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Mesa, AZ – Taiyou Con 2013 is a three-day anime focused convention that was held at the Hilton Phoenix East/Mesa in Mesa, Arizona this last weekend of January 4th through January 6th. Although the convention is a smaller one, the venue was a comfortable size to accommodate all the attendees. It definitely makes up for the small size with its programming. It offered a variety of programming from anime, video games, art, and music to cosplay, fashion, and many exciting guests.

The signature events continue of course, such as the Masquerade, the Maid Café, the Lolita Tea Party, the J-Fashion Show, and the raves. The Masquerade was on Saturday night and allowed contestants to show off their best handmaid cosplays. The Maid Café, brought to us by At Your Service, featured wonderful dances and skits while being served lovey treats by maids and butlers. One skit included the maids performing Gangnam Style with a Psy costumer. Attendees enjoyed games and tried their best to win marvelous prizes. Lolitas Cherise Kellogg and Chelsea Hauston ran the Lolita Tea Party, called the Wicked Circus. It was beautiful display of Lolita costuming as well as fun and games. The J-Fashion Show, run by local Lolita fashion designer Poision Sugar, was on Friday and was a stunning display of designers and artists sharing their Japan inspired fashions. Also on Friday, a local Arizona cosplayer known as Smoldering Flame Cosplay ran the Nyotalia Cosplay Café, a gender swapped twist on the anime Hetalia. The raves on Friday and Saturday night allowed attendees to dance and enjoy amazing music. Touhou Rave was on Friday night and GNN’s own Hong Le showed off his DJ skills for everyone and the Adventure Time Rave was Saturday night.

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Main guests included exquisite cosplayer Maridah known for her Saber from Fate Stay Night, professional costumer Tristen Citrine, the lovely voice actresses Christina Vee  known for voicing Mio in the anime K-ON! and Lauren Landa who is well-known as Litchi Faye Ling in Blazblue: Continuum Shift, talented voice actor Sonny Strait who voiced Krillin from Dragonball Z, and Kirby’s Dream Band. I had the pleasure of interviewing the beautiful ladies Christina Vee and Lauren Landa who were both more than willing to talk about their vast experience in the voice acting industry. Sadly, they were unable to share any current or future projects with us but they were a delight to meet and speak with.

Overall, this was a very well put together and fun convention to attend with programming for everyone!

Stay up to date for 2014 announcements here on their Facebook: www.facebook.com/taiyoucon

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