Anime Central 2023

This past weekend on Saturday I went to Anime Central (ACen) up in Rosemont at the Donald E. Stephens (DES) Convention Center. The last time I went was in 2017.

I recently purchased a Sony 35mm f1.4 GM lens for my Sony A7iii mirrorless. I used this pair exclusively at ACen for all my shots. I’m getting a bit old now, and no longer want to carry too much gear on me. So I decided to trim my bag down a bit and go with just two prime lenses, a 35mm and 85mm. With just these two, I should be able to take most photos of either individuals portrait style, or group shots.

2023 Anime Central Entrance


I notice that the dance group that usually forms in the main lobby is getting bigger and bigger. I wonder how they organize it since it seems as though strangers can get up to join and do the exact same dance routine as the performers at any time. Do they plan this? Is the song or beat agreed to before hand?

Group Dance


The cosplay scene is so much better than six years ago. Everyone was having fun celebrating not just anime, but whatever fandom they wish to bring and share with others.

2023 Anime Central Cosplay Collage

Some Sailor scouts. I’m surprised that Sailor Moon is still so well known today.

Sailor Scouts

Among Us, a very popular game people played online together during the 2020-2022 pandemic years.

Among Us

Full album can be found here.

Pokemon Go Collaboration

I really liked how ACen worked with Niantic to have a special Pokemon Go game event during the weekend. From my count, they had eight special pokestops created for the event that physically coresponded to actual booths or areas of interest of the convention. It was really well done.

See: Pokémon GO Collaboration with Anime Central

Anime Expo is on July 1-4, 2023, and they are also collaborating with Niantic for a Pokemon Go event.

See: Anime Expo + Pokemon Go tweet

Anime Expo Pokemon Go promo

Final Thoughts

I’m glad that we are moving beyond the Covid-19 pandemic. Being isolated from friends/family these past few years was rough. It is great seeing familiar faces once again.

Things seemed much more back to normal now. I imagine that other upcoming summer conventions will be quite fun!

See also