A few more updates on the convention scene:
• LeftField Media has announced both a return to live events and a new hire. LeftField puts on several much-liked shows including Awesome Con and and Rose City Comic Con. And in-person dates for all of these shows have been announced:
- Awesome Con, Washington DC: August 20-22, 2021
- Rose City Comic Con, Portland, OR: September 10-12, 2021
- Anime NYC, NYC: NOVEMBER 19-21, 2021
- Anime Frontier, Dallas TX: December 3-5, 2021
According to Leftfield president Kelly Comboni, “We are excited and honored to be bringing this amazing community of fans, exhibitors, guests, and industry professionals back together in-person.”
Awesome Con has already announced William Shatner, George Takei, Christina Ricci and Sam Maggs as guests — so it looks like people are willing to sign up for going to shows even as the COVID situation is uncertain.
AnimeNYC’s website lists Viz, Funimation and other major anime/manga players as sponsors, and several guests. This was a great show in its last outing back in 2019, and I would welcome its safe return.
To show that they are revving up for in person events, LeftField announced that they have hired veteran showrunner MK Goodwin, formerly Global Director of Content and Talent at ReedPOP, as their new Comic Portfolio Director to oversee Awesome Con and Rose City Comic Con.
Goodwin brings with her more than 10 years of industry experience working with ReedPop on the growth of events like New York Comic Con, Emerald City Comic Con, C2E2, and Star Wars Celebration. In her new role, Goodwin will be responsible for LeftField’s Comic Portfolio of events, which contains Awesome Con and Rose City Comic Con, as well as new business development.
“MK brings with her over a decade of experience building professional events with major partners, publishers, and guests,” said Comboni. “We couldn’t be more excited to welcome her to the team, and we look forward to her leadership and strength adding to our events across the US.”
Awesome Con is definitely the earliest major show on the calendar….we’ll see how this shakes out.
• Meanwhile, ReedPop has announced that Keystone Comic Con in Philadelphia will not be held this year. However, they hope the show will return in the future. The following letter was sent to fans:
To our Keystone Comic Con community –We know it’s been a minute. Earlier this year, we announced dates and timelines for our 2021 ReedPop event line-up and many of you noticed that a key show was missing from that list.At the time, we were hoping to be looking forward to the third year with our Philly community—to be cheering on a wrestling match on the Show Floor, watching cosplayers gather for photo ops in Cosplay Central, or running to the Reading Terminal Market to down a pretzel-wrapped hot dog for lunch.Unfortunately, it wasn’t in the cards for us, and we won’t be running Keystone Comic Con this year. This was not an easy decision for us to make and we didn’t make it lightly. We worked for a long time to try and figure out a way to still build you a fantastic physical event. Knowing that we won’t be on-site, feeling the energy of our fans and exhibitors is heartbreaking for a team that put years of hard work into the creation and growth of this show.While it won’t be returning in 2021, as the world gets back to normal and things stabilize, we hope to bring KCC back in the future. In the meantime, we’ll keep the spirit of the event alive and continue to connect with all of you through our virtual initiatives at FindtheMetaverse.com. We encourage you to sign up for our Metaverse newsletter to keep up to date with the exciting experiences to come.Thank you for your support in what has been a difficult year for our entire community. Thank you for your patience and understanding at every turn, and for your continued love and excitement for Keystone Comic Con since its start.
All of the things mentioned in the letter indeed made Keystone a fun con, although one that still had modest crowds. Although the future of live events is a work in progress, Philadelphia is still a prime venue.