Cosplay, Culture and Creativity: ESU’s Anime Club Hits Colossalcon East, at Kalahari Resorts in the Poconos

Chrissy Rose as "Sailor Jupiter" and Janice Tieperman as "Sailor Mercury" Photo Credit/ Erica Dymond

By Janice Tieperman 

News Editor

 To kick off the new semester, ESU’s Anime Club attended the inaugural convention of Colossalcon East, held at Kalahari Resorts in the Poconos. 

 While the convention spanned from last Friday to Sunday, the majority of club members met up on Saturday for the event, which opened its doors at 10 a.m. While some dressed casually, others paid tribute to some of their favorite characters from anime by decking out in full cosplay. 

Anime members in full cosplay
Photo Credit/ Erica Dymond

 Upon entering the convention center, club members were introduced to an otherworldly atmosphere as fans and content creators alike traversed the premises. Countless individuals attending the convention dressed in cosplays of their own, which provided a warm, accepting environment for those looking to geek out about their favorite anime series’ and franchises. 

 “It was always like a faraway dream for me to go to a con like this,” said Victor Arias, a junior who is currently shadowing to be the future president of Anime Club. “I honestly wish I had taken time to make a schedule so I would know what to do and when to do it.” 

 Back-to-back panels and exhibitions lined the day’s schedule, providing intriguing explorations of Japanese culture in the form of show discussion, voice actor interviews, sword demonstrations and more.   

 Art, food and other merchandise was also available for viewing and purchase in Artist Alley, which was held in the centermost room of the convention center. Wares ranging from melon bread and Japanese soda to official figurines and plush toys from various anime shows were also available. 

 “As someone who had never attended a convention in their life or ever considered themselves as a convention goer, I can definitely say that I had a wonderful time with my friends and all the sights to behold,” said junior and club member Kristen Flannigan. “I think one of my favorite places had to be the Artist’s Alley and seeing all the different artists. Despite its small size, I saw so many people with one common interest and showing off the characters they loved through cosplay or discussion.” 

Being able to interact with other fans of the same shows and franchises was one of the biggest highlights of the day. 

“Colossalcon was an experience for someone going to their first convention,” said junior club member Glenn Williams. “Seeing people dress up as characters that I loved and seeing how much effort that they put into their cosplays was amazing, and I hope to go to many more cons in the future.” 

Other club members share identical sentiments. 

Arias added, “I just can’t wait for next year and I’ll be doing it for three days next time.” 

 Interested in anime and Japanese culture but weren’t able to make it out to last weekend’s convention? Join ESU’s Anime Club, a localized community of anime lovers on Tuesdays and Fridays from 3 to 5 in Stroud 210. 

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