by Patch O'Furr
“Camp Feral! An all-inclusive furry summer camp where the registration fee covers your food, lodging and activities for the most unique and memorable furry experience of your life! Your fee covers all the coffee you can drink, [and] all the breakfast lunch or dinner you can eat.” (from the Camp Feral! 2012 website)
Camp Feral! is the oldest of the recorded outdoor furry conventions, going back to 1998. It is also Canada’s oldest furry event, and the fourth oldest continuing furry convention (after EuroFurence in 1995 and Anthrocon and Mephit FurMeet in 1997). It was started after the oldest furry annual convention, ConFurence in Southern California (1989), gave rise to U.S. East Coast furry conventions in 1995 to 1997 (Furtasticon, Confurence East, Albany Anthrocon), inspiring Canadian furry fans to start their own convention – but with a difference.
Camp Feral!: Fifteen Years, 1998 – 2012, Part 3
Camp Feral! X, at Camp Arowhon, was August 27 – 31, 2007. The U.S. financial crisis affected attendance adversely, dropping it back to about 80 campers. It focused upon the Camp’s tenth anniversary. The Feral! Survival Guide featured a retrospective by Terry Wessner titled “It’s Like Herding Cats, Only Moreso”. Registration was now C$325 for regular campers, C$375 for Sponsors, and C$495 for patrons, plus the C$45 bus fee.
Guests of Honour were three Canadian furry artists; Ferris (Chuck Davies), Gideon Hoss (of Club Stripes), and Max Blackrabbit (Malcolm Earle). The FeralCom staff was mostly the same: Potoroo and Patchouli (co-chairs), Verec (registration and logistics), Grex (finances), WilyKat and Growler (security), Dralen (workshop coordiator), Crono (activities coordinator), Cobalt (conbook and activities editor), and Blake, Desertwolf, Khaki Wolf, and Srice (gofurs).