We never would have expected a con in the beginning of the year to kickstart 2016 with a bang, but after spending a day walking around the Pomona Fairplex, we have to say that Anime Impulse got the ball rolling!
Settled into a corner of the Pomona Fairplex, facing the very empty shell of an Oktoberfest set, crowds of people gathered to be delighted in the best of Asian culture, sights, sounds, food, and more! But just what is Anime Impulse all about?
Brought to you by the creators of the hugely successful KTOWN Night Market and OC Block Party, ANIME IMPULSE is the exciting new project fusing the worlds of Anime and Manga Culture with the hypnotic world of Video Games as they mesh with KPOP and more fascinating Asian pop culture today. The event will highlight appearances from celebrities and special guests, panels, VIP parties, vendors, artist alleys, delicious food and treats, and the cutest fashion live from our runway stage! Encompassing everything fun in Asia in one event!
With a list of 38 special guests, a fantastic lineup of artists, and interesting and creative vendors lining the convention floor, there was definitely something for fans new and old to be a part of and fall in love with. It goes with out saying that we were incredibly impressed with this entire show.
First and foremost, Anime Impulse was incredibly affordable. Offering three different price points for entrance into the convention, even the most frugal person could afford a single day pass.
For $11 dollars (a single day ticket, plus a small service fee) we never once felt like we were not getting our money’s worth. While there was plenty of action going on inside the convention hall, the outside festival of foods and more only added to the value. Plus, each ticket also got you into the Asian American Expo. Essentially, you were paying $11 dollars for two conventions and some of the best Asian street food you can even begin to imagine. With the two mixing together to almost be one convention, it became apparent that this was something that the normal convention goers and fans would not necessarily go to, but complimented one another so well that it was a goal to try to see everything that was offered.
We’ve been to quite a few conventions and seen our share of volunteers in the process. Heck, we’ve even been volunteers for San Diego Comic-Con. We have to say that the Anime Impulse volunteers were on point. They made the initial welcome to the con a genuine experience, and were really there not to just be a guide, but to be a part of your adventure. They were friendly, knowledgeable, and even took part in the panels. Kudos to them for not being just passive in a corner with their bright yellow shirts!
A convention would not be so without its panels, and Anime Impulse had its fair share of them ranging from in depth discussions, Q&A’s, musical acts, and even the Le Geek So Chic Fashion Show! Here’s just a peek at the schedule from Anime Impulse:
The panel that caught our eye the most was on Sunday, which helped to fuel our cosplay goals for this year. Lead by panelistsAlicia Bellamy and Chad Van Wye, “Armor and Prop Building” brought knowledgeable experts front and center to the attendees, lending advice and tips on how to create props and armor for cosplay while making them look realistic. We learned some great things from the panel, and speaking with the panelists after in a more casual one-on-one manner was even more of a delight. We left the panel invigorated to get to work on some of our builds for this year, and even went fabric shopping when we got home from the con!
Another great highlight of Anime Impulse was the Le Geek So Chic Fashion show. Bringing together designers from Castle Corsetry, Living Dead Clothing, and Girl With One Eye Fashion, the designs that walked the runway were a dazzle to the eyes. Every model put out 110% and the audience clearly loved them all. We’ll have a full gallery of the show soon!
While we loved the panels on both the main stage and the panel room, we definitely wanted to see more of them featured prominently throughout the convention. The panel “room” was in the back of the hall and in an area where, even with a PA system, sometimes you could not hear the panelists speak. Let the panels shine, Anime Impulse. They add to your already awesome convention. We hope to see them in a bigger light next year!
All in all, Anime Impulse shot right out of the gate for its first year and we really cannot wait to see what they do in the years to come. Combining their presence with the Asian American Expo and Silk Show brought a varied crowd which only added to the experience, and the convention left us with an overall satisfied feeling as we drove home.
Until next year!