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The Man Behind Comic Con's Success
Added June 10, 2013

NIAGARA FALLS - Chris Dabrowski's eyes widened when the original Batman Adam West came up to him in the airport.

Inside, the boy who watched him on TV after school wanted to ask him about his time on set.What it’s like to be Batman. Get a picture with the star. Outside, the owner of High Impact PR, a Niagara Falls-based public relations firm, was professional.It comes with the territory of being in the industry. Do what you can to make your clients comfortable.

So when the 84-year-old West asked to be taken to Wendy’s restaurant soon after his flight arrived, Dabrowski arranged the stop.When Dave Prose, better known as Darth Vader in the original Star Wars trilogy, expressed interest in taking a helicopter ride over the falls, Dabrowski made it happen Monday.

“(The profession) changes everyday and there’s something new all the time,” he said. “It’s not a job when you’re having fun. It’s not work.”Dabrowski graduated from Niagara College in human resources and from University of Victoria for public relations. He started in the field working at OEB International in 2003.

Now at 35, he has owned his own public-relations firm for three years and is making a name for himself around Niagara for his marketing skills.He has helped promote small events such as golf tournaments to major events in Toronto such as the International Home Show.He helped a Niagara Falls photography business achieve YouTube fame in 2010 when he co-ordinated a flash mob at the Seaway Mall in Welland for Alphabet Photography.The video, which features a group singing Hallelujah in the mall’s food court, has close to 42-million views.

Dabrowski’s latest focus has been comic cons. The Niagara Falls convention saw 15,000 people attend in its second year this past weekend.Seeing the popularity in the shows continue to rise, he has organized a Steel City Comic Con in Hamilton. The city’s first such event is happening Oct. 5 with a Back to the Future theme.

“We’re not looking to compete or top anything (done in Niagara Falls). I’m just trying to expand and build another successful event,” he said.The perks of organizing a comic con are obvious in meeting and dining with celebrities, but sometimes it’s the unexpected surprises that are most memorable.

During the weekend, that came in the form of a pen doodle by West. Dabrowski is treating it like an original art piece. “I’m going to frame it and it’s going in my office,” he said. “It’s not going on eBay I can tell you that. It’s an honour to have it in my presence.”

matt.day@sunmedia.ca

Niagara Falls Review

 


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