We have tons of main events every year, and additional events are added as panelists submit them - our main Chicago anime convention events are listed below. We have literally 100+ events every year. To give you an idea of the full schedule, there are tons of events also not listed here, including anime screenings, our special date auction, photoshoots, debates, game shows, and beyond.
Anime Midwest Program Book 2014
2014 Event Schedule!
Download last year's schedule.
Click here to see the 2014 schedule.
Our masquerade will be the best opportunity to show off your costumes and see some awesome, talented people. We have superior judges, and excellent competitors. We do everything we can to make your costumes look excellent. Do you want to compete? Get the full cosplay contest details first.
Our exhibit hall will feature some of the most awesome vendors ever, with tons of anime swag to take home. Dealers will be selling everything you can imagine, from costumes and corsets to pocky and DVDs, you'll be able to find some awesome stuff in our dealers room.
Back in 2009, we bought our first pachinko machine for engaging fans at our convention table. Shortly after that, we were bitten by the pachi bug, and now own 14 machines, in various stages of restoration. Pachinko is Japanese pinball, Japan's favorite pastime. Its been one of their most popular leisure activities for nearly a hundred years. Pachinko Fever sets up an interactive parlor that works just like it does in Japan (minus the Yakuza, of course), where you buy balls to play with, and redeem your winnings for prizes much like an American arcade. Our machines represent the history and evolution of pachinko over the last 55 years with machines dating from 1961 up to 2010, so we have a machine for everyone! Come try your hand at some great prizes and experience this really fun part of Japanese culture first hand with Pachinko Fever!
Our maid cafe is a fun experience similar to maid cafes in Japan - but much more suited to Anime Midwest. Come, and be the king of your own maid world (you'll find out what this means!)
Apply Here to be a Maid or Butler
We'll have some awesome games for you to play. • SOUND VOLTEX • beatmania IIDX • pop'n music • jubeat (2 Cabinets!) DanceDanceRevolution • Taiko no Tatsujin (2 Cabinets!) • Dance Dance Revolution Extreme / In The Groove • THE☆BishiBashi • Future TomTom • Dariusburst Another Chronicle EX
Our video gaming area features 32" LCDs screens and more, with gaming tournaments happening all weekend. Last year we even had DDR machines, Pump-it-Up, and more, to give you something fun to do during downtime (like we have that!).
We have several official, amazing DJs in our guest DJ lineup, including Party Monster DJs, Lucid Beats, and DJ Oso. We know how to break it down with awesome EDM dance music (hey, that's redundant!). Jumpstyle. Hardstyle. Techno. Trance. Maybe even dubstep? (If that's still cool by then). No stops and no bad DJs.Chicago Anime Rave
Formal Fantasy Cosplay Ball
As a special treat, our convention holds an annual fantasy ball. Admission is free to convention attendees with a badge. In addition, we will have professional formal dance lessons before the event begins, taught by an experienced dance instructor. For those without dates, we will even have our very own Date Auction on Friday afternoon, before the ball. Semi-formal outfits and above required for this exciting featured event.Chicago Formal Ball
Dante's Fabulous Date Auction
Unrivaled by any other convention, Dante's Fabulous Date Auction is your chance to win a date to the formal ball.... or several, if you're greedy. Join our sexy 15-con veteran host Dantes as they auction off other cosplayers to the highest bidder. Money goes towards improving the con, and 10% of all winning bids is donated to charity.
Anime Midwest features epic concerts every year including fantastic guests playing everything from anime theme song covers to unique shows filled with noir, rock, and tremendous energy. Everything about Anime Midwest's concerts is awesome.
Sleeping Samurai, founded in 2007, brings Interactive Entertainment to conventions across the country. Event attendees participate in foam weapon battles, tournaments, instructional panels, training sessions and more. We sell handmade foam weapons created by our staff - made to simulate historically accurate, Asian-inspired weapons. Custom & Fantasy weapon orders are available through them as well.
Anime Midwest has tons of panels, submitted and created by attendees like you. Talk about favorite shows, compete in homemade game shows, learn stuff, and more! Everything you love, from Lolita and Dolls, to Homestuck and Pokemon, we'll have it. Want to run a panel? Go to the event submission form.
We are excited to feature tons of cosplay events, in addition to the mainstage masquerade cosplay competition, including photoshoots, meetups, panels, and much more. If you are looking for the masquerade, check out the cosplay info page.
We provide the best in Chicago of free snacks, ramen, and rice all weekend. To help you get through the convention filled with energy, our ConSweet provides congoers with unlimited rice, ramen, and soda throughout the entire weekend. Rice/ramen/soda may not be taken out of the ConSweet, and please clean up after yourself.
Meetup with people who like the same stuff as you. Whether it's Ball Jointed Dolls, Lolita Fashion, Kingdom Hearts, J-Pop, or whatever, you'll make friends here.
Guests from Japan who can answer your questions about their designs, creations, and outfits. Lolita fashion designers from Japan will also participate in events like our tea party and fashion show.
Lolita Tea Party
Anime Midwest will have a brand-sponsored Lolita tea party event. Tickets are required, and more details can be found here.
Lolita Fashion Show
We may still announce details about a brand-sponsored fashion show. Also, Anime Midwest includes independent lolita fashion show is a chance to see some of the most endearing and newest lolita fashions created by local independent designers. Applications for models will be accepted a few months prior to the convention, after our guest designers are announced.Chicago Lolita • Apply To Be a Model
We have a ton of awesome guests and of course you can have their autograph. Autographs from most of our special guests are free, so bring your favorite DVD to get signed (no bootlegs, please).
Over 100+ events total.
There are also numerous panels and events not listed here happening at the convention, ranging from Karaoke to workshops. Please check out our website regularly so that you can find a more complete list when we post our program guide closer to the convention.