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What is Anime Central?

Who Organizes Anime Central?

When is Anime Central and How Long is it?

How Do I Attend Anime Central?

Frequently Asked Questions

What is there to do at Anime Central?

All sorts of things! We have panels on favorite series, guest signings, a dealer’s room with anime/manga and Japanese culture merchandise, video rooms, special events such as the Masquerade, and more! And that’s not counting all the opportunities you get to hang out with people who like anime/manga too.

How long has Anime Central been around?

Anime Central started in 1998, but the planning for it began much earlier in 1996 at a local anime club. Ever since then, we’ve been going strong, and our exponential growth has put us among the top conventions in the United States.

Where are all the events held? Is there a map of the convention?

Anime Central is held in the Hyatt O’Hare and the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center. The program guide will have all the specifics of when and where to go for each event.

Is there a limit to how many attendees can enter?

There is no limit to the amount of attendees that can attend Anime Central. Some events, such as the Masquerade, will have limited attendance due to fire code rules and space. For the event itself however, we have no membership cap. Please remember that because of the volume of individuals at the convention site, you should be mindful of congregating in one place where you can block the hallways and common areas that people need to get through.

What can I expect at a convention?

You can expect pretty much anything, but aside from that, some specific things to expect are dependant on what kind of convention you attend. At ACen, you can expect to find cosplayers who dress up as their favorite Anime or Japanese culture characters, live events, concerts, dances, competitions, gaming, and individuals of all ages who appreciate different parts of the anime, manga, and Asian culture genres. We also hope you’ll find a fun and sociable atmosphere, and memories to cherish.

What is cosplay?

Cosplay is short for “costume play,” where individuals create or have made costumes of their favorite anime characters and wear them to the convention. Cosplayers are creative and are proud of their work, and it’s common to see many of them walking the halls during an anime convention.

What is the Masquerade?

The Masquerade is one of the biggest events of the convention and it is an opportunity for cosplayers to show off their costumes, present skits, and if so desired, compete for prizes.

Where’s the programming schedule, and when will it be finished?

The programming schedule is fluid depending on many factors, including but not limited to guest lineup, panel demand, new events, and time constraints. We want to put up the most accurate grid of events that we can, and not confuse our attendees with changing information. This is why we wait until the programming grid is final before we post it online. You can of course find the programming grid in the program book of your convention packet.

I want to be a volunteer at Anime Central. Who should I contact?

You can email to get information from the Volunteer Staffing Services team about being on staff for Anime Central. Alternatively, volunteers can use to get at-con volunteering information.

What can you expect from being on staff?

You can expect a lot of work, time, and energy spent. You can also expect, depending on what department you’re in, to miss some or most of the convention. You can expect to be told to follow the orders of your assigned department and be respectful and courteous to our attendees. But most of all, you can expect to meet a great bunch of people that want to put on a neat event for others.