Youmacon is the closest (in Detroit) US con I attend, its so close I still get my Canadian cellular reception!
As I'm busy with my new job in Toronto I wasn't able to make it to Detroit until about 11:30pm with my friend Ammiechan, questioning at the border was pretty strict this time around; "Have either of you ever been arrested or finger-printed before?" "No I'm here take pictures of people in costumes." (What I should have said). It was Halloween night after all!
I picked up my badge, dropped stuff in my hotel room, and joined some friends at the Volt bar. I had a single beer which had me/us talking crazy till 3:30am. I received a RMT massage it was so good thank you Ashli! Hit the hay by 4am, got up around 9:30 Sat morning.
Saturday was busy with photoshoots, I'm still surprised I took so many but there are many wonderful cosplayers out there! I did have a few hours to head to the cobo center to check out the artist/dealer's room and some other stuff in that building. The dealer's room had a nice variety of merchandise and a good variety of artists were present as well, crafters, painters, miniaturists, weavers, etc... I bought a few small items there and said hello to ZeekayArt and Monique. Hello. Goodbye. I even saw the God themselves, Daft Punk, at the COBO center. Seriously, how would I know if it were imposters!?
Just like last year, I did feel a disconnect between the two facilities. It almost feels like its two conventions because of the distance. It doesn't help when it's cold outside or wearing a light costume. It is only a 0.5 mile walk but it can feel longer since you don't normally cross those "empty spaces" at other cons.
There is a people mover (monorail anyone?) which goes around and makes the trip easier for some people, but not a perfect solution. Only 75 cents per ride, or you bulk up and save on tokens. The ride back to the GM building is about twice as long due to the distance traveled. Funny story, as my friends, myself and the rest of the passengers were getting off the people mover the people who were waiting to get on were showing us the exit direction and there was a storm trooper motion with his hand while saying "move along move along", haha.
I wish there were was another hotel across the street from the COBO center which could hold the capacity needed. I think most attendees will agree its somewhat of an inconvenience and planning to travel between the two areas. Maybe one day something better will work.
Though I haven't been to every one from all the conventions I attend, I will say that Youmacon has a pretty solid Rave/J-Dance party on Fri/Sat night. Lots of lights, music, people with enthusiasm storm the room for several hours dancing to their hearts limit. As usual, some people consume too much alcohol and things happen. One of the reasons my Sunday shoot was cancelled. I hope your costume is ok! : O
I don't have official numbers but attendance seems to be on par with last year, some areas seemed a bit more empty than others but there's all sorts of nooks and crannies at this con to secretly go do photoshoots so that security doesn't hassle you.... Though I heard that security was gonna be more strict (hoooowww?!) with photo taking on the light bridge than last year I didn't shoot on there at all and wasn't approached at all! I'll consider myself lucky.
Sat night I had a nice dinner at the Volt with Sweets4aSweet, PrettyLush, AprilGloria, and a few others. Some of the topics we discussed caught the attention of others around us with "keywords" being heard XD That single beer I had did me in again; man I'm a light-weight.
Sunday was more chill with me walking around the con snapping more photos and attending some events. Parking at the con was easy and price wasn't all that bad. I did have a hard time finding my car, I knew more or less where it was and I could HEAR it, I just couldn't find it! Took me like 15 minutes going up and down with my luggage and elevators. Wow Mike.
So that's it for this year's con, check out the gallery for your amusement and see all the cool cosplayers and other stuff! : )