Thursday, December 16, 2021

Dalton's Kumoricon 2021 Report

Going into Kumoricon 2021, the last convention I attended was this very convention two years ago and I was surprised when the entire crew got accepted to cover this convention a month out, a step up from 2019 when it was just myself and Ryan. This would truly help out in terms of providing additional angles while others covered other aspects that were of interest to them. 

One of the places where I made a major presence was in the interview space where I got the chance to interact with the likes of Robbie Daymond and CiarĂ¡n Strange. I even hijacked his interview when we were talking about Borderlands 3, the character Lorelei, and the impact the game had on the LGBTQ+ community.

Outside of that room, it felt like I did more exploration than some of my colleagues, walking around and taking in the sights and sounds, some captured on my phone and some captured on my Nikon that I carried around while ironically cosplaying as Prompto from Final Fantasy 15.

Speaking of Final Fantasy, here's a Aerith and Cloud cosplay

Waifu car galore

I did find some time where I not only participated in an event but also had a chance to hang out with said crew dressed up in kigurumis, which is essentially a Japanese onesie - it can be translated as “ wearing stuffed toy.” But in this case, when I went to this “Kigu Party” it was more than just animals, like Ryan’s Eva-1 kigu that he bought and wore to this event. We played a variety of party games, some inspired by a certain popular Korean TV show, as we played the night out and had a really good time.

"Get in the damn robot Shinji! Oh wait..."

Even Matthew stopped by after the end of the ACME concert to get a photo of us.

Myself with Nate and Ryan at the Kigu Party [Photo Credit: Matthew M]

While the Kigu Party was during the evening, I was able to attend both days in full the Late Night Dance Parties that the convention was throwing. While I enjoyed Friday’s set of VGR and James Landino, I was super stoked for Saturday’s slate of Meirlin and Teddyloid to light up the weekend. And with our credentials in hand because we were recording the concert with the permission of the convention, I was able to get a front-row seat of all the action occurring up on stage. 

TeddyLoid up on stage

The crowd feeling every moment

Like the rest of the crew, one of the major staples outside of the convention that we covered was all of the food that were not only in Portland but also the two Medford stops that Matthew, Nate, Jeriko, and Jeriko’s “waifu” made in both staging and decompressing. Ryan and I wanted to be sure that we took them to places that either Matthew and Nate haven’t been to yet or anyone coming in haven’t been to yet, like for example Crackin’ and Stackin’ known for their big pancakes that honestly even the the most hungry had a hard time trying to finish. I also made a return to Stepping Stones like in 2019 and went on the light side and ordered really good bacon and eggs fried.

Breakfast at Stepping Stones

There was huge debate over pizza as we both had Sizzle Pie and Apizza Scholls, granted they were of the take-out variety due to the pandemic and hopefully, like everyone else, we can dine-in the the next time we visit, assuming that we don’t pick new places for variety’s sake. I was in the Sizzle Pie camp this time around for it’s unique take on flavors like banh mi and their side sauces were out of this world.

But out of all the experiences I had, nothing compared to Thursday night and Sunday night in what was probably one of the magical food journeys that I've ever had.

The Instagram-exclusive Tito Boy shot

After getting into Portland and settling in Thursday night, we went down south to Magna Kusina, a modern Filipino restaurant that Ryan had found. Up to this point, I haven't experienced the full range of Filipino cuisine outside of staples like Adobo, so when I tried something like Pancit Bihon or Ox Tail Kare-Kare, my taste buds where in a different place that night.


##kumoricon ##kumoricon2021 ##tastetest ##filipinofood

♬ original sound - California Conventions Blog

##kumoricon ##kumoricon2021 ##tastetest ##filipinofood

♬ original sound - California Conventions Blog

The Sunday night post-con meal took in the form of Brazilian BBQ at Fogo de Chao. It was one thing to have scrumptious steak, chicken, and lamb, but it was taken to the next level with A5 Wagyu ribeye steak. 

That thing melted in my mouth like butter, and since I was in my Ryuji cosplay I had to utter that single line that was a running meme throughout both our preparation and in the actual restaurant. 


##kumoricon ##kumoricon2021 ##brazillianbbq ##tastetest ##a5wagyu

♬ original sound - California Conventions Blog

Over on the arcade side of things, I had a good time at Ground Kontrol as it had more pinball machines that I wanted to play and drew in the likes of Matthew and Nate to become total pinball wizards which even carried over to when I got back to Medford and played even more over at the Gypsy Blues Bar.

I will have to say though that the Japanese Garden visit on Monday was an eye opener to me, taking in all the beauty and worth the mile or so walk that we did after all the walking during the convention.

The Cultural Village with the Umami Cafe and Gift Shop in focus

The Heavenly Falls

After attending this convention, I felt content with being able to experience a convention after also two years of not really doing anything. Hopefully this step will push me forward into the 2022 convention year, although it’s up in the air at the moment due to personal situations and hopefully I don’t miss much but I already have the backing of my colleagues who will support what I do in the near future.

I felt the love that everyone else was giving me throughout this convention, both from the attendees as well as the staff members who helped us out throughout the weekend. Without them, it would have been an uphill battle to obtain the coverage that we wanted. I would love to be back at Kumoricon next year with the same crew if possible.

Nate, Matthew, Jeriko, and Jeriko's waifu at the Nezu Gate

Thank you for reading my report.


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