San Japan Prop Policy Says No to Open Carry, Silly String

click to enlarge Aaron Garcia, The Punisher, Marvel Comics
Aaron Garcia, The Punisher, Marvel Comics

Planning to cosplay as Wolverine from the X-Men at San Japan? Better make sure those claws can’t even cut through butter. Want to make your Thor costume as authentic as possible? Sounds great, but that oversized hammer better be made out of plastic or Styrofoam. Otherwise you’ll be leaving the convention center faster than you can say, “By Odin’s beard!”

As always, cosplay prop rules will be enforced at the convention this year by staff and the San Antonio Police Department. While Texas became an open carry state at the start of 2016 with the passing of HB 910, which gives licensed gun carriers the right to carry their firearm openly on a holster, cosplayers dressed like Jonah Hex aren’t getting anywhere near the convention floor with an actual quick-draw revolver.

According to Michael Sawaya, executive director of convention and sports facilities for the City of San Antonio, the city has to allow for open carry in the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center because it’s required by state law. However, the city’s policy also allows licensees of the venue to determine if open carry is allowed in areas which they have control.

San Japan officials have determined no firearms will be allowed inside the convention center during their event.

“Safety is always the number one priority for San Japan,” said David Ramirez, San Japan community relations director. “In the past nine years, we’ve mostly figured out how to create guidelines that don’t stifle creativity [and] still create a safe space for our attendees.”

Ramirez adds that San Japan’s prop and weapon policy aligns with the best practices shared by comparably sized conventions in the U.S. and Canada. The policy includes a mandatory prop check-in with SAPD and rules such as no metal blades or sharp edges, no firing of any type of projectiles, including silly string (sorry Spider-man cosplayers) and no solid metal props.

For the full San Japan cosplay prop and weapons policy, visit


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