FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

WIZARD OF OZ CONVENTION TO MEET ON THE CAMPUS OF CAL POLY POMONA

POMONA, CA, July 7, 2019—Wizard of Oz enthusiasts from across the USA and several other countries will gather in Pomona, CA, from Friday, July 26 to Sunday, July 28, 2019. The 55th annual OzCon International will be held at the Kellogg West Conference Center on the campus of Cal Poly Pomona. This three-day event is an opportunity for Oz enthusiasts to share their love for the world created by L. Frank Baum in all its forms. The convention opens Friday, July 26 at 10 AM. A pre-OzCon screening of MGM’s 1939 motion picture The Wizard of Oz starring Judy Garland will be held at the Fox Theatre in Pomona on Thursday, July 25.

At OzCon International, attendees of all ages come together to discuss Oz books and movies, swap Oz collectibles, display Oz crafts, listen to guest speakers, watch live performances, and share their love for all things Oz. Many attendees have been making the pilgrimage to OzCon for years.

This year OzCon celebrates the centennial of L. Frank Baum’s thirteenth book in the Oz series, The Magic of Oz. We’ll focus on Baum’s life and literature one hundred years after his death, and feature the eightieth anniversary of the 1939 MGM motion picture The Wizard of Oz.

The Oz Masquerade costume contest awards cash prizes for the best costumes. The Oz auction features rare books and collectibles, often at bargain prices. New and unique Oz items will be for sale in the Dealers Room. Oz quizzes, presentations, and performances round out the weekend of Ozzy fun. 

OzCon International 2019 is proud to welcome the following special guests:

Aljean Harmetz, Hollywood journalist and film historian, is best known for her books on the creation of several classic films, including The Making of The Wizard of Oz.

Kurt Raymond, Wicked Witch impersonator extraordinaire, channels Margaret Hamilton’s portrayal of the Wicked Witch of the West in stage productions of The Wizard of Oz and at public events.

Mike Chamberlain, known as "The Singing TV Guy," will perform the Wizard of Oz portion of his show Music from the Movies, Academy Award Winning Songs as a main feature on Saturday evening, July 27. 

Holly Van Leuven presents her new biography Ray Bolger: More than A Scarecrow, detailing the life of the actor who played the Scarecrow in the MGM movie The Wizard of Oz. Van Leuven will be at OzCon July 27 and 28 only. 

Christianna Rickard is the niece of Ray Bolger and assisted with research for Holly Van Leuven’s new biography of Ray Bolger. Rickard will appear at OzCon July 27 and 28 only.

Barry Bregman is the grandson of actor Jack Haley, who played the Tin Woodman in the 1939 MGM movie The Wizard of Oz. Bregman edited the book Heart of the Tin Man: the Collected Writings of Jack Haley.

Robert Welch is the grandson of “Buddy” Gillespie, MGM studio’s special effects genius on more than four hundred films, including The Wizard of Oz. Welch is co-editor of his grandfather’s memoir The Wizard of MGM.
 
Raymond F. Wohl will present his full play The Royal Historian of Oz, about the Chicago days of Oz creator L. Frank Baum.

See the full schedule at: http://www.ozconinternational.com/our-next-convention.html

For more information and to register for OzCon see the website at: http://www.ozconinternational.com

On Thursday, July 25, OzCon presents with The Fox Theatre Pomona a special 80th anniversary screening of MGM’s Wizard of Oz at the Fox Theatre in Pomona. Doors open at 5 PM. Listen to an OzCon panel discussion at 6 PM. The movie screens at 7:30 PM. Tickets for the Fox Theatre screening are sold separately from OzCon registration. For tickets and more information, see the website: https://80thwizardofoz.eventbrite.com

OzCon International was founded in 1964 as The West Coast Oz Convention by four southern Californians: Blake Maxam, Judy Pike, C. Warren Hollister, and Peter Hanff, as a west coast gathering of members of the International Wizard of Oz Club. Over more than five decades the West Coast Oz Convention would expand beyond the USA and the Oz Club to become a truly international convention. Today OzCon International welcomes Oz enthusiasts of all stripes and interests from around the world. It is the longest-running annual Oz event, and regularly features authors, actors, scholars, researchers, and Oz experts of all sorts, who share their knowledge and love of Oz with attendees.
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Contact: Anil Tambwekar, Publicity Director, OzCon International
vicechair@ozconinternational.com
415 694 3942
http://www.ozconinternational.com

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L. Frank Baum reading to children in Coronado, CA

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OzCon kids in costume

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L. Frank Baum circa 1909

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