SacAnime returns to Sacramento after 2-year hiatus

Local News

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — Thousands flocked to the SAFE Credit Union Convention Center in downtown Sacramento for the SacAnime convention following a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic.

Security verified the vaccination status and negative COVID-19 test of all visitors before providing wristbands to get inside.

“As long as they manage it like they have here,” explained Kenny James while raising up his wristband. “I’ve got this on because this says I’m fully vaccinated.”

James has voiced the Super Mario Brothers’ Bowser for the past 18 years and he told FOX40 the turnout at the convention has been amazing with everyone doing what they must to follow the safety protocols.

“It’s a good model for the rest of the cons coming up this year,” James said.

For those who needed it, rapid testing was available just across the street at the Sheraton Hotel.

“We’re enforcing the mask-wearing inside, you got proper face covers from vendors, staff and attendees,” explained event security specialist Jeremy Curtis. “Just so we can make sure everybody has a safe and fun experience.”

The safety measures were put in place as the omicron variant continues to spread quickly across the region and the rest of the state.

Scott Zillner, owner of the toy news website Toy Wizards, told FOX40 that as long as virus prevention rules are followed, it’s important that people get to attend these types of events.

“SacAnime is a great event for everybody to come and have a great time, to be themselves, to meet incredible guests. Opportunities to talk to your heroes are here at this convention,” Zillner said.

“I think we can continue to do a lot of things like this. As long as everybody keeps their head on, works together, I think we can relatively get back to normal with relative safety,” added cosplayer Travis Ragsdale-Sweig.

Three local attendees cosplaying as Spider-Man told FOX40 they were happy to get to attend the event.  

“I think it’s just great that we’re able to just roam around and see what’s going on here at SacAnime,” said Shingle Springs resident Shalan Smith.

“I was worried it was going to be canceled, for me. But thankfully, no. And I’m really excited to be here,” said Fair Oaks resident Spencer Pedemonte.

“I love Spider-Man. He’s my favorite character,” said Cameron Park resident Joshua Moore.

Organizers said they know that this convention means everything to thousands of people, so the last thing they wanted to do was cancel.

They said they knew there was a good way to make sure that everybody stayed safe.

“Now to come back and come back as strong as we are, the fans love the event, they love coming out,” Curtis said. “We love having them.”

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