From Fanlore
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Name: Arisia
Dates: 1989-
Frequency: annual
Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Focus: science fiction and fantasy
Organization: Arisia Inc.
Founding Date:
URL: (via Wayback)
2014 con program cover, art by Lubov
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

A convention for science fiction and fantasy fans, held annually in Boston, Massachusetts, USA. Arisia typically takes place in January during Martin Luther King weekend.

Arisia has historically focused on fans and fandom. It's run by and for fans, with the convention itself organized exclusively by volunteers. Programming includes a Masquerade costume contest, dances, panels, gaming and LARPs, filk, and anime and film showings.

Guests of Honor have included John Scalzi, Michael Whelan, and Phil Foglio.


Arisia was founded in 1990 following fan dissatisfaction with changes in Boskone's venue and programming. Arisia's name reflects this history; in the Lensman series by E.E. Doc Smith, Arisia is the nation of 'good' protagonists opposing the evil empire of Boskone.


In 2018, Arisia was criticized for mishandling harassment complaints against senior staff members, including its president, Noel Rosenberg. See Crystal Huff's open letter, Maura Taylor's #MeToo post, and Jim Hines' summary.


For those of you who were not at ARISIA '90, I have this to tell you. ARISIA is NOT one of those snotty cons where you're herded around and overcharged for warmed-over P.S.G. and impenetrable cliques. ARISIA is a con-lover's con which is run by people like us, who are fans first and con-crew second. ...You will have to look hard for a more multi-media convention. ...You do not need to be a big name to [volunteer and] become a part of ARISIA, you just need to be willing to give a big piece of yourself. There are even "TEAM ARISIA" T-shirts and "Lenses" for those who distinguish themselves with contributions to the con. ...When you are at the con you can see the line between con-crew and con- customer begin to fade. THIS is what makes ARISIA special.

Final Stop Andromeda, newsletter of the Boston Japanimation Society (Nov/Dec 1990)