41st annual Superman Celebration starts Thursday

MICHELE LONGWORTH | Southern Scene

The famous Superman statue and Market Street, as shown here, will be the hub of most of the activities and entertainment during this year's 41st Annual Superman Celebration. There will be vendors lined up on Market Street along with a carnival located near Dorothy Miller Park. For more information visit www.supermancelebration.net.

This year's 41st annual Superman Celebration starts on Thursday evening and is sure to bring a super-sized amount of music, food, free activities for kids along with a carnival and a star-studded line up of celebrity guests.

At at 5 p.m. Thursday, everyone will gather at the Superman Statue, for a skit and ribbon cutting ceremony. Immediately following, the Metropolis Planet will present its annual 2019 Lois Lane Award.

This year's line up of celebrity guests includes: Erica Durance, Helen Slater and Katrina Law. Durance, best known for playing Lois Lane in the TV series Smallville, will attend the Celebration for the first time.

Durance, also known for portraying Dr. Alex Reid, is a producer and lead actress on CTV's hit medical drama Saving Hope. Playing the role of Reid, she garnered Canadian Screen Award nominations in 2013 and 2017. Many Superman fans know her as Lois Lane from Smallville, which she starred in for seven years.

Her many notable guest appearances include Wonder Woman on Harry's Law, with Kathy Bates, and Samantha Masters in the Charlie's Angels remake. Durance's more recent film credits include her tour de force performance as twin sisters in the Italian film Gemelle. In 2011, Durance was nominated for a Saturn Award and Teen Choice Award for best actress for her work in Smallville.

In 2012, Hello! Canada magazine listed her as one of Canada's 50 Most Beautiful People, and Buddy TV ranked her 9 on its TV's 100 Sexist Women. Durance is a supporter of World Vision Canada and lives in Vancouver, British Columbia with her husband and their three sons.

Slater, who played Supergirl in the 1984 film Supergirl, also appeared on Smallville in the role of Lara, and most recently played Supergirl's adopted mother on the Supergirl TV series, will return to Metropolis for a second visit. She also visited the Superman Celebration in 2007.

In her next film, Slater was cast alongside Christian Slater as Billie Jean Davy, a folk hero who styles herself as a modern-day Joan of Arc, in the film The Legend of Billie Jean. In the following years, she starred in several comedy-drama films such as Ruthless People, The Secret of My Success, and City Slickers with Billy Crystal, the steamy A House in the Hills with Michael Madsen, and the action-crime drama No Way Back opposite Russell Crowe.

Other noteworthy performances were seen in films including 12:01, Betrayal of the Dove, and opposite Andy Richter in Seeing Other People. Slater has appeared on episodes of various television series, including The New Adventures of Old Christine, Supernatural, four episodes as the voice of Talia in Batman: The Animated Series, and others.

She was a series regular on the half-season run of the 1990 ABC newsroom drama Capital News and the 2011-2013 two-season run of the ABC Family series The Lying Game. During her career, Slater has revisited her 1984 role of Supergirl. She made a brief guest appearance on Seinfeld as a love interest of Jerry Seinfeld. Slater was seen in a recurring role as Clark Kent's biological mother, Lara, on the TV series Smallville. In the 2000s, Slater recorded five albums, singing her own compositions and playing the piano.

Law is best known to DC Comics fans as Nyssa Al Ghul on The CW series Arrow.

Law currently stars on Sony Crackle's The Oath alongside Sean Bean and Ryan Kwanten. Prior to that, she starred as the female lead in Antoine Fuqua and Jerry Bruckheimer's Training Day series for CBS and Warner Brothers Television.

Law also stars in the Independent features, Apparition directed by Quinn Saunders, and Death Valley directed by T.J. Scott, as well as Zeroes directed by Charles Smith and Darkness Rising directed by Austin Reading. She also starred in a pivotal role as Danny Glover's right hand woman in the independent feature Checkmate directed by Timothy Woodward Jr.

Law notably starred as the romantic lead in Hallmark's Snow Bride directed by Bert Kish. Snow Bride has become one of Hallmarks highest rated movies, which led to her starring, again for Hallmark in 12 Gifts of Christmas, directed by Peter Sullivan. Katrina previously starred in the series Spartacus for Starz Network.

This year's Artists Alley will feature a variety of artists and writers including: Todd Aaron Smith; Cory Hamscher; Martheus, Janet and Anakin Wade; Brian K. Morris, Sean Dulaney, Trevor Hawkins, Candice Comelleri, Tyrone Tony Reed Jr., Mark LeMieux and Allan Perry.

The always-popular Sonshine Amusements will bring back carnival rides, which will again be located near the riverfront, to the west of Dorothy Miller Park. There will be all sorts of exciting rides, along with concessions, including corn dogs and cotton candy.

There will be musical entertainment each evening with performances on Thursday evening by the Tribute Quartet beginning at 7 p.m. Since 2006, nationally known recording artist Tribute as become one of the country's most dynamic and beloved male quartets in gospel music.

On Friday evening at the Metro Tent there will be singing and dancing. At 6:30 p.m. karaoke lovers will have a chance to pick a song, jump on the Real GM stage and rock the mic during Super Sing Lip Sync. Singles, groups and costumed singers are welcome. Ray Martinez will host the event, and there will be some fun giveaways. Then at 8 p.m. individuals can hang around for the Superhero Glo Dance. There will be a DJ and plenty of music to keep people on their feet dancing.

Saturday night under the Metro Tent at 7 p.m. the Paducah Jazz Ensemble will take the stage to entertain the crowd.

Of course the most popular annual events are returning to this year's line-up including the Super Road Race on Thursday, June 6; the Kiwanis Supertrek Bike Ride, June 8; and the Metropolis Superman Celebration Heroes and Villians Costume Contest at 2 p.m. on June 9.

Other favorite events include: The Metropolis Rotary Club Car Show on Sunday, June 9; Color-A-Cape for kids; Super Baby Contest and the Supergirl and Superboy pageants, just to name a few.

Right in the middle of all of the activities visitors will have the opportunity to pose with the world-famous 15-foot-tall bronze statue of Superman and tour the Super Museum, which holds the largest collection of Superman memorabilia in the world.

Or, visitors can walk just a few blocks to see the Lois Lane statue, the slightly larger than life bronze statue of Noel Neill, the First Lady of Metropolis.

During the four-day celebration, visitors can sample food items at numerous food vendors lined along Market Street and browse sidewalk sales.

For more detailed information on the Metropolis Superman Celebration guests, be sure to read the Metropolis Planet special section in the June 6 issue of the Planet or visit the official websites: supermancelebration.net, metropolischamber.com or metropolistourism.com or call the Metropolis Chamber at 800-949-5740.

The Superman Celebration is hosted by the Metropolis Chamber of Commerce, the City of Metropolis, and the Metropolis Area Tourism Commission.

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