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Straight from Japan...in the near future

Oota-ku: Popular choice of the otaku mini-convention

Posted Oct 21, 01:43 PM by chiisai_nezumi to Conventions (コンベンション), Doujinshi (同人誌)

Practically everyone knows about Tokyo Big Sight because of ginormous and well-publicized events such as Comiket (glorified in media by such shows as Lucky Star and Comic Party), but not so many people know about the dozens of mini-conventions every year and the buildings they take place in.


Some examples of mini-conventions: on the left, What do you listen to? (なに聞いてるの?), a headphone girl themed mini-convention (illustration by ニリツ); on the right, Sukima Festival (スキマフェスティバル). The fact that it has Tokyo Big Sight on the advertisement despite being held at the Oota-ku Industrial Plaza is testament to the grip Big Sight has on otaku culture

Each mini-convention typically has a theme and attracts anywhere between 100-500 circles, as well as several thousand otaku. Obviously Big Sight and it’s gigantic exhibit halls are far too large to have a mini-convention in, but what place will be consistently available and just the right size?

Enter the Oota-ku Industrial Plaza PIO (大田区産業プラザPIO), a moderately-sized convention hall located just outside Keikyuu Kamata station (京急蒲田駅) in Oota-ku (大田区). It is the perfect size for most mini-conventions, and is easily accessible by train.


The Oota-ku Industrial Plaza PIO Exhibition Hall a few hours before Puniket 16

Getting There

Keikyuu Kamata station is located on the Keikyuu Main Line (京急本線), which is owned and operated by the Keihin Electric Express Railway. It links up to the familiar JR East system at Shinagawa (品川) station. Keikyuu Kamata station is actually south-southwest of Tokyo, but within easy distance and offers the most direct access. The Oota-ku Industrial Plaza is at the intersection just south of the South Exit.


The Oota-ku Industrial Plaza is at the intersection just south of the station

If you choose to use the Keikyuu Kamata station, be aware that some trains are faster than others (same fare – approx. 190 yen from Shinagawa as of the time of this writing). Keikyuu stations are typically equipped with an electronic board that shows you which stops the next train will stop at. Use these for best effect, or simply take any of the non-local express lines for a faster trip.

Caveats

Transferring to and from the Keikyuu line from the JR line may be a tad bit confusing. If you are entering from Shinagawa on your way to Keikyuu Kamata, you will have to turn in your JR ticket at the Keikyuu ticket window when you purchase a Keikyuu ticket. If you are on your way back, the automated turnstiles will block your path unless you first insert your Keikyuu ticket, and then your JR ticket (or swipe your IC card) immediately thereafter. Keikyuu does not accept IC cards as payment.


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