About Otafest

21

Years

142

Volunteer Staff

300

Volunteers

$135,899.00

Raised

Our Mission

Otafest creates inclusive events which build a community of fans of Japanese anime, popular culture and related arts.

Our Beginnings

Otafest was born in 1999 when the University of Calgary’s Dedicated Otaku Anime Club decided to have a 1 day film festival showing Japanese Animation (anime) to the public.

Over the next decades, Otafest has grown to become a large three day festival, with 9,500 attendees in 2018. The festival is run by a non-profit organization (The Otafest Film and Cultural Festival Planning Committee), and while we still showcase anime, it’s just a part of the festival experience.

Otafest is an annual conference for anime enthusiasts. We act as a creative outlet for fans, an occasion where they can show their passion and appreciation of the hobby. We are an event where fans can show off the costumes they have made, the music videos they have created, and the art they have painted and drawn. Otafest is a forum for discussion and education. We host educational panels introducing others to the basics of the Japanese language and tips on how to use computer programs to enhance music videos and CG art. In the past, we have hosted guests who explained the process of donning a kimono, demonstrated the intricacies of tea ceremonies, and Iaido (the art of drawing a sword from a scabbard). We have also invited individuals involved in the voice acting and animation industries to speak of their experiences.

Otafest is a marketplace. We gather dozens of vendors together from all over Western Canada to facilitate the best bargain hunting in town. And, of course, we haven’t forgotten our roots: Otafest is an anime festival.

Each year, we host charity events and fundraisers during the festival to be donated to that year’s selected charity. Dedicated rooms such as the Maid Cafe donate their proceeds to the charity as well.

We hope to see you this year!

Statistics

Otafest Attendees have made charitable donations to various causes through various fundraising drives and activities. These have included the great “head-shaving” initiative of 2010, and the infamous “let’s-put-the-chairman-in-a-dress” fundraising drive of 2011. We are very proud of our community for coming together and donating to great causes!

  • Otafest 2019

     

    May 17 - 19

    9,222 Attendees
    $10,242 raised for Pathways Community Services Association

  • Otafest 2018

    May 18 - 20

    9,572 Attendees
    $12,000 raised for The Alex Youth Health Centre

     

    Otafest 2018

  • Otafest 2017

     

    June 30 - July 2

    7,724 Attendees
    $11,180 raised for The Tom Baker Cancer Centre

  • Aurora 2016

    Nov 4 - 5

    1,824 Attendees
    $2,670 raised for Between Friends

     

    Aurora 2016

  • Otafest 2016

     

    July 1 - 3

    7,995 Attendees
    $10,000 raised for United Way of Calgary

  • Aurora 2015

    Nov 13 - 14

    2,542 Attendees
    $1,500 raised for Children’s Cottage Society

     

    Aurora 2015

  • Otafest 2015

     

    May 15 - 17

    8,144 Attendees
    $10,100 raised for Distress Centre Calgary

  • Aurora 2014

    Nov 29

    2,040 Attendees
    $1,500 raised for Boys & Girls Clubs of Calgary

     

    Aurora 2014

  • Otafest 2014

     

    May 16 - 18

    7,787 Attendees
    $13,500 raised for Alberta Animal Rescue Crew Society

  • Aurora 2013

    Nov 30

    1,716 Attendees
    $2,300 raised for Seniors Secret Service

     

    Aurora 2013

  • Otafest 2013

     

    May 17 - 19, 2013

    4,947 Attendees
    $12,474 raised for Canadian Mental Health Association – Calgary Branch

  • Aurora 2012

    Dec 15, 2012

    843 Attendees raised for

     

    Aurora 2012

  • Otafest 2012

     

    May 18 - 20, 2012

    4,938 Attendees
    $11,000 raised for Calgary Humane Society

  • Lite 2011

    Nov 12, 2011

    700 Attendees
    $1,000 raised for Autism Aspergers Friendship Society of Calgary

     

    Lite 2011

  • Otafest 2011

     

    May 20 - 22, 2011

    4,135 Attendees
    $10,398 raised for Japan Red Cross

  • Lite 2010

    Nov 13, 2010

    800 Attendees
    $2,000 raised for Children’s Cottage Society

     

    Lite 2010

  • Otafest 2010

     

    May 21 - 23, 2010

    3,697 Attendees
    $5,300 raised for Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation

  • Lite 2009

    Nov 14, 2009

    900 Attendees
    $5,000 raised for Mustard Seed

     

    Lite 2009

  • Otafest 2009

     

    May 15 - 17, 2009

    4,361 Attendees
    $1,735 raised for Alberta Children’s Hospital

  • Otafest 2008

    May 16 - 18, 2008

    4,278 Attendees

     

    Otafest 2008

  • Otafest 2007

     

    May 19 - 20, 2007

    2,709 Attendees

  • Otafest 2006

    May 21 - 22, 2006

     

    Otafest 2006

  • Otafest 2005

     

    May 21 - 22, 2005

  • Otafest 2004

    May 15 - 16, 2004

    Otafest 2004

  • Otafest 2003

    May 24 - 25, 2003

  • Otafest 2002

    May 24 - 26, 2002

     

    Otafest 2002

  • Otafest 2001

     

    Sep 15 - 16, 2001

    700 Attendees

  • Otafest 2000

    June 17 - 18, 2000

    900 Attendees

     

    Otafest 2000

  • Otafest 1999

     

    July 3 - 4, 1999

    700 Attendees

Attendance numbers are warm body counts.