IF YOU’RE A REGULAR READER of this column, you know that ”Cul de Sac” creator Richard Thompson has lent his esteemed talents and supreme collegiality to Team Cul de Sac, a book-and-auction campaign to raise funds to fight Parkinson’s disease. And that more than 150 top artists — including “Calvin and Hobbes’ “ Bill Watterson, “Pearls Before Swine’s” Stephan Pastis and Pulitzer winners Pat Oliphant and Garry Trudeau of “Doonesbury” — have donated their “Cul de Sac”-inspired work to this charity.
Now, as this two-year drive comes to full fruition, Team Cul de Sac has just announced that the online auction for all this glorious original art will kick off May 27 and conclude June 10. The event will be handled through Dallas-based Heritage Auctions (which says the consignment deadline will be May 14).
(The creators of “Mutts” and “Zits,” “Cathy” and “Garfield,” “Lio” and ”Fox Trot,” “Big Nate” and “Beetle Bailey” and “For Better or for Worse” ... the list of notable contributors goes on and on.)
“I am overjoyed by all the contributions and in awe by the talent,” web designer Chris Sparks, who spearheaded and edited Team Cul de Sac, tells Comic Riffs late Wednesday. “So many of the artists have taken such ownership of TCDS. It makes me so proud to be a small part of this cartooning community.”
Thompson’s syndicate and publisher, the Kansas City-based Universal Uclick and Andrews McMeel, have announced that the campaign’s companion book, “Team Cul de Sac: Drawing the Line at Parkinson’s,” will go on sale in June. (Full disclosure: Comic Riffs’ Post Magazine profile of Thompson from last May will be included in the book.)
“Cul de Sac,” Thompson’s Reuben Award-winning strip, is syndicated to about 150 newspapers. The Arlington, Va.-based cartoonist announced early this year that he was taking a five-week hiatus while he received physical therapy for Parkinson’s disease; artist Stacy Curtis now assists Thompson with the strip.
Team Cul de Sac, which seeks to raise $250,000 for Parkinson’s research, is affiliated with Team Fox and the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research. The campaign says 100-percent of the proceeds from the auction will benefit Team Cul de Sac, and that a portion of the book proceeds will also go to the Michael J. Fox foundation.