On the Friday SacAnime started, I met up with Matt and went to our hotel room which had a great view of Sacramento. I quickly dressed into my Ouran High School Host Club cosplay dressing up as Kyoya Ootori for the gathering that was going to be held later on in that day. Afterwards, I decided to take a stroll around Sacanime and noticed that I didn’t bring my SD card for the trip! My camera would have been useless now! So me and Ryan went to Best Buy which was only 10 minutes away from the Sacramento Convention Center to get one. It was really inconvenient but it was my fault for forgetting it so I missed some time at SacAnime. Either way, I did manage to get back in time for the Ouran High School Host Club Gathering. The gathering had a good amount of cosplayers that were cosplaying from the show. Of course the fans were going for the Hikari twins and the “yaoi” things they do. Let’s just say it attracted a whole lot of fans when the twins cosplayers began to get really close. Besides that, we all had a fair amount of shots for the fans to be entertained with and it seems that everyone had fun. I myself had a good time so I would say that the gathering was pretty successful.
|Two cosplayers at the Hikari Twins at the Ouran High School Host Club Gathering|
|To left to right: Robbie, Guest of Honor Tony Oliver, myself, and Ryan|
With the gathering over, the day was pretty much done with. I was able to check out the Swap Meet in the hotel which was actually disappointing. It took only ⅓ of the registration room and there wasn’t much dealers selling stuff. I was hoping for more but I guess there wasn’t that much sellers. Either way, I did manage to get a few things. I would then call it a day to get ready for the next one. So far the first day was a good one. My cosplays came out pretty well, the gatherings I attended were all so fun, got autographs from the guests of honor, and nothing bad came out of it. A pretty good start to SacAnime.
Saturday started early as me and the rest of the CCB crew went to eat breakfast at a local restaurant called Jim-Denny’s which was located only a few blocks down from SacAnime. We picked this place out because it was featured in a Travel Channel show called Man vs. Food. We decided to take on the challenge and ate their big breakfast platters. Ok we didn’t take on challenge on eating a Hubcap solo but we had a HUGE breakfast. I ordered 2 mini pancakes and a side of bacon with coffee for drink. I COULDN’T EVEN EAT JUST ONE PANCAKE! THEY WERE HUGE! I decided to take one of the pancakes back to the hotel room as a snack (Oh yeah I never ate that). That breakfast pretty much took my appetite throughout most of the day.
|This is a "mini?" That's not a mini!|
|Me and Guest of Honor Grey Delisle|
|Madoka Magica cosplayers at the Madoka Magica Gathering|
Ryan, Matt, and Ray along with a couple of my friends attending my birthday party at the Old Spaghetti Factory
Afterwards, me and a couple of my friends would go down to the Karaoke room where we would sing the Wreck-It Ralph song, "When Can I See You Again" by Owl City. We actually had a great applause from the audience. They must be such great fans, then again the movie came out recently so I would understand the great applause. I would also sing the song "Sakura Kiss" from the anime Ouran High School Host Club. A lot of people recognized the song and I got some positive remarks to my singing so I had fun with that. And on that note, I ended the day there.
|Robbie at Karaoke|
The final day of SacAnime arrived and we were busy packing. We wanted to check out of the hotel room as soon as we can. So after I took a quick shower and put on my Yosuke cosplay, I packed up my stuff. I would notice that my camera wasn’t with me because it was actually left in my friend’s room last night. Luckily, his room was located one floor down from us so I picked it up conveniently. I would then take my stuff down to the lobby where I would wait for a friend who was also riding back with me back to the bay. When he came down, we both went to the hotel garage and placed our stuff there. I would start the day off at the Exhibit Hall to see what I may have missed when I first browsed the area before. And with the amount I had in this trip, I couldn’t even spend much. I only spent my money on a new plush, new manga, and Gravity Falls keychains from an artist. I decided to check out the “Live from Arkham” panel where Kevin Conroy and Grey Delisle were having a Q&A session from the audience. It was great to hear fans’ questions to them and hearing their answers. All of them were pretty funny. Even weirder, I heard from Grey that voice acting can get you very far, even getting you out of paying a ticket. You may ask Spongebob’s VA, Tom Kenny, for more information about that. I had a good time listening to their stories of voice acting in the world of cartoons.
|Guest of Honors Kevin Conroy & Grey Delisle anwering questions at the "Live at Arkham" panel|
|Red Scout from Team Fortress 2 at the Valve Gathering|
|Wreck-It Ralph cosplayers|
To show my analysis about Sacanime Winter 2013, I’ve made a list of pros and cons that I’ve seen at this convention.
First off I have to say the move from the Woodlake Hotel to the convention center is the right move. The convention center is very spacious, easy enough for everyone to move around in the con. I felt like I can get through to my destinations in a good way, not in a place where I have to push or shove people to find my way. I believe everyone is in agreement with me that the location is perfect.
Dealer’s Hall and Artist Alley combined into the Exhibit Hall is also very spacious, enough to bring in many vendors and artists like what happened in this SacAnime. I believe there was more vendors and artists that were at SacAnime Winter than any of the previous SacAnime conventions. This is probably due to the size and the room to bring in as much vendors as they can. And the space also had walking room for everyone to get through. It has definitely resolved the problem that has been going on in SacAnime ever since I started going back in Winter 2012.
The lineup of guest stars for this season’s con was a great one.I think I saw more people going for the guest’s panels/autographs than before. And with a lineup that included notable foreign and regional VA’s, great artists, and Batman, I would understand why more people attended. It greatly helps SacAnime grow with guest stars like this and I hope Sacanime continues on with this success in this area. Plus, it was much faster this time around to get autographs than the one line system used in the previous SacAnime cons. I would have to say keep up with this new system because it's really satisfying me.
As SacAnime was spacious enough, the Sheraton Hotel also helped support SacAnime as well. And the hotel also looked really nice. Makes a good impression to those who attend Sacanime and could attract more people to attend the con.
Food places and entertainment around the convention grounds are good. There is a theatre along with local eatery at the block called “The Kay” which was located across from the Sacramento Convention Center and is behind the Sheraton Hotel. A pretty convenient location for attendees of SacAnime as good food and entertainment are just close to con grounds.
Cons (The bad things):
Let’s start with what I hate the most: the "Late-Night Electronik" dance. What kind of music are the DJs pulling off? Their music does not make me want to dance. This has been an ongoing problem at SacAnime in my opinion as I started engaging at this activity back at Summer 2012 and even back then I didn’t like the music. It seems like it got worse now. For me to continue supporting the late night electronic dance, please fix your DJs because I may not be dancing in your dances anymore.
The swap meet wasn’t that impressing. It was located at the registration room and it only took ⅓ of the room! There were not a lot of vendors selling and there was not much space for people to move around. I mean you have the whole convention center and hotel to make swap meet a whole lot better. Please consider that.
Lastly, I know people want to have fun at cons especially at night. But I’ve overheard Saturday night, there were people that were messing up stuff at the convention. Most notably a statue that was taken off its foundation on the last day. According to sources, the statue was damaged by convention attendees. Guys, I know you want to have your fun being drunk and going out past hours but doing stuff like this does NOT look good to you or SacAnime. It makes the City of Sacramento think that we’re just a bunch of vandals messing up stuff without any care. Please for the next SacAnime, don’t do these things as it may ruin the future of SacAnime at Downtown Sacramento.
Overall, SacAnime Winter 2013 was definitely an improvement. The new convention venue is perfect with more space for everyone to move around. The lineup of guest stars were great. The panels were good and the newly minted Exhibit Hall was a very big improvement. I find this convention to be very satisfying even with it’s ups and downs but I really had a fun time. This SacAnime Winter is definitely looking up for better SacAnime conventions to come. We’ll just have to wait and see at SacAnime Summer. But as we wait for that time, I guess it’s farewell for me in Sacramento. Until summer, keep it cool SacAnime.