Nan Desu Kan is here! The Denver Nan Desu Kan or NDK is one of the biggest anime conventions in Colorado and it opens its doors for their 18th year on Friday, September 12 at the Denver Marriott Tech Center. I cannot be more excited for this event, it’s one of my favorite Colorado cons.
NDK is an annual convention where anime enthusiasts of all types gather to meet voice actors and anime contributors, play games, buy merchandise and art, and do other fun activities. The event is run by a non-profit organization called The Rocky Mountain Anime Association, a group dedicated to promoting Japanese culture in Colorado. This convention not only brings anime fans together but it also raises money for charity. This year’s charity is Colorado FIRST, an organization that teaches young people how to build robots and build an interest in science. NDK is also collecting can foods for Food Bank of the Rockies.
There are a lot of great voice actors coming to visit this convention. Though I’m very excited to see returning names like Patrick Saiz and Chris Patton, I’m disappointed to see a lot of repeated guests from previous years and not very many new names. I’m hoping they’ll get bigger names for future conventions. However, Rachel Robinson will be making her first appearance at NDK, she has a large list on her filmography but she’s mostly known as the voice of Fang from the Final Fantasy XIII trilogy. I’ll be interested to see what she has to say about her career in both the video game and anime industries. The guest list may not be as fresh as I would like it to be but what I love about the Geek culture is how interactive and open the stars and industries are. You can tell the guest enjoy coming to these conventions and love mingling with the fans.
I’m personally looking forward to the industry panels. This year anime companies FUNimation, Aniplex, and Crunchyroll are giving attendees special insider previews of upcoming titles and more! I’m very interested in how the industry works and what new titles I can look forward to seeing. In previous years they’ve shown some exclusive sneak peeks at upcoming anime. FUNimation even had a special screening of the Fairy Tail the Movie: Phoenix Priestess months before it came out in the US. I cannot wait to see what this year’s industry panels will have in store. Local companies like the Denver Film Society and the Denver Botanic Gardens will also have booths and specials at NDK.
The part I’m looking forward to most is the costumes! Last year’s cosplay was simply amazing and I’m looking forward to seeing what this year has to offer. Cosplayers have been preparing for months to show off their skills and talent and I’m very excited to see the results of everyones work. I anticipate that this year’s hottest cosplays will be from the series Kill la Kill, DRAMAtical Murder, Free! Eternal Summer, Tokyo Ghoul, and Attack on Titan.
Another big event at NDK is the Anime Music Video awards or AMV awards. AMVs are music videos that use clips from an anime to tell a story that goes with the music. Making an AMV takes a lot of time and talent and the end results are simply amazing. A list of 2013’s winners is available on NDK’s forums and can be viewed on YouTube. My favorites from last year were Shine A Light and This AMV Will Win An Oscar!.
Last year’s NDK was pretty amazing but there were a few chaotic events due to the weather. Anyone who attended the events on Saturday won’t forget the fire alarm that went off in the hotel causing the attendees and hotel staff to usher out of the building for a brief time. After that we were quickly pushed back in because of a tornado warning and a massive rain storm. Luckily the staff was very organized, no one was hurt, there wasn’t any damage to hotel property, and the convention resumed without anymore delays. This year there’s a slight chance of rain and snow on Friday so it will be a chilly weekend but keep an eye on weather updates for any changes.
It will be very difficult to pick out what panels to go to for NDK 2014 since there is so much variety. There’s a little something for everyone to enjoy and plenty of fun games and activities so there never will be a dull moment. If you’re planning to attend but haven’t pre-registered yet, there are at the door tickets available for the whole weekend or just a few days. I highly recommend getting there as early as possible because tickets run out quickly and parking runs out even quicker.