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Anime Banzai
Status Active
Genre Anime, Manga, Video games, culture
Venue Davis Conference Center
Location Layton, Utah
Country United States
First held 2005
Organizer Utah Anime Promotions
Official website http://www.animebanzai.org/

Anime Banzai is an annual three-day anime convention held during October at the Davis Conference Center in Layton, Utah. The name of the convention roughly comes from the Japanese word for "hooray". The convention is organized by Utah Anime Promotions and is run by a volunteer staff.

Programming

The convention typically features an AMV contest, arcade gaming, artist alley, board gaming, card gaming, cosplay contest, formal dance, karaoke, panel discussions, special guests, video games, vendors, and workshops.

History

Anime Banzai was founded by the Salt Lake Community College "End of the World" Japanese Animation Club in 2004. Over 600 people attended the first year, while the organizers were expecting less than 300 attendees. The convention was held at the Salt Lake Community College in the Student Center for two years, the Sheraton City Centre Hotel for three, until moving to the Davis Conference Center due to the convention's growth. The convention in 2010 brought $400,000 to the economy and signed a three-year contract with the Davis Conference Center. In 2011, the convention brought an estimated $350,000+ to the economy. The 2012 convention brought $491,000 to the economy and remained at the Davis Conference Center. The convention in 2013 signed an agreement to return to the Davis Conference Center until 2015.

Representatives of Anime Banzai, while commenting on articles discussing why Salt Lake City did not have a large comic con, have stated that the convention would like to (and most likely will) return to Salt Lake City. Problems include outgrowing most convention space in the area, outgrowing the Davis Conference Center, affordability of the Salt Palace, and they hoped a new venue will be built that can handle conventions like Anime Banzai. Anime Banzai 2020 was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Event history

Dates Location Atten. Guests
October 15, 2005 Salt Lake Community College
Salt Lake City, Utah
600
October 20–21, 2006 Salt Lake Community College
Salt Lake City, Utah
Ichidan, Ken Rand, Amy Reeder Hadley, and Spike Spencer.
August 31–September 1, 2007 Sheraton City Centre Hotel
Salt Lake City, Utah
Artbeat, Michael Dobson, Ichidan, and Steve "Warky" Nunez.
October 24–25, 2008 Sheraton City Centre Hotel
Salt Lake City, Utah
Tiffany Grant, Ichidan, Vic Mignogna, Steve "Warky" Nunez, and Sonny Strait.
October 16–18, 2009 Sheraton City Centre Hotel
Salt Lake City, Utah
3,000
(est)
Chuck Huber, Ichidan, Steve "Warky" Nunez, Michelle Ruff, and XDCosplayDX.
October 8–10, 2010 Davis Conference Center
Layton, Utah
3,200 Michael Coleman, Newton Ewell, Lynn Hardy, Ichidan, Steve "Warky" Nunez, Sonny Strait, and The Slants.
October 21–23, 2011 Davis Conference Center
Layton, Utah
3,500
(est)
Tonya Adolfson, Brad Beachell, Matt Cole, COO-Interactive Entertainment, Preston Cowley, Christopher Escalante, Chuck Huber, April Nunez, Steve "Warky" Nunez, Wendy Pini, Jan Scott-Frazier, and Lisle Wilkerson.
October 19–21, 2012 Davis Conference Center
Layton, Utah
4,146 L.B. Bryant, Steve "Warky" Nunez, Chris Patton, Amanda Rush, Micah Solusod, and David Vincent.
October 18–20, 2013 Davis Conference Center
Layton, Utah
Richard Ian Cox, Darrel Guilbeau, Kyle Hebert, Jamie McGonnigal, Christopher Robin Miller, Steve "Warky" Nunez, and Laura Post.
October 17–19, 2014 Davis Conference Center
Layton, Utah
Chuck Huber, Vic Mignogna, Steve "Warky" Nunez, Chris Patton, Jan Scott-Frazier, and Sonny Strait.
October 16–18, 2015 Davis Conference Center
Layton, Utah
Tanglwyst De Holloway, Michelle Ann Dunphy, Christopher Escalante, Bill Galvan, Danielle McRae, Steve "Warky" Nunez, Laura Post, and David Vincent.
October 21–23, 2016 Davis Conference Center
Layton, Utah
Chris Cason, Kara Edwards, Julie Rei Goldstein, Steve "Warky" Nunez, Steff Von Schweetz, and Kiba Walker.
October 20-22, 2017 Davis Conference Center
Layton, Utah
Sean Chiplock, Michaela Laws, Jamie McGonnigal, Daman Mills, Steve "Warky" Nunez, Pannon, and Diana Tolin.
October 19-21, 2018 Davis Conference Center
Layton, Utah
Ben Dunn, Cole Feuchter, Natalie Hoover, Steve "Warky" Nunez, Pannon, David Vincent, and Kiba Walker.
October 18-20, 2019 Davis Conference Center
Layton, Utah
Alpacosplay, Jennifer Cihi, Stefanie DeLeo, Ben Dunn, Newton Ewell, Trina Nishimura, Steve "Warky" Nunez, Pannon, Derek Stephen Prince, Jez Roth, Alejandro Saab, Tara Sands, and Bryan Young.

Coordinates: 41°05′03.7″N 111°58′50.2″W / 41.084361°N 111.980611°W / 41.084361; -111.980611

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