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From the large events to our attendee run panels, our Live Events has the programming you will not want to miss!

Have an idea for programming at ACen? Please submit your ideas for this year’s convention! We are always looking to increase our educational event offerings and love activity style events that get everyone moving. If you want to run an event but are struggling to come up with an idea, please consider one of the topics listed here:

  • Japanese – Spoken/Written.
  • Art in Japan.
  • Flora/Fauna of Japan.
  • History of Japan (overall or a specific time period, event, or individual).
  • Popular Music/Films/Gaming trends in Japan.
  • Japanese School Yard or Board Games.
  • Yoga.

Live Events Participants Policy

All event participants (panelists and performers) are required to be aware of and agree to abide by the terms of this policy before being able to submit an Application. If there is anything you do not understand about this policy, please contact us at and we will clarify it for you.

At-Con Membership Pick-Up Hours

You can pick up your membership badges at either the self-service check-in or the will call station inside of Registration.

Cosplay Photoshoots and Meet & Greets

Those interested in holding a Cosplay photoshoot, wedding, gathering, meet & greet, or similar event should submit an application through our cosplay gatherings page.

Video Games, Board Games, and Card Games

If you wish to host a card game or board game, please contact our Tabletop Gaming department at

If you wish to host a video game tournament, please contact our Video Gaming department at


Each event participant group (panelist and performer groups) must select one person to be their point of contact, or Group Lead (GL). The GL has the responsibility of coordinating with Live Events Staff about the details of their group’s event(s). The GL is the only member of the group that can make changes, such as: adding/removing members of the group, description/content changes, schedule change requests, etc. Any requests, questions or concerns should be directed to The GL is responsible for ensuring that all members of their group are up to date on everything as well as making sure all members of the group understand and follow all ACen Policies.

Only the GL will be contacted regarding an event’s status. It is the responsibility of the GL to communicate any information to the rest of the group.

Speed Dating

Speed dating panels will not be considered.

Event Applications

All event applications must undergo a formal submission, review, and approval process before being included in the programming at Anime Central.

Live Events Deadlines

  • Applications Open – October 1, 2023

  • Applications Close – January 1, 2023

  • Schedule Change request cut off – February 15, 2023

  • Panelist Change request cut off – April 1, 2023

Do not submit payment for your membership before your application is approved! If a discounted or complimentary membership is desired; you will not receive a refund if you have already paid. Payment is due only after an application is approved or denied.

DO NOT SUBMIT PAYMENT for your membership before your application is approved! If a discounted or complimentary membership is desired; YOU WILL NOT RECEIVE A REFUND if you have already paid. Payment is due only after an application is approved or denied.

Host a panel, new show reviews, exciting games, traveling to Japan and exploring the Japanese culture, etc.

Part of a band, cultural group or other type of performer.

How to Apply for an Event

It is an amazing privilege for ACen when you share your knowledge and passion about a topic with the community through an event. This is your chance to show us what you can do. We get 400+ applications every year so we look for quality, not quantity.

What you need to include

A short paragraph about why you think your event would be a good addition to the convention. This is a great way to help us understand your event. Make your panel as unique, and relevant to the convention, as possible to increase your chances of being approved. Make sure to:

  • List specific topics/ideas you want to explore or cover.
  • List any Q&A type segments.
  • List any audience participation activities.
  • List any special things you will do to make your panel unique.
  • Link to any online media resources.
  • Link to or reference any books/groups/clubs.

Example Outline

Topic: Title of your panel
Background: 2-3 sentences about you (and your group)
Qualifications: 1-2 short paragraphs of why you can run the event. For example, if you want to host a Japanese language panel, you need to explain your educational background and experience with the language.
<list any specific credentials or requirements>
Outline: See above

General Pointers

  1. The more availability you/your group have over the weekend the better chance you will have of being accepted, just make sure you aren’t selecting times someone isn’t actually available.
  2. Powerpoint is a good idea, but DO NOT JUST COPY/PASTE US YOUR POWERPOINT!
  3. A group is a good idea, having multiple people helps drive questions and discussion can help fill gaps.
  4. Audience participation is good.
  5. Do not rely on the internet, have your content 100% available offline or saved.
  6. Time your event before the convention to make sure it will fit into your scheduled slot.
  7. Think of a topic/idea that is unique to you.
  8. Understand the Live Events Participants Policy or ask us at if you have any questions.
  9. Gameshow or roleplay character panels are generally not a good idea.

Event Criteria

  1. All decisions regarding acceptance or denial of applications are made at the sole discretion of the Live Events Management team. Denied applications may be re-considered if all management requested changes are made.
  2. Applications will be considered on a first come first serve basis. Those who apply first have a greater chance of getting a slot and their requested date & time. After the February 1st deadline, applications will be put on a waitlist and will be considered only if we have space available.
  3. A single person may not participate in more than 5 events total. This is to avoid difficulty in scheduling. If a person is involved in 5 events the 5th event will likely be scheduled on the Sunday of the convention.
  4. Group participants may only be changed prior to January 1st. Changes must be submitted by either the GL, or a group member with the GL copied on the request email if the GL is stepping down. After the January 1st deadline, all events will be locked to the group participants that are registered for it.
  5. Attendance to events cannot be limited outside of the room capacity.
  6. Preferred seating is not allowed for events. This includes, but is not limited to, only allowing those in cosplay to enter, allowing family and friends to enter the event first, etc. This excludes attendees with EAS passes (see the Event Management section below).
  7. An event cannot charge their attendees money. Participants may not sell anything during their event, including, but not limited to, merchandise or supplies. Any event found engaging in these or similar activities will be canceled and will not be allowed to return.
  8. Event participants may not pass out or sell ANY food or drink, store bought or homemade. This includes, but is not limited to, candy, chips/pretzels, pocky, ramen, water, soda pop, tea, and coffee. Any event found engaging in these or similar activities will be canceled and will not be allowed to return.
  9. Live Events ONLY supplies one projector, sound system, and two mics in Panel rooms. Live Events stages are plug and play only for audio and video. Event participants are required to provide all additional needed equipment.
  10. Live Events DOES NOT provide the following:
    • Any sort of computer/laptop/tablets.
    • Electronics outside of those described above.
    • Any sort of cable needed to plug YOUR equipment into the technology we provide. If you need to know what type of cable is needed please email us at
    • An internet connection. Internet connections cannot be purchased for any specific event space. You will need to purchase a wireless connection through the venue that your event is being held in.
    • Pens, Markers, Pencils, Sharpeners, Paper, Whiteboards, Sign Stands, or any other general office supplies. Participants will need to provide these if they are required for their panel.
  11. To conduct a Japanese Language or Educational event, verbal and/or written proficiency in the language or topic must be demonstrated. If you wish to run such an event you may be asked to interview to show proficiency.

18+ Events

Any event that could be identified as inappropriate for minors or that contains adult material will be marked as 18+. This determination can be made by either the event participant(s) or by Live Events Management during the application process. All participants and attendees for 18+ events must be 18 years of age or older on the day of the event, no exceptions.

Event content that may be marked as 18+ upon review include, but are not limited to;

  • Adult Language/Cursing
  • Violence
  • Blood/Gore
  • Hentai
  • Nudity/Nude or Partially Nude images or videos
  • Sexual Intercourse
  • Sexuality/Orientation
  • Yaoi/Yuri

Attendees and the EVENT PARTICIPANTS must have an Anime Central 18+ wristband to gain entry to 18+ events. Wristbands can be acquired by presenting a government-issued ID at a designated wristband location showing that they are 18 years of age. No attendee will be admitted to an 18+ panel without the official wristband. This includes ACen staff wishing to attend an 18+ panel.

Panelist Memberships

A panelist membership is issued as a form of compensation for the service of conducting one or more panels for Anime Central. A panelist membership badge provides admission equivalent to the purchase of a Full Weekend membership. It does not provide any back-stage or privileged access to the convention beyond the ability to conduct their specific panel during its allotted time period.

  • Panelist Membership Badges ARE NOT mailed out.
  • All membership badges are available for pick up in the Registration area of the convention center.
  • A photo ID is required by all Panelists age 16 or older to pick up their membership badge.
  • A panelist can only pick up their own membership badge, not co-panelist membership badges.
  • Accepted panelists must register prior to May 1 in order to receive their discount. Discounts are not applicable after May 1.

The discount for hosting one panel is 50% for the first three panelists (Group Lead, Co-Panelist 1 or Co-Panelist 2) listed on a panel. Any additional panelists listed will not receive a discount on their membership. Participation in a second panel as one of the first three panelists listed will provide a 100% discount. Each panelist is tracked separately, meaning that if someone participates in one panel a group of friends and then participates in a second panel on their own, they would still receive the full discount.

There is no discount provided for panelists listed as Extra Panelists on a panel and no additional discount provided for those listed as one of the first three panelists on more than 2 panels.

The discount does not apply on top of any other discounts such as tier discounts, group discounts, service member discounts, or child memberships.

  1. If a membership is purchased prior to the approval of an event application and a discount, NO REFUND will be provided. NO EXCEPTION will be granted under normal circumstances. If an event is canceled a refund will not be granted.
  2. If an event application is denied, the registration pricing tier that was in effect at the time the COMPLETED application was received will be applied. If the application was submitted during Tier 2, and denied in Tier 3, the applicant(s) will receive Tier 2 pricing.
  3. Attendee memberships are non-transferable and non-refundable, but the status of a Panelist membership can be transferred to another attendee if that panelist is leaving their panel and a new attendee is taking their place. For example – A member of a panel quits, they will lose their panelist membership status, while retaining Attendee status, and the person replacing them gets the Panelist status instead. If a Panelist drops from hosting their panels they will lose their discount and be required to pay for their membership through Registration in order to attend Anime Central.
  4. If you lose your membership badge, there is a $30 replacement fee. A membership badge can only be replaced once; if it is lost a 2nd time the replacement will be at the full at con price.
  5. A maximum of three (3) discounted panelist membership may be granted per group (Group Lead, Co-Panelist 1 & Co-Panelist 2). You may have more than 3 panel members but additional panelists will not benefit from the discount and will need to pay full price for their memberships unless they are involved in other panels where they are listed as one of the first 3 panelists.
  6. All listed panelists for a specific panel must take part in performing the panel. Anyone not performing in the panel they are registered for will have their applied panel membership discount revoked.
  7. If you are also an Artist participating in Artist Alley, your Artist Alley membership takes priority over your panelist membership. You will not have 2 membership badges; you will only have an Artist membership badge but your panelist discount does still apply.
  8. If a group was a no show at the previous year for Anime Central they will not be eligible to receive a panelist membership or host a panel for the current year.

Performer Memberships

A performer membership is issued for select events at the discretion of Live Events Management. Please fill out the event application or contact Live Events at for more information.

Event Scheduling

All events are a minimum of 1 hour long. Time will increase in intervals of 30 minutes. (1 hour, 1:30, 2 hours, etc.) Applicants should consider the time it takes to set up and/or break down their event (10-15 minutes) when requesting their time slot as additional time beyond what is requested will not be provided for this.

  1. Participants MUST begin to wrap-up a minimum of 10 minutes before the scheduled ending time. This is so they will be able to tear down and end in time for the next event to begin. Live Events Staff will enforce this.
  2. Events that begin late due to late arrival and/or problems setting up equipment that was not provided by Anime Central will still be required to end as scheduled.
  3. Events that have not started within 15 minutes of the scheduled start time due to the late arrival of the event participants will be canceled. Live Events Staff will enforce this.
  4. Live Events Staff must be informed in the event of an emergency or other occurrence that will prevent the event participants from conducting their scheduled event(s). You can email us at
  5. Anime Central retains the right to reschedule an event to a different time or location at any time and for any reason. The event participant or GL will be notified if any changes are made to their event.
  6. Participants may request a change to the scheduled date/time for their event before January 1st. It may not be possible for Live Events Staff to grant all time change requests. Time slots and locations are given out on a first come first serve basis.
  7. Participants must inform us of when they are absolutely not available due to arrival/departure times, work schedules, or involvement in other ACen events such as the fashion show, masquerade, etc. while filling out the Application. We will consider this when placing events into the schedule. We must be informed of this in the application form. Any times selected as available will be considered during scheduling.
  8. If a situation outside of Anime Central’s control, such as a fire alarm, tornado drill, etc., hampers or prevents any events from running during their scheduled time, the events that were in progress will be notified by Live Events Management once the situation is over if they will be allowed to run past their scheduled end time, and told their new time frame if an extension is possible. Participants who do not return after such an occurrence will be considered a no show and the event will be cancelled.

Event Management

  1. Attendees with the appropriate EAS indication on their membership badge are given early entry and/or seating, and are allowed to bring up to three companions. Event participants must be aware that people using wheelchairs or scooters will be requested to park in front of the first row. Live Events Staff may, at their discretion, either A) allow them to enter during setup time (preferred), or B) allow the handicapped party to enter first once the room is ready and hold the line back until they are seated.
  2. All events are on a first come first serve basis. Event space will be cleared of attendees after each event has ended.
  3. Event participants MAY NOT seat friends or family before anyone else in line unless they fall under the EAS Policy.
  4. ACen does not allow priority entry. Event participants may not only allow certain groups to enter the room, such as only attendees in cosplay outfits, or allow certain groups to enter before others are admitted into the event. The line will be let in as a first come first serve while keeping the EAS policy in mind.
  5. Event participants must yield to Live Events Staff and Management decisions. Any violation of this may result in the event being cancelled and the offending participant(s) being prohibited from applying to participate in future Anime Central conventions. This includes following directions given by staff, and conduct with staff. Belligerent and/or rude encounters will be subject to disciplinary action.
  6. Participants must begin their event within 10 minutes of the start time. If pre-setup is required it needs to be done and the line let in by 10 minutes past start.

Live Events Participants Conduct

Performers and panelists are expected to behave in a professional manner when coordinating with Anime Central Staff and while conducting events at the convention. For policy violations see the section on Disciplinary Actions.

  1. Inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated. It is Anime Central Staff’s right to determine what is considered inappropriate.
  2. Participants may not consume alcohol just before or while conducting an event.
  3. Participants may not offer food and/or drink to attendees while conducting an event. This includes, but is not limited, to candy, tea, pocky, etc.
  4. Behavior deemed inappropriate during events where legal minors, defined as those under 18 years of age, may attend could result in the termination of the event in progress and/or the cancellation of all of the participant’s scheduled events.
  5. 18+ events – Government issued ID will be checked at the issuance of 18+ wristbands. We require people attending to have one of these wristbands on them prior to entry. If there are any signs of tampering entry can be denied. No participants in this event may be below the age of 18.
  6. Participants may not present materials that violate copyright or other intellectual property rights within the United States. Reasonable Fair Use exceptions may apply. FanSubbing – fan-subtitled content is a violation of copyright laws in most countries including the US unless permission is granted by the party holding the copyright to the material. See this link for more information

Disciplinary Actions

All disciplinary actions are at the discretion of Live Events Management and may vary in severity based on the violation. Violation of the terms of this policy may result in:

  1. Termination of an event in progress and/or cancellation of all of the participant’s scheduled events.
  2. Panelist or performer membership badges will be revoked on the spot.
  3. Probation for the next convention year that a participant/group requests to conduct an event.
  4. Event participants violating the terms of this policy while on probation will be subject to being banned from conducting an event for a minimum of two convention years. During this time, banned participants may not submit event applications to Anime Central or act as event participants during the convention.