A veritable earthquake shook the Woodlake Hotel during the last Labor Day weekend. It is a holiday weekend that fans of Anime and Cosplay have adopted for themselves in the form of a convention called SacAnime. SacAnime is a twice yearly convention created by Dan Houck that has been a must attend convention for fans in the Sacramento, California area and beyond since the year, 2004. The aforementioned earthshaking event came in the form of the announcement from Director of Programming, Jodon Bellofatto stating that SacAnime would now be taking place within the Sacramento Convention Center beginning with the winter version of SacAnime.
It was an inevitable and much desired transformation that the powers that be behind the convention event were hoping for in the grand scheme of things. The very last SacAnime to be held within the Woodlake Hotel demonstrated that the number of attendees kept increasing with each passing convention. The numbers that had attended the last convention exceeded over 7,500 and there was not a shred of doubt that a change was needed!
The new year of 2013 ushers in the new dawn of SacAnime as a convention where space is no longer an issue. After the announcement, Bellofatto addressed a number of concerns that those in attendance had voiced. The convention would now be in the heart of downtown Sacramento and parking was of primary concern to many. The question was addressed by stating that the venue would secure reduced parking rates for each weekend the convention would be held in the location. The area is also quite upscale and with it comes hotel rates that may be beyond the reach of many attendees. The director of programming also stated that the convention would be securing a sizable amount of hotel rooms in able to offer these rooms at reduced rates to attendees.
Economically accommodating attendees is a major concern, but will SacAnime’s transformation enhance its popularity among fans or detract from it? This is the question that will probably be the most intriguing to witness as the convention takes over the convention center and the immediate area surrounding that portion of downtown Sacramento. If successful(and all indicators point in the direction), SacAnime will reinvent itself as a mandatory twice yearly gathering for industry professionals and fans alike. Indeed-one could well imagine that the convention will be seen as a testing ground for new merchandise and talent which could also prove to be a economic boon for Sacramento. It might even begin to reach the epic proportions of the convention known as “Wonder-Con.”
The upcoming SacAnime once again promises an impressive amount of celebrity guests. A name and face that is not often seen at conventions is that of Kevin Conroy. Conroy is most famously known as the voice of Batman in several acclaimed animated versions of the character’s adventures. Kevin Conroy has not been to many conventions, so it should be a notable treat to fans to hear the actor speak of his work as the voice of the most recognizable voice of the Dark Knight that the public has been exposed to up to the present.
This SacAnime will introduce an event known as the “Starlight Ball.” The concept of a formal dance is not an entirely new idea at a convention, but SacAnime has never had such an event. Formal attire is required and will be strictly enforced. This event is in stark contrast to the regular rave function that has been quite popular in the past. The rave itself has also been transformed to what is now being called, “Late Night Dance.” Both events will take place on Saturday night and should provide dancers of all ages a fascinating choice of the new SacAnime style!
The one consistent element of the SacAnime is the fact that the convention draws an amazing amount of talented cosplayers who genuinely enjoy each other’s company. For those who are participants of Cosplay-SacAnime is an incredibly respectful and exciting venue to demonstrate your craft to fellow cosplayers and fans alike. Cosplay is arguably the raison d’être for the convention and SacAnime is a remarkably friendly venue for talented cosplayers.
There is a palatable ambiance of excitement within the Cosplay community at this moment as SacAnime prepares to unveil a possible new and improved version of itself. Whatever the outcome will be on January 4th through the 6th, SacAnime should be given a round of applause for dreaming large and aggressively embracing the future of Cosplay conventions!