Your guide to summer conventions

Cheyanne Kramer, Managing Editor

Conventions aren’t cheap. But I scrounged up enough cash to attend a few this summer, namely NotCon, Anime Central, ColossalCon, Glass City Con and Fan World.

Let’s go in order.


I was looking forward to a weekend of fun with my friends at Midwest Media Expo However, the hotel cancelled the convention two days beforehand. There were accusations that it was the convention’s fault and that it was the hotel’s fault, but no matter which party caused the cancellation, I was suddenly without plans.

However, convention guest John St. John decided to start his own convention with a two-day notice. It was fun, and free, but I have no idea if it’ll happen again next year, or if Midwest Media Expo will return. 

Anime Central

I attended this with a friend of mine who works as a cosplay photographer so I spent most of the weekend with them exploring the convention and taking photos of some amazing cosplayers. The venue for ACEN is breathtaking. It’s in Rosemont, IL.

We also ended up with a free hotel. Turns out they overbooked and instead of turning guests away, they put us in another hotel down the road for free. There was a wide array of programming and even a small costume contest held by one of the exhibitors, so even beginners could try their hand at a contest. The badge price was completely worth it.


ColossalCon has always been one of my favorite conventions. My team and I returned this year as panelists and it was a fantastic experience. 

Colossal had affordable food and nothing can beat a waterpark convention at Kalahari in Sandusky, OH. The only downside: the price. Our hotel slept six comfortably, and our grand total was around $1300 for the weekend. On top of that, badges were around $65 at the door.

So if you’re broke, Colossal might not be the convention for you. But if you can save up, it’s worth the splurge. There are many panels and events throughout the weekend including a rave, a formal ball and even a flea market on Sunday. Attendees could even pay an extra $15 to stay in the waterpark a few hours after closing. 

Glass City Con

We also went to Glass City as panelists, and were invited to attend. Our hotel was very inexpensive and it was connected to the convention center, which was an added bonus.

The convention staff had set up small areas to take photos, which meant photoshoots turned out amazing. There was cheap food and the game room was huge, which was fantastic if you love obscure Japanese rhythm games.

Fan World

This hotel was shady. It was older than most members of my family, and the air conditioner made our room smell like curry. Also, the convention staff stayed in a different hotel, which made me a little uncomfortable.

The cat calling around the convention center was horrible too and ended with a friend of ours changing out of her cosplay early because of how bad it got. For me, the only thing that made it worth it was the people I met and the people I went with. So if anything, it would make a fun addition to an already-planned trip to Niagara Falls.