Posts Tagged ‘Cosplay’

The 2017 Anime Expo returns to the Los Angeles Convention Center starting this Saturday and running through Tuesday. This annual 4-day expo for all things Anime & Manga attracts exhibitors and fans from across the globe for the largest gathering of its kind in the world. What started as a simple expo for those in the Anime industry has grown to encompass anything remotely related to the art of Japanese art & animation. Today, this large expo now hosts artists, designers, vendors, video game companies, technicians, actors/actresses, voice actors, models, musicians, singers, cosplayers, and much more to spread their work out to the public as well as interact with the fans. With so much to do, so many people to see, and so many people wanting to get in (tens of thousands of visitors on the first day!), naturally the organizers had to make this expo cover a span of four days every year.

As the current world’s largest expo of its kind, one can expect sheer overflow of people in the area for miles. Road traffic does not face as much of a problem, save for the exuberant parking prices that reaches upwards of $40 per vehicle. Pedestrian traffic causes the most headaches, from the uncontrolled crosswalks to the endless line of jaywalkers. If anything definitely terrorizes attendees, the line to enter the expo causes the most grief. From getting in line to getting into the building, the wait in the mornings usually takes hours to enter. Strangely, very few attendees complain about this, as if they accept this year after year. Upon questioning some attendees from previous years, they mention that at least a hundred attendees camp overnight, and that entering the line at 8am when the expo opens still takes over an hour to get in. They also mention that the first day always sees the most amount of attendees, which sounds reasonable. Lesson learned: if attending Anime Expo, either attend extremely early on the first day, or attend on the second and/or third day.

The actual expo covers the entire span on the convention center, both the South Hall and the West Hall. The main expo occurs in the South Hall, while the West Hall houses the miscellaneous activities, such as workshops, video game competitions, cosplay contests, and more. The expo simply has too much going on, so I understand why most attendees purchase either the two or four day pass rather than just a single day. The expo contains different sections based on the content; for example, attendees would find the artist booths at the back, the autographs at the right, the merchandise in the middle, and celebrity/actor appearances at the front.

For any type of expo or convention of this nature, sure we may want to pay attention to the exhibitors, but at the heart of any gathering of this kind, our attention instantly turns to the cosplayers. Attendees love to dress up as their favorite character to show their pride and/or craftsmanship, while some simply slap together a lazy costume just to blend in somehow, such as the hundreds of attendees with a Teemo hat. For Anime Expo, the world’s largest expo of its kind, attendees either go all in or go nothing.

9th Annual Taste of La Mesa
5:00 pm – 8:00 pm, June 12
La Mesa Community Center, La Mesa
http://taste.lamesachamber.com/

Sample food from the local restaurants of La Mesa tonight at the La Mesa Community Center. General admission costs $60, starts at 6pm, and includes unlimited food samples while supplies last. VIP admission costs $80, starts at 5pm, and includes preferred parking. All drinks come at a separate cost.

8bitLA + Play It Loud! Present: Hack The Multiverse 2017
6:00 pm – 12:00 am, June 13
The Airliner Nightclub, Los Angeles
http://www.facebook.com/events/623470824524545/

Jam out to video game inspired music this Tuesday night in Los Angeles. The cover for this show costs $10 before 8pm or $15 afterwards. Anyone ages 18-20 must pay an additional $5 to enter. No one under 21 may enter.

San Diego Summer STEAM Maker Festival
8:00 am – 4:00 pm, June 14
Del Mar Fairgrounds, Del Mar
http://www.sdfsmf.org/

An interactive educational event for all ages comes to Del Mar this Wednesday. Admission costs $8 for adults or $6 for children, and provides access to all the vendors, exhibitors, demos, games, activities, and more.

Taste of Little Italy
5:00 pm – 9:00 pm, June 14
Little Italy, Downtown San Diego
http://www.tasteoflittleitalysd.com/

Sample the local flavor of Little Italy this Wednesday night, as attendees stroll through Little Italy and sample food directly in each participating business. Attendees pay for a stamp card with boxes representing each participating business. After receiving a sample, that business will stamp their corresponding box. Two different stamp cards exist for a north route and a south route, and each route’s stamp card costs $36 each, while purchasing both costs $50.

San Diego Magazine’s Best Restaurants Party
6:00 pm – 8:30 pm, June 14
Pirch UTC, University City, San Diego
http://www.sandiegomagazine.com/San-Diego-Magazine/January-2017/Best-Restaurants-Party-2017/

Sample bites and wines from some of San Diego’s top chefs and wineries this Wednesday night at Pirch UTC. The $60 admission gets you in to unlimited food and drink samples while supplies last. No one under 21 may attend.

Big D & The Kids Table – Live in Southern California
8:00 pm – 1:00 am, June 14, The Roxy Theatre, West Hollywood
8:00 pm – 1:00 am, June 15, The Observatory’s Constellation Room, Santa Ana
8:00 pm – 1:00 am, June 16, The Soda Bar, Normal Heights, San Diego
http://www.bigdandthekidstable.com/

Ska-punk band Big D & The Kids Table currently tour across the country, and that tour will swing through Southern California this week. Ticket prices and age minimums to these shows vary by location, so check with the venue for information.

2017 Dew Tour
11:00 am – 5:00 pm, June 15-18
Long Beach Convention Center, Long Beach
http://www.dewtour.com/

Extreme sports take over the Long Beach Convention Center this weekend. Various events will take place over the weekend that involve sports and/or concerts, and each event has a separate admission fee. Check the website for full pricing information.

Tartar Control – Live in Anaheim
8:00 pm – 1:00 am, June 15
The World Famous Doll Hut, Anaheim
http://www.facebook.com/events/285151208593229/

Get your weekly dose of punk rock this Thursday night in Anaheim. The cover for this show costs $10. No one under 21 may enter.

San Diego International Beer Festival 2017
Various times, June 16-18
Del Mar Fairgrounds, Del Mar
http://sandiegobeerfestival.com/

The San Diego County Fair will import hundreds of beers from around the world for a weekend of beer at the fairgrounds. Over the weekend, the fairgrounds will host five different four-hour sessions of unlimited tastings, and each session will feature different seminars and presentations. General admission starts at $55 and includes admission to the rest of the fair plus the souvenir cup. Parking on-site costs $10, while off-site parking with shuttles costs nothing. Although the beer fest takes place in the arena under a roof, the rest of the fair takes place outdoors, so prepare for sunny weather if you choose to venture outside. I highly recommend arriving as early as possible, as each session tends to run out of beer an hour before a session ends.

K-Town Night Market 2017
4:00 pm – 11:00 pm, June 16
2:00 pm – 11:00 pm, June 17
Robert F. Kennedy Community Schools, Los Angeles
http://ktownnightmarket.com/

Experience Korean nightlife this weekend at the annual Koreatown Night Market! This event celebrates Korean culture by immersing visitors into the night market experience similar to that of South Korea. Over 40 food vendors and 11 food trucks will serve up delicious Korean delectable eats, while visitors can check out the live entertainment, art exhibits, and vendor village in this outdoor market. Admission costs $2 presale or $5 at the door. Visitors can find $5 parking at nearby parking lots around the venue.

4th Annual OC Night Market
4:00 pm – 12:00 am, June 16-17
4:00 pm – 10:00 pm, June 18
OC Fair & Event Center, Costa Mesa
http://www.ocnightmarket.com/

The popular 626 Night Market comes to Orange County this weekend at the OC Fair in Costa Mesa. This weekend-long all-ages festival brings the nightlife of the east to the west, and shows the locals what goes on at night in populated Asian cities. Visitors will find lots of food, merchandise, live entertainment, music, games, and more. Admission costs $5 per person, while parking costs $8 per vehicle. These night market events always see wall-to-wall people, so expect a big crowd all weekend.

Trials of Bahamut – Los Angeles
6:00 pm – 11:00 pm, June 16
10:00 am – 11:00 pm, June 17
10:00 am – 9:00 pm, June 18
DoubleTree by Hilton, Downtown Los Angeles
http://realescapegame.com/ffxiv/

A special Final Fantasy themed escape game comes to Downtown LA this weekend. Unlike the organizer’s other events that only take one team at a time, this escape game will involve multiple teams in the same room all trying to escape. Registration for a game costs $41 per person, and they will have multiple sessions taking place throughout the weekend.

15th Annual Beer & Sake Festival
7:00 pm – 10:00 pm, June 16
Harrah’s Resort, Valley Center
http://www.harrahssocal.com/events/beer-sake-festival/

Sample over a hundred different beers and sake this Friday night at Harrah’s out in northeast San Diego county. General admission costs $60, while VIP admission costs $80 and includes VIP seating, exclusive tastings, and an event t-shirt. No one under 21 may attend.

Little Saigon Night Market 2017
7:00 pm – 11:00 pm, June 16-18
Asian Garden Mall, Westminster
http://www.littlesaigonnow.com/asian-garden-night-market-1170.html

Westminster’s Little Saigon gets into the night market action this weekend. Free to attend for all ages, visitors can expect to find tons of food, treats, drinks, vendors, games, toys, entertainment, and more.

9th Annual Los Angeles Beer Week
June 17-25
Greater Los Angeles Area
http://www.labeerweek.org/

This 9-day beer celebration covers Los Angeles through Orange County, starting with a beer fest at Los Angeles Center Studios. During this period, virtually every restaurant, bar, gastropub, and any other craft beer establishment will host some sort of beer event. Literally hundreds of beer events will take place over 9 days in the Greater Los Angeles Area, so for an abridged list, visit the website linked above. Even the website cannot contain every single event! Check with your local favorite brewpub to find out how they will participate. For the purposes of condensing this list, I will not include any event that directly relates to LA Beer Week, as their website will list them all.

23rd Annual Dawg Walk & Pet Faire
7:00 am – 12:00 pm, June 17
The Village Green, Mission Viejo
http://www.dawg.org/

A dog walk and pet fair comes to Mission Viejo this Saturday morning. The dog walk starts at 7am and costs $25 online or $30 at the gate to register for the walk. A pet fair starts at 8am, costs nothing to attend, and includes many pet vendors and activities.

3rd Annual Fat Boy 5K
8:00 am – 12:00 pm, June 17
Shoreline Aquatic Park, Long Beach
http://www.active.com/long-beach-ca/running/distance-running-races/fat-boy-5k-long-beach-ca-2017

A 5k run/walk combines with donuts, pastries, and other desserts this Saturday morning in Long Beach. Registration costs $50 for adults, $33 for teenagers, or $18 for children.

3rd Annual AleSmith Tony Gwynn 5.5K Charity Run/Walk
8:00 am – 12:00 pm, June 17
AleSmith Brewing, Miramar, San Diego
http://www.tonygwynn5k.org/

Participate in a charity 5.5k run/walk this Saturday morning, hosted by AleSmith Brewing. The post-run party will have food and beer for participants.

11th Annual Car Show
8:00 am – 4:00 pm, June 17
The Crossing Foursquare Church, Whittier
http://www.facebook.com/events/2232713373620842/

Enjoy a FREE and all-ages car show this Saturday afternoon in Whittier.

The Original International Tiki Market Place
10:00 am – 3:00 pm, June 17
Elks Lodge 1952, Garden Grove
http://www.facebook.com/events/409852749379540/

For $10 admission gain access to a plethora of tiki-themed vendors in Garden Grove this Saturday afternoon. Admission comes with a $10 voucher for a drink.

Mountain Lakes 7th Annual Charity Car Show
10:00 am – 3:00 pm, June 17
Mountain Lakes Resort, Lytle Creek
http://www.mountainlakesca.com/

A car show will take place in the mountains north of Fontana this Saturday, free to attend for all ages.

Fairy Festival 2017
10:00 am – 4:00 pm, June 17
San Diego Botanic Garden, Encinitas
http://sdbgarden.org/fairyfest.htm

Bring your children to this event to enjoy fairies, tea, treats, games, arts & crafts, shows, and more. Admission to the venue costs $14 for adults, $10 for students/seniors/military, or $8 for children.

25th Annual Pasadena Chalk Art Festival
10:00 am – 7:00 pm, June 17-18
Paseo Colorado, Pasadena
http://www.pasadenachalkfestival.com/

Watch hundreds of artists create massive works of art on the sidewalks, plus enjoy a classic car show on Father’s Day! Completely free to attend for all ages, attendees will also find live music, arts & crafts, merchandise vendors, food trucks, and more.

10th Annual Chili At The Beach
11:00 am – 5:00 pm, June 17
Downtown Huntington Beach
http://www.hbdowntown.com/chili-at-the-beach.html

Got a craving for heat? Satisfy that craving this Saturday in sunny Surf City, as the streets close to traffic for the annual Huntington Beach Chili Cook Off & Salsa Tasting. Free to attend for all ages, this all-in-one street fair covers a massive portion of Downtown Huntington Beach, filled with arts & crafts, food, drinks, merchandise, a kids’ zone, music, and lots of chili and salsa tastings. In order to taste the chili and salsa, guests must purchase tasting tickets for $10 presale or $15 on the day of the fest. As this area gets extremely crowded on this day, I suggest carpooling, taking public transportation, or parking far and walking to downtown.

Beach Con 2017
11:00 am – 8:00 pm, June 17
Huntington State Beach Lifeguard Tower 10, Huntington Beach
http://www.facebook.com/events/1135314589892082/

More of a meetup than an actual con, fans of cosplay, anime, manga, video games, comics, and other fandom will meet on the beach this Saturday.

2017 Global Reddit Meetup Day
11:30 am – 6:00 pm, June 17
Grand Park, Downtown Los Angeles
http://www.reddit.com/r/LosAngeles/comments/6cd8qi/global_reddit_meetup_day_details_and_junk/

Basically a large meetup/picnic, this free and all-ages gathering will have food, drinks, games, and more.

Los Angeles Beer Week Kick-Off
12:00 pm – 4:00 pm, June 17
Los Angeles Center Studios, Los Angeles
http://labeerweek.org/tickets/

Featuring over 75 breweries bringing over 200 beers, you definitely will not want to miss this epic beer tasting gala that kicks off LA Beer Week. General admission costs $50 and starts at 1pm, while VIP admission costs $70 and starts at 12pm. No one under 21 may attend.

17th Annual US Sumo Open
12:00 pm – 4:00 pm, June 17
Walter Pyramid, Long Beach
http://www.usasumo.com/us-sumo-open/2017-us-sumo-open/

Watch sumo wrestling matches in Long Beach this Saturday afternoon. Tickets to this all-ages event start at $25 depending on where you want to sit.

L.A. Dessert Festival 2017
12:00 pm – 6:00 pm, June 17
Cooper Design Space, Downtown Los Angeles
http://dessertgoals.com/

Gorge out on sweet treats in Downtown LA this Saturday afternoon. $15 gets you in to one of four 90-minute sessions, but you still have to pay for everything once you enter. Some of the vendors will have free samples though, but expect to carry cash if you want more than just samples.

Hamilton Family Brewery’s 3rd Anniversary Celebration
12:00 pm – 10:00 pm, June 17
Hamilton Brewery, Rancho Cucamonga
http://www.hamiltonfamilybrewery.com/
http://www.facebook.com/events/1470296843030273/

Hamilton Brewery turns three years old this week, and to celebrate, they will have lots of special beer available at their tasting room in Rancho Cucamonga this Saturday. Free to attend, they will have over 20 beers on tap, plus free food while supplies last. They will offer prepaid packages that will include beer pours plus other souvenirs, so click on the event’s link above for package details.

OC Weekly’s Summer Fest 2017
1:00 pm – 5:00 pm, June 17
Newport Dunes, Newport Beach
http://www.ocsummerfest.com/

Come act merry and get drunk with other rich people at this fancy summer party this Saturday in Newport Beach. General admission costs $30 while VIP admission costs $55. Pay the admission, and you too can come get drunk and party with strangers that like to flaunt their status.

12th Annual Los Angeles Wine Fest
2:00 pm – 6:00 pm, June 17
1:00 pm – 5:00 pm, June 18
The Row, Downtown Los Angeles
http://www.lawinefest.com/

Want to sample up to over 500 wines, brews, and spirits from around the world? Head to LA Wine Fest this weekend, where you will find plenty of good drinks, cooking demos, live entertainment, seminars, food trucks, boutiques, merchandise, and more. Ticket prices vary depending on how you choose to attend, with a general admission ticket starting at $70. This fest takes place outdoors with limited shade, so prepare for a day in the sun. Bring cash for the parking lot across the street, unless you get lucky and find street parking.

1st Annual Boots & Brews Country Music Festival
2:00 pm – 10:00 pm, June 17
Central Park, Santa Clarita
http://www.bootsandbrews.com/

Country music and beers collide this Saturday in Santa Clarita. General admission costs $45 but does not come with any food or drinks – all attendees will still need to pay for everything once inside. Children 10 and under enter for free with a paid adult admission.

5th Annual TacoLAndia
3:00 pm – 7:00 pm, June 17
El Pueblo de Los Angeles, Los Angeles
http://www.laweekly.com/tacolandia

Drown yourself in taco heaven at this all-you-can-eat taco fest this Saturday in Downtown Los Angeles, featuring over 80 different chefs. Attendees will also find Mariachi bands and cash bars. General admission costs $50 and includes unlimited food while supplies last. All drinks come at separate cost, so bring cash for drinks.

Artists Corner: June Summer Opener (Hot Summer Nights)
4:00 pm – 9:00 pm, June 17
The Daily Brew Coffee Bar, Montebello
http://www.keepingtheculturealive.com/artist-corner-

A free and all-ages art exhibit will take place in Montebello this Saturday evening.

Dance Ska Los Angeles
5:00 pm – 12:00 am, June 17
Union Nightclub, Los Angeles
http://www.facebook.com/events/1701850306509232/

Get your skanking on this Saturday night in Los Angeles. The cover for this all-ages show costs $30.

22nd Annual Wine, Brews & Blues Festival
5:30 pm – 10:00 pm, June 17
CA Center for the Arts, Escondido
http://www.bonsallrotary.com/

Enjoy wines from over 80 wineries, beers from local microbreweries, food from over 20 local restaurants & chefs, and blues music from various local musicians. Admission to this festival costs $75 per person, or $55 for non-drinkers.

OC Roller Derby – June Doom
6:00 pm – 9:00 pm, June 17
The Rinks, Huntington Beach
http://www.ocderby.com/

Watch intense & brutal girl-on-girl action at this roller derby bout this Saturday night in Huntington Beach. Tickets to this roller derby bout cost $15.

JFA – Live in Laguna Niguel
8:00 pm – 1:00 am, June 17
The Karman Bar, Laguna Niguel
http://www.facebook.com/events/1756752387975988/

Rock out to some local punk rock bands this Saturday night in Laguna Niguel. The cover for this show costs $15. No one under 21 may enter.

Father’s Day
June 18

Treat the father in your life to something special this Sunday.

2017 Rock 2 Rock Paddleboard Race
6:30 am – 12:30 pm, June 18
Two Harbors/Isthmus Cove, Catalina Island
http://rock2rockrace.com/

This annual paddleboard race from Catalina Island to San Pedro returns this Sunday morning. Interested participants may register as an individual or on a relay team.

Cask & Ye Shall Receive: MacLeod Ale Brewing’s 3rd Anniversary
12:00 pm – 5:00 pm, June 18
MacLeod Ale Brewing, Van Nuys
http://www.macleodale.com/

MacLeod Ale Brewing turns three years old this weekend, and to celebrate, they will have a cask beer tasting event at their tasting room in Van Nuys this Sunday. Expect to encounter a handful of other breweries sampling their cask beers as well as this event. Admission comes in three levels. General admission starts at 1pm, and comes with five drink tickets for $20 or ten drink tickets for $35. VIP admission costs $50, starts at 12pm, and comes with unlimited beer pours for the duration of the event. No one under 21 may attend.

10th Annual The Car Show at WVCC
4:00 pm – 7:00 pm, June 18
West Valley Christian Church, West Hills
http://www.thecarshowatwvcc.com/

Enjoy a free and all-ages car show in West Hills this Sunday evening.

Which came first: the chicken or the egg? Since the beginning of time, civilization has always asked what came first. While the public can typically attribute tangible items with an origin, everything else requires documentation to pinpoint an origin, unless generally accepted. For example, today’s gourmet food truck trend started in early 2009 with Kogi BBQ, which everyone will say started it all. When you look at expos for comic books, all fans will tell you that the San Diego one started it all. But with the San Diego Comic Con selling out in seconds every year, what else can fans do? Sure they can shell out the cash for super inflated after-market passes, but why not travel up two hours to the greater Los Angeles area? We have witnessed countless comic events in Southern California, with one seemingly popping up every weekend or two. But how does one know which event to go to compared to others? It takes the brave to venture out and seek the new comic events, and many found that the Comic Con Revolution held up to its promise to deliver a fantastic comic con experience.

The 1st Annual Comic Con Revolution took place at the Ontario Convention Center this past Saturday to a massive crowd easily in the thousands. For as large a turnout that appeared, this expo worked in a very small space to hold that many fans. Taking place in most of the rooms on the first floor, hundreds of local comic book writers and artists traveled here to exhibit their merchandise, art, books, toys, and more. Eager fans could gain access to the entire show floor for the low price of $25 per person or $15 for teenagers, with children 12 and under entering free with a paid adult admission. In addition to the expo on the show floor, various workshops and seminars took place in the surrounding meeting rooms for those who registered ahead of time. True fans will recognize the various celebrities sitting in for meet & greet and autograph sessions. For a small space, it took some time to walk through every single aisle to gaze at all the work on display.

Even to those not interested in comics, everyone should attend a comic expo/con just to see everyone dressing up in costume. At any expo involving comics, video games, anime, manga, and more, any attendee cannot avoid seeing another guest participating in the inevitable cosplay for the duration of the event. Cosplay has turned into a staple for any sort of expo in this industry, and the fans proudly donned their best gear for this expo. Check out some of the amazing costumes that I encountered at Comic Con Revolution below.

Considering the massive turnout for this event along with the cramped space, not only do I foresee Comic Con Revolution returning next year, but I also predict that they will have to expand their space to accommodate for all the extra vendors and attendees that will want to attend next year. Comic Con Revolution joins the ranks of big comic events in Southern California, such as San Diego Comic Con, Long Beach Comic Con/Expo, Wonder Con, Los Angeles Comic Con (formerly Comikaze), Anime Expo, Fantasia Comic Con, Comic Excitement Con, and lots of others. Keep in touch with future updates from Comic Con Revolution by liking them on Facebook and following them on Twitter.

Many fandom events have occurred recently in Southern California. The term “fandom” refers to a broad range of pop culture interests and hobbies, from comics to video games to anime/manga and more. The most popular ones cost the most to get in, but a lot of smaller ones often do not cost much, if not completely free, to attend, and more often than not the smaller ones still attract a huge crowd, such as TitanCon 2017. Hosted at the student union on the Cal State Fullerton campus, TitanCon represents a locally-run community event around all things anime, manga, and video games. Taking place this past Saturday from 11am to 10pm, this free and all-ages event attracted thousands of fans of anime, manga, and video games to this quaint gathering for a fun day of mixing and mingling. Visitors would find artists, vendors, merchandise, mobile food vendors, live entertainment, cosplay contests, video games, a maid café, and more.

While it may not have the abundant amount of content that larger conventions and expos would have, Coast Con still had enough content to keep visitors occupied for hours. The student union primarily contained all the happenings of TitanCon, where attendees would check in, find the artist/vendor hall, check out all the programming, enter the maid café, play games, and more. On the other side of the student union from the check-in table, the majority of cosplayers gathered on all floors. The cosplayers took advantage of the stairs and the large outdoor space to handle all their photos, dancing, and acting.

Since none of the programming took place at the southeast section of the student union, this represented a great place to not only relax, but for attendees to mingle and meet others. I have attended countless fandom events in the past, but always attended as a regular person with a camera. This time, I actually arrived in costume, providing me with an entirely different experience. Many attendees stopped me to take a photo of me, while many others wanted to converse with me. Sure this distracted me from taking hundreds of photos like I usually do, but experiencing the life of a cosplayer more than made up for it, as I now understand how other cosplayers feel. While it may sound like a silly concept to people not into comics, anime, video games, or other forms of media, I highly encourage everyone to try cosplaying at least once, and not just buying a premade costume from a Halloween store.

Expect many more fandom events in Southern California in the near future. SoCal has Comic Con Revolution taking place in less than two weeks from now. The granddaddy of all anime events, the Anime Expo, takes place on the 4th of July weekend as it always does. The major maestro of comic cons, the Comic Con, takes place just three weeks following Anime Expo. Remember that smaller events will always occur between then, so always check with your local community to find more events to visit.

Many fandom events have occurred recently in Southern California. The term “fandom” refers to a broad range of pop culture interests and hobbies, from comics to video games to anime/manga and more. The most popular ones cost the most to get in, but a lot of smaller ones often do not cost much, if not completely free, to attend, and more often than not the smaller ones still attract a huge crowd, such as as Coast Con 2017. Hosted by Anime Academia, an organization of Orange Coast College, Coast Con represents a locally-run community event around all things anime, manga, and video games. Taking place this past Saturday from 12pm to 8pm, this free and all-ages event attracted hundreds of fans of anime, manga, and video games to this quaint gathering for a fun day of mixing and mingling. Visitors would find artists, merchandise, live entertainment, cosplay contests, video game booths, a maid café, and more.

While it may not have the abundant amount of content that larger conventions and expos would have, Coast Con still had enough content to keep visitors occupied for a few hours. The Student Center acted as the hub of the event, containing a check-in table, lots of vendors, and the maid café. Directly outside in the maid quad, more artists and vendors set up along the center aisle. Going past this aisle, we find the classrooms that had the event’s programming, which included the video game stations and anime viewing rooms. Walking down from the main quad to the Moore Theatre brought us to the main stage where they held the cosplay contests. I only stuck around for the main cosplay contest that had everyone strut their stuff for the audience, and boy did a lot of people dress up for such a low-key event. This goes to show the dedication that these cosplayers have towards their interests.

While Anime Academia exists as a college organization, they often put on events open to the public. Check out Anime Academia on Facebook to see what other events they have planned that you can attend.

They said the classics never go out of style, but eventually they do. But when looking at trends, things that have goner out of style also eventually rebound back into popularity. Trends and fads ride a wave where they peak at one point then fall down and rise back up, repeating this cyclical process over time. Take a look at Pokémon for example. It had its prime time in the early 2000’s then slowly faded down, but then it surged in popularity again with the release of Pokémon GO last year. The Power Rangers had its glory in the 1990’s, then faded away for some time. However, a new Power Rangers movie will release later this month, hoping to revitalize the franchise. It helps to pay attention to the classics, as they will always find a way to come back into our lives, as we witnessed at the 2017 Pasadena Comic Con & Toy Show.

Pasadena gets their own event dedicated to comics and toys of new and old with the Pasadena Comic Con & Toy Show. Taking place this past Sunday at the Pasadena Convention Center, this all-ages convention represents a smaller, localized version of some of the larger comic events known throughout the world. Unlike those larger events, this one only costs $10 to enter for a decent amount of content. The main show floor had dozens of writers and artists all showing their work, as well as a handful of vendors selling toys, video games, and accessories. Additionally, some of the convention center’s side rooms contained more content, such as more toy vendors, guest cosplay booths, and a seminar/programs room. Altogether, this represents a nice scaled version of the big comic cons.

As a comic expo, we cannot forget about the diehard fans dressing up as their favorite fictional character. At any expo involving comics, video games, anime, manga, and more, any attendee cannot avoid seeing another guest participating in the inevitable cosplay for the duration of the event. Cosplay has turned into an art of fans sporting outfits and accessories to appear like another usually recognizable character. Mainstream characters such as Harley Quinn and Deadpool often get selected as the costume of choice due to the fast recognition by many fans, while lesser known characters tend to receive more praise by the fans who recognize the outfit. As one of the smaller comic expos, the Pasadena Comic Con did not have as many cosplayers in attendance throughout the day. However, a good amount still showed up, and I got to interact with them at the same character level that I do at larger events.

The Pasadena Convention Center hosts a handful of related events, such as events dedicated to Legos, Transformers, Power Rangers, and more. Check out the convention center’s website often (linked above) to see when they will have an event next. Also make sure you like the Pasadena Comic Con on Facebook, as they will post links about the aforementioned similar events that will take place at the Pasadena Convention Center.

Like a flash, the 2017 Long Beach Comic Expo came and went this past weekend at the Long Beach Convention Center. This convention for all things comics returned to the convention center’s Hall C just like previous years, and visitors had to enter from the east side instead of the usual west side due to another convention taking place along the western rooms. The main operations of the expo had not changed – hundreds of local comic book writers and artists exhibited their merchandise, art, books, toys, and more, either for sale or for show. Elsewhere in other rooms across from Hall C, a number workshops and seminars occurred, ranging from speaker panels to art workshops to live activities. Cosplay Corner returned to the expo as a part of the show floor in the same side of the room as previous years. Nothing else drastic changed from the previous years of the Long Beach Comic Expo, but due to the weekend’s storms, a few things got moved around – notably, anything vehicular moved to the other side from the entrance, such as themed cars and the mobile food vendors. Many cosplayers often remain out in front for photo shoots; however, due to the weather, most attendees preferred to remain inside the expo halls. Overall, I experienced lower attendance than usual this past weekend, and many attribute that to bad weather.

As a comic expo, we cannot forget about the diehard fans dressing up as their favorite fictional character. At any expo involving comics, video games, anime, manga, and more, any attendee cannot avoid seeing another guest participating in the inevitable cosplay for the duration of the event. Cosplay has turned into an art of fans sporting outfits and accessories to appear like another usually recognizable character. Mainstream characters such as Harley Quinn and Deadpool often get selected as the costume of choice due to the fast recognition by many fans, while lesser known characters tend to receive more praise by the fans who recognize the outfit. Check out this collection of the great costumes from the 2017 Long Beach Comic Expo. If you recognize any of these awesome people, please leave a comment with a URL to the person’s website or Facebook page, as well as the reference costume & photo! If the image links go down, click here for the album.

The Fall expo, the Long Beach Comic Con, returns in early September. The Fall event should return to the exact same location as this past weekend’s event, and generally has a greater turnout due to more famous people in attendance. Until then, keep an eye out for other similar expos, such as WonderCon at the end of March, or Anime Expo in early July. You have plenty of time to work up that unique and amazing DIY costume that everyone will want to take a picture of.

The 2017 Long Beach Comic Expo returns to the Long Beach Convention Center this weekend, taking place over two days in all its glory. Returning to Hall C and the Pacific Promenade area, hundreds of local comic book writers and artists will travel here to exhibit their merchandise, art, books, toys, and more. Eager fans can gain access to the entire show floor for $30 per person for Saturday, $25 for Sunday, or $50 for both days, with children 10 and under entering free with a paid adult admission. In addition to the expo on the show floor, various workshops and seminars will occur in the surrounding meeting rooms for those who register ahead of time. Diehard fans will recognize the various celebrities sitting in for meet & greet and autograph sessions.

Some general tips to make your visit pleasant:

  • Peak time: 12pm-2pm on Saturday, as you will encounter the most amount of cosplayers at this time
  • Wear comfortable shoes, as you will walk a lot.
  • I advise staying for as long as possible to see more and interact with other attendees. Also have enough energy to last the entire time.
  • While mostly indoors, a lot of the cosplayers like to hang out outside for photo shoots. Regardless, it would behoove you to dress for chilly or possibly rainy weather.
  • Have extra cash available for food as well as merchandise if you think you will buy something inside the expo.
  • Get into character! Even if you cannot dress up, cosplayers love to act their part and interact with others.
  • Expect to take a lot of photos, so bring an extra camera or power bank for smartphones.
  • I know we normally tell our kids to not talk to strangers, but at this event, attendees encourage others to chat with the cosplayers, especially children.

Even to those not interested in comics, everyone should attend a comic expo/con just to see everyone dressing up in costume. At any expo involving comics, video games, anime, manga, and more, any attendee cannot avoid seeing another guest participating in the inevitable cosplay for the duration of the event. Cosplay has turned into a staple for any sort of expo in this industry, and the fans proudly don their best gear for this expo.

The turn of a new year indicates that Lunar New Year soon approaches, and with it comes countless fairs, festivals, and events that all celebrate this cultural tradition. However, no other event brings everything all together quite like the Asian American Expo. Now in its 36th year, this event returned to the Fairplex in Pomona this past weekend to deliver the expansive world of Eastern culture. This all-ages expo featured just about everything revolving around Chinese culture and Asian pop culture in general, from the fashion to the fiction to the food to the art to the music and so much more. Attendees would encounter art, music, dance, entertainment, cosplay, fashion, anime, manga, comics, video games, merchandise, accessories, food, drinks, treats, and tons of other things that could keep one occupied for more than just a weekend. Many attendees went all out and dressed for the occasion, while other fans simply attended to check out what this expo has to offer, and believe me you could spend more than a day here.

While the Asian American Expo covered a great portion of the Fairplex, the expo consists of more than just its own vendor expo – the event incorporates Anime Impulse as well as The Silk Show, both of which took place in its own expo hall. The Silk Show took place in one of the expo halls and basically contained vendors for apparel and shoes. For most of the expo’s action, we turn to Anime Impulse. This annual event for all things Anime & Manga attracts exhibitors and fans from across the globe for a huge gathering of like-minded people. Attendees would find artists, designers, vendors, video game developers, technicians, actors/actresses, voice actors, models, musicians, singers, cosplayers, and much more. Within the layout of the Asian American Expo, Anime Impulse took up an expo hall and a half, splitting a second expo hall with part of the overall expo. Anime Impulse also utilizes a lot of the open space as well, as many of the cosplayers and anime fans spread out around the area, most of which looked for a good spot to take photos at. However, most of the action took place inside the main expo hall, filled with all the vendors as well as the indoor stage. A special Maid Café event took place in the back corner; however, this required an additional admission fee to check out, mainly for those who actively participate in those kinds of events.

Even to those not interested in the anime or manga or video games, everyone should attend an anime expo/con just to see everyone dressing up in costume. At any expo involving comics, video games, anime, manga, and more, any attendee cannot avoid seeing another guest participating in the inevitable cosplay for the duration of the event. Cosplay has turned into a staple for any sort of expo in this industry, and the fans proudly donned their best gear for this expo. Observe some of what you may expect to see in cosplay at an anime event:

The Asian American Expo, in conjunction with Anime Impulse and The Silk Show, operates annually right before Lunar New Year. While it will take another year for this particular series of events to return, plenty of Lunar New Year events will take place all the way up to the actual Lunar New Year. Check out my blog every Monday morning for a post about the following week’s events to see if one will come to your area. In the meantime, get social with the Asian American Expo by liking them on Facebook. You can also get social with Anime Impulse by liking them on Facebook and following them on Twitter. The same goes for The Silk Show: check them out on Facebook and Twitter as well. If you missed out on visiting the Fairplex this past weekend, fret not – Anime Los Angeles will take place at the Ontario Convention Center in less than two weeks from now.

The 2017 Anime Impulse returns to the Fairplex in Pomona this Saturday and Sunday. This annual event for all things Anime & Manga attracts exhibitors and fans from across the globe for a huge gathering of like-minded people. What started as a simple expo for those in the Anime industry has grown to encompass anything remotely related to the art of Japanese art & animation, as Anime Impulse takes place concurrently with the annual Asian American Expo and The Silk Show, both also at the Fairplex. Today, this combined event now hosts artists, designers, vendors, video game companies, technicians, actors/actresses, voice actors, models, musicians, singers, cosplayers, and much more to spread their work out to the public as well as interact with the fans. With so much to do, attendees can spend the two full days exploring everything here, and possibly not see everything offered in time.

The actual event covers a huge span of the Fairplex event grounds, occupying multiple buildings and outdoor areas. Admission cost $11 per day, and grants access to all connected events: Anime Impulse, Asian American Expo, and the Silk Show. Parking costing $11 per vehicle per day – attendees commuting there should enter Gate 9 on N White Avenue. The event’s show hours start at 10am and end at 7pm both days. These events will occur rain or shine, so prepare yourself for the weather for this weekend, including those who will dress up. Attendees should plan to bring extra cash to not only pay for parking, but to pay for food, since the event does not allow ins-&-outs. If you feel that you cannot make it to the Fairplex this weekend, fret not – Anime Los Angeles will take place at the Ontario Convention Center two weeks later. In the meantime, check out what you may encounter at Anime Impulse by liking them on Facebook and following them on Twitter. In the meantime, check out photos from last year’s Anime Impulse:

Following photos by Shannon Cottrell:

Following photos by Fil Zafra: