Otakon 2020 Canceled Due to COVID-19 With Eyes Towards 2021


Otakon Inc. has announced that Otakon 2020 has been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This last Friday, the Army Corps of Engineers announced it would be converting the Walter E. Washington Convention Center into a field hospital for COVID-19 patients. Due to the expected duration of that use, Otakon has been notified it will be impossible for the convention center to be used.

The convention looked at alternate dates and even a reduced-size event but the ability to hold a safe and fun event in 2020 just wasn’t possible.

You can read the full statement below:

After conferring with partners in Washington D.C., Otakorp Inc. has come to
the difficult decision to cancel Otakon 2020. This decision was made inevitable by the upcoming use of the Walter E. Washington Convention Center into a field hospital.

On Friday, April 17, the Army Corps of Engineers announced it will be converting the Walter E. Washington Convention Center into a field hospital for COVID-19 patients. The timing and expected duration of this endeavor
means that the facility will be unavailable to the convention during the scheduled Otakon 2020 dates. Otakorp has looked at every possibility, including alternate dates and a reduced-size event, but the reality is that it will not be possible to hold a successful, fun, and most importantly, safe event in 2020.

Otakorp is an all-volunteer organization, and as the senior staff have been trying to keep themselves and their loved ones safe, they have also continued planning, holding out hope that Otakon 2020 would still happen. Despite the severe disappointment at the need for this decision, the staff have turned their focus to Otakon 2021, which will be held August 6-8, 2021, in the Walter Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.

All registrations for 2020 will automatically be registered for 2021. No additional action will be needed.

For those unable to attend in 2021, or who need to request a refund for other reasons, Otakorp is making an exception to the standard no-refunds policy for this year.  Please fill out the Refund Request form on the Otakon website before May 31.

Dealers and artists will have the option to transfer their registrations to next year, or to request a refund.

Hotel reservations made through Experient (Otakon’s official housing provider) will automatically be cancelled, and any deposits made will automatically be refunded. Those who booked outside Otakon’s housing portal will need to contact their hotels directly. Please allow the hotels time (at least 30 days) to process refunds.

Otakorp’s senior staff would like to say thank you to their partners at Destination D.C., Events D.C., Experient, Hargrove, DSL, Simmons Security, and more for being supportive during this difficult time. In addition, they’d like to thank all of the industry partners and guests, both foreign and domestic, as well as the artists and dealers.