One of my favorite traditions of the summer is going down to Palais des Congres every year to without a doubt my favorite convention “Otakuthon”. Thousands of people travel from far and wide to come together for one common goal, to celebrate their love for anime and pop culture.
What I love the most about Otakuthon is the air of positivity and thriving sense of community. People flock in dressed in costumes of their favorite pop culture icons and I must say, every year my mind is continually blown by the sheer creativity and workmanship that goes into them. At Otakuthon, there is so much to do and so much to see, like every convention there is the dealers room, where vendors from all over the place come to sell their products, most of these being independent stores or artists looking to sell their work which they have put countless hours of blood, sweat and tears into. If that doesn’t float your boat, there are countless activities including panels and workshops all organized and hosted by fans and common people like you and me. Need a place to relax? Check out the café they have set up where you can simply kick back, relax and enjoy an array of various imported snacks and treats.
As a convention-goer, I decided to dress up in costume, which is always a good time, however with this, comes the chances of having unfortunate mishap. Which was the case with me, however thankfully the organizers had this in mind as there was a great area upstairs ran by the good people at “Helios Makerspace” where people (including myself ) was able to go to be able to repair my costume with ease and they were more than willing to provide resources, I am very thankful for them.
Every year at “Otakuthon” the organizers get more and more ambitious with their special guests and this year was no exception, in which they featured performances from the band “Man on a Mission” an orchestral performance of a collection of music from the Final Fantasy series and I holographic display of the vocaloid artist IA, unfortunately I was not able to attend these events however word of mouth states that the performances were very strong and I wish that I was able to see them. What I like about “Otakuthon” over something like Comic Con is that things feel a lot more fan-run and a lot less corporate, as with something like Comic Con most of the weekend is based entirely around what celebrities are going to be there and while they have special guests at “Otakuthon” it’s more for the convention experience and despite it being an anime centered convention, it feels a lot more accommodating to fans of pop culture.
Otakuthon continues to be one of my all time favorite events to attend every summer and I very much to go again in the next few years, I hope to see it grow bigger and bigger as well.