Taiyou Con 2020 is our absolutely our favorite Arizona convention of the year because of their hard work, dedication, and strong connection with the community. This year was their 10 year anniversary and it featured a number of new guests and a wealth of events for attendees to enjoy. If you are unfamiliar with Taiyou Con, it is a three-day convention focused on celebrating Japanese culture, cosplay, and anime. It is held in the Mesa convention center and every single year it seems to grow in size, no doubt thanks to how fun the event is every year.
We sent our two staff members, Jessica Carlson and Connor Heinzmann who helped tremendously in their coverage of the event! Be sure to check them out to support them and all of their hard work. In the past, Taiyou Con has been a hot spot for local cosplayers to come together for a fun time and start off the year with their latest creations. This year was no different as we saw many faces, both familiar, and new, grace the convention floor in their awesome costumes.
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Incredible guests could be seen at the convention such as Iwood Cosplay, PiggyNukka Cosplay, Marie Miyake, Rei Matsuzaki, and more! There is something great about not only getting to attend panels hosted by these guests to hear about their careers but also to have the chance to actually meet them in person. Taiyou Con does a wonderful job of bringing hard-working creators and professionals to their convention. From all angles, it seems like the guests also have a fun time coming to Arizona to meets convention-goers as well!
There was a sea of both local and out of state vendors that offered one of a kind wares to consumers. Most of the content related to the Japanese theme or anime but what I always love is seeing the vendors who came with creative content that took mainstream series and put their own spin on it. A lot of people came out in droves to support both the convention and the vendors and seeing such support for local creators was amazing!
Two of my favorite events of Taiyou Con were the Dobutsu Lounge and Sumuji Maid Cafe. Although they are very similar in their approach of catering to guests with entertainment and games, they differ in the fact that Sumuji focuses on being cute with their costumes while Dobutsu is sultry. Not to mention the Dobutsu Lounge themes each event and the performers then craft their costumes accordingly. I’ve attended both events and can confirm they are a blast!
We highly recommend Taiyou Con to fans of anime and who are looking a great time. There is free parking, food trucks, it is well organized, locally owned, and so many other great aspects that make it a win. You can find more information about Taiyou Con at their website!