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Last week, I visited Cebu for the fourth time to witness Otakufest 2020. It’s their 13th year holding the said event, and the second time that they will do so at SM Seaside City Cebu’s Maze Garden.

I’ve thought long and hard if I’m supposed to push through with my fourth Cebu trip, and it turned to be like any Cebu trip I had in the past: It’s wild! It’s been a fun weekend spending time in the Queen City of the South.

Otakufest 2020 has been held successfully amid perhaps the worst of predicaments, filling in a lot of activities for all otaku in Cebu.

Hikarin / DD Tenka Meet and Greet

I started the day going to the meet and greet for this year’s international guests Hikarin and DD Tenka.

Some of the highlights of the meet and greet are questions about their skincare routine, their cosplans and the like. Thanks to the Otakufest team, we secured fast talks with them the following day, so stay tuned as I will release it on YouTube and Facebook soon.

Cosplay Propsmaking Workshop

It’s been 10 years since I put my foot into the cosplay community, but I have yet to learn how to craft props. This is where the cosplay props workshop of Team Class S and King Rusydi comes in. Joining them is Class S’ mentor and 2018 WCSPH Alumni Sergio Sta. Ana (you should probably know him by now).

I stayed for around 30 minutes, but I brought with me two things:

  1. There are two cuts we can use to slice the EVA foam, which I can perfect through practice; and
  2. I can actually make props if I wanted to. Even if my output didn’t fulfill my expectations, as long as your mentor appreciates it, all is well.
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Artist Alley

Otakufest has a lively art alley featuring a lot of art, stickers, ships and of course memes.

I went to Kei Cyanyan‘s booth just to see this Mio Honda meme sticker that I can’t stop laughing. If I remember correctly, I bought other stickers except for this one because it deserves to be in the hands of much worthy iM@S memers.

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Aidoru Community in Cebu

Even with me becoming oshi-less in the MNL48 community, I still find myself being in the same place as other MNLoves (I said I’d graduate from the fandom but where am I again?).

I believe I told all of you about Ai Natsumi on this space before, so let’s go fast forward: Ai met her fellow MNLoves, and it was a really nice experience seeing fellow MNLoves talk about their oshi. Hats off to Skip Goat and Cebu MNLoves for being such a good sport.

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I have been saying this to myself: Set aside and let the new fans enjoy the fandom. I’m happy with that decision, as (1) I honestly felt irrelevant to the topic of MNL48 nowadays, and (2) we need one less pessimist in this group.

I mean, I can talk at length about MNL48 on my podcast for the long-time fans, but at the same time I want to leave it to the newer fans to learn more about the group they are idolizing.

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Pastel Mix

Otakufest and the World Cosplay Summit Philippines have been inseparable since the first Central Visayas Qualifiers in 2017. As with last year, WCSPH brings in its ambassador, Davao-based performance group Pastel Mix, to the Otakufest stage.

They always have Walküre (Macross Delta) in their musical repertoire, but did you know that they did dress up as the group in Davao almost two years ago?

Odd stuff

Otakufest is not complete without memes and the memers who are propagating it. While we are recording our next two podcasts at the Unity Productions booth, I saw the KEK flag being flown around the area.

That, and some more weird stuff. There’s even some guys who are implying to tell everyone to take a bath before going to conventions.

Also imagine a walking life-sized AXE spray coming to you to “Purify the Filth,” which then makes you question yourself if you took a bath.

Luckily, the heavy winds balances the hot temperature of the venue – remember that it’s called Seaside City for a reason.

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Final thoughts

What I noticed in going to a lot of events (that eventually I became part of the industry soon enough) is that the visitors make the event most of the time.

Events are platforms for people to meet each other, and those people make the most of their time to have a wonderful experience, no matter what happens.

In the case of Otakufest, the organizers had a few scratches to soldier on while they proceed with the show, and eventually, things fell into place. The environment is not that hot, just that windy; but overall, it’s a fair-weather weekend for us all.

Going back to what I said earlier, my second Otakufest experience is as great as last year’s, and I plan to keep going there should another opportunity comes.

I have a series of photos to cap off this post-event report. There are more photos on Facebook – including my proudest shots of more cosplayers. You definitely should see it.

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Upcoming Otakufest 2020 Content

  • Please do subscribe to the Podcast as we will be releasing the two-part Otakufest 2020 special for the month of March, with Max Maquiling of Unity Productions alongside Gary Montejo and Serena Moon.
  • As I mentioned earlier, stand by for our quick fast talk with King Rusydi, Hikarin and DD Tenka on YouTube and Facebook soon.
  • Team Zero is the Central Visayas representative to the 2020 World Cosplay Summit Philippines qualifiers, after participating in the competition for the third time. I’ll write a separate story on this once all the finalists from all qualifier legs are selected.

Thank you Otakufest for having keepsakes. as one of your media partners once more.

Otakufest 2020 Media Team: Jay Agonoy / Gary Montejo / Serena Moon