A warm environment with unique costumes, entertaining games and enticing merchandise — many may recognize it as the winter-time Otafest, and others as a crazy haven for people who have a vested interest in Japanese cartoons — otherwise known as anime and manga. Otafest Aurora, however, is a special celebration of a culture that attracts all ages of people who love this form of entertainment. From merchandise to cosplaying, Aurorafest brings many festivities that we wouldn’t normally see to a condensed, one day celebration. This year, Aurorafest will be held at SAIT Polytechnic on November the 29th, from ten o’clock in the morning to twelve in the morning.
Otafest Aurora’s main attraction is its goods — from pins to clothing to bags, Otafest has it all. Sometimes, the lines formed are so extensive that the time needed to wait for vendors seems to be an hour. The waiting time, however, isn’t as long as it appears to be. Such evidence comes from a writer for The Strange Five, Sam Ijaz.
“It was packed, the line extremely long, reaching the park outside. So, we stood in line, thinking it was going to be an 1/2 hour to an hour wait. WRONG! We waited at most 15 minutes and we were in. They had everything; toys, cosplay outfits, accessories, and free candy from a Pedobear (typical). I ended up picking up a cute stuffed Monkey King for my daughter. Dropping $30 is nothing compared to what others were dropping… Hundreds.”
Otafest Aurora also provides many activities that are enjoyable. A ‘must-do’, as Victoria –a frequenter of Otafest festivals– states, is visiting the Artist’s Alley, a place where artists sell their artwork and showcase their talent. Another inventive program is the maid cafe where volunteers dress up like maids, simulate a real maid cafe —like those found in Japan— and serve refreshments, snacks and other delicacies. “Smaller events like vocaloid, cosplay and photo gallery are also great ways to spend your time,” says Victoria, a frequenter of Otafest festivals.
In general, Aurorafest provides a friendly, warm community with entertaining events and fantastic products. Next time someone wishes for another way to celebrate winter, inform them of the fun they are missing at Aurorafest!
For more information visit otafest.com.