501st 25th Anniversary

It was on February 21, 1997, when Albin Johnson put on a stormtrooper (TK) costume for the first time for the premiere of the Special Edition of Empire Strikes Back. This day began the long journey of where we are today.

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Hall of Honors

MWG Trooper Of The Year 2021
Rudy Grasha
BH 3620

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Upcoming Events

The Midwest Garrison is active year round at various events around Illinois. Click below to see where we will be next, or to request an appearance.

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Who We Are

The Midwest Garrison is the Illinois chapter of The 501st Legion, a Star Wars Imperial costuming club. The 501st is dedicated to the movie-quality costumes of the "villains" of the Star Wars universe.

What We Do

We provide a means for Star Wars fans to meet and network with each other to engage in the hobby of building and improving Imperial costumes from Star Wars. All of our costumes are scratch-built or "fan-made," whether through the arduous process of building molds and vacuum-forming, or assembling costumes from found objects.

The majority of our costumes are not available through retail channels. LucasFilms, Ltd. prohibits any mass sales from unlicensed vendors. To become a member of the 501st Legion, one must build and own a costume of the highest quality and as close to appearance in published Star Wars media as possible.

In addition to providing a network for fans to meet, we are committed to the community. We offer support at charity events, fundraisers, and social functions by appearing as film-authentic Star Wars characters. While there is no cost to engage our services, we encourage donations to charity on our behalf instead.

Join the Empire

Learn what it takes to be a member of Vader's Fist: from costume resources, membership resources, and sign up forms.

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