BURBANK, CA – The martial arts is a thriving community which as been growing continuously since the 1960s. With over 27,000 known martial arts schools across America alone, a huge percentage of Americans have taken martial arts sometime in their life. A booming industry through martial arts games, anime, television shows and films, it is only fitting that a weekend convention be dedicated to the martial arts genre. Called the Dragonfest Convention, it is an arena filled with celebrities, supplies, toys, martial arts films productions, artists and more. Stretched over a two-day period, July 18 and July 19, the expo is foreseeing an even larger crowd than last year.
Dragonfest, the martial arts equivalent of comic book conventions in which fans come in from all over the world to meet some of their favorite celebrities, action stars, pioneers, champions and even get some unique martial arts weapons and souvenirs.
“The Dragonfest convention does a lot of things for the community. It provides a venue in which martial arts celebrities can meet and greet their fans. It provides a place for the latest and greatest martial arts weapons and items can be revealed and sold. It also creates a format for independent films producers to unveil the latest martial arts and action films to their audience,” says Michael Matsuda, museum president. “It also supplies a place where martial arts icons can push their latest books and videos and we've included a martial arts jewelry booth as well.”
Last year's Dragonfest was attended by such notables as John Saxon from Enter the Dragon, James Hong of Kung Fu Panda, Cynthia Rothrock, Master Ken, Michael Jai White, Gerald Okamura, James Lew, Benny Urquidez, Doug Wong, Art Camacho, Peter Kwong, Leo Fong, Tak Kubota, Donnie Williams and dozens of other well-known figures in the arts.
Dragonfest 2015 is proud to welcome the addition of two well-known actors in the industry including Joe Mantegna of TV's Criminal Minds and Steve Oedekerk of Kung Pow Movie: Enter the First. Martial arts celebrities this year also include Fumio Demura, Robin Shou, Don “the dragon” Wilson, “bad guy” Al Leong, Sasha Mitchell and many more.
The goal of the Dragonfest convention is to not only pull the martial arts community together, but to support the museum, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. One hundred percent of all funds received goes directly to support the museum.
“A museum makes an immediate impact on the entire martial arts community. It shows the world that the martial arts is important enough that it deserves a place in history. It also keeps the memory of all those pioneers alive for future generations and it shows large companies that the martial arts carries with it a huge and ever-growing audience,” adds Matsuda.
The convention, which is located at 150 E. Angeleno at the Holiday Inn Media Center in Burbank, CA, is seeking sponsorships and booth rentals. Cost to enter the event is only $25 for one day, $30 for both days. Doors open at 11 am and close at 6 pm. Information and advance tickets can be purchased at MuseumDragonfest.com. Donations to the Museum are always encouraged.
© Martial Arts Museum, 2023