Fanime Convention in Silicon Valley

Fanime 2010It’s a warm and sunny spring day in San Jose, yet it is anything but normal. The sidewalks are packed with people in costume. The individuals in street clothes seem not to notice the spectacle, and everyone appears completely comfortable with the situation. A few of those in costume pose for photos or playfully get into character, to the amusement of themselves and others. Larger groups loiter outside the San Jose Convention Center. Some gather for pictures with peers in the same outfits. More pose for professional photographers. Yet others munch on Pocky and show off the contents of their shopping bags. This is Fanime.

Fanime is an annual convention held on Memorial Day weekend in San Jose. Open to all enthusiasts, the convention’s slogan is “By fans, for fans” and, true to that, it welcomes lovers of anime, video games, martial arts, manga, music, sci-fi, comic books, steam punk, and much, much more. Throughout the four days of its running, the center is packed with a multitude of events for all to enjoy, including 24 hour video programming, a game room, a music festival, costume contests, an artist gallery, panels, guest speakers, and even a black and white (costume optional) ball with organized dance lessons earlier that weekend. If you’re a dedicated fan, you’ll be in good company. It is the largest such convention in Northern California (but, who can compete with Comic Con in San Diego for size?), and many dedicated fans come quite a distance to attend it. Don’t expect to find hotel vacancies downtown next weekend!

This year, Fanime runs from Friday, May 27 to Monday, May 30 and will be held, once more, at the San Jose Convention Center. To join in, attendees must purchase a badge. The at-door prices for each day of the week and for the full weekend price are listed below via the links. Discounted, Pre-Sale badges are closed for 2011 but will be available the morning of the 30th. To learn more about Fanime, visit the website. And if you go downtown during Memorial Day weekend, remember to bring your camera – fans love to be appreciated!

The San Jose Convention Center is located at 150 West San Carlos St. San Jose, CA 95110

For more information on Fanime Con:

Fanime website
Register for Fanime
Wikipedia article on FanimeCon