Saturday 1st October was the first ever GALLERIA Convention, which was aimed at fans of anime, Manga, video games, Cosplay and comics. I attended with my brother and his cousin; lately the conventions dedicated to comics and animation that I’ve attended have been rather excellent as compared to this other convention that I used to attend.
Okay here is how it is; back in August of 2003 I attended one of the Anime City events. It was an all day film fest of well known and lesser known anime movies, decent free giveaways at the door, and a mini-mall that was selling a lot of comics, graphic novels, movies (VHS & DVD), posters, wall scrolls etc. My first anime experience was all right. Granted I had to wake up around 4am to get to the venue to get a jump on the crowds (good thing to, by the time they opened the doors the lines was out the gate and into the road), but I came out of it seeing some interesting movies and with a decent haul in graphic novels. Following that one I attended two more with my brother and his friends, and needless to say they did not measure up to the first one that I attended.
Even although we got there really, really early there were people already there and the line had extended a great distance. To get in did not take all that long; to get into the anime city mall took forever. There was a lot of pushing and shoving to get to the entrance and they would not let anyone in until a few people had come out. Also, members of the organization that was hosting the anime event were yelling at people like they were animals; granted there were some major jerks in the crowd there was still no need to talk to people like they were lower than scum. By the time I got in, most of the really good books were already taken and I had to settle for a few interesting leftovers. Trying to browse for books was difficult in the sense that everyone was crowding around the one table that it was difficult to move. After my third anime city experience, I along with the others in my small group vowed to never attend any more anime city conventions.
Good thing to, at one of the following conventions some guys that were there to participate in the Yu-Gi Oh contest ran around the school pulling the fire alarms, pretty much running the whole event for many others. As a result the G****** Foundation was banned from ever using the venue and now had to rely on some place that is a whole lot smaller and not as air-conditioned.
Since then, I’ve attended three/four other conventions where I have been able to comfortably browse for books and make some excellent finds. There were several tables and booths occupied by a diverse group of vendors which made searching for much sought after books a whole lot easier. Some of the vendors gave out calling cards for their organizations and even invited me to contact me if there was any particular book that I was looking for. At GALLERIA one of the vendors held some book for me that I had inquired about, now how cool is that. Apart from comics, there were others vendors that were selling anime movies, video games and anime music videos. For a first time outing, I found that it was alright in that:
1. There was a diverse group of vendors.
2. It was held in a central location that was quite spacious.
3. The event staff was not yelling at people like they were animals.
4. It was a jerk free event.
5. Came out of it with a decent haul in books (four trade paperbacks of which I got decent discounts on, and about ten comics…of that 10 I got one of them for free)
6. A decent amount of Cosplayers.
7. The DJ was playing some rockin tunes.
However for next time they could:
1. Choose a location that has air-conditioning for the entire facility.
2. Advertise way in advance of the event to generate a larger turnout.
3. If providing refreshments, let patrons/attendees know where they are located.
4. Decide in advance what movies will be shown.
5. Provide a play list of movies and their times.
6. Start on time.
7. Provide souvenirs for those that purchase tickets in advance of the event (i.e. lanyards, key chains, pins/badges)
If interested, then I advise that you check out the following site: