“Thunderbird” Hotel to be Torn Down, Displacing Multiple Minnesota Conventions

Last night, multiple conventions were contacted by management at the Ramada Bloomington Minneapolis Airport (aka “The Thunderbird”) informing them that the hotel had been sold to the City of Bloomington and is scheduled to close in the next thirty to sixty days (followed by an eventual demolition in the proceeding months).

This is devastating news to the Minnesota convention scene, as the hotel is home to quite a few local conventions — including 2D Con, MLP-MSP, Anime Fusion, and Tol Con. This is especially damaging for the first two, as both 2D Con and MLP-MSP are scheduled for just over two months from now.

While MLP-MSP hasn’t made any official statements on the matter, 2D Con made an announcement on their Facebook page stating that they are currently looking for a new venue. While October convention Anime Fusion has yet to make an official statement on the matter, Tol Con (scheduled for November) has as well.

(Update 3/24 1:00pm: Anime Fusion has now released a statement about the closure as well.)

Hopefully all of these cons (and any others if I forgot one) can find a new home quickly.

Besides the four listed here, the “Thunderbird” has been the historic home of quite a few other conventions. It’s a part of Minnesota fandom history, and many will be sad to see it go. With one less venue available in the area, the impact this will have on the local con scene in the Twin Cities cannot be underestimated.

Trae Dorn

Trae Dorn has been staffing conventions for over twenty years, and is a co-founder of Wisconsin’s longest running Anime convention No Brand Con. Trae also writes and draws the webcomics UnCONventional and The Chronicles of Crosarth, which leads many to ask when the hell they have time to actually do anything anymore. Trae says they have the time because they “do it all quite poorly.”