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Otakon Raises Over $34,000

Otakon Raises Over $34,000

Otakon is an anime convention in Washington, D.C. It is an annual three-day anime convention usually held between July and August. Otakon is run by the non-profit organization, Otakorp, Inc., whose primary purpose “is to promote the appreciation of Asian culture, primarily through its media and entertainment”.

From 1999 to 2016, Otakon was held at the Baltimore Convention Center in Baltimore, specifically in Maryland’s Inner Harbor district. Since 2017, it has moved to the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.

WHY DID OTAKON ASK FOR DONATIONS?

Last year’s convention (Otakon 2020) was originally scheduled for July 31 to August 2 at the same convention center. Otakon 2020 was, however, canceled due to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. Otakon held the Otakon Online virtual event on August 1.

The organization began requesting donations for the first time in January earlier this year, while also revealing that it is continuing to evaluate plans for 2021 and noted that the event may “potentially close” permanently.

Because of the cancellation of Otakon 2020 due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the organization is in a “precarious position”.

Brooke Zerrlaut, Otakon Chief of Staff, in an earlier newsletter said:

We use the proceeds from each year to plan the next Otakon and make sure we survive until then. So without the income from Otakon 2020, and the early pre-registrations we would normally see at this time of year, we are in a very precarious position. Put simply, in the next few months we will have to make a decision to continue planning for Otakon 2021, or potentially close our doors forever.

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UPDATE ON THE DONATION

In a recent announcement, Zerrlaut stated that the organization has raised more than US$34,000 in donations to support its Otakon anime convention. The convention is still accepting donations through its store and through Paypal.

This year’s Otakon anime convention will be held at Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. from August 6 to 8.

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