Karoshi-Con is a free anime convention hosted by the NIU Anime Association, NIU's college anime club. Karoshi-Con first debuted in 2010!Our convention is hosted every Spring. Our convention is completely run on volunteers from our club, other organizations, and faithful alumni.Our convention welcomes those of all ages, we are proud to be family friendly. We encourage attendees from local, out of town, and students - no matter the grade! Please visit our Rules page here to read rules that all attendees are expected to follow.An important rule we need all convention attendees to understand is that we do not allow prop weapons of any kind on campus grounds. This is a campus policy that we are expected to follow. Please help us out and do not bring prop weapons. Read our rules page to see this policy in full.

Artist Alley 2024

Applications opening later this year.


As of Karoshi-Con 2023, we will no longer follow a first-come, first-serve policy for the Artist Alley. We hope to ensure local artists and NIU students are represented at Karoshi-Con. A limited number of vendors will be accepted. To apply for a table at the Artist Alley, please read through the entirety of this page before filling out and submitting an application. Filling out this application DOES NOT mean you have automatically been accepted to table at Artist Alley.You are required to submit to at least one of these below. Providing more than one will help us approve your application faster.

  1. Link to an online store or shop of previous/current works (this shop does not have to be currently open)

  2. Link to social media platform (such as Facebook, Instagram, Linktree) that has been active in the previous six months

  3. Google drive link to a folder of at least 6 items of art or merchandise you intend to sell (can be samples or prototype items) that can be viewed

Art & Merch Rules

Karoshi-Con is a family friendly convention. All art pieces and merchandise will be held to a PG-13 standard. Mature materials will not be allowed to be displayed.If you have questions about products you wish to sell, contact us at our email with images or merchandise questions.

  • Absolutely no gore, violence, sexual, or explicit content is allowed

  • No unpackaged items, or homemade food, snacks, or drinks are allowed to be sold


Tables & Spaces


  • Tables measure at 8 ft long, 30 inches across.

  • Tables are uncovered.

  • Two chairs are available per table. Keep in mind space behind tables is limited.

  • Outlets are available, but they must be requested in your application. Proximity to electricity and outlets are only available in specific areas in the ballroom.

16x10 Foot Area

  • 16x10 freestanding area

  • Provided with two tables and two chairs. You may rearrange them in the space or remove them.

  • This is optimal for bringing freestanding items (clothes rack, stands, shelves, or smaller tables) that can accommodate a 16x10 space.

  • Space for 16x10 areas is limited.


1 Table - $20.002 Tables - $40.0016x10 Ft. Area - $60.00

Payment for space:PayPal: Pay for your table space ahead of time. Payable via invoice sent from us.Cash - payment due on convention day check-in

Important Dates

Applications Open: TBDApplications Close: TBDResults: TBDConvention Day: April 6

Pre-Convention Day

Payment invoicing information will be sent with confirmation and acceptance emails.
Cash payments will also be accepted on the day of.
We will send you a form to fill out for how many badges you will need for people working your space.Important information on parking, directions, and check-in instructions leading up to the convention day will also be available.

Convention Day

Hall Open Hours: 10:00 AM - 6:00 PMCheck-in will begin at 8:00 AM.For parking information, please read this page.You will follow signs to the Duke Ellington Ballroom,
There will be a Check-in table to receive convention badges and directed to where your table is.
Electronic payment due ahead of time, or cash payment for space is due upon check-in.You are responsible for your merchandise that you bring into the center.

Application for Artist Alley are now closed, as of February 15, 2023

Location: Duke Ellington Ballroom
Hours: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm

Registration 2024

Register here and enjoy all the fun Karoshi-Con has to offer.Upon entering the venue, follow signs for Registration (Capitol South).If you miss Pre-Registration, you can still register on the day of at the convention.As of Karoshi-Con 2023, we will no longer be printing pre-registration badges with chosen badge names printed on them. All badges will be available at Registration for attendees to fill in. We are sorry for the inconvenience.

Registration Rules• Admission badges are free!• A state ID or proof of identifcation is not required for badge registration or pick up.• Adults/guardians can sign up children with the same emergency contact information.• Children under the age of 5 do not require a badge as long as they are accompanied by a guardian that is registering.• Your Karoshi-Con badge must be displayed at all times in the convention area.


Location: Capitol Room South
Hours: 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM

Panels & Events

Karoshi-Con panels are short presentations done by attendees at the convention, or done by our special guests. In the past we have included a variety of panels ranging from cosplay tips, voice acting, and interactive games.
Panels typically last from one hour to an hour and a half.

Event NameTimeLocation
Coming soon  
Event NameTimeLocation
Coming soon  

Apply for a Panel

Interested in hosting an informative panel or presentation? Here's where you can do that.

  • Keep in mind that panels need to be suitable for a PG-13 environment.

  • You can request for up to one hour and 30 minutes for panel length, or as little as 30 minutes or 45 minutes.

  • Each panel room will be accompanied with a projector, or television screen. Sound system, two microphones, and connections for VGA and HMDI inputs. There will also be a table for your use in the room.

  • We will provide technology accommodations only. Any other items are the responsibility of the host.

2023 Panel Applications Closed

Enjoy the different events that Karoshi-Con has to offer!
Feel free to peruse in each category.

Main Events

Main events coming soon

Cosplay Contest

We invite you to join our cosplay contest held as the last event of our convention. The event is open to attendees of all ages. You will have the opportunity to walk on stage and show off your costume. There will be prizes!

  • Interested participants can sign up at the convention on the day of via a virtual sign up form. You can use our tablet or your smartphone.

  • Sign ups will close at a 20 person capacity or at 3:00 PM - whichever comes first

  • Contestants will be asked to fill out a brief questionnaire - each question has a 600 character limit

  • Contestants will be asked to submit a photo of their costume for judges to review before the contest. A photo can be uploaded on this form or a photographer will be available at 3:00 PM for contestants to have their picture used as a submission.

  • Failure to submit a photo of the costume may result in being inaccurately judged and a delay in the competition process

  • Contestants are expected to be present at the Carl Sandburg Auditorium by 6:45 PM to be prepared for the cosplay contest and receive stage instructions.


  1. Youth and Adults will be judged and on stage separately (Youth are under the age of 13).

  2. Group cosplay is allowed.

  3. Original character cosplay is allowed.

  4. The cosplay contest does not require participants to perform any skit on stage.

  5. Participants will be judged on craftsmanship, appearance, accuracy, and charisma.

  6. Please do not bring in any prop that resembles a weapon as part of your cosplay. Only small prop items will be allowed.

Location: Carl Sandburg Auditorium
Hours: 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Video Gaming Room

Our video game room will have an array of video games to try! We will have classic games and the latest! Come join for open play during our open hours, and look out for tournaments hosted throughout the day.Room Rules
• You must have an ID to utilize equipment.
• Guests must also sign out the game that they will be using.
• This is limited to one game at a time
• Misuse/mishandling of equipment will result in ejection from the room.
• Report any damaged items or technical difficulties to a staff member.
• Do not attempt to get any equipment or games yourself, please ask a staff member to do so.
• Inappropriate or unsportsmanlike behavior will not be tolerated. Physical and verbal abuse can result in ejection from the room.
• Theft will result in involvement of the police and ejection from the con.

Location: Regency Room
Hours: 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Traditional Gaming Room

The Traditional Gaming room contains numerous board and card games for all to try out. Enjoy games such as Munchkin, Apples to Apples, Exploding Kittens, and many more! Feel free to grab some friends and head on over; there is open gaming all day!Room Rules
• You must have an ID to play games.
• Please ask the staff for any games you would like to play.
• You may sign out one game at a time.
• Do not mistreat games.
• Report any damaged items to a staff member.
• Theft will result in involvement of the police and ejection from the con.

Location: Ellington's
Hours: 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM


Interested in seeing how your favorite anime characters would gamble? Grab your friends and stop by to play one of the six Pachinko machines donated by a current and former club member! Socialize by the machines and become familiar with this Japanese Arcade game! These machines are for entertainment ONLY there will be NO gambling of any kind! Ours are only for recreational fun!

Location: University Suite
Hours: 10:00 AM - 4:30 PM

Silent Auction

For the first time ever, Karoshi Con is proud to offer a Silent Auction in memory of one of the NIU Anime Association’s founders, David Schrader. ALL of the 96 items that are being sold come directly from Mr. Schrader’s personal collection. The collection boasts a complete set of Cardcaptor Sakura, Revolutionary Girl Utena, Marmalade Boy, and MORE! If those are a little out of your price range, come check out the Under $5 sale for some unique vintage films. If you want to grab a great set, The Makoto Shinkai Collection includes the hit films Voices of a Distant Star, Five Centimeters Per Second, and The Place Promised in Our Early Days! Whatever your interests, there is surely a DVD in this extensive stock to fit both your desires and your budget!

  • There will be 6 Lots of items that will be displayed. Silent Auction catalog is on our website and a physical copy in the room.

  • Each Lot’s bidding will be open for ONLY 30 minutes beginning at noon and ending at 3 PM.

  • You MUST be present to win, any item that is not claimed by the winner will revert to the NEXT highest bidder. Winning bidders will be contacted in text message.

  • We accept payment via cash or PayPal

  • Lot 1 Under $5 Sale 12:00pm-12:30pm

  • Lot 2 Under $10 Sale 12:30pm-1:00pm

  • Lot 3 Under $30 Sale 1:00pm-1:30pm

  • Lot 4 Under $30 Sale 1:30pm-2:00pm

  • Lot 5 Sale Under $100 2:00pm-2:30pm

  • Lot 6 $100 and Over 2:30pm-3:00pm

Location: University Suite
Hours: 12:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Special Guests

Lucas Schuneman

Lucas Schuneman is happy to be making his eleventh return appearance to Karoshi-Con!A character voice actor with over a decade of experience, Lucas can be heard in titles like One Piece as Vice-Admiral Onigumo, Legend Of Galactic Heroes - Die Neue These as Negroponte, Ikebukuro West Gate Park as Kouzou Tsukamoto, Death Battle as both The Joker & Goro, Warframe as Nef Anyo, Tyl Regor & The Treasurer, Wasteland 3 as The Patriarch, Clash Royale as The Bowler, Lost In Random as Seemore & The Duke and Desperados 3 as Hector Mendoza. He has also recorded with over 100 brands and companies including The Onion, YouTube Gaming, Warner Brothers Music, Illinois Lottery, Louisville Sluggers, Orbitz, Walmart, Turtle Wax, Hormel, and The Huffington Post.

Cosplay Judges

Saar: The Dragon God of Potatoes


Memories by Mitri

Kid Yuki

Kid Yuki is a Chicago-based anime and video game cover musician who is totally not just lazily cosplaying Koyuki from Beck (don't look that up).Kid Yuki streams weekly on Twitch with anime and drum covers.Come rock out or just chill to some of your favorite anime openings and video game tracks at his acoustic show panel.


Amaya has been singing and performing online covers for almost 15 years! In 2015, she met Kid Yuki, they did an cover collab, and became part of the band, Kid Yuki and the Otakus. The rest is history! Amaya is excited to perform with Kid Yuki as part of a live acoustic duo once again, and is looking forward to seeing what songs Karoshi-Con will request.Amaya will be performing at the acoustic request show panel with Kid Yuki.


DaSueDragon DesignsMaker of fine high-quality, hand-crafted leather bags, accessories, cosplay and more! Also a proud NIU Alumni! DaSueDragon Designs is a longtime sponsor of Karoshi-Con and supporter of our cosplay contest. For amazingly constructed accessories and cosplay pieces, we recommend you visit their Etsy and Facebook page listed above.

There's Fun in StoreThere’s Fun In Store is a growing local company with locations in Downtown DeKalb as well as Elgin. We feature a robust selection of toys and games presented beautifully in our aesthetic stores. We promise to put a smile on your face.
Come check out our wall of thousands of retro and modern video games! Or you can use our massive touchscreen kiosk to browse our websites selection of over six million Pokémon, Magic, and YuGiOh cards! We also have an extensive selection of tabletop games, plush, popits, lanyards, and more! There’s Fun In Store and we mean it!

Interested in being a Sponsor for Karoshi-Con?Contact us at our email and let's talk about what we can do for each other!

Donate to the NIU Anime Association

Schedules For 2024

Event RoomLocationTime
RegistrationCapitol South10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Artist AlleyDuke Ellington Ballroom10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Video Game RoomRegency10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Traditional Game RoomEllington's10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
(Pending)University Suite10:00 AM - 4:30 PM
Event NameTimeLocation
Coming soon  
Event NameTimeLocation
Coming soon  



General Rules• This is a family friendly convention. Please keep your actions appropriate.• Northern Illinois University own the Holmes Student Center. Please respect any state, local, and NIU laws and policies.• A badge must be displayed at all times while partici-
pating in the convention areas.
•Children under the age of 12 must be accompanied by an adult at all times.•Respect your fellow con-goers. DO NOT touch or take pictures of people without their consent. If they say no, it means no.

Cosplay RulesNO WEAPONS. No prop firearms, nerf guns, or model guns. No replica swords or anything that resembles a weapon. You will be asked to remove it from the campus grounds immediately. No exceptions. Karoshi-Con Staff have the right to ask you to remove the prop from the venue. This is a NIU rule that must be upheld.• Any props brought to the convention must be seen and approved in the Registration Room.• No obscenity in clothing. Remember this is a family friendly event.•Footwear is required.•Costume wear may not hinder anyone’s path near them or entrances.


Directions to Dekalb, IL and maps available here on the NIU website.

LocationKaroshi-Con is located in the Holmes Student Center at Northern Illinois University (HSC).Holmes Student Center address:
340 Carroll Avenue Dekalb, IL 60115

ParkingThe Holmes Student Center has free parking on weekends. There are two prime locations for parking near the HSC. Both are accessible on Carroll Avenue.a) Visitor Pay Lot located 0.3 miles South of the HSC located at 121 Carroll Avenue DeKalb, IL 60115b) NIU Parking Garage located at 199 Carroll Avenue Dekalb, IL 60115

FoodStarbucks is located in the lower level of the Holmes Student Center.There are many restaurants that are available on or near campus.

Send us an email at
[email protected]

If inquiring about a specific topic, please include that in the message subject.

Convention Questions

WHAT IS KAROSHI-CON?Karoshi-Con is an anime convention. An anime convention is an event that promotes Japanese animated television shows ("anime"). Animes have many genres, and is created for many different age groups. At Karoshi-Con we also embrace other pop culture topics like video games, comics, tabletop gaming, music, karaoke, and cosplay.

IS KAROSHI-CON FOR KIDS?Karoshi-Con is suitable for all ages. We encourage that adults bring their children or extended family members. Children under the age of 12 years old should be accompanied by a guardian or family member. Adults are also welcome to enjoy the convention. Any content at Karoshi-Con is strictly at a PG-13 level.

WHAT IS THE COST OF ADMISSION TO KAROSHI-CON?Karoshi-Con is free and it is open to anyone. You can be a student, adult, local to DeKalb, or visiting from another city.

HOW DO I REGISTER FOR KAROSHI-CON?Click here to be taken to our registration page. Here you can learn how to sign up yourself, or others and a little about the registration process.

WHEN DOES KAROSHI-CON OPEN/CLOSE?Karoshi-Con doors open at 9:00 AM. Registration opens formally at 10:00 AM, and most convention activities begin at 10:00 AM.Most activities cease at 6:00 PM. The cosplay contest will be the last event, and takes place 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM.

WHERE CAN I FIND A MAP OF THE CONVENTION?Venue maps are located here.

CAN I WEAR A COSTUME?Yes! We encourage anyone to wear a costume. You do not need to wear anime-related costume. You can wear any outfit you like from any show, series, book, or movie. You can also wear a Halloween costume, dress, or fancy outfit.There are some costume guidelines you can read about them here.

CAN I BRING A PROP OR A WEAPON WITH MY COSTUME?The answer is no. It is a Northern Illinois University rule that there will not be any props that resemble a weapon allowed at the convention or campus. If noticed by staff, you will be asked politely to remove it from the convention area or put in a vehicle. If we have to ask again, we will ask you to leave or have intervention from venue security. Please take this rule seriously!We will NOT allow any real weapon, steel, replica weapon, fake weapon, foam weapon, long staff, long stick, toy gun, or any item that resembles a weapon or prop that could injure someone.

HOW CAN I SELL MY ART AT THE CONVENTION?You can read all about the Artist & Vendor Hall at this page here, which includes information about applying.

HOW CAN I RUN A PANEL AT KAROSH-CON?Yes, you can. Read information about panel guidelines and the panel application at this page here.