EVENT: Annual anime convention offers cosplay, artists, and more May 16 at WCC

Anime and cosplay abounds at the sixth annual BA~CON — Bellingham Anime Convention — an all-day, all-ages fandom extravaganza from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, May 16, at Whatcom Community College’s Syre Center, 237 W. Kellogg Road.

BA~CON 2015 events include cosplay creation and game industry panels, Reset Games’ game room, and Wii U Super Smash Bros. Brawl tournament, a cosplay pageant, a timed art contest, meet-ups, Artist Alley, karaoke, and special guests. A dance party ends the evening.

Cosplay is creative self-expression through costuming, with cosplayers often dressing as characters from fandoms they enjoy. Popular fandoms include anime titles, Dr. Who, video game characters, and Disney movies. Costumes are encouraged for the event, but not required, and should be appropriate for all ages.

The convention has drawn a capacity crowd of 250 people each year for the past three years, outgrowing its space at Bellingham Public Library, said Jennifer Lovchik, BA~CON convention director and founder, and teen services librarian at Bellingham Public Library.

Doors open at 11 a.m. with opening ceremonies starting at 11:30. The dance party goes from 6 to 7 p.m. All ages are welcome; youths younger than 12 must be accompanied by an adult.

For the schedule and pre-registration, go to bellinghamanimecon.com.

Sponsors include Bellingham Public Library, Whatcom County Library System, Whatcom Community College’s Animation & Anime Club, Reset Games, Funimation, and Dakota Arts.