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Anime Expo 2018: The Mecca of Anime Fans

Eager to take part in the largest anime gathering in the United States? Coming up during the first weekend of July, Los Angeles will be hosting its 26th annual Anime Expo! The convention runs from July 5th through the 8th and it promises to be the American epicenter of all things anime.

For over a quarter of a century, Anime Expo has delighted fans in its vast array of artists, vendors, panels, and special guests, all catered to the world-wide phenomenon that is Japanese animation. There’s something for everyone, no matter if it’s manga to be read, statues to be collected, or pictures and autographs to be obtained from behind-the-scenes icons of your favorite films, TV series, and OVAs (original video animation). Such famous personalities could include voice actors, directors, producers, and more. 

Worried that your favorite anime-inspired American animation will be left in the dust? No need! Though centering on “Japanimation” (as we in the States commonly called it back in the 90s), animation from other countries - including our own - that were influenced by Japan are embraced as well. One should have no trouble finding merchandise and other goodies from such shows as Cartoon Network’s Steven Universe, Netflix’s Voltron: Legendary Defender, and Nickelodeon’s Invader Zim, among plenty of others.

The gaming industry is another area of pop culture that seizes the spotlight at Anime Expo. Whether you’re more comfortable with a console or prefer to work table-top, the convention boasts a wide variety of games to choose from and enjoy. Beginners and seasoned players alike are encouraged to take part in sessions ranging from introductory level to full-on tournaments. 

In addition, any anime con-goer knows you can’t have a convention without cosplay. The act of cosplaying is a highly sought-after activity at Anime Expo and both the organizers and fans do not disappoint! They even go so far as to hold the World Cosplay Summit U.S. Finals in order for cosplayers to compete for the opportunity of representing our nation at the Cosplay Championship in Nagoya, Japan. It’s the cosplay equivalent of the Olympics!

Interested in learning more about Anime Expo? Check out their website at Anime Expo, see all the fun that’s to be had, and plan accordingly if you wish to attend. Can’t make it, but still need your anime fix? Look no further than our merchandise here on Panda Pony Toys!