Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Anime North 2010 - Closing Ceremonies

Due to some delays, the improv comedy group the 404s did some more improv skits to entertain the audience while waiting for the closing ceremonies to begin. Among the prompts for the actors was "the worst place for Chuck Norris to show up." The first response was an actor (pretending to be Chuck Norris) saying "what's yaoi north?" which encouraged lots of laughs from the audience.

The closing ceremonies were led by Irwin Tan, the con chair for Anime North. He started off by saying that the estimated warm body count at Anime North this year was 18, 500 people! That includes an estimated 16, 000 attendees, plus all the staff, volunteers, dealers, guests, and others. Mr. Tan also reported that the charity auction was a success and that all pieces were sold.

He happily noted that next year will be Anime North's 15th anniversary. We wonder what exciting additions there will be for the anniversary next year?

Next we heard from some of the guests over the weekend.

Chris Ayres said that he had always wanted to come to Canada and that the fans exceeded his expectations. The audience was very proud to hear that!

Brittney Karbowski said the fans here are so awesome.

Greg Ayres took off his jacket to show off a Canadian hockey jersey, which he was really pleased to have. He said he had a phenomenal time and has met some of the nicest fans ever. He also thanked the fans for showing his brother how awesome Canada is. He ended with a simple "God bless the fans and Tim Hortons!"

Ricky Dick said thanks to everyone who helped behind the scenes to make everything go smoothly. He said he was also very appreciative of being a guest.

Nobuyuki Hiyama, via his translator, said that he enjoyed the convention and now really understands how passionate the fans are here. He will be sure to tell his colleagues about it. He promises to make something more awesome with his co-workers for all the fans to enjoy. Hiyama thanked the attendees for helping Anime North reach 15 years. He hopes to be able to return again next year and will be sure to keep that weekend open. He said that he will even try to learn some English because he wants to be invited again next year.

Next we heard from Derwin Mak, who was the masquerade director for the first two years of Anime North. He said that he is amazed at how the masquerade and costuming has grown. He also said that the attendees at Anime North are the otaku he loves the most!

After all the farewells from the guests able to participate in the closing ceremonies, another short video was shown with clips from various anime set to Belinda Carlisle's "Leave a Light On." The closing ceremony ended with a "sing-along" that the audience participated in.

It looks like Toronto fans can't wait until next year, after a fantastic event this time. That's all for our convention coverage for this year's Anime North. Here's to hoping for wonderful weather next May too!

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