Get out your favorite superhero apparel because tomorrow, October 1st, is the second annual “Wear Your Superheroes Day!”
The annual event was started last year by the two amazing sisters pictured above, Leanna, then 5, and Adalina, then 7. To understand more about how “Wear Your Superheroes Day” began, check out what their father had to say about it last year:
“Leanna is a 5-year-old girl who loves superheroes. When she wears her superhero clothes to kindergarten, though, the boys tell her that superheroes are ‘for boys.’ She has even started to wear her jacket all day to keep from being hassled about it. (For the record, princesses aren’t ‘for girls,’ either.) Her 7-year-old sister Adalina has declared Oct. 1st to be Wear Your Superheroes Day. Boys and girls who believe superheroes are for EVERYONE should wear their superhero stuff and post a picture with the hashtag #WearYourSuperheroes. Solidarity!”
This year, HeroicGirls.com caught up with Leanna and Adalina’s parents, Tom and Mindy Nagel to talk to them about why superheroes are important to girls, and why they are making this an annual event:
When asked why they started “Wear Your Superheroes Day” they said:
“Our daughters, Adalina and Leanna, developed an interest in superheroes over a relatively short period of time last summer. Leanna in particular seemed to be captivated by the idea of superheroes and the virtues they represented, and she began wearing superhero shirts and Batman shoes to school.
“One day, I picked her up from school and she had her jacket on and zipped up, even though it was hot out. She explained that some of her classmates had been telling her that superheroes were for boys, so she decided to cover up her new shirt featuring members of the Justice League.
“That evening, we talked about what had happened, and Adalina decided that we needed to tell everyone to wear superhero clothes on the following Wednesday, October 1 (in 2014), to show people that superheroes are for everyone and not just boys.”
When asked what the response to “Wear Your Superheroes Day” was like last year they said:
“It was unexpected and overwhelming. One of our friends, Stacy Brannan-Smith, posted a Facebook event page to share the idea publicly. Word spread rapidly, and shortly thereafter, the girls were featured on a local television news broadcast. When the day arrived, we were pleased to see that many children at school wore superhero clothes, as did both of the girls’ teachers and other staff members. Later that morning, the school contacted us to get our permission to let a news crew film Adalina in her classroom. As I was walking to lunch, I passed someone wearing a Captain America shirt over a dress shirt. And in the evening, we sat down in front of a computer and browsed hundreds of pictures that were shared by people around the world, in support of Leanna. All told, there were more than 1,800 participants from around the U.S. as well as several other countries.”
When asked about how their daughters have responded to the media attention, they said:
“At first, it was novel to them, and they really enjoyed being on TV. Aside from that, they’ve been somewhat ambivalent, almost as if the attention was to be expected. They were more pleased that so many people participated at school and online.”
When asked which superheroes the girls like now, they said:
“Adalina is into Phoenix, Wasp, and Black Widow. Leanna still likes Captain America and Batman. They’ve been reading Squirrel Girl lately too.”
Finally, when asked why they feel it’s important that we give girls permission to like superheroes, they said:
“Well, I don’t think girls need permission to like superheroes in the first place — not from their peers, anyway. For us, as Leanna’s parents, it’s about being comfortable with who you are and being able to share that confidently with the world. It doesn’t just apply to girls, and it’s not even just about superheroes, although I think they can exhibit many characteristics that are worth aspiring to.”
You can follow “Wear Your Superheroes” on Facebook and even sign up for the event!
Most importantly, men and women & boys and girls who believe superheroes are for EVERYONE should wear their superhero stuff tomorrow, October 1st! And you can post a picture to Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #WearYourSuperheroes to be a part of the movement!
So get excited for Wear Your Superheroes Day and spread the word! I’ve gotta go pick out my outfit for tomorrow!