Japanator goes to AniMaine 2015: Day 3


A look at the small con in Maine

Welcome back to Japanator's coverage of AniMaine 2015 from South Portland, Maine.

After getting a whole lot more sleep than I did the night before, Sunday morning was a lot easier to get up and going. Since check out time was 11:00 AM, we got up and got our things put together before heading down to the breakfast buffet. bacon, sausage, biscuits and gravy, and a whole lot of other things would keep us going through the rest of the day as the con wound down.


We caught a little of a panel called The Transnational Otaku, a look at the spreading of subcultures across international borders. Although we didn't stay very long it was an interesting look at how different parts of the world adopt a style and make it their own.

The next panel on our docket as taking place in the Underground panel room with Scott Melzer's Fandom Abridged. This was a look at anime fandom through the decades, starting in the 60s and working its way up until today. It was a great look on how not only the people but especially the technology has advanced the fandom to what it is today. Although more informational than many of his other panels, Scott knows how to make a presentation and make it entertaining as well.

Staying in the same room (although everyone was kicked out and let back in for some reason), was Why Can't I be Ellen Ripley, hosted by Terri Doty. This panel was about the outside lives of those who work in the anime industry and how much it affects their regular lives. The stories of her family's reaction to what Terri does and the stories of using new voices on people (especially her husband) put in perspective how much a career in anime voicing can really take over one's life. Since I was able to ask a question I got an autographed card from Terri!

Up next was back upstairs for the annual AniMaine charity auction. Every year items are donated to the con and an auction is held to raise money for different charities. This year's proceeds went to enhancing art education for the students of the state of Maine. We got in a little bit late so we missed some of the items being auctioned off, but I won a snuggly soft demon yokai blanket made by Mere Doyle of Your Illusion Crafts. I've bought something from her every year of the con and wanted to keep the tradition alive. The biggest bids came from a bidding war over the AniMaine official sign (featured on day 1's coverage) that ended up going well north of $130 dollars!

Getting out of the auction, it was back to the Underground for DLW: Since the dawn of time with David Williams. David, being a co-founder of ADV Films back in the day, was there right as anime really started taking off in the U.S. and English dubbing and subtitling began to happen. Not only was this a look at just how these things get licensed for American distribution, but a look pretty much how these companies get started (and ultimately end) in getting into the business of licensing anime.

Bidding adieu to David, we did one last raid of the dealer's room where I picked up some bottles of ramune, a paper fan, and some chocolate goodies. With all the stops to the dealer's room, the things I won, and the goodies I got from the Veranda Asian market before the con started I ended up with quite a haul.

It was time to wrap things up with Closing Ceremonies as everyone who was still at the con gathered upstairs. The Guests, Colin, Chris, and a number of other staff members gave some final words, the theme of next year's con was announced (Food!), and things were officially closed. We hung around for the con feedback panel before saying our goodbyes and heading back up north where Jeremy and I got dinner and the Asian buffet here in town before I was dropped off here at the "home office" and rightly fell asleep (with the cuddly soft demon blanky).

To wrap the weekend up, it was a wonderful time. If you are into the charm of the small convention, this is the perfect example. The staff is always friendly and willing to help, even if it's your first year and you do not know anyone. Although the layout of what rooms house what change from year to year, it is still a very simple set up that you can figure out very quickly. The guests are more accessible to talk to than any other con I've been too and the panels they host are a lot of fun. It seems like a convention and more just a family reunion or a gathering of friends. Of course, that is not to discredit all the hard work the staff and crew do to make it all happen every year. Those folks hustle like you wouldn't believe to make sure things are running and work. So kudos to all of them!

If you enjoyed what you've read through my weekend adventure and want to know more about this wonderful convention, please visit their website or their facebook. It is an experience well worth it! Tell them Japanator sent ya.



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Soul Tsukino
Soul TsukinoContributor   gamer profile

Soul Tsukino lives in the state of Maine. When not enveloping himself in a new fiction story he also comments on happenings in the animation and Otaku fan scene. A creative writer since he was yo... more + disclosures



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