3 Diamond Dust Cosplay: Katsucon 2017 Report

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Costumes Worn:
Sango, InuYasha
Small Lady Serenity, Sailor Moon
Miku Hatsune, Vocaloid: Project DIVA
Princess Serenade, Eternal Sonata
Princess Zelda, Hyrule Warriors
Summoner Lenne, Final Fantasy X-2
Summoner Belgemine, Final Fantasy X
Summoner Ginnem, Final Fantasy X
Convention Photos:






Katsucon is a large-scale anime convention held annually in Washington, D.C. by Katsucon Entertainment, Inc. an educational non-profit organization dedicated to bringing information about Japanese animation, society, and traditional and popular culture to fans everywhere.

Convention Overview:
The twenty-third annual Katsucon was held at the Gaylord National Hotel and Convention Center in Washington, D.C. A 24-hour convention, panels and programing were offered around-the-clock, and guests, consisting of mostly voice actors, included Greg and Chris Ayres, Bill Rogers, Darin DePaul, and Monica Rial. Industry panels also included Funimation, Aniplex, and Vis, and the Japanese Cultural Institute's sessions were in-depth as usual. A new track, Chibi Katsu, which was geared specifically towards children was a wonderful addition, encouraging family-friendly and kid-geared panels such as the history of anime and Pokemon yoga. Overall the convention still suffered from poor management decisions, including the preregistration badge pickup which has absolutely no excuse for being a over three-hour wait year after year when larger conventions have cut the wait time down to mere minutes. However, with a great location, entertainment and food close by, dazzling A-game cosplay and incredibly friendly attendees, this con remains a great deal of fun despite its internal struggles.

Personal Thoughts:
Thursday morning Sketch, EllyStar, Scarlet and I packed up the car and started the drive down to National Harbor, picking up Punzy along the way. This was the fifth year we've driven down for Katsucon, so we have this road trip down to a science; EllyStar taped some of it for an AnimeCons TV episode on driving to conventions, which you can view HERE! We arrived at the Gaylord around dinnertime, and were pleasantly surprised to get a balcony room for the first time with an awesome view of all the goings-on! We went out for dinner and drinks, but since I was about two months pregnant I settled for water. This was my first alcohol-free and caffeine-light convention in my 12 years of going to cons, so laying off the cocktails was a different experience.

Friday morning we were up early to get ready for a photoshoot as the InuYasha main cast with MPL Photography. Sketch, Punzy, and I had cosplayed as Miroku, Kagome, and Sango before, but we finally had an InuYasha with Scarlet! Punzy speant some extra time fluffing up Scarlet's wig before we headed downstairs. We had a fun shoot in the garden area of the Gaylord lobby before wandering the con for a bit. That afternoon I changed into my revamped Princess Chibiusa outfit for a shoot with Amie; on the elevator ride downstairs one of the cosplayers complimented my wig and asked who had made it. "Oh I commissioned it from Ms. Rae," I said, and she replied, "I thought that was one of mine. That's me!" She was super nice and we chatted abit; she liked my costume and apparently she rarely runs into the people she makes things for, so it was really cool we bumped into each other. It was warm and sunny outside so I had my shoot with Amie outside and she got some fantastic photos, including one of me throwing my rose petals. Afterwards I hung around the outdoor area with EllyStar while Sketch and Punzy had a shoot in their new Outlaw Star costumes. Afterwards we went through Artist's Alley and the dealer's room for a few hours before putting on regular clothes and going to our favorite National Harbor sushi place for dinner. That evening Sketch, EllyStar, Punzy, Doug and Kate changed into their Voltron kigus while I wore my remade Vocaloid costume. I took photos of the Voltron crew and we had an enjoyable evening hanging out in the lobby and socializing.

Saturday morning I spent quite a bit of time getting into my new Princess Serenade costume from Eternal Sonata. It had taken me over a year to finish it so I was happy it was finally done! I had a fun shoot with Amie and Cole outside and then changed into my Hyrule Warriors Zelda for a shoot with Sketch as Link. After our shoots, we had fun checking out the con for a bit; we even got a photo with a giant Snorlax cosplayer! In the evening we got a great dinner at a brewary we'd never tried before and then got into our evening clubbing outfits. Sketch and the crew were wearing their Voltron costumes while I wore Songstress Lenne and we headed up to the club. Everyone was enjoying their drinks, but since I had to stick to Shirley Temples it was weird being the only sober one after a while! Regardless I had a blast dancing the night away, and since it was so warm out, the balcony was open for the first time since I'd been going to Katsu. We went outside and checked out the amazing view. They also opened up the VIP upstairs section to everyone, which I'd never seen them do before, and soon we had two stories of congoers cutting a rug. So much fun! We stayed until last call, then headed out. We normally would have changed and packed up the car, but since we had a late checkout on Sunday, we went to bed instead.

Sunday was sunny and in the 70s, which was shocking for D.C. in February! Scarlet and I wore our Summoner Belgemine and Ginnem for the day, and instead of being warm and comfy as we expected we were sweating in them. We walked a few blocks to the beach area to take photos with the Awakening statue, which was awesome except for the fact that the gorgeous weather meant the area was packed with people, including little kids, so it was hard to get access to and clean photos with the statue. It was still a lot of fun though. We then went across the street to the Peeps Store and got some candy and a shot with the Peep Mobile. We returned to the con and saw some amazing costumes for a Sunday - there were even an Officer Hops with an actual police car from Zootopia! Around 4PM we changed, packed up the car, stopped for lunch at Nando's and started on our road trip home, another fun Katsu on the books!