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February 23, 2019 at the RBC Convention Centre

Events and Panels > Panel Rules and Guidelines

Ai-kon 2019 Events and Panels Guidelines

General Information

Winterfest 2019 Applications will be open October 31st, 2018 & close January 20th, 2019

Ai-kon 2019 Submissions Dates TBA

Please check out the Events & Panels Mainpage for additional announcements.

Application Timeline (Winterfest 2019)

  1. Submit an application during the open submission period (October 31st – Jan 20th)
  2. Contact with Ai-kon Staff regarding any questions, scheduling concerns & pre-approvals (Date of Application – February)
  3. Application Deadline & Final Scheduling (Jan 21-25th, 2019)
  4. Final Approval & Rejection Notices, Scheduling Adjustments (Jan 26th- Feb 2nd)
  5. Winterfest 2019 (February 23rd)


Events & Panels Expectations

  • Please respect Ai-Kon and convention center property. Keep the panel room as clean and as you found it. Do not move around any furniture without permission. Please consult the Ai-Kon panel coordinator if you require a change in room set-up.
  • Arrive at your designated time panel/event start slot in a timely manner. Any cancellations or delays should be reported to the Ai-Kon panel coordinator.
  • Be mindful of your designated panel/event completion time as other panelists will be awaiting use of the room. Also, if the panelist before you is running late, please be considerate and contact the panel coordinator or room Volunteer.
  • There will be a 15-minute buffer between panels for panelists to use for setup and teardown.
  • As per convention center policies, no outside foods or drinks are allowed in the panel rooms. Special exceptions may apply if this is the pre approved focus of your panel/event by the Ai-Kon panel coordinator.
  • Failure to comply with these rules may result in a ban from hosting future events/panels at Ai-Kon.
  • Please do not begin formally organizing an event/panel until you have received approval by the Ai-Kon panel coordinator.

Rules Regarding Event & Panel Content

  • Ai-Kon is a family friendly con. Please keep all content and language to a PG13 level. (Please see below rules for 18+ events)
  • Panels that align with Ai-Kon’s mission statement of promoting Asian culture will receive higher priority in acceptance.

18+Events & Panels Rules

  • Panels that involve ‘Mature content’ including nudity, sexual content, heavy violence or gore, or any other content that is not family friendly (PG13) should be submitted as 18+
  • Audience entry will require ID and all organizers are required to be 18+
  • 18+ Panels should still follow all Canadian laws when it comes to content.
  • While age restricted, these panels are still public. Please be mindful of the audience and provide any additional warnings for content may negatively affect individuals.
  • Photography at 18+ Panels is only allowed by Ai-kon approved photographers


Panel Room Setup

Panel Room Styles:

  • Theatre style seating. (Audience area is comprised of only chairs facing the panelists)
  • Classroom style seating. (Each row of chairs is accompanied by tables for the audience use)
  • Open Space. (Audience area cleared of chairs and tables or they are stacked to the side)

Panel Room Equipment:

  • Two skirted head tables with four chairs for panelists
  • Projector (HDMI only)*
  • Projector screen on Stage
  • Stereo sound system (headphone jack)
  • Microphone (wired)

Requests for other equipment or setups will be considered by the committee based on manpower and cost.

*Panelists needing a VGA converter are asked to supply their own

Winterfest Day Passes

  • All Panelists who present at Ai-kon are eligible for Day Pass to the event.
  • Additional passes for assistants or groups will also be accessed on a case by case base.

Event and Panel Types

Below are the list of Event and Panel types as per our application form. Some panels may not fit neatly into one type, so please select the one that matches the most, or choose “Other” and provide us with full details about your panel layout.


Presentation / Lecture

A presentation of a pre-made slideshow, speech or talk on a set topic. Often includes things like Q&A, audience participation, video examples and physical examples

Do you have a passion for an otaku topic that just needs to be expressed? Want to show off and explore great anime? Or maybe not so great anime? From exploring hobbies from BJDs and model kits; showcasing OSTs, genres and manga; to deep dives into fandom and culture, the possibilities are endless!

What we are looking for:

  • Well researched topics
  • Fun presentations
  • Hosts looking to share information

Craft Panels

A panel in which a group of participants are provided with and taught to make a craft (Examples: Paper Craft, traditional Japanese crafts, cosplay)

Craft panels provide not only a learning experience, but something for participants to take home that they created themselves.

What we are looking for:

  • Traditional Japanese / Asian crafts
  • Anime based crafts
  • Supplement of required materials and tools for the craft
  • Clear and simple instructions at a beginners level

Game Shows

Interactive game show using audience members (examples: Anime versions of Jeopardy,  1 vs 100, The Price is Right or newly created games)

Do you have a fun game show you’d like to run? Is your dream to watch contestants try and answer your best double jeopardy questions? Have you always wanted an excuse to build something off of The Price is Right? Game Show Running is for you!

What we are looking for:

  • Hosts with a positive vibe
  • A clear set of rules/steps your game show will follow
  • Supplement of any required props

Ai-kon is happy to provide prizes for game show winners as we see appropriate.

Cosplay Character Meet and Greets

Often referred to as “Ask a Nation” style panel, with a cast of cosplayers who act as their character to answer questions and entertain the audience

What we are looking for:

  • A confirmed and dedicated group of cosplayers
  • Prior experience in performing as a character
  • A loose script / written plan of topics, games etc that structure the event



Demonstration of a dance, performance, craft, sport etc. (not interactive)

Would your club like to do a kendo demonstration? Dance group have a performance they’d like to give? Want to show off a unique skill? Demonstrations are great for exhibitors who’d like to perform, then have the discussion come back to their club table after.


Community Discussions

A discussion that heavily relies on audience participation and discussion of a topic.

Community discussions are open forums to talk and discuss a number of topics. These often involve discussing personal experiences, and viewing different takes on the subject.

We are looking for:

  • Discussion moderators who will create a fun and interactive conversation
  • Safe, informative and inclusive discussions
  • Prior experience moderating community discussions
  • Set plan of discussion topics


Interactive Teaching Panel

Interact with your audience to teach them a skill like a dance or game.

We are looking for:

  • Beginner level lessons for anyone to try
  • Clear and helpful instructions
  • Fun learning environments