Anime USA is a smaller convention in Washington DC. For the past 4 years it has been held at The Washington Marriot Wardman Park Hotel. AUSA is not a tiny convention but at the same time not huge. It is intimate with a beautiful venue & homey feel.

October 2016 was my fourth year attending Anime USA. I had not actually planned on attending this year since other members of our group could not go with me. A few of my out of state cosplay friends invited me to join them if they were able to get a room at the host hotel. Low & behold, success. I traveled and roomed with my friends page model Lostdreamz82 Chrissy, Ace5262 Katie, Chibitoon Cosplay Candice & Jeana. It was turned into Nerd Girls’ Weekend. We also hung out with many other cosplay friends like Rurouni-chan Katrina.

Instead of the usual con full of video shoots, panel coverage, and POV plans, I wondered the venue taking selfies with cosplayers and friends. I ran into so many people that I knew and had no clue would be attending AUSA. It was so much more relaxed and fun. Everyone loved the idea of taking selfies and they were a good icebreaker to start conversations. Also it made for a good excuse to run into the same people/friends multiple times over the course of the weekend. The fact that I didn’t have to run from location to location for “work” made it so less stressful. I even cosplayed multiple times and did an off sight cosplay photo shoot. I brought my Sith cosplay and Kaylee Frye from Firefly. The most fun was seeing and spending time with so many friends; walking the dealer’s room & artist alley, hanging out in the game room, eating pizza and shenanigans in the hotel room.

Even though there is SO MUCH to do at a convention, you don’t always have to do everything. Make sure to relax, enjoy yourself, and have fun with your friends. These are the best parts of a convention.

Anime USA 2017 will be held once again in the Marriot Wardman Park Hotel December 8-10