May 26, 2015 – Boise, ID – This past Memorial Day weekend saw the return of Boise’s longest running four-day anime convention, Anime Oasis, hosted on three floors of The Grove Hotel and Century Link Arena in downtown Boise, as it has been for it’s sixth year running. From it’s humble beginnings in 2002, hosted at a Best Western motel in south Boise, Anime Oasis has endured the ebb-and-flow of changing economies and population booms, having run consecutively for fourteen years straight, as of this year.
Calling western/southwestern Idaho home, this appropriately named convention has nearly doubled in attendance in just the past few years, with peak attendance for this year reaching 2591 unique paid attendees (an increase of 521 from last year alone), according to Jeremy Loppett, Anime Oasis’ chairman and founder, on the Anime Oasis Facebook page. Not huge compared to some of the larger conventions in other parts of the U.S., however for a small to mid-sized city like Boise, nestled into the Mountain West’s Treasure Valley region, with a population of less than 250, 000 (just under 1.75 Million for the entire state of Idaho…Portland, Ore. alone has over 1/2 million residents) being a long-standing exclusively anime/Japanese pop-culture oriented convention as a fixture amongst in the reagion for going on two decades, has been something that local fans and cosplayers have really appreciated and have enjoyed calling their own over the years, in having the opportunity to meet in person, get autographs by and listen to panels from world-renowned voice actors, artists, and other talent relevant to the world of Japanese animation, manga, gaming, music, or acting.
Burgeoning attendance can be a double-edge sword, between stretching facility resources and staff a little thin, and resulting in more crowded convention space, 2016 will see Anime Oasis’ first facility expansion since 2009. Not only will Anime Oasis 2016 (dubbed Anime Oasis SP) be hosted at The Grove Hotel and Century Link Arena, but will share convention space within part of the adjacent Boise Center, adding a considerable amount of space for events, activities, artists, vendors and con-goers alike.