his important role as show organizer, and this truly marked the end of an era. Since the show’s beginnings, Max worked tirelessly to design, plan, and promote events; craft panels and workshops; and connect CAKE with the rest of Chicago’s arts communities. The public face of the festival for so many in Chicago, and a large part of its soul for those of us who have helped make CAKE, Max’s energy and profound dedication to artistic excellence are hard to match. We thank Max for his outstanding work on the show over the years, as well as his dedication to comics and art more generally in Chicago.

An organizer since before CAKE even had a name, Jeff Zwirek has been an indispensable resource for the festival. From postering, print logistics, and art direction to creating our sponsorship platform and shaping our methods and practices, Jeff has worked tirelessly to make CAKE the equal of any comics festival in the world. Although he will still be an instrumental part of the show, in 2016 he stepped back from being a core organizer, so we want to take this moment to thank him for his commitment, his talent, and his genuine, authentic passion for comics. Always patient, always friendly, and always conscious of the big picture, CAKE owes so much to Jeff, and we thank him for all he has done.

Comics That Kiss Better: CAKE and European Comics Chicago Party!

June 2, 2017

Thursday, June 22 at 7 PM – 9 PM
Sector 2337 + The Green Lantern Press – 2337 N Milwaukee Ave

Chicago Alternative Comics Expo (CAKE) and the French Comics Association, with Europe Comics and Sector 2337 + The Green Lantern Press, host a FREE cross-cultural celebration with drinks, drawings, and Bande Dessinée.

Welcome European Cartoonists to the Windy City: Guy Delisle, Marguerite Abouet, Jérémie Royer, David Etien, Teresa Radice & Stefano Turconi with Chicago-land favorites Ivan Brunetti and Keiler Roberts

Live readings of projected comics, emcee’d by Aaron Renier, plus book-signings, (cash) bar, and the chance to chat with incredible international artists. Bring your sketchbook. Mingle with French and European publishing professionals and the CAKE community.

Learn more

Two Cookie Minimum Starts its 7th Season!

June 2, 2017

Tuesday, June 6 at 8 PM – 11 PM
CHI PRC – 858 N Ashland Ave

Have a Ball as Chicago reading series stalwart Two Cookie Minimum is celebrates its seventh season with cookies and all things self-published. The first of its four zine- and comic-friendly summer readings will take place on Tuesday June 6, at Chicago Publishers Resource Center (CHI PRC 858 N. Ashland Ave).

Special guest and CHIPRC/ Transit Residency (TRANSIT) Artist in Residence Célia Marquis (illustrator and zinester) will be visiting from Montreal, Canada. Joining her will be Chicagoans, Yewon Kwon (comics artist), Alenka Figa (journalist), Rebecca Mir Grady (comics artist), and Amy Giacalone (writer).

All readings are open to the public. The $5 cover benefits CHIPRC. Doors open at 8pm. Get there early to grab a seat. And as always, cookies will be provided. The full summer reading schedule will be posted on the series blog.

Two Cookie Minimum is a reading series that aims to bring together writers and self-publishers. It gives emerging writers a forum and showcases the Chicago zine community. For more information visit the TCM blog at

A Revival House Party: 2017 CAKE Pre-Fest Social Mixer

May 26, 2017

Revival House Party: 2017 CAKE Pre-Fest Social Mixer

Friday 6/9 starting at 9:30 p.m.

The Den Theatre
1331 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, Illinois 60622

Join Revival House and CAKE for this free mixer at the Den Theatre, featuring D.J. Pluto (aka Ben Marcus).

Learn more

CAKE Drink and Draw Brunch Special Thanks

May 20, 2017

On April 30, 2017, CAKE hosted a Drink and Draw fundraiser at Empty Bottle. We would like to thank the people and institutions who helped make this year’s event so good.


Empty Bottle was a wonderful venue who was super accommodating and nice to us. Special thanks to our contacts Mike, Tim, and Sarah, and Marie for working the door.

CAKE Coordinator Corinne Halbert did a great job with the event logistics – thank you, Corinne!

Hey- you know who generously donated their time and did an outstanding job DJing on a stormy Sunday afternoon? Joe Tallerico and Tony Breed did. That’s who. Thank you both.

Blick Art MaterialsQuimby’s and Mike Freiheit sponsored our event, and we are so thankful for their generosity.

Special thanks for everyone who volunteered for CAKE at the event:  Neil Brideau, Mike Freiheit, Corinne Halbert, and Jeff Zwirek.




May 19, 2017

Tuesday, June 6  – A Book Release Party for Along the Lines: Selected Drawings by Saul Steinberg at The Seminary Co-op Bookstore, 5751 S. Woodlawn Ave.,  6:00–7:30 p.m.

Join Art Institute of Chicago curator Mark Pascale and comics artist and CAKE organizer Amy Peltz to celebrate the launch of Along the Lines: Selected Drawings by Saul Steinberg. The book is published in conjunction with an exhibition of the New Yorker artist’s work that is on view at the Art Institute (111 S. Michigan Ave.) from May 27 to October 29.

Romanian-born American artist Saul Steinberg (1914–1999) won international acclaim for his inventive, wry representations of the postwar age. His work appeared on the covers and interiors of the New Yorker for nearly six decades, and his drawings, collages, prints, paintings, and sculptures have been exhibited in galleries and museums around the world. With essays by cartoonist Chris Ware and curator Mark Pascale, this lively book traces Steinberg’s imagery as it evolved over the full scope of his career, celebrating his refusal to distinguish between high and low art. The 60 works included traverse the realms of Steinberg’s world, from the witty black-ink takes on his newly adopted land of 1940s America to the watercolor paintings he made as a mature artist in the late 1980s.

RSVP HERE (Please note that your RSVP is requested, but not required)

CAKE Art Auction Special Thanks

May 13, 2017

On April 21, 2017, CAKE hosted our fifth annual Art Auction fundraiser at 826chi. The event was a great success, and we would like to thank many people and institutions who helped make this year’s event so memorable.

826chi was a wonderful venue who was super accommodating and nice to us. Special thanks to our contact Tyler!

Ian McDuffie and their assistant Brad Rohloff were the perfect auctioneers, generously donating their time and talents.

Blick Art MaterialsRevolution Brewing and Cream Wine Distributors sponsored our event.  They were all easy to work with and we are so thankful for their generosity.

We were so lucky to have Mike Centeno, Beth Hetland & Kyle O’Connell give incredible readings. Thank you!

Thank you so much to the amazing artists who donated: Chester Brown, Josh Cotter, Nick Drnaso, Mike Freiheit, Henry Guerra, Corinne Halbert, Sammy Harkham, Kevin Huizenga, Jesse Jacobs, Ed Luce, Leigh Luna, Alex Nall, Gary Panter, Laura Park and John Porcellino, John Pham, Keiler Roberts, Isabella Rotman,  Johnny Sampson, Leslie Stein, Joe Tallarico, Hiromi Ueyoshi, Carrie Vinarsky, Lale Westvind!!!

Thank you to Davey Krofta, who tended bar. Special thanks for everyone who volunteered for CAKE at the event:  Matt Brady, Neil Brideau, Mike Freiheit, Corinne Halbert, Chris Lopez, Sara Murphy, Amy Peltz, Anne Marie Sticksel, and Jeff Zwirek,

And, finally, extra thanks to Mike Freiheit who drew our poster, programmed the readers, promoted the event, donated art, worked the door, found us a BASSETT-certified bartender, hung the silent auction, and,to top it all off, won the most expensive auction item. Thank you, Mike!!


CAKE Street Team Pizza Party

May 12, 2017

Tuesday, May 23 at 7 PM – 9 PM
Dimo’s Pizza Wicker Park
1615 N Damen Ave


Chicago Alternative Comics Expo (CAKE) needs help getting out the word that our expo is back at Center on Halsted this June 10 and 11. Please join CAKE’s organizers for FREE PIZZA! We’ll have posters, and you can participate in two ways:

1. Pick up a bundle of CAKE posters and agree to hang them in your neighborhood, and post a photo with the hashtag #CAKE2017, OR

2. If you picked up posters from us at Chicago Zine Fest or some other time and place, post a photo of the poster in the world on social media with the hashtag #CAKE2017

In past years this has been a great chance to volunteers to catch up with food and a short low-key weeknight hang. It’s fun, and we really appreciate any help you can give us postering the city.

Learn more at our facebook event