Local Anime Con Steps Back in Time

annual con has something for every “nerd” culture lover

Lauren Fisher

FANTASTICAL DOUBLE FEATURE. Hayao Miyazaki’s Howl’s Moving Castle and Jim Henson’s Labyrinth will screen at the Chippewa Valley Anime Con, which also features tons of activities, games, and cosplay.
FANTASTICAL DOUBLE FEATURE. Hayao Miyazaki’s Howl’s Moving Castle and Jim Henson’s Labyrinth (below) will screen at the Chippewa Valley Anime Con, which also features tons of activities, games, and cosplay.

Bring an old polaroid camera and film for the treasure hunt and win a gold coin – technically a dollar coin – at the third annual Chippewa Valley Anime Con. The event, organized by Thomas Jannusch, takes place April 14 Micon Cinemas in Chippewa Falls.

The festivities kick off at 10am with screenings of Hayao Miyazaki’s Howl’s Moving Castle and Jim Henson’s Labyrinth. Throughout the day, there will be a cosplay contest, oversized gaming including chess and Dungeons & Dragons, and a treasure hunt that will send participants to nearby locations to snap photos and gather items. Players may use any card (even the banned ones) at the Yu-gi-oh tournament.

When No-Brand Con made a move for Wisconsin Dells in 2015, some former participants of the convention weren’t ready to give up the local experience. Jannusch, who attends conventions around the United States, decided to keep the party rolling by organizing Anime Con. Don’t let the name fool you; this event is a celebration of all facets of “nerd” culture from anime to comics and role play to video games.

This year’s theme is “Going Vintage.” K3 Fantasy & Sports Cards out of Chippewa Falls is bringing old televisions for attendees to play classic video games on, and setting up a table for their products. Eau Claire Comics and Retro Distortion will also be present, along with a homemade plushie table, manga, and more.

For those seeking an extra challenge, Jannusch has arranged for a few opportunities to win a grand prize. The first person to complete a 1,000-piece puzzle, beat a classic video game, or answer a riddle (all of which are his choice) will receive a $100 prize. Only the first person to do any of these things will be eligible for the grand prize.

While participants come from Minnesota, Iowa, Madison, and more, attendance in past years has mostly been made up of locals. “It helps young people who can’t travel very far to big cons enjoy the culture,” Jannusch said. He estimates that about 500 people come to the convention each year to watch movies, play games, and hang out with others who are passionate about anime.

Doors open for Chippewa Valley Anime Con at 9:30am Saturday, April 14, at Micon Cinemas Chippewa Falls, 475 Chippewa Mall Drive. Movies begin at 10am. All events and games are free, and merchandise and concessions are available for purchase. This is an all-ages event.

Press and hold the up/down arrows to scroll.