Huntington celebrates Japanese pop culture

Herald-Dispatch photo by Bishop Nash Sierra Winland, 15, of Charleston slides into the sand during the third annual Natsu No Tsubasacon picnic Sunday, June 22, 2014, at Ritter Park in Huntington
Herald-Dispatch photo by Bishop Nash
Sierra Winland, 15, of Charleston slides into the sand during the third annual Natsu No Tsubasacon picnic Sunday, June 22, 2014, at Ritter Park in Huntington

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — Getting about 300 costumed individuals into one spot for a group photo isn’t an easy task.

But that’s what Jack Varney, one of the primary organizers of Huntington’s annual anime and manga convention, Tsubasacon, found himself tasked with Sunday afternoon at the third annual Natsu No Tsubasacon (Summer of Tsubasacon) picnic in Ritter Park. It was a problem he was glad to have. “Last year we had about 150 turn out for the picnic, and this year we have about 300 individuals,” he said. “It’s just fantastic.

“We have a lot of cross-pollination at this event with the people are into the comic book scene, and it’s a chance for people who love these things to interact with their peers.”

Anime fans are known for their dedication to their favorite films and characters, and most wore some sort of costume — some even wearing full animal suits — with temperatures in the mid 80s and high humidity Sunday…

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