This afternoon we sat down with Dan Carroll, the Director of Media Relations for MomoCon 2015, and talked about the convention, what fans can expect this year, and why the Georgia World Congress Center is the happening place to be in Atlanta this weekend.
This is MomoCon’s first year here at the Georgia World Congress Center, and it looks like it is shaping up to be an amazing one! How has the attendance been this year, compared to last?
We are anticipating 20,000 total attendees… last year we had 14,600. The move to the new venue has obviously given us more opportunity, more exposure, and a lot more fun for the people coming. We have convenient parking, MARTA takes the local Atlanta folks right to the conference center, and as you can see from where we’re sitting, we have this amazing, giant, enormous vendor area and the largest gaming square footage area in the southeast at a convention.
This year it is very apparent how important the inclusion of gaming is to MomoCon’s programming. Is this a sign of the direction MomoCon plans to take moving forward?
Absolutely. We’ve had gaming since our first MomoCon. In fact, MomoCon directors would meet together on a regular basis to play analog games and also plan out the convention. It works out that we just happen to adore games. We’ve had some amazing LAN/console gaming competitions in the past, and right now you and I are looking down on the show floor and can see how large the LAN area is, as well as the console gaming. But, the big new amazing thing is the indie game developer showcase.
The showcase is providing an opportunity for new developers to show their work, and the showcase itself is juried. There are a number of industry experts that are going to be reviewing the games, judging them and giving out cash prizes.
Moving forward, is the indie game developer showcase going to become an even bigger part of MomoCon’s programming?
We are Georgia’s anime and gaming convention. The gaming is going to continue to grow and the anime is going to grow too. Also, it’s not just anime, but American animation too. Next year, I think you’re going to see a lot of growth in the comics area.
How long do you see MomoCon being booked here at the GWCC?
I believe we’re currently booked through 2019, and we do have contingencies for growth into other halls here at the GWCC, but we’re going to take it one year at a time and make sure we do the best we can. What we do here at MomoCon is focus on the end-user/attendee experience. The membership brings a lot of fun with it.
What have you personally been the most excited about with MomoCon 2015?
Well, a number of things. We have some of my favorite voice actors here this year. I just got off of a panel with Crispin Freeman, the voice actor who performed as Alucard in “Hellsing.” He does an amazing job. I also got to meet with Greg Weisman, (writer, developer and showrunner in several American animations including “Gargoyles,” and “Star Wars Rebels”) which was great.
Probably for me more than anything else is to see how comfortable, relaxed and filled with enjoyment the fan-base is here. People have commented about our diversity in terms of age, race, gender, LGBT, and how everyone is completely accepted. We are just a warm environment, and as always, anytime you have any event in Atlanta, it’s filled with a lot of hospitality.
What would you say to parents with kids that may be interested in coming to MomoCon, but are unsure of its content and family friendliness?
There is still plenty of opportunity for people to come and enjoy MomCom 2015, and MomoCon 2016 is just around the corner. The one thing families need to know is that all of our programming is “all-ages” appropriate, 24 hours a day. There are no late night panels that are adult oriented or inappropriate for anybody. We have a pretty solid dress code and we like to make sure that our customers are presenting themselves in the best possible way. We also like to make sure that we are following standards that are family friendly and inclusive.
What kind of programming do you have for the kids?
Well, card gaming is always big, but this year it seems to have exploded. We also have the Chalk Twins here, and yesterday we had a sidewalk chalk art competition here. It turned out really well. The weather has helped out a lot.
MOMOCON IS GOING ON ALL WEEKEND. VISIT HTTP://WWW.MOMOCON.COM TO FIND OUT MORE INFORMATION.