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‘Star Wars’ Day sightings in Phoenix area include Wookiee on a velocipede

(Screenshot)

PHOENIX — Other than the release date of new chapter in the beloved film franchise, Friday was the best day of the year for “Star Wars” fans in Arizona and around the world — and galaxies far, far away.

“Star Wars” Day has become a social media sensation annually on this date because of May the Fourth’s similarity to the iconic line from the films: “May the force be with you.”

Related hashtags #MayThe4thBeWithYou, #MayTheFourth and #StarWarsDay were top trends on Twitter in the United States on Friday morning.

There were indications locally that the holiday was being embraced.

The Gilbert Fire Department posted video of an unusual encounter with a Wookiee riding an old-fashioned bicycle with a giant front wheel. You read that right: a Wookiee — or maybe a human in a Chewbacca mask — on a velocipede. (You’ll want to turn the sound on for this.)

The Arizona State University Library made sure to remind everybody that it houses an extensive “Star Wars” collection that includes publicity materials and merchandise.

Valley Metro wished its riders a happy “Star Wars” Day.

NASA, of course, got in on the action, with a reminder of when a “Star Wars” movie was enjoyed on the International Space Station.

Back on Earth, in London to be precise, Heathrow Airport joined the fun by adding locations from the movies, including the Death Star, to its departure listings.

Another reason for the movies’ fans to celebrate is that advanced tickets for the next installment, “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” went on sale. The film comes out May 25.

Arizona open and hiring: If you’re looking for job openings, visit ktar.com/arizonahiring.

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