I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from my first day at Furry Fiesta 2012. As mentioned during my pre-game podcast with artist Chris Holm, we really didn’t expect it to be that much different from other cons that we have been to before. So far, that has held up. Sure, the “Dealer Room” is called a ‘Dealer’s Den’ and fursuiters play the role that cosplayers would play at an anime con, but for the most part it’s the same song, it only goes to a furry beat.
The first thing that really impressed me about Furry Fiesta were the freebies that I received upon registering: a hard plastic badge that was of much better quality than the laminated ones one usualy gets at these things, and a 8.5 x 11-sized con book with a nice glossy cover, which made me even more happy to have my short story included in it. The inclusion of a bar of soap felt a bit like a tongue-in-cheek joke, but it is honestly something that more cons should probably do. There was also a furry survey that is apparently taken every year as part of a study on the fandom, I’ll need to fill that out and return it.
Aside from badges, the main way to identify someone is an attendee is by the wearing of a tail. Sometimes ears (the headband kind, not the ‘hat’ kind like I’m wearing in the picture) and fuzzy gloves are worn as well, but tails are pretty common.
While the panels I have been to have not all been as good as I initially had hoped for, I was still pleased that there are more panels that I was actually interested in. The five panels I attended on Friday easily equaled the number of panels I might attend during the three days of an anime or comic book convention.
There seems to be more of an emphasis at Furry Fiesta on the creation of art rather than the consumption of it. Instead of attending a panel where a voice actor answers questions from fans about the shows he or she has worked on, I. can attend a panel where I can learn about voice acting, writing, and art.
There are quite a few things to do here at Furry Fiesta for someone who is interested in creating. The vast majority of the costumes are of original characters; instead of pretending to be something that is the product of another person’s imagination, attendees create their own ‘fursonas.’ Oftentimes, they only exist on paper or in artwork, but a few take the extra step of bringing their creation to life in the real world. They are known as ‘fursuiters’ and there are some REALLY good costumes out there.
The only horsefly (ba-doom, tissh) in the ointment has been the jerkasses that are staying in the room above the one I am in. I have been hearing nothing but stomping around and horseplaying last night and into the morning. Two calls to the front desk and a chat with the Furry Fiesta security guy have proven to be pretty fruitless in getting anything accomplished. To be fair, though, that is something that one experiences at all of these things, so I can’t really hold it against them. That said, I think the fact that something hasn’t been done about this reflects poorly on both the hotel and the convention. I will speak with the folks at the front desk again (and maybe even FF security) today and see if anything can be done. I got a five-hour drive tomorrow back home and I need more sleep.
But yeah, that’s a problem one comes across at any convention. Its only been the first day, but I have already had a lot of fun and even learned a new thing or two at Furry Fiesta 2012. I look forward to the remainder of the con. At this rate, I will be attending Furry Fiesta 2013 without any hesitation. If that isn’t the best compliment I can give, I don’t know what is.