Creative Commons license icon

COVID-19 pandemic causes furry convention closures and delays worldwide

Your rating: None Average: 3.6 (11 votes)

As governments restrict gatherings of people, furry conventions are being postponed or canceled. Here's a quick run down of events in March and April and their status as of March 31 08:00 EDT (UTC-4) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic - updates to come.

Links go to statements if available, or to their Twitter feed or site. See also: Furry Fandom and the Internet forced back to roots by viral outbreak

Per-event details

Thailand-based Thaitails, originally set for 21-22 March, attempted to address concerns by offering screening, sanitization and a refund, but on March 5 it was postponed to 29-30 August, with staff saying that their hotel had been "sympathetic and generous to our convention".

Motor City Furry Con was postponed under governors' orders, as the event dates fell at the tail end of a three-week ban on events of 250+ people.

Then came Furnal Equinox. Just this Wednesday, the convention was still going ahead, having given a warning about Covid-19 two weeks ago. The next day, they admitted that financial considerations were playing a part in their decision:

As it currently stands, we have committed to business contracts with multiple vendors that have very specific cancellation terms, much like other conventions have. These terms are intended to protect both Furnal Equinox and our business partners, but breaking these contracts at this late date would put our organization into bankruptcy, threatening any future events (either delayed or for future years).

We recognize that other organizations and businesses have taken different steps, but they are in a more secure position to do so. We’re a small organization that took in just over $150,000 last year, and don’t have that same security.

The day after, the convention was cancelled, with registrations rolled over to 2021 - although they did offer refunds, as well as a plea that attendees donate this year's registration to cover the event's costs.

It wasn't long before BLFC followed suit, moving half a year ahead to the Halloween weekend after negotiations with the Grand Sierra Resort.

If you can make the new date of Oct 29 - Nov 1, the only action you need to take is to alter your travel plans. Hotel and registration will be taken care of automatically. [...] If you can’t make the new dates, you may use your confirmation email to cancel [...] Likewise, your convention registration is fully refundable. [...] We understand other conventions and events are already scheduled around the same time as BLFC 2020’s new Oct 29-Nov 1 dates. If you were planning on attending one of these other events and our new schedule poses a conflict, please attend that other event!

Despite that last bit, responses were tinged with regret that it would harm events around that date, such as Infurnity, Furpocalypse and ACFI.

In the UK, attempts are being made to defer the peak to 10-14 weeks in the future - or May 22, the first day of ConFuzzled 2020. It's usually packed, and some commentators have already pointed out risks:

Every year [...] Confuzzled [...] has a giant cookie [in the main hotel's lobby] that people break apart and eat despite it being a decoration.

[Note: This isn't a current issue; as of 2019, the cookie was cut after display and served from hotel food stands in return for a charity donation.]

In response, ConFuzzled put out a directors' statement on March 5, followed by a flash update last Thursday. But with expectations of a ban on large events as soon as next weekend, the situation remains fluid. On March 15, they laid out the possibility out in more detail, hinting that there might be more government guidance on March 17 - and that, unlike BLFC, postponing to later in the year (especially much later) might not be feasible.

Whilst postponement to later in the year might seem like the easiest solution, we need to consider things like both venues having the space available or suppliers availability aligning with our new dates. Additionally, we would need to consider the stress this would put on our team of volunteers who would effectively be delivering 2 conventions within a 6-7 month time window when taking into account next year’s event. [...]

Whilst we are of course insured for ConFuzzled, there are specific sets of criteria that must be satisfied in each given situation to invoke this process. Currently, owing to the HM Government’s position to not ban mass gatherings as an example, we cannot take the business decision to cancel the convention without there being heavy financial penalties that would jeopardize the future of the event.

The story was similar on March 20 – as while restaurants were closed as of Friday night, hotels were not.

The difficult reality ConFuzzled is faced with is a set of different scenarios that if played out, could mean no more ConFuzzled events in future.

The Directors have a legal obligation to secure the future of ConFuzzled, but also have a moral and ethical obligation to the safety and wellbeing of our attendees and team alike. We want to do everything within our power to ensure we do right by you, the attendee, whilst trying to ensure at the same time we can guarantee the survival of ConFuzzled. [... We] have written to the Government directly for clarification.

Sooner still on April 10-12 was smaller UK event Just Fur The Weekend. As of March 6, they also had no plans to cancel, and they followed up on March 15 with a note on precautions they intend to take – and a now-familiar explanation of the cost of cancelling unilaterally. Their message: Don't Panic. Since then, social gatherings have been banned in the UK, and JFTW discussed an "acceptable resolution" with the venue.

This turned out to be a transfer to April 2-4, 2021, with the convention issuing vouchers for registration, hotel rooms and dealers' tables which can be traded or sold. The bad news: being so close to the con, they and the hotel had already incurred expenses, so don't have the money to refund those who don't want to go - and say they will probably only be able to offer partial refunds even after the 2021 event.

…anyone seeking a refund by fully cancelling their voucher will need to wait until additional registration funds for the 2021 JFTW are received and additional expenses paid for. After JFTW 2021, any funds left will be earmarked for pending refunds. They’re likely to only receive a partial refund at best. This is why selling a voucher directly to another attendee is the best way to get the full value of your purchase back. The hotel will honor that voucher without any additional overhead, any additional margin, etc. That kind of direct 1-for-1 transfer is best for all involved.

The need to discuss was shared by ConFuzzled, which was swiftly followed by cancellation of its convention for 2020, staff not feeling it a good idea to try to run two conventions in much less than a year.

LondonFurs staff also announced that, with the closure of public bars, pubs and restaurants, their meets, held every three weeks, are postponed until further notice. It's unclear as of yet whether the restrictions will persist to the summer weekender party, scheduled for July 17 this year.

On the other side of the world, Furry Down Under (or FurDU) will not be held in Surfers Paradise - at least, not in 2020:

Unfortunately due to the new laws banning gatherings over 500 people, and our concern for attendees health, FurDU will be postponed [...] Our new dates will be Friday 7th – Sunday 9th of May, 2021.

We will be offering refunds of course but we will also allow those who already have rego to keep them for next years con, this will give you a guaranteed spot, current dealers will also keep their table in the Den if they take up this option.

Those responding on Twitter seemed to feel it was the right call – perhaps aided by the government's decree. This was also the approximate reason for Furnexion's deferment to the second half of 2020: their guests of honor could not attend Mexico from the USA. As the con was to be held March 27-29, attendee materials had already been paid for, so "unfurtunately" a refund could not be given.

Furry Weekend Atlanta, furry fandom's fourth largest convention by attendance (just after BLFC), announced on March 15 that Atlanta's 30-day event ban, CDC advice to cancel events of 50+ in the next two months, and the emergency return of Georgia's legislature "will have an effect on FWA 2020". The following night, they announced the cancellation of FWA 2020. Many asked about refunds, not being able to justify "donating" sums which could be $350 per person, and in some cases not wanting a transfer to 2021 (if that's available); staff say they are "working diligently to determine options". Hotel room deposits are to be automatically refunded.

At around the same time, Golden State Fur Con announced a postponement to August 28-30, with registration transferred but hotels needing to be rebooked; those not wishing to attend could instead transfer to 2021 or another Corgi Events con - or failing that, get a refund.

In Asia, Indonesian convention PAWAI is still monitoring the situation, and expects to be able to make a decision by early June. But for FurryPinas, early May is too close, and they're looking to reschedule for the third quarter of the year.

Back in Europe, Czech convention ZodiaCon was hoping to go ahead as of March 10, despite a nationwide prohibition against events of 100+ people - and later 30+. However, given the uncertainty, they are no longer requiring immediate payment, and are offering refunds to those who cannot travel; a final decision will be made by May 15. Similarly, Germany's Mephit Mini Con intended to proceed as of March 14, but on March 20 it was called off for 2020.

AnthrOhio is working through its options, given that "canceling or postponing an event comes with many costs that are hard for a non-profit to absorb". Argentina FurFiesta is warning attendees to follow a nationwide quarantine from March 20-31. Italy's Furizon "do not believe that there is any reason to talk about postponement or cancellation" but are "closely [following] the development" (as of March 23) – the region has been in a lockdown since late February, expected to last until at least Easter (April 12).

Anthrocon has stated actions they may take, including restricting attendance from areas where the virus is rampant, requesting that ill people stay home and everyone refrain from hugging, providing hand sanitizer, and postponing or cancelling in the event of "advice" not to hold it by health authorities. On March 25, they rolled out an addendum to their refund policy - registration may now be donated or refunded (optionally, without transaction fees to help them cover the cost) or deferred to 2021. In the even of cancellation, attendees have two weeks to pick, or else be deferred.

Norway's Furway, scheduled for mid-July, is still on but there is "a definite possibility" of it being cancelled - a decision is to be made in early-to-mid May.

Euforufence says it is "too early to speculate" while "the current system is highly dynamic"; as of March 13, they expect their August event to happen.

Wild North is likewise still going ahead "as it is still six months away, and a lot can happen in that time". But Spanish convention Furrnion, traditionally held around October, will be deferring to 2021.

Midwest FurFest, while noting their main hotel cancelled two months of events, "do not expect this to impact Midwest FurFest 2020 at this time".

What is COVID-19?

In Wuhan, China late 2019 a new viral menace emerged from local butchery markets, called "wet markets". While the practice had been curtailed after previous outbreaks, the Chinese government had turned a blind eye to these market's continued growth. This increased demand in local agriculture and loosened regulation may have been exasperated from the strain when China and Trump started a trade war in 2018 cut American food imports into the country. Now all the market gains since that trade war began have been whipped clean in a matter of weeks, and then some. But regardless of who started the trade war, it finishes now with a war for the health of the human race. In the petri dish of animal blood of those markets in Wuhan, spawned the infamous "Novel Coronovirus"; the disease it causes being termed COVID-19.

After disrupting the economy of China the virus has quickly spread in our interconnected world. As cases started showing up in the United States in late February, the spread continued into early March. At that time the United States declared travel restrictions with allied countries, including most of Europe, hoping to mitigate its import from overseas. However this microscopic immigrant had already made itself at home; Ohio leadership estimated there could be 100,000 infected in the state. Food, toilet paper, and sanitizer has flown off of store shelves as people prepare to hunker down.

So what makes people worried about this particular strain? The mortality rate is around two to three percent with a upward distribution tending more fatal with older age. Of course those with compromised respiratory or immune systems also face an escalated risk of death. This is combined with it being a disease that can be passed before symptoms appear.


Your rating: None Average: 5 (3 votes)

Changes are happening rapidly, so please bear with us as we update. We will be looking at events in May/June/July soon.

Your rating: None Average: 5 (3 votes)

P.S. That subhed should be COVID-19, not CORVID-19. :) Don't blame the crows!

Your rating: None Average: 4.5 (2 votes)

Aw, no birb transformations then.

Your rating: None Average: 4.5 (2 votes)

Fixed, thanks for pointing it out.

Don't blame the rats this time either, though it did start taking hold in the year of the rat. It was the bats.

Your rating: None

I'd blame Grey, but they're the wrong kind of bat. Perhaps Revar? Or the staff of Furloween 2006?

Your rating: None Average: 4.5 (2 votes)

Also the first instance of Otterdance, scheduled for 29 March in Rotterdam, after The Netherlands banned gatherings of over 100 people. The venue has reserved a later date, though, so it will (eventually) go on!

Your rating: None Average: 3 (4 votes)

Sounds like an interesting event!

Your rating: None Average: 2.3 (4 votes)

I'm worried if the furrie fans get the coronavirus.

Your rating: None Average: 1 (3 votes)

I hate this comment. It's an error.

Your rating: None Average: 1 (3 votes)

Same for next one. It's not an error.

Your rating: None Average: 1 (1 vote)

But its such a Novelty.... (new things)

Your rating: None Average: 3.3 (3 votes)

What is the rationale here for the wet market in question being described as "unregulated" when it did pass government inspections in 2019?

Your rating: None Average: 4.5 (2 votes)

Perhaps "under-regulated" would be a better phrase? The initial wording was "had lack in regulation" but I don't know what the 'roo's source for that was - a link would be helpful.

Officials seem to have decided that it was a bad idea and stopped it fairly quickly after it became known as the source, but then China is a place they can do that even if it might have a valid certificate.

Your rating: None Average: 4.5 (2 votes)

I wonder if the ban on wild meat sales there will last. How long did the SARS-related ban on civet sales last?

Your rating: None Average: 1.5 (2 votes)

They shouldn't be eating meat in the first place. That's a major reason that this all happened. I think its most zoonotic diseases are due to meat consumption and farming of animals. Considering the health and environmental costs, it's a behaviour we should absolutely be phasing out as the global population balloons.

"If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind."
~John Stuart Mill~

Your rating: None Average: 4.5 (2 votes)

Furlandia (May 21-24) currently has no change unless Oregon's assembly ban continues further into May.


Your rating: None Average: 4.7 (3 votes)

Thanks for the tip. It looks like there will come a point where they have to decide, but I imagine they are hoping that if it gets to that, the government will have got there first so they're covered by any insurance they have.

Your rating: None Average: 4.5 (2 votes)

For conventions postponing their dates Dragoneer is offering free advertising on FA:

Your rating: None Average: 2.5 (2 votes)

This is a nightmare. The virus is so bad (or so we have been told) that cons are being cancelled and the economy is melting.

How do we wake up? ????

Your rating: None Average: 4 (2 votes)

I feel like postponement/cancellation of furry conventions is pretty low on the nightmare scale.

Your rating: None Average: 2.5 (2 votes)

True. But the virus?

Your rating: None Average: 4 (2 votes)

Look at it this way: there's never been a better day to stop smoking! Hookah and cannabis, too. (And vaping, why not?)

Your rating: None Average: 4.3 (3 votes)

There will likely be many more conventions cancelled or postponed. Most will have to wait for government action to force their hand in order to invoke the 'force majeure' clauses in their contracts to do so without going bankrupt. For those who don't know there are often very high cancellation penalties as well as the event being on the hook for the room cost of all the rooms in the room block that wouldn't be rented. Invoking that clause gets them off the hook for that. Most furry cons in the US do not have or even qualify for event insurance.

I'd say the ones that have rescheduled are being very optimistic. We haven't come close to seeing the peak of this pandemic. I've seen estimates that that could well be 3-4 months out or even longer. That's if everyone cooperates with the measures being put in place now (expect those to get more restrictive). This pandemic will be with us until a viable vaccine is developed or enough people have caught it and recovered (hopefully) that the rate of new cases can't go exponential anymore.

Your rating: None Average: 1 (1 vote)

This is purgatory. The coronavirus outbreak make time longer. I wish that the virus has been eradicated.

Your rating: None Average: 1 (1 vote)

I mean makes, and it's my (and some others') opinions.

Your rating: None Average: 3.5 (4 votes)

I want to note that the 'Novel Coronovirus' you mention is not COVID-19. COVID-19 is the disease. SARS-CoV-2 is its virus. Like HIV is to AIDS.

Your rating: None Average: 3 (1 vote)

What a novelty....Correct its actual name is SARS-CoV-2, seems Coronovirus has a category of its own (Similar one found in bats apparently)

Your rating: None Average: 3 (2 votes)

Furry Weekend Atlanta has canceled. Thanks to their staff for making the difficult, but responsible decision.

Your rating: None Average: 3.5 (2 votes)

Especially given that their convention is pretty far out at this time, and that they are held in Georgia, and the wording seems to indicate that they probably made that decision in adversarial conditions for their contract.

Your rating: None Average: 5 (2 votes)

Thanks for the overview!
I'm continuously updating the list of German wikifur, but sadly nobody is doing it for the English version.
With my account only working on the German wikifur I can't. Maybe someone with an English wikifur account can update the English list?

Your rating: None Average: 4 (2 votes)

GreenReaper would know more about that then I, I'm no too proficient with wiki syntax.

Your rating: None Average: 5 (1 vote)

I would, but I'm kinda busy moving Inkbunny's main server at this moment. The issue with upcoming events is not that the syntax is complex, but it is semi-protected due to vandalism - you need to create an account (or perhaps import it from Wikia/Fandom, as I see a ForestFox edited but has no current account) and then make a certain amount of edits (I think 10?), possibly have it around for a bit too. I tag Equivamp! ;-)

The furry convention map can be edited without this issue (just click the edit icon), but the syntax is quite a bit more complex. Just changing dates for events should not be too bad, though.

Your rating: None Average: 4.7 (3 votes)

I can update the upcoming events template if it's not done so already some time on or after the 26th.

Your rating: None

I edited all necessary dates of the events on the convention map.
Are there instructions on how to import an account from Wikia/Fandom? Because I tried it and quite don't get it. Does maybe o'wolf know more about this issue?

Your rating: None Average: 5 (1 vote)

Thank you very much for that. It's been pretty crazy over here with our own self-isolation just adding to it.

In theory, all you should have to do is login "normally" with a username and password that you would have used when we were on Wikicities/Wikia, now known as Fandom. But it was designed as a temporary workaround and it has been over a decade now so while the import process did seem to work a couple of years ago after I tweaked it, I cannot guarantee it now.

Note that usernames, like article titles, are case-sensitive after the first character. So ForestFox, not Forestfox.

If you can't log in, resetting your password on Fandom's end and then logging in with the new password on WikiFur may work (you have to set a whole new password on their end; the reset code itself is not a password).

If that doesn't work - or you don't want to mess with it, which is understandable - just create a new account on and let me know the username and I will manually fix the problem and give it your original username.

Your rating: None

Just to inform, Wildnights was postponed to 2021 now.

Your rating: None

Thanks for the update; I was looking on Twitter but it seems they haven't been using that this year (presumably in favour of Discord).

Your rating: None

All the more reason getting a centralized list together is important in case people are not in those chats.

Your rating: None

Furry Weekend Holland now postponed to Friday April 16th - April 19th 2021.

WUFF also postponed to 2021, per

Your rating: None

Thanks for keeping track of that, updating the article

Your rating: None

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette notes the comments of VisitPittsburgh's interim president and CEO, who says that, while only one June event has been cancelled in June, they expect more to be in due course.

The event in question appears to be the Nation Retail Federation PROTECT loss-prevention conference - curiously, they scooped the event's own website and Twitter feed - which is roughly a third of Anthrocon's size, and held a week and a half ahead of it.

In-between the two is Cap Classic Pittsburgh, a youth baseball tournament. They're still booked (or were as of Wednesday) and indeed they still have an event listed in May. A few weeks ago, their Twitter account retweeted someone questioning the wisdom of cancelling events in June. Now they're talking about their cherished memories of the 2019 season.

Anthrocon itself has, of course, not been canceled - but it has posted an addendum to its refund policy (as of March 25) offering options of donation to the con, deferral to 2021, a full refund, or a refund minus processing fees. If they do cancel, and no option is selected within two weeks of AC's announcement, registration will be automatically deferred. (As a special case, those who deferred from 2019 may also defer to 2021.)

I don't think this has received wide attention yet as it was not tweeted on AC's feed; I'd be curious to know if those already registered got an email. Given this, I suspect a lot of people will eventually be using it.

Your rating: None

I reached out to the NRF about this and their conference SVP got back to me today, having announced the cancellation of their June event yesterday. Their FAQ on this topic mentions that they will be creating digital content - which they clearly hope to be sponsored by some of their exhibitors, in lieu of a refund, an option which I could see some conventions looking into - and they have already created a resources page for retailers with coverage of the government initiatives as they relate to small businesses.

Your rating: None Average: 3 (2 votes)

Commendable the effort to keep the list up-to-date and append relevant information.
This is good journalism right here. Great job! <3

Your rating: None

In that vein, given the efforts of the other editors to do so I will be switching the authorship to "anon" as while I was the initial publisher, this has been an effort by others to keep it up to date.

Your rating: None

This will run for a while, too. I just found out Furrnion is deferring to 2021. They hadn't even announced their dates - but they're usually in October. Maybe I was right to worry about MFF.

Your rating: None

If they were having issues with securing a venue or date before the COVID issue they may have just decided to save their strength and defer to 2021 regardless.

Your rating: None Average: 5 (1 vote)

Is there a way in our setup to "sticky" it so it stays up top?

If there were ever an article that seems appropriate for that, it's this one.

Your rating: None

Yes, the "sticky at top of lists" option. I'd toyed with the idea before but if others think it is suitable, sure.

Your rating: None

Seems like others thought it was suitable.

Nice to contribute something palpable in the comment section other than vague anger and resentment. Maybe I'll try that more often!

Your rating: None

I would say MFF is the absolute earliest a large convention might happen but I sure wouldn't book a flight. Hopefully they set things up so if they do have to cancel, it will be as straightforward as possible. I sure wouldn't expect registration or their room block to open up until the last minute.

Your rating: None

I had put in a question directly with the Holland convention since they had no social media to utilize. Obviously their site was updated and we had updated, but they had gotten back to me with the following statement:

Hello Tantroo,


The Dutch government announced on March 23rd that all events in the Netherlands until June 1st are not allowed to take place.
With this information we have looked at the options and decided the best course of action is to cancel Furry Weekend Holland for 2020.

All attendees have been informed about this and have been given several options, including but not limited to a full refund or registration rollover for 2021, regarding their registration.
We're currently working hard on making sure we wrap up everything regarding FWH 2020 neatly so we can start focusing our attention on 2021.

I see on your website that the status for FWH is already updated. I hope you can understand us taking the time to first inform our attendees before we inform the media.

With regards,
Furry Weekend Holland Tech & Operations

Your rating: None Average: 4 (1 vote)

I'm not good at making good comments here. It's very hard, eh.

Your rating: None

Furlandia has now closed pre-reg and are asking people to hold off on general refund requests until 4/15.

Post new comment

  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <img> <b> <i> <s> <blockquote> <ul> <ol> <li> <table> <tr> <td> <th> <sub> <sup> <object> <embed> <h1> <h2> <h3> <h4> <h5> <h6> <dl> <dt> <dd> <param> <center> <strong> <q> <cite> <code> <em>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

More information about formatting options

This test is to prevent automated spam submissions.