Katsucon is an annual three-day anime convention that was held during February 17-19 this year at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland. It is traditionally held in February over Presidents Day weekend and is held/was held in locations around D.C. Metropolitan Area.
This convention, like others, offers an array of events and activities such as an art show, artist alley, costume contests, dealers room, formal ball, a maid cafe, masquerade, musical performances, panels, workshops, video gaming, etc. One of my favorites is the Japanese Culture Programming, which I think is unique to Katsucon due to its’ array and informative panels on Japanese culture.
Oh!Press was given a great opportunity to attend and cover the event! Katsucon 2023 definitely had a great turnout based on how busy everything was from the artist alley to the Gazebo floor, apparently attendance was pretty close to 25K!
The famous Katsucon Gazebo, a cosplayers go to place for an amazing photo shoot. At some point Friday, there must have been too many people on the Gazebo floor, including those without a con-badge because Saturday, there were staff members checking for badges in the entrance. I wish they added an occupancy limit as well because it was nearly impossible to move around as there were too many people. The photo above was the group photo shoot for the Sonic The Hedgehog series.
Another thing that was definitely popular this year was the panels, I’m usually pretty confident that I can get a seat if I arrive within 15-20 minutes before a panel starts but many were full before it even started. The K-pop random dance challenge workshop was very popular this year where we had to wait as people leave before entering the venue.
I would say that the Merchants Hall and the Artist Alley has been the busiest it’s ever been compared to previous years, was hard to navigate once it got too full. There was a great variety of merchandise from K-pop albums to art books and plushies to figurines. Something that caught our eyes at the Artist Alley is this jewelry shop, Charming Little Fox! They had lots of Anime and K-pop themed jewelry pieces such as earrings and necklaces.
Last but not least, we got to attend the Maid Cafe at Katsucon this year, the last time being 2017. The decoration and food was great but one thing that I wanted to note was the maids were hanging out at our table a little too much that we couldn’t focus on eating our food nicely, that’s just complaint of mine.
We also got the chance to capture a few cosplayers while walking around the event. Check out some awesome cosplayers from Chainsaw Man to Yu-Gi-Oh down below!