January Update - Hibanacon 2017 - Hibanacon 2017
Written by Mike on 23/01/2017
Greetings to you the bright sparks who follow Hibanacon. Welcome to the first post on our brand new website.

It’s taken us a lot of work to get this far with Hibanacon, so we thought we’d use an update each month to give you an idea of what we’re doing, and what we already have so far. Over the weeks and months until the convention itself we have a lot of additional content planned for the site, and it should appear via Facebook, Twitter, and the front page of Hibanacon.co.uk, we’ll tell you more of what to expect in the future at the end of this update.


Our first big announcement is that we’ve signed a contract for, and paid a deposit on, the venue, the delightful Jurys Inn Milton Keynes:


Jurys Inn enterance way    


This is a huge step for us as it means the convention has secured the time and the space we need to give you a great weekend. From Friday right through until Sunday we have an entire floor of the hotel for you, yes, that’s right, a whole floor. Walk out of the lifts and you are right in the heart of convention central, by which we mean “The bar is about 6 feet away”.


For you cosplayers having the floor like this is a perfect way not to ruin your painstakingly crafted hair and costume, plus you won’t be too far from our talented face painter who will be available on the weekend for any design you might want. Here are just a few of her designs:



But this convention isn’t just for cosplayers, no, what can other groups expect? Well, let’s just show you the kind of space we have:


Venue Map


We've marked out a few of the key areas such as ops and some of our event rooms already but there's a lot more we need to finalise, but just to throw some examples of how we're using this space:

  • If you want to watch anime, then we have a packed programme from Anime Limited, Manga/Animatsu, and also MVM Entertainment. We’ll be creating something that’s a mix of classics, new titles, and movies for you to come and watch, so hopefully a little bit of something for anyone.
  • If you want to party then we’ve got something for you too. Our mysterious president is busy arranging musical events for the evening once our main hall has been opened up (and, yes, the Hibanacon bar too). He may have walked past just now with a clipboard reading "Mandatory glowsticks", frankly he seemed a little maniacal...
  • How about those of you who want a bit of board gaming? Well that’s not a problem thanks to our traditional games room with a library of games for you to choose from. If you want to bring your own games (and we know a lot of people do) then you’re also welcome just please remember to check you’ve got all the pieces before you leave the hotel.
  • More of a fan of video games? Well we’ve also got a games room being filled out with some frankly staggeringly huge hardware. Currently we have a customised DDR cabinet, as well as a customised Rock Band setup, along with a selection of retro games, there may also be our events officer's pinball machine provided he can find the correct kind of repair engineer with a good eye for soldering, and a selection of spanners.  By the way, I wasn't kidding about the DDR machine, here it is at a previous convention:


As you can see we’ve got a lot of space to fill and we’re doing our best to make sure you have as packed a time as we can get. What comes next, though? Well, Hibanacon needs YOU! Yes, as much work/time/blood/tears/sweat as we can put in we need what every convention needs: volunteers! We’re looking for anyone with a passion for something, who wants to talk about it to be able to spread that passion and knowledge to other people. If you think you know more about Sentai than anyone else, or how to plan a Japanese road trip, or anything else you think people might be interested in then please do get in contact! Sign up forms should be available within the next few weeks.


Even if you don’t want to talk to rooms full of people there’s still opportunities to help out and lend a hand on the land. We need Gophers too! Live the glamourous life of telling a queue to move slightly closer to the wall, or direct people to empty seats at the opening ceremony. In all seriousness, though, Gophers are an essential part of every convention, and help with the smooth running of almost every event. Sign up forms for gophering will go live at the same time as those for events!


Now as we mentioned earlier we’re looking at posting an article on our site to update you on the convention once a month, and then an article every week outside of that. Now that you know a bit more about the convention let’s see what we’ll be expanding upon in the coming weeks:

  • More on our talented facepaint artist, Karen. We’ll be including details of when, where, and how much, as well as details on how to pre-book for more complex designs, or to suggest a design so she can add it to her repertoire beforehand!
  • Boardgames at conventions. As we have a Traditional Games room, and the committee are big on board gaming we thought it would be a good idea to talk about the increasing presence of board gaming as a whole at anime conventions.
  • Volunteering at Hibanacon: Gophering. In this article we’ll have more detail on how you can get involved in making sure Hibanacon is the sort of safe and welcoming space we want to make it.

Last but not least we’re looking to have ticket sales open as soon as possible. Our well trained web developer is hard at work making sure that when we open ticket sales you can actually buy them, we’ll make sure to get the word out on our various social platforms before anything goes live, though.


Please remember to let us know on Twitter, Facebook, or email if you have any questions, and if we get a particularly good question we may have to highlight it in our monthly update.

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