Spring is in the air and the snow is melting. Gone are the seasons where furs bundle up in their homes, and here are the days where they come out to frolic in the sunshine. But perhaps instead of going to a big city to a stuffy hotel, you may be interested to know that there are other fur gathering styles that are becoming a bigger staple in the furry fandom.
The fur camps are gatherings that take place in parks and other such outdoor facilities that put emphasis on connecting the fur with a bit more of the rural wilds than the urban jungles. Camp Feral!, which takes place in Algonquin leads the pack with estimates of around up to 200 guests. Today I go over my first experiences with one of these cons, and how they differ from their hotel-bound cousins: World Wild Fur Camp, which took at a YMCA camp just north of Cincinnati Ohio in the fall of 2018.
The New Jersey FurBQ, which has run since 2005, has been 'permanently' cancelled after allegations of 'simulated sex' between fursuiters and the presence of alcohol were raised at a town-hall meeting. Reports of the events have since appeared in local media.
The event, typically held bi-annually on the weekends of Memorial Day and Labor Day, was a fundraiser for the Twin “W” First Aid Squad, and was held May 26 on the grounds outside their premises, attracting "almost 200", including over thirty fursuiters. A few weeks later, organizers announced that there would be no further instances of the event.
An article in the Times of Trenton relates the allegations; those concerning alcohol were commented on by the major of West Windsor Township. The matter has also been raised by a local Fox affiliate, using footage appropriated from a furry fan.
80 donors have since given almost $3000 to the squad – ten times the amount reportedly raised at the FurBQ itself. However, this is a small fraction of the funds formerly donated by the township, and now at risk.
Emphasis: No evidence has been provided to substantiate the claim of inappropriate activity; the media reports are based on claims by town officials, and now-withdrawn FA journals.
The article's tone is positive, though the claim that "most ... in the group own at least one fur suit, and many own more than five" may only be true in the Bay Area, if anywhere.
This 21+ event provides food, drinks, a place to crash (bedding will need to be brought), and a community atmosphere for $10 at the door (BYOB).
Although South Africa has a small number of furs, with just under 200 registered users on the ZAfur forum, it does hold an annual, national furmeet, South Afrifur. As there are so few furs in South Africa the meet is intended to gather as many as possible together, once a year, to get to know one another.
The 2010 meet, organised by Nanukk, Electrocat and Cat147, was held in Port Elizabeth from 7–15 January 2011. The meet was hosted by Nanukk and attended by about 14 furs from around South Africa, though that varied from day-to-day.
This 21+ event provides food, drinks, a place to crash (bedding will need to be brought), and a community atmosphere for $15 at the door (BYOB).
It is a most strange scene to behold, furries (not in fursuits for once) raving to the tune of House of Pain's Jump Around.
I’ve been on the UKFur boards for 18 months now and it seems that every couple of months drama and gossip and downright un-needed negativity flare up. So I’m here posting this to give everyone some advice which is available elsewhere but maybe not in one place.
Now let me start off by saying that the term meet is extremely broad and can take in a small meet of four or five people, to an organised party of 100-odd furs. Each type of meeting will have different rules. It may have official posted rules that people expected to abide by, or it may have no official rules, only what the group feel is socially acceptable at the time.
So my first piece of advice to enjoying your meet is to fit in; don’t expect because last week you met up with four guys who were crazy and bouncy, that the next big organised event will have 50 furs who all want to climb the walls. Take some time to understand what the meet is about and if it’s not for you, that’s fine, there’s plenty other events which will more suit you. A good way to judge the calibre of a meet is through meet reports and photos of previous ones. However when reading reports a certain amount of reading between the lines and large pinches of salt are often required, as I will explain later on.
The current six cities rotation of Manchester, Sheffield, Liverpool, Chester, York and Leeds is considered by some to be too unbalanced, with Manchester and Sheffield furmeets drawing significantly larger crowds in comparison to Chester and Liverpool – where attendance rarely exceeds 30 people. Hull and Newcastle may replace these cities come 2009.
Others however have more ambitious ideas and wish to completely reshape the Northern organisation, adding numerous new cities and increasing the frequency of others. Some of the most aspiring ideas put larger meets – such as Manchester – hosting up to 18 meets per year. No conclusions have yet been drawn on the matter.
The LondonFurs averted potential disaster this month, as the Apostle bar – the venue for just one London furmeet – went into administration. The sudden short-notice closure of the bar, combined with a £350 deposit already paid and an organiser in no position to work to such a schedule left the group in disarray.
With the meet on the verge of being cancelled, ex-organiser Rapido joined with London regular Lupus Londonwolf to pull together an impromptu change of location to The Spirit on Patemoster Square. The £250 deposit belonging to organiser Spargue also managed to be recovered, it is thought that The Spirit may now be adopted as the new London furmeet venue.
It's very rare that I end up getting more than annoyed at something; even moreso when it gets to a point where I feel an intervention is needed. But last month just that happened.
I set the scene; it's November in the north of England, it's quite cold and is raining as it usually is. However the ecstasy that the day's furmeet brings is enough to alleviate such a low. It's the Manchester furmeet, the twice-yearly event when I get to meet the equivalent to a small convention of furs without having to spend a penny!
I meet old faces and meet anew. We laugh, snuggle and generally have a good time. Fursuits are brought out and the fursuiting events go on. The artists converge into "artists corner", show off their sketches and draw new ones. All the same to the average meet! A fairly perfect day in furrydom.
Then you see, and you learn.