With so many of the furry fandom's largest conventions originating in the USA, it tends to dominate global discussions of furry culture. In Europe, Germany stands as a major centre of the furry fandom with multiple conventions and events being held within its borders. But, for many other countries, the furry fandom is much smaller, or may just be starting out and is consequentially less visible.
Last August, furs from all over Europe and beyond gathered in Berlin for Eurofurence, the largest furry convention outside of North America. Between all the
furpiles and yiffing fursuit walks, art shows and other activities, some furs took the opportunity to speak about their own furry communities and the challenges faced with starting up the furry fandom in a country where it previously didn't exist.
One of the drawbacks of living in South Africa is that the furry scene is currently rather small. Despite attempts to bring furs from all over the country together for a national meet, we had limited successes and, even when we managed a national furmeet, only assembled between 14 and 16 attendees. Things have improved during the last few years, and meet sizes have increased quite dramatically, even to the point that plans are underway to reboot the South Afrifur convention in 2016.
So, when I moved to Europe, I was glad to finally have the opportunity to attend proper, large-scale furry conventions. I chose two different cons to attend. One was Lakeside Furs, which is a relatively small (approximately 50 attendees) Austrian convention. It made sense as I was now living in Austria and it offered a way to meet the Austrian furry community. I also chose Eurofurence which, as the largest furry convention in Europe, is an almost obligatory furry visit. Although I didn't realize it at the time, both Eurofurence and Lakeside Furs were started by Unci, although he is no longer involved with Eurofurence.
Bitter Lake – an EZwolf and Shay co-production – recently premiered at Eurofurence, and the screening was a smash hit. Everyone at FurPlanet is excited about the movie; we couldn't be happier about helping to bring it to furry conventions across the U.S., and to FurPlanet.com.
More information and an order page will come soon. We estimate the DVDs will be in stock by late September, so keep your eyes on this space for more info when the time comes!
Reuters has published a short video from last weekend's Eurofurence, focused on fursuiters.
The segment includes a clip from Sesame Street's Jim Martin (this year's guest of honour), who explained furry fandom as an expression of animal spirit, saying that "a lot of us grew up with cartoons, and comic books, and loving our pets."
One wolf emphasized the open-minded nature of the fandom, noting that "you can't run around in a giant dog costume without a good sense of humour."
The merger made a lot of sense, as slippery convention spokesotter Tungro explained:
Running a convention involves a lot of logistics and expertise, as well as time and commitment. In order to reduce costs and overlap, it is in the interests of both conventions to pool resources together.
The UK and DE editions of EuroFuzzled will still be lead by Matt Lion and Cheetah respectively; however, art show panels, registration systems, badge printers, regualar guests, hired entertainers and gophers will be shared between the conventions.
The news goes some way towards explaining the recent notice of ConFuzzled's cancellation.
Update: A new announcement from ConFuzzled suggests the merger will not go ahead.
The availability of alternatives means that the con could not subsidise membership through a surcharge on room rates, as in prior years.
Recent news from conventions near and far.
ConFuzzled organizers were celebrating last night, as the newly-minted UK convention sold its last ten spaces. The event is scheduled for June 20-23 at the Manchester International Youth Hostel, which holds 144 attendees, including 16 staff and 47 sponsors. Most were charged £170 [US$340] (£210 for sponsors), £135 of which covered YHA costs, though the price was £10 lower for the first eight weeks.
Demand was even higher for rooms at late August's Eurofurence 14, which opened registration this Sunday. Badge numbers over 600 were issued in the first 3 hours of registration, and a total of 760 had registered to pay by Wednesday morning.
On December 1st and 2nd, 2007 the independent art festival Rassemblement des Mondes Hors-Pistes (Assembly of the Off-Track Worlds) took Part at gallery agnes b. in Paris. The festival celebrated ten years of TRACKS, a TV magazine about subcultures and independent art which broadcasts on the Franco-German cultural channel Arte.
Eurofurence chair Cheetah has announced a ban on the sale or distribution of the erotic cub publication Softpaw Magazine at this September's convention. The announcement came just an hour after Portugese comic book artist and Softpaw contributor Dktorzi announced his intent to act as a dealer of the magazine. German furry artist Inuki was given a similar message.
Cheetah noted that the decision was based on four factors: the legal "gray area" surrounding cub pornography in Germany, the "rather diastrous[sic] conflicts within the fandom" (a reference to incidents at Fur Affinity and elsewhere), the board's wish to maintain a good reputation with the hotel and its staff, and a pre-existing ban on cub pornography in the art show. He stated that the board's decision "is final, and we will not discuss it."
Yep, it's that time of the year already. We've started early this time, so hold your breath and...
Get your ticket for *** EUROFURENCE X - THE MOVIE *** now!
Yep, that's right! Eurofurence is celebrating its glorious tenth incarnation - and this time we're going for the big screen! Be there when Europe's largest furry convention beats itself again! August 26 to 29, 2004.
From Dario Abatianni on alt.fan.furry: "The registration period for this year's Eurofurence has begun!
Our Cunning Little Vixens are eagerly waiting for your registration. To register yourself visit the Eurofurence website at http://eurofurence.org/EF9/
And click on the cute little foxy called "Registration". Then just fill out the form and submit it to us, and you are done!
Please check that you provide a valid eMail address, because all the important imformation will be sent there.
If you have any questions, feel free to eMail the organisation team. We will gladly be of help."
Eurofurence 8 will be held in Hilders (Germany) from August 15th - 18th 2002 .For more information about the con and the location, check out the website . If you'd like to know something about previous Eurofurences go to here. As you will see,there aren't that many furries in Europe, but the community is slowly growing.