I’m very excited to share my experience at Anime Fest my first US anime convention.
Anime Fest is a non-profit organization that helps educate people about Japanese culture, including anime and J-pop.
The convention took place at the Sheraton Dallas Hotel, with some events at the Majestic Theater, from August 17 to 20.
You can read more at their site: https://animefest.org/
Anime Fest had special guests: Mitsurou Kubo, Sayo Yamamoto, and Tadashi Hiramatsu the creator, director, and character designer of the ultra-popular ‘Yuri on Ice’! I was so excited to see them. (I’ll call them the creative staff from now on.)
My day was planned around YOI panels and signings.
There were also many YOI English dub voice actors including the voices of Victor Jerry Jewell and Yuri Josh Grelle and Yurio Micah Solusod. (Any many others, but it’d take too long to list them all.)
Let’s break down everything by numbers.
$50 USD for 4 day pass
$110 USD for merch
1 sign board
7 new friends
2 times I almost cried
I didn’t attend Day One except for the Opening Ceremony at the Majestic Theater. It was fun. I got to see all of the guests at the convention. I have some photos, but I’m not sure I’m allowed to post them. Sorry.
I went to the Art Show, Paint and Take, Bizarre Bazaar (Artists’ Alley), and Dealers’ Room. I bought everything minus the charms and one print on this day.
The Paint and Take was a fun event. I did horribly, though. The figure was so small that it was hard to see what I was painting.
I ended up just giving up when everything seemed to be covered. But I also had a panel, so it was okay.
And now the madness begins.
I line up an hour before for the Creative Process panel with the YOI creative staff. But I got kicked out of the unofficial line. I joined a group of three ladies to walk the Bizarre Bazaar and get boba before jumping into the official line. We ended up at the end, but we got shuffled to the front when a volunteer recognized us as part of the group who had started the unofficial line.
I met some friends. We hung out for basically all three days.
The panel consisted mostly of ooh-ing and aah-ing at sketches. I couldn’t take pictures, but just imagine lots of butts.
Then Sethe and Annie and I rushed to the Yuri v Yurio panel with Josh Grelle (Yuri Katsuki) and Micah Solusod (Yuri Plisetsky).
They had fun conversations about getting the part and other topics.
BUT! Someone proposed! It was so cute. The couple was cosplaying as Yuri and Victor. I don’t have any pictures or videos, so here’s a picture of the ring.
Then I went to the LM.C concert to see what j-rock was like. It was okay. I’m interested in looking into their music now.
Again, no photos. Sorry.
I went to the YOI Creative Staff and Voice Actors panel. It was so cool. The English voice actors asked the creative staff questions.
They talked about the movie a bit (!!!) and making the anime. Who were the favorite characters? Which were the favorite songs? Stuff like that. But the voice actors had awesome questions.
Then, I went to the ita bag swap and meet. I got two free Haikyuu charms of Daichi and Sugawara. They’re now on my school ID lanyard. And I paid for a Yuri and Victor charm. One I’d been looking for.
And I want to start an ita bag now! The ones the people at the meet had were so cute.
I brought some stuff such as Youme Cafe JJ coasters and a Yurio button and a few Haikyuu charms. I gave them all away. I probably should have traded them, but it’s fine. I meant to trade all but the coasters; those people could take for free.
The Hetalia: A Murder Mystery event was so much fun. We were all in a room with some cosplayers: Spain, Italy, Germany, Prussia, England, America, Canada, Netherlands, China, France, and Scotland. We got little flags for some reason; I got the French flag. Then, the little game started. France, Netherlands, Germany, England, and America died from falling from a window and a gunshot and other things.
We got to ask questions to the countries and find out who was the killer.
And Spain did it. (Spain was also the game master.) Apparently, we were the first group to get it on the first try. Woot woot.
England, Netherlands, Canada, and Scotland were amazing. They were so in character..
I’ll leave you with this drawing from Kubo from the Live Drawing Relay on Day Two. I didn’t go, but she posted it on her Twitter. It sold for almost $8000 USD at the live auction.
The final part of my recap will be up soon!
And here are some of the awesome cosplayers I met at the con! I can’t say exactly when I met these people but enjoy