Photos courtesy of Anime Anonymous (Left) Anime Anonymous hosted its first virtual anime convention, AnonCon, in place of its annual Sweethearts Cafe on March 27. (Right) Students submitted artwork of anime characters and themes to be showcased during AnonCon. The artists from left to right include @brokentethers on Tumblr, @just_a_weeb_uwu on Instagram, and an anonymous individual.

AnonCon ties anime community together

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As a welcome start to spring break, the Anime Anonymous (AA) cabinet officers adapted to social distancing policies by hosting AnonCon with Rosemead High School’s Anime club on March 27. The event aimed to unite the anime community together during the challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The goal was to have an event to bring people together, pandemic or not, and to have fun in an uplifting environment,” senior and AA President Jasmine Flores said. “Although we did not entertain as many people as we would have liked to, watching the interactions between who was there and my cabinet did make me feel like we had a small community of our own.”

In order to ensure AnonCon had no hiccups, AA started planning the event in February, meeting together and establishing an itinerary of the activities which started at 4 p.m. There were several challenges to creating a balanced event to replace the Sweethearts Cafe, AA’s annual school event. Ultimately, AA found AnonCon “easier to plan” than their previous events because there was no need to purchase additional supplies. 

“My cabinet had to be really flexible, as there were obstacles, such as advertising and changing the activities due to the lack of video submissions,” Flores said. “To address this, we showed what was submitted and also work from other online creators. Regardless, the activities went really well in terms of planning and executing.”

Attendees were invited to submit videos of them performing a talent, photos of their artwork, and images of their cosplay outfits by March 21. Students observed these works during AnonCon in addition to playing anime trivia and group games and listening to manga voiceovers, bringing the beauty of anime and Japanese media to life. 

“Anime can bring many people together in harmony, and with this event, people were able to show their talents as well as make new friends along the way,” junior and AA Vice President Ryan Giberti said. “The bonds that people made are what I think are really important.”

Although no major events are planned in the near future of AA, the club continues to brainstorm new and engaging ways to attract individuals into the wonders of the anime community.

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