The first ever Culture Japan Con (CJC) took place on the 17th and 18th of August 2013 at Straits Quay Convention Centre Penang Malaysia which turned out to be much more successful than any of us had anticipated for a first event which was attended by 7500 comrades!
We sold tickets to 6000 comrades out of which 1500 were pre-orders for 2 day tickets - this gives us a total of about 7500 turnstile attendees over the 2 days.
The theme of CJC is "Comrade" and follows on the concept of Culture Japan Night (CJN) where attendees can enjoy activities and interact with guests in a relaxed environment.
Where possible, we created as many opportunities for fans to interact with our guests and it was great to see that many people mentioned that CJC had a homely feel to it. We even had a study area for folks to cram for their exams ^o^
For the guests, I thought it only made sense to invite my close comrades too who where voice actress Yuu Asakawa, illustrator Ikkyuu-sensei, illustrator Shirahane Nao-sensei (DMYO), cosplayer Maridah, cosplayer Angie and music band Vividblaze.
Many of the vendors were also comrades who I have been working with for a while and include Good Smile Company, Bushiroad, Kinokuniya, Little Akiba, Nozomi, VBG Network, AFA Shop, Comic Fiesta, Tomodashi T-shirts, Sakura Maiden Artworks and Infinity Sky. We also had a load of doujin booths too.
A quick thanks to sponsors B&W, Little Akiba and VBG. Also thanks to Air Asia, Holiday Inn, Holiday Tours, SQCC, Gamertakus, The Japan Foundation, the Japanese Embassy, WOW Japan, Aeon, Oh Sushi and all who made this event possible.
The following video by Media Partner WOW JAPAN gives you a taste of the event but focuses on Cosplay. More video coverage on YouTube too.
We had been taking notes running up to and after CJC for a post mortem that we recently had. I will be publishing all our bad judgement calls and learnings in a report for you too so that you can use those notes to put together your own events.
While CJC was announced back in June, we didn't really have time to work on CJC until after Anime Expo which left us with only 6 weeks to put CJC together meaning that all of us put in quadruple time to make the event happen - this photo taken after CJC shows us in the Left For Dead pose ><
There were so many unknowns as it was our first event and had no idea how many people were going to come. Many folks in Malaysia asked "Why Penang?" then folks outside of Malaysia asked "Why Malaysia?" and Martians asked "Why on Earth?"
I understand that KL being the capital of Malaysia would have most probably got us more attendees but what's more important than attendee numbers is that the everybody enjoyed themselves - we always focus on quality over quantity.
While its difficult to please absolutely everybody, CJC is organized by fans for fans and we know what its like to attend cons - where possible, we tried to make CJC a homely relaxed event and that is exactly the same feedback that we got from many of you.
Thanks again to all who came to support our first convention!
Will be posting more photos taken at CJC later which will focus on stage, the CJC official shop, booths, cosplay etc but for now am going to leave you with a wall of photos which were taken by photographers ARC Photography, Razrig, Yunamon, Jei and Fuminari - many staff members also helped take these photos too.
And that was our first ever Culture Japan Con which went so well that I decided that we should do...
Culture Japan Con 2! Details as soon! Which country do you want CJC to be held in?
In order to improve CJC, I need your feedback on your CJC experience - in return, you stand a chance of winning the 11th CJC Touch n Go card which you can't buy as it was given out at stage events.
To stand a chance to get hold of the card all you have to do is to fill in the Google Docs form below with your feedback. If you win we will ask you to show proof that you attended CJC ^^;
To increase your chances of winning or if you can't be bothered to fill in the form, I'd love you to share photos or videos of your CJC experience on Twitter or Facebook or YouTube and use the tag CJC2013.
I will choose entries at random and contact you for your mailing address. Winners will be announced on my Twitter and Facebook as usual.