Otakon® Pre-Reg Higher Than Expected

Up 4.6% Over Last Year's Numbers

Baltimore, MD (July 12, 2009) – Despite global financial troubles and health scares such as the swine flu, more people than ever are flocking to Baltimore to attend Otakon. This year, 17,985 have pre- registered for Otakon. This is up nearly 800 people, or 4.6%, from last year.

Otakon president Matt Smiechowski says, "I was actually expecting it to be on par with, if not lower than, last year's pre-registration total of 17,186, due to factors such as the economy. It's better than I could have hoped." He said he's expecting around 27,000 to attend this year. That would represent 2.8% growth over last year.

Pre-registration badge pick-up this year will be open one hour later (until 11 p.m. on Thursday). This means that those picking up their badges Thursday night could get in line in the early evening and still make it through the line quickly. Smiechowski reminds those attending that if they plan to get in line first thing Thursday morning, they should come prepared for the weather. Pre-registration begins at 5 p.m.

ABOUT OTAKON AND OTAKORP, INC.: Now entering its sixteenth year, Otakon is an annual celebration of Japanese and East Asian popular culture, and also one of the largest gatherings of fans in the United States. Otakon celebrates popular culture as a gateway to deeper understanding of Asian culture, and has grown along with the enthusiasm for anime, manga, video games, and music from the Far East. Since 1999, Otakon has been held in Baltimore, Maryland; currently, Otakon is one of Baltimore's few large, city-wide events, drawing over 25,000 individual members for three days each year (for a paid attendance of over 70,000 "turnstile" attendees). Otakon is a membership-based convention sponsored by Otakorp, Inc., a Pennsylvania-based, 501(c)3 educational non-profit whose mission is to promote the appreciation of Asian culture, primarily through its media and entertainment. Otakorp, Inc. is directed by an all-volunteer, unpaid staff – we are run by fans, for fans.

For more information about Otakorp, Inc., see http://www.otakon.com/otakorp/index.asp

For more information and the latest news on Otakon 2009, see http://www.otakon.com/

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