KHARKIV, Ukraine, 28 January -- Amid growing disapproval and violent protests that left 4 dead and hundreds injured in the Ukrainian capital city of Kiev, Prime Minister Mykola Azarov resigned on the morning of 28 January 2014.
He and his cabinet will continue in their roles until the President and the Parliament can form a new government to lead the eastern-European nation moving forward.
The protests ultimately stem from the decision of Azarov to imprison former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, who was one of the nation’s most outspoken leaders in the effort to integrate the Ukraine into the European Union.
Some 475 kilometers (300 miles) to the east in Ukraine’s second largest city, Kharkiv, the situation has been tense but different. Most of Kharkiv’s residents speak Russian and many do not actively support the integration of the Ukraine into the EU, due to already deteriorating ties with Russia.
A small gathering will be occurring this weekend in Kharkiv, but politics are not on the agenda for discussion. KharCon, a small furry convention that meets several times a year, will take place this weekend, from Friday 31 January through Sunday 2 February.
Fred Patten says,
I am writing a history of all Furry conventions from the first, in January 1989, to the end of 2010, when there were 42 of them around the world. This is 182 pages; almost 45,000 words. Most fans think that it is already too long, so I have stopped with 2010. There were 43 in 2011, and over 60 today.
Here are some sample entries and illustrations:
|Albany AnthroCon 1998 – Here Be Dragons||The Omni Albany Hotel, Albany, New York||July 3-5, 1998 (Attendance: 600)|
|GoH: Jeffrey A. Carver (s-f author), Jim Groat (Furry cartoonist); Fandom GoH: Dr. Samuel Conway|
|Charity: Whiskers, a cat rescue group ($3,092)||Chair: Roger Wilbur (Aloyen Youngblood)|
The activities of the first AnthroCon were repeated and expanded upon. There were special interest group meetings; panels on such subjects as anthropomorphic-animal advertising mascots and “Cleaning Up Our Past”; a puppet show by Steve Plunkett and a Story Hour by Uncle Kage; and a Saturday-night performance by Purple Nurple Live! The previous year’s Moreau Awards were not repeated; the committee considered them a failure since only about twenty members out of 500 had bothered to attend and vote. The 44-page Program Book had a cover by Jim Groat. The AnthroCon had over forty staff members; Roger Wilbur was the official Chairman (CEO), but most of the convention was coordinated by Jonah E. Safar as Organizational Director. The T-shirt was by Jim Groat. There was general agreement that a larger hotel was needed for next year.
What The Fur has finally announced the dates and venue for their 2014 event. After some speculation about what was happening to the Canadian event, the release of information comes just before Christmas. The convention will be held in Montreal, Quebec from the 23rd to the 25th of May, 2014, and will be taking place at the Sheraton Montreal Airport.
We had every intention of keeping FurFright going for years to come. At this year's Closing Ceremonies we dispelled unfounded rumors and told you we'd be back in 2014 and beyond. That was always our intent.
Since that time the Con Chairs have experienced a devastating turn of events in their personal/family life, making it impossible for the convention to continue. All our time, energy, and resources need to be spent healing and coping with the challenges we face. So due to circumstances beyond our control, FurFright has come to an end. 2013 was our final year.
This news was not confirmed through official channels as of Saturday night. However, the convention's website contains no information on future events a month after FurFright 2013, and no response had been made to questions regarding 2014 on Facebook.
Update: Bios (FurFright 2013's Dances coordinator) has tweeted that he is "now personally working with Crowne Plaza Sales Dept signing contracts for #furfright" and that "due to personal reasons Furfright will change a hand [sic] in con chairs for 2014".
There is a small movement right now by FF staffpersons to hold an event in the same timeframe, which is being bandied around on twitter #furfright However, the FF name will remain with the Con Chairs so this new event will also have a new name, should it come about (which we would certainly love to see!).
It is official #furfright will retire its name, but our passion and love for this fandom will live on for 2014 with a new look and name! [Bios]
Update 4 (Dec 4): The new convention's staff have terminated voting "due to infighting amongst the community over name choices":
The name will instead be chosen by board decision tonight, using all previous submissions as a guideline. While vote counts will be considered, they will not determine the winner.
This promotional newsletter was provided by Fangcon. Story written by Nightwolf.
Welcome one and all, to the furriest show on Earth! Come to a convention unlike any you've seen before!
What makes Fangcon stand out from the rest? We've packed this weekend full of activities to enjoy all weekend long by all ages. Test your skill and luck at our carnival corner, with games provided by furries from all over Tennessee. Enjoy the fursuit parade and watch the suiters compete in the fursuit games. For a more refined feel, take a seat in the poker tournament. Relax in the hotel's heated pool before the late night dances.
In a statement, chairman Gir Tygrin detailed the group's struggle to deal with the growth of the organization, and their ultimate decision that the amount of work needed to allow FCN to continue to exist and "not change its core mission":
[…] would be unrealistic and would potentially compromise the integrity of the event.
The organization's supplies and funds are to be donated to other events and charities; the latter have already received $21,299.67 from this year's charity fundraising efforts.
Camp Feral! was the last group to eat in the Main Lodge, a rustic building erected in 1934 that has been the focal point of the camp site since its founding. In 2012, Feral! was last to use the Rec Hall stage before it was torn down to make way for a floor hockey space.
The dates for 2014 are Thursday, August 21st to Monday, August 25th. The theme will be 'Algonquinos.' Typical of Feral!, the theme will be a bizarre mashup of all things high fantasy – from Lord of the Rings to Game of Thrones – with a uniquely 'Feral' twist.
Guests of Honor include artist & fursuit maker Crazy Corgi; and Sema Jayhawk, who will be co-hosting "Whose Lion is it Anyway?" with con chair, Alkali Bismuth. Alkali, Pandez and Xander the Blue will also provide stand-up comedy. Dances are to be hosted by DJ Firr.
Registration is at fursquared.com. As one of their perks, Super Sponsors ($100) can have Xander draw their character into the con picture and will receive a copy. For more information, check out "fursquared" on Fur Affinity, Facebook, and Twitter.
Lastly, here's the launch trailer. (The con name was originally F-Squared.)
All 33 entries were anonymized and identified as numbers through the board's selection process.
Kigai Holt is an artist whose works include anthro art. Although not considering himself a furry, and not being deeply involved in the furry fandon, Kigai attended last weekend's IndyFurCon 2013 to sell commissions in the Artists' Alley.
According to journals posted on deviantART and Fur Affinity, Kigai enjoyed the convention and was able to sell several commissions; but the experience was soured when his car was broken into, and his original artwork and art supplies stolen.
GaymerX, the first gaming convention focused on LGBT themes, won media buzz and crowds through active inclusion. Inviting allies in "geek culture" to an "arms-open party for anyone who wants to join", it drew over 2,000 to San Francisco's Japantown (a heavy turnout for a first con, compared to established furry conventions.) Founder Matt Conn called it "just the start".
The last time I did a report for Flayrah, someone complained that being mostly interested in furry comics and webcomics doesn't make one a 'fringe' furry. Well, there wasn't a single comic-related event in over 160 program items. A couple of panels on making cartoons, and two or three categories in the Ursa Major awards for 2012, which were announced at the con, but that's it. Still plenty for me to enjoy, though.
Another San Diego Comic Con, and that means it’s time once again for Animation Magazine to hold their annual Pitch Party competition. For the past 12 years the Animation folks have asked would-be show-runners to purchase a 1/6-page ad in the magazine, wherein those creators can show off their idea for a new animated series as a one-panel poster. The ideas are judged by a panel of animation industry experts (including executives from The Hub, Cartoon Network, PBS, and more), as well as the Animation staff and the magazine’s readers, all of whom picked their favorites for a show to actually bring into development. As usual, there were several furry-themed titles among the entries, including: Mob Dogs by Paul Trineer, Across the Universe by Daron Orange, Master Karate Todd & the Power Squad (web site), Night Watch Dog by Chris Gruszka (web site), Fast Sloths by Stephanie Komure and Joseph Medina (web site), Shell & Paddy by Thomas Spettel (web site), and The Tinies of Raglan Shire by Michael Kushner (web site). So who won?
GaymerX is the first gaming convention focused on LGBTQ themes for "gaymers", their allies, and geek culture. On August 3–4 GaymerX will bring contests, parties, panels and more to Hotel Kabuki in San Francisco's Japantown.
Founder and Director of Technology, Andrew Evans, told me:
Creating a safe space for queer geeks and their allies to come together, discuss their geekiness, hang out and feel safe is super important to the community. We felt like the gaming community wasn't doing enough to bring together queer geeks, which is why we're doing GaymerX and built out GaymerConnect. ["A service that allows you to find queer gamers and allies of every identity who play the same games you do."]
Update: Use code GX13FUR by July 26 for a $10 registration discount. [Latte]
Welcome, Ladies and Gentlemen, Furries of all ages, you are invited to join us and our circus family for the second year of Fangcon, the greatest convention in Furry Fandom.
Our convention circus circuit has us at a new location, the Holiday Inn in beautiful Knoxville, Tennessee! Start planning now and make those reservations for our Oct 31–Nov 4 long weekend. You need to get those front row seats now for the best viewing. You should also consider upgrading those memberships to our Sponsor and Super Sponsor levels. We will be adding perks as they come in and likely some secret ones too, to be given out at the con.