Kitacon Invasion 2014
So this weekend was my first ever Kitacon. Overall thoughts were the events were great and the parties entertaining but the con overall could have been improved by some better organisation. I arrived early Friday and started out wearing my Juri cosplay. I was sharing a twin room in the Hilton, which was charged at a reduced rate. The room was lovely and the Hilton had put on a food court for the event which sold discounted pizzas, hot meals and so forth, which I thought was a great idea. With not much to do early in the day we went to the video room to watch the Fate trilogy, which was a three part live action series which some of the committee had been working on (including some well know faces from the con scene, such as That Man). It was a pretty amusing way to kick off the con. I got a few nice comments on my Juri, which was a pleasant surprise as it doesn’t get recognised that often!
Following that was the opening ceremony, which included another great video from the Fate team. Some good guests were announced this year including Ellen McClain of Portal and Pacific Rim fame and the “english gentleman rapper” Professor Elemental. In my opinion the opening ceremony was just a bit too long though. After that we went to plushie making 101, where we learned techniques for making various things, such as My Little Pony plushies. Some very great tips in that. We decided to switch over cosplays and I changed in to my Gilbert Nightray with my friends as Oz and Alice. The evening brought an event that I had been looking forward to: the Yaoi Panel. This was a great laugh as always, involving some penis jousting! Last event of the night was the disco, which was a mixture of eastern and western music.
Today I was wearing my Hanji costume. After breakfast we headed to the Bring and Buy and the dealers room. I picked up a few bits of manga from the bring and buy and the first DVD volume of Gurren Lagan (I’ve heard good things about it, so it was worth getting for the price just to see if I like it). I headed over to the lovely guy from Yaoi Kingdom, who sold me a gorgeous Free! Iwatobi Swin Club book, a Free! Doujinshi and an Attack on Titan doujinshi. I picked up some sweets from Tofu Cute (the guy also twisted my arm in to buying a tote bag). We checked out Professor Elemental’s panel, who gave generally advice on how to make a living doing what you love- it was pretty amusing. We followed that by attending Tab’s singing workshop, which was very well done. Tab gave some fantastic tips on how to improve your stance and breathing and got us together singing a verse from the “Misty Mountains”. Sadly as the panel started late it was a little shorter than intended. We had to miss out on the Tofu Cute tasting panel as that clashed with Tab’s panel.
We stopped off for coffee and cupcakes at the Maids of England, where we were served by the very handsome butler Shen. The green tea cupcakes were yummy. After that was the masquerade. Fabolous costumes this year, including a lovely Asuka, some simply gorgeous Pandora Hearts cosplayers and a guy who was doing something from Mass Effect (not sure what it was but it did look damn impressive). Another event blighted by a frustratingly late start, though. With nothing much else in the evening we checked out the Hentai Panel, which was actually very funny. The thing with the tortoise with be forever burned in my brain, though. We stayed around in the same room for the charity auction. The definite highlight of that was Ian and Keith as their alter-egos Dekker Dane and That Man re-enacting a yaoi pose, all in the name of raising money for charity! We ended the evening watching the AMV set. The standard of the competitive entries was incredible this year.
After breakfast we headed down to the cosplay Q&A, which sadly had been cancelled. Instead we took another sweep of the bring and buy and dealer’s room. I talked myself in tro buying a very pretty (if slightly creepy) art print. We watched the cosplay chess, which was entertaining. After that we took the opportunity to get some outdoors pictures (we were wearing our Pandora Hearts cosplays again). The closing ceremony followed. I have to say this was the worst example of a late start. After starting an hour late it also ran a half hour longer than was timed. This had a knock-on effect leaving the talent show and the cosplay ball with really late starts. Probably the highlight of the closing ceremony was the announcement of the Ame/ Kita collaboration. With the end of Aya and some problems that led to Ame 2014 being cancelled Ame and Kita will start rotating alternate years running a small spring con and a larger summer con. Next year Ame will run AmeChibi, a small event in April, and Kita will be our big summer con back in the Hilton. I haven’t settled on my con plans for next year yet. I want to do AmeChibi because I’ve always enjoyed Amecon. Of course this will put it very close to Minamicon, which I’ll almost certainly go to. The question remains whether I will do Kitacon too.
As I mentioned earlier Kita’s Got Talent started late, which meant a lot of people had left either to change for the ball or to fetch food. I felt this meant that it didn’t have quite the atmosphere that some similar events at other cons had. Still there were some great performances, including Keith, Tab and Christian as their personal take on the Powerpuff Girls. After that there was just enough time to bid goodtime to friends who were leaving and to grab a quick bite to eat. I headed down to the ball, which had a two hour late start. I danced for a bit and then headed to the bar, where I ended up chatting to a very sweet girl, who complimented my cosplay and gave me some useful tips. Also turned out she had made the adorable Fluffle Puff that was in the masquerade. I dropped in to Professor Elemental’s set and danced for a bit at the cheesy disco that followed. Finally heading off to catch some sleep round about 1am.
So final thoughts: great con and parties, just need to sort out their logistics! Will I go back? Quite probably.