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Phoenix Phurmeet 2005

Edited by GreenReaper as of Thu 29 Dec 2011 - 22:03
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Ok, this isn't exactly an official announcement, but more a plea for help. The short form is that we'll be starting a mini-con April 2005 with the exact days to be determined in the future, but we need some help and advice.

1) What events should we offer, keeping in mind that this is a first year and small con?
2) What do you expect to see at a con(artists alley, art show, dealer room, lounge, etc)?
3) Where should we hold it(ie hotel event space or the likely cheaper VFW Hall or similar)?

Aside from that, any advice, suggestions, volunteering and ideas are welcome and can be sent to it bounces, wait twelve hours and resend, since I just set it up).


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Phoenix..... as in Phoenix, Arizona?

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Aw yup

tabbytaur@large.... or was that large tabbytaur?

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Before you set up any convention, ask yourself:

  1. What need are we filling that isn't filled already?
  2. Do we have enough local staff to pull it off? Enough money? Enough local interest?

If you're trying to run a convention because "it would be neat to run a convention", then when you have to sign a contract with a hotel that has a $100,000 fine if you back out... you'll have second thoughts. If you can name hard, specific things that aren't being met in other conventions -- your convention can grow.

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1 is a good question, about the only need we'll be filling is a need for a replacement west coast con in April. More importantly, there's still enough room in the market today for another con.

2 That I'm not as sure about, we are after all in the earliest part of planning. Money, not today, hence such a far off plan and the consideration of holding it in non-hotel/non-convention space for the first few years. As to local interest, we've two decent sized local furry lists, and there was Zoniecon out here in the past, so we should be able to cover the major staffing at least in the first few years, after that, we may have a problem if we wish to continue growing.

Basically, I'd like a local con, although Confusion isn't hideously far, its not close, and for people east of here, this would be closer, so this is for the people who can't or would prefer not to travel to Cali for a con. Combined with the OK con that's being rolled around, this gives America a line of cons across the country, which is perfect for making it possible for every fur to visit at least one con a year.

tabbytaur at large(or was that large tabbytaur?)

tabbytaur@large.... or was that large tabbytaur?

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ZonieCon is dead and buried, right?
You may want to locate the folks that used to run that and see if you can find out why that con is dead and if they can offer any help and/or advice for bringing a new furry con into the region once again.


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The major function of a fannish event is social. You get folks together who share similar interests and have a good time. For now, rather than trying to run a convention, start small, with parties and picnics. Develop a nucleus of folks willing to do various tasks and _then_ see who is willing to do what.

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Speaking as the business manager of a small regional furry con:


Unless you like working hard. And I mean WORK. Be prepared to have no personal life during the weeks leading up to the event.

Seriously, I've been on various staff positions for cons ranging from a few hundred attendees to a few thousand, and I keep coming back for more, so obviously I must think it's worthwhile.

You need a good core of people, as you probably already know. I think a first year con should start small. You should look into incorporating as a club before you start signing contracts, because it's a lot easier get insurance and it's a way to keep your personal finances separated from the club's.

That latter is more important than you may think now, and the protection goes both ways.

Connect up with as many people as you can who either are running cons now, or have run them.

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Hmmm, incorproating as a club? How does that work? I've taken a few basic business classes and was planning on incorporating as a way to keep the business seperate. As to work, I already do 50 to 60hrs a week, so I don't see that as an issue, though I do need a staff.

tabbytaur@large.... or was that large tabbytaur?

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As others have been saying.

*Keep it small to start with - Don't expect 500 people to show up your first year. MFM started with less then 60 people and grew to over 400 in six years.

*Start with smaller Hotels - Drive around the area where you would like your con to be held and see what is around. Take a note of the hotels and call them afterwards. Smaller hotels are ok, but think of things like airport access, food places, highway access, etc. Be careful and check dates with the hotel so you don't end up having to share it with a wedding or something like that.

* Maintain a level of professionalism. When working face to face with a hotel, dress like a in-formal interview, make business cards/letterheads/envelopes with the club name and use them when in contact with the hotel (or anyone else), keep a copy of EVERYTHING somewhere safe.

* Art Show - Art Show can generate income for your con, but they require a lot of paperwork. This one I would leave to debate within your staff.

* Dealers Den - Yes. Even if you don't want one, people will ask for one.

* You do realize that there is over 12 furry cons per year now? As someone else was saying, ask yourself the question of what would make your con different and appealing to fans? What's there to do in Pheonix? Would the locals help out? Etc....

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Having been to Phoenix a time or three, I can vouch for the fact that there is no shortage of things to do. One that I'm sure will be on the must-see list for many furry fans is Out of Africa Wildlife Park.

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As one of the ZONIECON Veteran con-guys, You have received some good advice already... ZONIECON died because of online infighting, never getting Not-For-Profit tax status, and because the chairman tended to let most of the con duties lay until about a week before the actual con date, Before our last ZONIECON I decided to walk in to the hotel one week previous to our con date only to find it under reconstruction, and worse, they had forgotten we were coming! There are simply a zillion details you must prepare for. Find folks willing to work together, whose personalities won't interfere with con planning, make a plan like a flow chart showing who is helping with what, what the supplies needed are, and try to get the scratch for said supplies BEFORE you need them.. BTW, we have artshow pegboards, some knowhow and lots of horror stories to share if you email me at add AZ Furry con or somesuch to the title line or I'll probbly dump it.
Regards, Wolf Smith, Tucson Az.

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so thats why zonie-con went poof ...*whimpers*

Your rating: None is now up and running, and has been repaired.

tabbytaur@large.... or was that large tabbytaur?

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