COVID-19 Expectations for Kumoricon 2022
Posted September 1, 2022
Last updated November 7, 2022
In our ongoing mission to keep Kumoricon 2022 the safest event for everyone, we have decided to increase the protectiveness of our COVID-19 safety precautions compared to last year's convention.
Please review the following requirements, as well as answers to frequently-asked questions below:
- All attendees age 6 and over must provide either proof of COVID-19 vaccination and at least one booster administered within the last year, or proof of a negative test. Verification will be conducted on site.
- If you are using a PCR test, then it must be taken on or after Tuesday, November 8. A negative result will be considered valid for the entire convention.
- If you are using an antigen test, then a negative result is considered valid for 3 full days following the test date. (For example, a negative test taken on Thursday will permit being at the event on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.) A test must be re-taken during the convention if an antigen test's 3-day validity window expires before the end of the event.
- We currently expect free 2-hour PCR testing to be available nearby—see COVID-19 testing locations below for more information.
- A home antigen test is not accepted except in specific extenuating circumstances. See our Test requirements FAQ section below for more information.
- All attendees age 2 and over must wear facial coverings in convention space, except in designated eating areas while eating or drinking.
- Facial coverings must completely cover the nose and mouth, and must attach to the head with a strap.
- Facial coverings must meet a minimum certified standard of N95, KN95, or KF94 filtration.
- Facial coverings that are not allowed include (but are not limited to): surgical masks, paper masks, cloth masks, any masks with an exhalation valve, bandanas, mesh materials, masks with excessive holes or damage, face shields without a mask, and neck gaiters.
- This year, Kumoricon is providing KN95 masks! See Mask availability below for more information.
- Facial coverings must be visible. Attendees may not wear a costume that prevents anyone from seeing that the facial covering requirement is being followed (such as a helmet or head covering).
- The facial covering requirement applies in all locations in the Oregon Convention Center, and in all event rooms and event hallways for any programming in the Hyatt. The only exceptions are in designated eating areas while eating or drinking, and while presenting or performing for any officially-run event where the written rules for that event allow for an exception.
Our safety precautions are an ongoing conversation involving our venue, local guidance, and the conditions of the pandemic. Our requirements are subject to change up until the convention. Our COVID-19 Safety page and our Code of Conduct will always reflect the latest information.
Kumoricon will provide a free KN95 mask to any staff or attendee without a sufficient facial covering option, or unsure of their mask's filtration. Masks can be obtained from the Operations Office, Registration, Info Booth, or any wristband station. Masks sized for youth and small children will be available. While we should have enough to supply anyone who needs a mask, we ask attendees to do their best to limit to one mask per person.
COVID-19 testing locations
A vaccine is the best step you can take to keep yourself and everyone else safe at the convention, and is the most reliable way to get through our doors. Based on the CDC's guidance around vaccine effectiveness over time, our policy counts a primary vaccination series plus at least one booster dose, with the booster having been administered within 1 year of Kumoricon 2022.
A PCR test is the next best thing if you are unable to be vaccinated by con. There are many places where you can get this for free! The closest location to our event is located just outside the OCC's Holladay Lobby, providing free 2-hour PCR and ~30-minute antigen testing. Visit the Curative booking page for Oregon Convention Center Outdoor Plaza—Rapid PCR for more details.
An antigen test is an acceptable fallback if your PCR test does not arrive in time. Free PCR (and antigen) testing is available at multiple locations in addition to the location listed above.
We will continue to update this space if COVID-19 testing locations change closer to the convention.
More options can be found using the state COVID-19 test locator sites below:
If you take a PCR test, it must be administered on or after Tuesday, November 8, to allow entry for the entire event.
An antigen test is more restricted, and is only valid for three days following your test date. If you take a rapid test, it must be administered Thursday or later to cover all days of con.
- Costumes and mask types
- Mask exemptions
- Vaccination requirements
- Test requirements
- Vaccination or negative test verification
- Venue space
- Eating at the convention
- General topics
Costumes and mask types
Q: Will Kumoricon be providing masks if we forget or don't bring them?
A: Yes! This year we have been able to set aside a stock of masks for staff and attendees who need one. Masks for youth and small children will also be available. While we should have enough to supply anyone who needs a mask, we ask attendees to do their best to limit to one mask per person.
Q: If I lose the mask Kumoricon provides, or it becomes damaged, can I get a replacement?
A: While we ask that attendees do their best to limit to one Kumoricon-provided mask, we have planned ahead to have extra masks on hand. If your mask becomes damaged or lost during the convention and you don't have a replacement, please visit the Operations Office to let us know!
Q: I have a headpiece, helmet, or other full head covering as part of my costume. Can I wear this? If not, can I put it on temporarily for photos?
A: You may only wear it if it does not prevent us from seeing that you are following the mask policy. You may wear your headpiece over your properly worn mask for photos, but must remove it once the photos have been taken.
Q: Will fursuits or costumes with headpieces with open mouths be allowed if a staff member could see inside the mouth to check for a mask if they get close enough?
A: If we can clearly see that your mask is on properly, it is allowed.
Q: Please clarify "and must attach to the head with a strap". Are you requiring something more than standard ear loops?
A: Not all masks attach to the ears, so we want to be inclusive of masks that tie around the head or attach in other ways.
Q: I have a spandex suit that completely covers my head. Do I wear the mask under or over that?
A: Please wear the mask over the spandex and make sure it still covers your nose and mouth. We need to be able to see that you're wearing the mask and that it's secure.
Q: Can a neck gaiter be worn over a mask if it is part of my cosplay?
A: No. The required mask cannot be hidden by the neck gaiter. We need to be able to see the mask.
Q: Are ski masks allowed if they don't "attach" to the head?
A: No, these are considered similar to neck gaiters, and are not allowed for the same reasons.
Q: Can I wear a cloth mask over an approved mask?
A: This is allowed as long as the mask worn underneath meets our minimum mask requirements (N95, KN95, KF94).
Q: Is there any kind of double masking that would not be allowed?
A: As long as all of the visible masks being used fit our guidelines, it should be okay. However, we reserve the right to make a judgment call in unusual cases, as we cannot foresee every eventuality.
Q: Are "vented" masks acceptable if the vent is completely covered by filter material?
A: Sadly, no. Masks with vents are not allowed because we cannot verify whether someone has the proper filters inside. The CDC does not recommend these, so we are not allowing them.
Q: Are face shields allowed?
A: Face shields are not an appropriate substitute for a proper facial covering. They may be worn as an additional layer of protection, but are not sufficient on their own.
Q: Are clear lip-reading masks where the mouth is visible allowed if they securely fasten to the ears or head?
A: Masks with windows for lip reading are allowed. However, face shields that have air openings or are located in front of the face are not allowed. A good rule of thumb is that air entering and exiting your mask should pass through some type of filter.
Masks that are designed entirely out of clear plastic or another airtight material are not permitted, as all air entering and exiting the mask moves past the sides of the mask unfiltered. This also includes face shields which are open to the air on one or more sides.
Q: Can I paint my mask?
A: While our policy does allow decoration, please take care to ensure that any materials used on your mask don't have harmful fumes or negatively affect the mask's ability to filter.
Q: I have a layered cloth mask that fits a filter square into a pocket. Is this allowed?
A: Pocket-style filters aren't sufficient on their own. This type of filter has a wide variety of actual filtration, which can’t be determined on sight.
Q: I have a special mask that has full N95+ filtration (not just a pocket insert). Is this allowed? (e.g., Happy Mask, Enro, Breathe99, others)
A: Masks that can be visibly distinguished as a known brand/style with filtration comparable (or greater) to N95 may be permitted. Because this can be subjective, our staff reserve the right to make a judgment style on specific, unfamiliar, or unidentifiable mask types at con.
Q: Can I take my mask off for photos?
A: There is no exception for photography poses.
Q: As a panelist or event participant, can I take off my mask while presenting?
A: Currently the only exception is the Cosplay Lip Sync Showdown. If that changes for an event, that will be communicated in the rules for panelists or specific events.
Q: Will there be designated quiet areas for people with sensory needs to take mask breaks as an alternative to going outside?
A: Eating areas are the only areas where masks will be able to be removed briefly for eating or drinking. Our AFK room, Gunpla Lounge, and Manga Library are quieter areas, but masks will be required.
Q: What accessibility options will be available for those who may rely on lip reading?
A: We don't have a list of these handy, but if you or someone you know has an accommodation request or for any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: What vaccinations meet our requirements?
A: To meet the vaccination requirement, you must present proof of having received a full primary dose of a COVID-19 of a vaccine (second dose for two-dose vaccines, or single dose for one-dose vaccines), as well as a COVID-19 booster vaccination. Your booster dose must have been administered within the last year.
Q: Are boosters included as part of the vaccination requirement?
A: Yes, a booster dose is required. See the above answer for additional information.
Q: Is the new bivalent booster a part of the booster requirement?
A: While we do not require the new bivalent booster for this year due to how recently it has become available, we do encourage all of our attendees to take this important protective measure if they are eligible to do so.
Q: I can't get vaccinated due to religious reasons. Can I show my exemption to get in?
A: If you cannot get the vaccine, you will need to meet the negative test requirements.
Q: Is a vaccination proof from outside the United States acceptable?
A: We will accept as much as we are able. Please check back to this page for the latest confirmation. Also, please contact us in advance if you would like to make sure.
Q: Does 1 year count a year from con, or does it have to be within 2022?
A: Our booster requirement measures 1 year from the date of Kumoricon 2022. For example, a booster administered in December of 2021 would satisfy our policy.
Q: What kinds of tests will be accepted?
A: NAAT/PCR-based tests (including rapid PCR), ID NOW tests, and antigen tests will be accepted. A test should be administered at a location which provides a record of the test date and result.
Q: What if the test is taken at the store?
A: To be an allowable antigen test, the store must produce their own documentation of the negative test result.
Q: Are at-home tests accepted?
A: Currently, Kumoricon requires tests to be documented by a testing provider. In cases where local testing is unavailable due to shortages, unexpected closures, hours of operation, or otherwise not reasonably achievable, Kumoricon staff may accept results of home antigen tests on a case-by-case basis. In this exceptional case, check in with staff prior to administering the test.
Q: Your rules say for a PCR test, it must be taken on or after November 8. Does this refer to the date the test is taken, or when the results need to come in?
A: The test must be taken on or after November 8, not just the result. 2-hour PCR testing is expected to be available at the free Curative testing site located located outside of the OCC Holladay Lobby.
Q: Will testing be available on site?
A: We currently expect the free Curative testing site currently located outside of the OCC to be available during our event. For more details on this site, including address and hours of operation, please visit the Curative booking page for Oregon Convention Center Outdoor Plaza—Rapid PCR.
Q: What if I arrive after testing options have closed?
A: While we currently cannot guarantee any change to publicly posted hours, Kumoricon is working with nearby testing providers to extend hours of operation where possible. In the event that COVID-19 testing is not available locally, home test kits may be allowed on a case-by-case basis (see above FAQ item on home tests).
Q: Why aren't vaccinated attendees required to take a test?
A: We recognize that nearby testing facilities have limited resources. While vaccination does not provide a guarantee against COVID-19 transmission, it does provide some barrier. Combined with our increased minimum masking policy in 2022, we feel that our vaccination/testing requirement provides a balance between available resources and attendee safety.
Vaccination or negative test verification
Q: Is a photo of a vaccination card acceptable?
A: Yes, photos of vaccination cards are okay. We can also accept a standard medical chart app (such as MyChart) if it displays your vaccination proof.
Q: Are California resident QR codes allowed as vaccination proof?
A: We will try to support QR-code based health cards, but cannot guarantee accessibility at the con. Please bring a backup if you plan to use this method.
Q: Can staff upload photos of their vaccination cards in advance?
A: Staff will be checked using the same process as attendees, as we don't even know your badge type when first entering the building. We are not set up to do advance verification.
Q: What kind of identification should I bring for proof of vaccination or negative test?
A: Identification requirements for our health check are the same as our requirements for registration, a valid, government-issued photo ID, so you don't have to bring anything extra. You can use the same documents for both. Please review our registration page for full details.
Q: Will I need to show my proof of vaccination or negative test every time I enter?
A: We will be giving wristbands once you have entered the OCC, even before you get your badge. You may need to get a new wristband the next day if you enter using an antigen (non-PCR) test result.
Q: Will there be time or capacity limitations in event rooms? Since the convention's livelihood is based on high attendee numbers, how are you addressing the direct conflict that brings with health and safety guidelines?
A: There's definitely a balance that we're having to find, and we want you all to know that we're taking it very seriously. We can't always achieve perfect social distancing, but we're looking at how much we can space things out. This is part of why we're enforcing vaccination and test requirements, as well as mask requirements. There's no perfect answer here, but we're doing what we can.
Q: Will you be clearing rooms between events for any kind of disinfecting?
A: We do have longer gaps in between panels this year for clearing out and less overlap, and we will be trying to add disinfecting, but it is not something we can guarantee for any or all panels.
Eating at the convention
Q: Where can I eat at Kumoricon?
A: Eating areas will be present in clearly marked areas at the convention. A marked section of the Gaming hall is our primary eating location; it and any other eating area will be clearly marked on our maps as well as with signage.
Q: Can I eat in other areas of the convention if there is space?
A: No. Any area not clearly marked as an eating area is required to keep our mask policy. Corridors and thoroughfares, including the large steps beside staircases as well as balcony seating, are not designated eating areas.
Q: Does a designated area mean I can bring my own food?
A: Although designated eating areas allow removal of a mask while eating, they do not override the Oregon Convention Center's strict outside food policy. Please do not bring outside food into the Oregon Convention Center, even in designated eating areas.
Q: Are there any differences between minors and adults for COVID-19 requirements?
A: The only differences are the minimum ages at which we enforce the vaccination-or-negative-test requirement and the mask requirement. All attendees age 6 and over must provide either proof of COVID-19 vaccination, or proof of a negative test. All attendees age 2 and over must wear facial coverings based on the listed requirements.
Q: If someone were to go against your COVID-19 requirements, what would happen?
A: We would follow the same procedures we follow when people break any other policy for our event. We will enforce those rules, and failing to follow them repeatedly could lead to being removed from the event.