Geekfest Weapons and Prop Guidelines

These rules are for the safety of Geekfest attendees and all other library patrons, and to allow those in costume to wear them responsibly at our convention. This policy will be strictly enforced, and any decisions made by Akron-Summit County Public Library Security Staff are final.

We appreciate the time and effort put into the creation of your costumes, props, and replica weapon/weapon-like items and understand that props and weapons are often a vital part of a character’s costume. However, safety does come first.

Please read and understand this weapons policy before using/making any props for your costume. It is imperative that any props, weapons or weapon-like items (called ‘weapons’ from here on forward for simplicity’s sake) comply with this Weapons Policy as well as with all local, state, and federal laws. This policy is not a summary of the laws nor does this policy constitute legal advice. You are solely responsible for understanding and complying with all applicable laws.


All props and weapons will need to be submitted to inspection prior to being allowed within the library. Weapons inspection desks will be located near entrances to the library

All items must be inspected and will be zip-tied for compliance with this weapon policy. The zip-tie must be visible at all times to indicate that the item has been inspected.

There may be times where a judgement call by the Akron-Summit County Security Department will need to be made on the acceptability of a prop or weapon. Please understand that Akron-Summit County Public Library reserves the right to refuse the entry of any prop or weapon it deems unfit, ill-constructed or unsafe to the convention, and the decisions made by security staff are final.

Uncostumed prop/weapon-bearing

All props or weapons must support the overall look the you are currently wearing. Wearing a prop or weapon for its own sake is not allowed. For example: you may not wear regular street clothes and carry a sword or a staff. Decisions about what constitutes uncostumed prop-bearing are at the discretion of the Akron-Summit County Public Library security staff, and their decisions are final.


Brandishing is defined as drawing, exhibiting, waving or using any item, prop or weapon in an unsafe manner. Any such display of an item, prop or weapon in an aggressive or threatening manner, real or implied regardless of intent, or any other activity thought to be unsafe is strictly forbidden.

The only exception to the brandishing rule is for photography/videography. For the limited period you are posing and if the area around you is clear of bystanders. You are allowed to pose with an item, prop, or weapon in a brandishing-like manner so long as no reasonable person would interpret the pose as anything but safe and no real threat. However, please exercise great caution when doing so – we want everyone (including yourself) to be safe!

Misuse of a prop or weapon will be considered grounds for removal or ejection from the convention. Anyone brandishing an item, prop, or weapon will be warned and asked to remove said item from the library grounds. If the individual ignores this warning and / or brings the banned item back, he or she will be asked to leave.

Anyone found fighting (real or otherwise) or threatening someone with an item, prop, or weapon will be immediately removed from the library grounds. They may also be turned over to the local authorities as required.

The Security Staff of Akron-Summit County Public Library, in their sole and absolute discretion, are empowered to determine whether a particular act constitutes “Brandishing” and its severity.

Edged weapons, metal

  • No sharpened edged weapons – all metal blades must be blunt
  • No unsheathed edged weapons – all metal blades must be sheathed
  • Any edged weapons that cannot be peace-bonded to permanently secure the metal blade within its sheath will not be permitted.
  • Clubs / blugeoning weapons (including wooden swords)
  • No rigid metal piping may be used in the construction of any weapon / prop
  • No brittle construction materials (for example, glass or acrylic sheet) can be used in the construction of any weapon / prop
  • No ‘sharp’ points – all points must be constructed of non-rigid / soft materials

Miscellaneous weapons

  • No kunai – all kunai-type weapons regardless of construction material may not be used.
  • Bows & slingshots – real bows and slingshots may be used, but without bowstrings and propelling tubing
  • Chains – no metal chains. Short lengths of plastic chain (12″ or less) are acceptable
  • Whips – whips which are peace-bonded to prevent uncoiling will be permitted.


  • No real guns of any type are allowed.
  • No metal pellet / BB guns are allowed.
  • No paintball guns are allowed.
  • No Airsoft guns of any type are allowed.
  • ‘Nerf’-type weapons – allowed as long as no ammunition is present
  • Waterguns – allowed as long as no liquid is present
  • All ‘firearms’ must have an orange tip and it must be present on the weapon at all times. When holstered, either the orange tip must be visible through the holster, or the weapon’s zip-tie peace-bond must be visible.

Thank you for reading our weapons policy! With your help, we can make this convention truly amazing!

2017 Creative Writing Contest

Do you think you’re the next Suzanne Collins or John Green? Would you like a chance to share your original story or poem with the world? If so, you should enter the Akron-Summit County Public Library’s Creative Writing Contest! Five winners will receive a $25 gift card to Barnes and Noble, and all authors who submit acceptable entries will get to see their writing in print in the Akron-Summit County Public Library Creative Writing Contest Collection.


  1. All entries must be the original work of the submitter.
  2. Submitters must be entering grades 6-12 in the 2017-2018 school year.
  3. There is a limit of three entries per submitter.
  4. Entries are due by June 30, 2017
  5. Entries should be no longer than 20 pages.
  6. All works longer than two pages must be typed in a Microsoft Word or Google document and submitted electronically (by email).
  7. All handwritten entries must be printed and legible.
  8. All entries will be included in the Akron-Summit County Public Library Creative Writing Contest Collection at the discretion of library staff; each submitter with an acceptable entry or entries will receive a complimentary copy mailed to their home address. Entries will not be returned, so make a copy!
  9. Five entries will be selected as “Judges’ Choice” award winners. These authors will receive a $25 Barnes and Noble Gift Card.
  10. Whether you are submitting a paper entry or an electronic version, all submissions must contain the information on the submission form below.

* It usually takes several months for all of the entries to be typed, edited and put into the collection.

Entry Submission

Download and fill out the submission form below and return it via one of the following options listed below:

  • By email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • By mail to:
    Akron-Summit County Public Library
    Susan Russ, Youth Services Office
    60 S. High St.
    Akron OH 44326
  • Or turn it in at any branch location or the Teen Department at the Main Library

If you have questions, please contact the Main Library Teen Department at 330.643.9067 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Submission Form

Click the image below and download the submission form PDF.

Creative Writing Contest 2017


Youth Arts Showcase

You won’t believe your eyes! You won’t believe your ears!

Join us for the 2019 Youth Arts Showcase and celebrate the artistic talents of the children and teens in our community!

Youth Arts Showcase ImageThe event will take place on Saturday, April 27, 2019. Artists, musicians, singers, and dancers in grades 4 through 12 are invited to apply to participate. Those selected will have the opportunity to perform in the library’s auditorium in front of an audience. Visual artists will be invited to attend a reception to be recognized and their work will be on display in the Main Library.

Applications will be available to pick up at the Akron-Summit County Public Library Main Library or any of the branches. You can also download and print an application.

Applications can be submitted:

  • Via email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Mailed to Akron-Summit County Public Library c/o Sarah Deisler YSO, 60 S. High St., Akron, OH 44326
  • Dropped off at Main Library or any of the branches

Applications must be received or postmarked by 5:00 pm on Saturday, March 9, 2019 to be considered.

Studios, teachers, directors, schools, and instructors are encouraged to submit groups of students to perform at the event.

Studios and schools may submit up to three groups. There will be a maximum of three selections per group not exceeding a total of 15 minutes on stage. Visual artists may submit up to three pieces. All performances and visual art entries must be suitable and appropriate for all ages.



3rd Floor
60 South High Street
Akron, Ohio 44326

Phone: 330.643.9067

Division Email

Monday - Thursday: 10 am - 8:00 pm
Friday: 10 am - 6 pm
Saturday: 10 am - 5 pm
Sunday: 1 pm - 5 pm

Youth Services Coordinator:
Carolyn Burrier
Contact the Manager

About the Division

The Akron Main Library Teen Department consists of thousands of resources for both school and fun all housed in a welcoming space where teens can do homework, socialize, or just hang out. It's the place to find all your favorite teen fiction, graphic novels, manga series, magazines, DVDs, and music CDs.

If you're looking to be successful in school, check out our non-fiction collection, databases, school reading list section, and study guides. Our 14 teen-only computers have all the programs you need whether you're writing a report or just checking Twitter.

Of course, the Teen department welcomes patrons of all ages – we even have items for parents, teachers, and book clubs, including sets of books. Our teen librarians are always happy to help you pick out a good book, answer a question, or tell you about our fun upcoming teen programs.