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Katsucon 18

Katsucon was once again held in the Gaylord National Harbor this year, a waterfront resort hotel along the Maryland shores of the Potomac river. The Gaylord resort is an upscale vacation destination with all kinds of classy shopping, dining, and entertainment in the area. And Katsucon has risen to the standard. Now nearing almost 20 years old, Katsucon continues to improve each year and offers attendees a great variety of events, panels, and competitions.

The expanded facilities at the Gaylord have allowed Katsucon to expand guests, gaming, industry show space, dealers, and panels. There's something for almost all interests, and often enough to keep one busy all weekend. When Katsucon originally moved to the National Harbor, many of the facilities and local businesses were new. Since then, food and shopping options have expanded nicely. Where there were once only a few upscale restaurants, one can now find everything from relatively inexpensive fast food to fine dining options, all within walking distance. With the addition of a new CVS and other convenience stores, one no longer needs to find a way out of the National Harbor to get any last-minute items. And in coming years, a new casino will likely expand the local attractions even more.

The weather is always chancy with Katsucon. Some will remember the year a winter superstorm hit Sunday of Katsucon 9, closing roads and stranding many attendees at the hotel for at least another night. Held during February, the weather can be anything from wet, snowy, and windy to almost spring-like with bright sunshine and gentle breezes. Normally weather isn't much of a concern for a fondom convention, since many people won't venture out until they need to go home. However, the beautiful interior architecture of the hotel resort and the expansive outdoor landscaping make Katsucon a favorite location amongst cosplayers. There are tans of great places to take photos, even if the many non-convention shoppers tend to ask questions.

Katsucon held the World Cosplay Summit US prelims this year, with teams of two showing off their best for the competition. The high-intensity competition isn't meant for everybody, but it does mean spectators get to see some of the most creative skits and costumes of the season. Many cosplayers spend the better part of a year getting ready for the event. A regular masquerade is held along side the WCS. Entrants there are free to enter any kind of skit and costume, and the more relaxed rules often allow for more lax but also more enjoyable skits.

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