Matsuricon 2023: Where Isekai Dreams Come True
We had the absolute pleasure of experiencing another Matsuricon, what an experience it was! Their theme this time was Isekai, ‘Into Another World’. We surely felt like we were transported with all the wonderful cosplays, panels, as well as events they hosted. Fitting into this theme they dressed their Shiba Inu mascot Tana-chan as the white rabbit from Alice in Wonderland. They unsurprisingly had quite the guest list, which included but not limited to voice actors, singer/songwriters, V-tubers, along with several writers. Some of which we were able to get exclusive interviews with, which you can look forward to watching those on our website.
Matsuricon is one convention we highly suggest going to. With it being held in the Greater Columbus Convention Center, they are connected to four hotels including the Hyatt Regency, Drury Inn, Sonesta as well as the newly built Hilton. This allows for more people to stay and attend while adding convenience, also adding to convenience this year they had rental pop-up lockers for which attendees could store their cosplay items, purchased goods or simply their bags. This seemed to be a hit as we witnessed many people using them.
One thing that sets Matsuricon apart from any other convention that we go to is their charity auction. All proceeds go to cancer awareness and research at the Ohio State University’s The James Comprehensive Cancer Center. They strive to collect some of the coolest items they can for the auction which is usually held on Sunday of the convention. Some items previously seen have included XXL men’s boxers with a few years’ worth of voice actors with special guest signatures it has also been to several conventions in Japan, entire lots of Sailormoon with signed memorabilia. When things get really exciting some of the special guests may start adding extremely exclusive offers such as a personalized voicemail by a character they voice or a special photo. This year they raised over $12,000, and to date they have raised over $115,000!
The special guests had some really interesting events this year that we were able to go to. Brandon McInnis had his concert acting as an opener for Nano. After her last song she invited a few people to come up on stage using them as her background dancers. At the end of the concert, they graced the guests with one more song as a special treat for those who attended, Nano along with Brandon sang ‘Saving my Soul’ together. What a treat this was too, the crowd went wild, the energy on stage together with the energy in the crowd was almost surreal, talk about feeling isekaied!
J. Michael Tatum hosted a panel called WTF this was an 18+ panel. Originally this was going to be held at 6pm in one of the larger rooms which could only hold about 250 people. The line was already at 280 to get into the panel, due to this the event was moved upstairs and to 9pm to one of the biggest rooms the convention had. This room could hold 2100 people standing, they had it set up for around 880 sitting. While waiting for the room to fill, J. Michael Tatum went around talking to a few guests, as well as attendees, embodying a most gracious host. Once the room had filled and it was indeed filled, the games began. Everyone was asked to not record or take photos during this panel, so if you know anything about panels, you Know this is going to be a good one from that request. The room was filled with so much laughter from the stories we heard to the interactions we had. This is one panel I wouldn’t want to miss!
You won’t want to miss next year either as the theme they have chosen is ‘Trick or Treat’ with the dates being Aug 30th– Sept 1st its sure to be exciting. We sure hope to see everyone there.