Dogpatch Press

Fluff Pieces Every Week

Category: Conventions

Conventions Cancelled By Corona Contagion — On March 20-22, Log On For KeepCalmCon

by Arrkay

Welcome to Arrkay from Culturally F’d. See their tag for more.

Furry con status updates via furrycons.com:

Cancelled: Furnal Equinox (Canada), Gateway Furmeet (Missouri), FurDu (Australia), Furry Weekend Atlanta (Georgia).

Postponed: Biggest Little Fur Con (Nevada), Otterdance (Netherlands), Golden State Fur Con (California), Fauntastic (France), Thaitails (Thailand).

BETTER SAFE THAN SORRY 

Conventions the world over are cancelling or postponing in every fandom. The COVID-19 (Corona virus) preparation has many in isolation the world over. Travel is becoming more restricted between countries, and preppers are bulk-buying all the toilet paper. These quarantines and lock downs being so wide spread, it’s actually kind of an impressive feat of social engineering that hasn’t caused this much panic since Y2K. The purpose of isolation is to take the place of herd immunity that doesn’t exist for a new virus. Yes, healthy young furs probably won’t get very sick if they catch it, but these proactive measures are to protect the more vulnerable, elderly, and immune-compromised. It’s drastic, but the virus would spread alarmingly fast if we continued attending concerts and conventions.

You can help these conventions by:

  1. Donating your registration to the organization
  2. Sharing the information, store fronts, and art streams of artists and dealers affected by closures and postponements
  3. Donate to the charity of the event
  4. Be patient with event organizers, venue and hotel staff, and workers who cannot take the time off to self-isolate.

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Good news! Doggos won’t make you vom-o — and more to know about a zoonotic pandemic.

by Patch O'Furr

Need something wholesome for a time like this?  Investigation found no reason to fear that people might catch COVID-19 from dogs. That’s good for me and my chihuahua child. No more worry about going “aww” for little sneezes!

Plague Bats and Furry Vets

It’s rare for a new disease to jump from one species to another — they’re usually incompatible. But COVID-19 came from zoonotic transmission with no herd immunity or treatment. It’s NOT the common flu. The CDC info page calls it an evolving situation. Brace yourself! Learn key terms that the experts use.

Zoonotic: A virus is considered zoonotic when its origins can be traced to animals. These diseases are known as zoonoses, meaning they are naturally transmissible from vertebrate animals to humans. It’s believed the virus that causes COVID-19 may have originated in bats and spread through a number of species before it was contracted by humans.

I reached out to veterinarian furries for professional comments or a message to the fandom. Zarafa Giraffe works as fill-in staff at many vet clinics. He says:

Obviously, the Covid19 pandemic, and the social distancing it requires, has been devastating to the conventions and furmeets we love so well. The good news is that as far as we know, your dogs and cats are safe, and cannot transfer infection to you. Veterinary clinics are considered essential services, and will continue to operate. Even here in the San Francisco Bay Area, which currently has the strictest social distancing requirements in the US, you’re allowed to go to your local veterinary clinic. If your dog or cat needs medical attention, contact your local veterinarian.

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40th anniversary of Animalympics: The “Rocky Horror Show” of furry fandom – by Sy Sable

by Dogpatch Press Staff

Here’s a guest article from Sy Sable, AKA Mark Merlino, a founder of furry fandom and its first convention ConFurence. Sy, Rod O’Riley and Changa Lion host monthly parties at their house (The Prancing Skiltaire) in Southern California. The parties screen animation like Animalympics. It became popular at 1980’s fan parties, where furries adopted it as their own cult favorite like Rocky Horror and kept it alive when it might be forgotten. Last week I hosted a furry movie party where the furry-made version (C/FO Cut with rare lost scenes) got a fresh look as an original fandom root. The Youtube video is at end of article. – Patch

To go with the story, Changa Lion provided his scans of a vintage TV Guide from when Animalympics first aired (Jan 26 – Feb 1, 1980). “NBC was at the time in the dumps in ratings and very desperate. It had been this way for some time. They would not dig themselves out until the Cosby Show.” (full issue on Archive.org.)

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The Furry Karate Hero who stopped an assault at Fur Con

by Patch O'Furr

“I threw my paws to the ground and took my head and collar off” — The last thing they see before the furpile.

In San Jose on January 17, fursuiters were cooling off outside Further Confusion‘s main hotel. That’s when a car stopped short, and they heard the driver screaming “Get out!” She was being beaten. Onlookers ran to the car and pulled a male passenger off of her.

“Among the first on scene was the pink dinosaur, who wrested the suspect by the head and shoulders while a massive tail bobbed in his wake” – The Mercury News

Kin Z. Shiratsuki is the furry they quoted: “This guy was just walloping a lady,” Shiratsuki said. “He had to have hit her 10 times.” But wait, pink dinosaur? She’s a KOBOLD/ROO (also sometimes a purple gryphon). Get it right… read furry news!

The group of helpers show that not all heroes wear capes — some wear fursuits. They can join the ranks with furries in a past story who helped crash victims escape a car on fire.

Kin is often at local SF Bay Area meets and responded to a Q&A.

Hi Kin. Did you see the video of the incident went around a lot? It even made CNN’s front page.

Oh gosh it did, meep meep I did not see. I just saw one Twitter post and a Facebook post. I’m just glad that the cops came and arrested the guy.

What’s the story from being on the scene? 

I was walking around the corner in suit with a friend. I heard some people talking, and focused on two in the car. As soon as I saw what was happening I yelled at the group of people, “get the car door open, get him out of there!” and they acted. I told people to call 911, and called myself.

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Help Make a Parents and Kids Programming Track at Further Confusion

by Patch O'Furr

UPDATE: The person running programming has had to drop out. Anyone interested in helping take their place should contact the con.

Who brings kids to a furry con? Check out Furscience.com: Resources for parents, or Moms of Furries. Vice has a report: How the Furry Community Became a Safe Space for Youth. Sometimes kids bring their parents, and sometimes furries have their own kids. Of course they do, this fandom started in the late 1970’s. Multiple generations is what makes it grow.

BunBun, a mom and furry near San Francisco, proposed kid-friendly programming to Further Confusion in January. She said the board really wants to make it happen. She’s now working to make special events for kids. There’s a schedule including guided story writing/mad libs (maybe with a writer guest?) and having the kids design a space ship, matching the sci-fi theme of the con.

It will be the best time ever for them. You can help!

  • WANTED: STAFF. Bunbun needs people willing to volunteer.
  • WANTED: ART SUPPLIES. Including hands-on craft or sewing supplies, like scrap fur, needles and thread to help them start furry costuming of their own.
  • Is anyone willing to put on a fun panel for kids, or be a DJ for kid friendly music?

Contact the con if you want to help make it happen.

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At Furry Weekend Atlanta, an academic philosopher wins a job by the power of fandom.

by Patch O'Furr

The human species is diverse, but anywhere you go, there’s job-seekers hungry to start careers. At least one of them is a tennis-playing philosopher with a FurAffinity account, a raccoon fursona and a cool story: WildeCard. (Here’s his personal site.)

In human form, he’s a Postdoc researcher and ethics course instructor at Ohio State University’s Center for Ethics and Human Values. He’s working on a book titled The Environmental Impact of Overpopulation: The Ethics of Procreation, which explores the ethics of slowing population growth. (For humans — no word about raccoons, bunnies or others with prodigious proliferation.)

How did he get there? WildeCard writes in:

“I recently documented how my experience on the academic job market (in philosophy) overlapped with attending Furry Weekend Atlanta 2019. And by overlapped, I mean that I was literally doing job interviews from my hotel room while attending this convention. That part of the story comes near the tail-end of an 8-month search for academic employment, which was ultimately successful.

The relevant (and lengthy) blog post is here.”

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South Afrifur 2019 – Convention Report by Jako Malan

by Patch O'Furr

Thanks to Jako Malan/Erdwolf_TVL for the guest submission. Compare the update with a look back at Fred Patten’s South Afrifur 2017 con report. And check out the guest articles sent here by Duncan Piasecki for another voice from South African furry fandom. “An exciting tourist destination to international furries”? Lekker place, maan. – Patch

Fursuiters SAFC2019 – Thanks to @FurnixWolf (Telegram) for photo.

In 2018, the local furry convention South Afrifur – then in its second year – had the unexpected privilege of South Africa’s largest Afrikaans magazine doing an editorial on the local fandom. I did not feel it pressed on me to write an official report then. This year the local convention attracted little attention from non-furries, but in a way, I think it had reached critical momentum and I felt inspired to write about it again.

Whereas the question on every muzzle in previous years had been “Will there be another con?” and “Did we succeed?” This year, there was tangible optimism and a sense of achievement. Other questions were being asked. “How many fursuiters will there be next year?” and “How will we fit everyone into the available accomodation?”

The 80s themed convention was held from the 12th through the 15th of July at the Ekudeni retreat about an hours’ drive from Johannesburg. As with previous years, the majority of furries came from the Gauteng province – the economic and industrial heartland of South Africa. The other provinces were represented too, albeit in much smaller numbers. We were also privileged to have four international visitors – Bravura and Aninok from Switzerland as well as Kit and Trace from Nebraska in the USA.

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DJ UltraPup barks about what it’s like to be on stage the first time at Anthrocon.

by Patch O'Furr

(Patch:) It sounds like you had a blast at Anthrocon! I wanted to ask you about your first time DJing a big con. What’s your story and how did you end up there? Was it your first furry con, or just first time on stage at one?

(DJ UltraPup:) I’m a member of the pup community and I have been for quite some time. I am also however a member of the furry community, and one of my big goals is to try and bridge the divide between furries and pups. When a friend of mine suggested I apply to DJ at Anthrocon, I thought why not. I’m well known in the DC area as a circuit DJ and I have 3 club residencies, so I applied, and sure enough they picked me to play Saturday night at 11pm. AC was my first major con. I had gone to FurTheMore earlier this year just to check it out, but this was my first time DJing a furcon, and it won’t be my last.

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Little con in the big city: How New York furries are establishing a convention in the Big Apple

by Dogpatch Press Staff

Rocky Coyote wrote in: “Hi Patch, great work on the furries and commercialization stories! Those were excellent reads. I just wanted to let you know that there’s a new mini con in New York City. I was thinking about submitting a feature about it and the growing furry presence in NYC.”

I wrote back that I have looked for furry presence while traveling in NYC and not found a lot in the past because it seemed scattered, and would love to help. (If anyone has the urge to write, guests get offered thank you tips, which I have to mention out of gratitude about the awesome result here.) – Patch

Little con in the big city: How a handful of New York furs are looking to establish a convention presence in the Big Apple – by Rocky Coyote

For a city referred to as ‘the concrete jungle,’ New York has a surprisingly small furry presence in the United States. Despite living in the biggest city in the nation, furries from the Big Apple must travel elsewhere if they want to attend a convention. A handful of furs looked to change that by organizing and hosting a mini convention on Memorial Day that saw over 50 attendees participate in a day-long event in the heart of Queens.

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A furry resurgence is bubbling up in West Michigan with the Great Lakes Furs.

by Patch O'Furr

Con gone? Tears were shed when Michigan’s Great Lakes Fur Con washed up in 2017. But now, @OrangeYouGlad brings good news of a new group, (Telegram: @GreatLakesFurs), lifting a wet blanket off those in spitting distance. Through hell or high water, furries will keep sailing on. Dam-straight!

First let’s look at how it rained on their parade. (I guess it rained cats and dogs?) From greatlakesfurcon.com:

An Important Announcement

Posted on May 14, 2017

We have a bit of disappointing news to share with all of you. Great Lakes Fur Con will not be taking place in 2017. Recently some of our staff members stepped down due to personal obligations, and while we wish them the best (and they wish us the best as well), this means we do not have the manpower to put on the convention that you all deserve and enjoy.

That’s not too dramatic. It sounds like it just melted away. Dogpatch Press shared a little notice in What’s Yiffin’? – June 2017 edition of syndicated furry news:

Even though there was no official convention this story still has a happy ending, too; the remaining staff of GLFC elected to hold a big cookout/potluck and invited furs in the area to bring a dish and come hang out. Afterwards, everyone went bowling! Sure, it’s not a convention but that still sounds like a hell of a way to spend a day.

Now they’re floating some new plans. @OrangeYouGlad joins me to talk about it.

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