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|First iteration||6-7 March 2010|
|Organizer(s)||Anthropomorphic Events of Ontario|
|Resources||Photos, videos, reports: Furnal Equinox resources|
|Furnal Equinox 2010|
|Furnal Equinox 2011|
|Furnal Equinox 2012|
|Furnal Equinox 2013|
|Furnal Equinox 2014|
|Furnal Equinox 2015|
|Furnal Equinox 2016|
|Furnal Equinox staff|
|Furnal Equinox guests of honour|
Furnal Equinox (sometimes abbreviated as FE) is a furry convention held during the month of March in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Announced in 2009 and holding its first edition in 2010, it is Canada's largest furry convention by attendance.
Prior to 2010, there had never been a large, hotel-based furry event hosted in the Toronto area. (Feral! has run continuously since 1998, but takes place at a summer camp three hours from Toronto.)
In late 2008, Dan Skunk, after scouting many possible venues and finding one suitable for hotel convention in Toronto and people willing to fund it, created message board on his web site, Ontario Furries inviting people to become involved in running it.
In early 2009, after discussions on Ontario Furries, an organizing committee was formed to plan the event. This committee consisted originally of Aaeden, Benjamin, Blindsight, Crassadon, Danruk, Dan Skunk, Sparrow, KI Wind, Pakesh De, Potoroo, Scani, and Shiro Tora. These members of local fandom all made contributions, some quite significant, of time and/or money to make the convention a reality.
Benjamin, Ki Wind, and Aaeden soon after resigned and Dan Skunk, Danruk, Sparrow were later dismissed by the remaining members followed by Shiro Tora and then Crassadon. These removals caused considerable controversy on the Ontario Furries forum, where Dan Skunk and Sparrow disputed the reasons for them, Dan Skunk continued to support the convention on Ontario Furries, offering criticism and suggestions, but banned them twice for engaging in flame wars on the site and slandering other members. After attending Furnal Equinox, Dan Skunk claimed he was treated rudely by staff, hassled by security, and treated rudely by the chairman and eventualy banned all discussion of FE on Ontario Furries. Furnal Equinox disputes these claims. The dispute eventually led to a split in the local forums and meets.
- See also: Furnal Equinox#Origins_and_controversy
FE was promoted in its first year as Toronto's First Furry Convention and formally announced its name on July 1 (Canada Day), 2009.
|Our mission is to bring together fans of the furry genre together in a laid-back, casual environment to exchange artwork and crafts, share ideas, participate in entertainment, and meet the fantastic creators and fans that contribute to the furry community, all in one of Canada's premier cities. We aim to not only showcase homegrown talent here in Canada, but bring the best furry artists around the world to our members.|
Furnal Equinox has aimed to promote this goal of showcasing the best local talent and attracting worldwide furry names by inviting two Guests of Honour to the convention every year, one from Canada and one from outside of Canada.
The convention has raised money every year for the Mississauga Humane Society (MHS) by hosting a charity auction. The MHS is unique among humane societies in that it has no shelter facility or paid staff — rather, all funds are directed towards veterinary bills, food and other supplies for the animals in their care. In total, Furnal Equinox has raised $4,200 for the MHS over two years.
- Furnal Equinox 2010 took place on March 6-7, 2010 at the Doubletree by Hilton - Toronto Airport hotel, attracting 330 attendees. The Guests of Honour were Heather Bruton and BushyCat, and the convention celebrated the theme of "Furry Fun and Games".
- Furnal Equinox 2011 took place on March 11-13, 2011, returning to the Doubletree by Hilton - Toronto Airport hotel, attracting 450 attendees. The Guests of Honour were FirestormSix and ZEN, and the convention's theme was "Wild Magic".
- Furnal Equinox 2012 took place on March 16-18, 2012, returning to the Doubletree and attracting 651 attendees. The Guests of Honour were furry artists Dark Natasha and Marci McAdam, and the theme of the convention was "Infurnally Yours".
- Furnal Equinox 2013 took place on March 8-10, 2013 at a new hotel, the Sheraton Toronto Airport Hotel & Conference Centre, attracting 750 attendees. The Guests of Honour were RedCoatCat and Rukis, and the theme was "Furries in Uniform".
- Furnal Equinox 2014 took place on March 7-9, 2014 at the Sheraton Toronto Airport Hotel & Conference Centre, attracting 910 attendees. The Guests of Honour were Sandy Shreiber and Sabretoothed Ermine, and the theme was "Circus!".
Furnal Equinox is operated by Anthropomorphic Events of Ontario, a corporation without share-capital (NPO) in the Province of Ontario, founded in June 2009. Pakesh De and Blindsight have been the co-chairs since the inaugural year of the convention.
Origins and controversy
|The factual accuracy of this section is disputed. (discuss)|
The details and credit for how Furnal Equinox came to exist have been mired in an extensive WikiFur edit war, stemming from disagreements between Dan Skunk and members of FE's staff. Generally, Dan Skunk has viewed his role as the main, instrumental and under-acknowledged founder, while the opposing view has been that he was an initial participant (amongst many) in the early stages of the convention's formation, who helped bring together a number of the people who eventually formed the concom. What is certain is that over the period from 2008-2010, relations between Dan Skunk and the organizing committee became increasingly acrimonious.
- July 2008 - An event called the Islington Furmeet was created by KI Wind and Dan Skunk, which is claimed to have demonstrated the potential viability of a convention in the area. Dan claims to have made several trips to meet with possible hotels and convention centers in the summer of 2008, to which FE staff have responded, "We have emails from Dan ... in which he states that the original ideas and proposals for the con effort that eventually led to FE, including the suggestion for the hotel that eventually was selected, were not (as he now claims) his ideas, and he ascribes them specifically to others. He did help to promote these ideas and deserves credit for that."
- Late 2008 - ShiroTora began a discussion on the TorFur Mailing List about holding a convention. A 17-year-old name Sparrow offered $5000, and another donor (later identified by Dan Skunk as Blindsight) offered to get things started, even though there had yet to be any guarantee of an event. Dan has claimed that by December 2008, this monetary offer allowed him to "[gather] the financial resources needed to start the convention", after which he "started a discussion ... inviting others to become involved with the project", and that himself and three others "had financial support, organizers, and had found a venue and had created a forum." What is definitively acknowledged by both sides is that Dan created a message board to explore the project on his website and forum, Ontario Furries.
- February 2009 - The message board attempted to determine the convention date and its staff members by nomination, poll and popular vote. Potoroo, the con chair of Feral, posted a harsh criticism to the board, and the debate attracted the attention of Crush! Yiff! Destroy!. In the staff member poll, Dan Skunk received one of the lowest amounts of support (54.3%), and suggested the threshold be set at 50% to indicate organizational involvement.
- March 2009 - Morgan held a furry dinner gathering at the Duke of Devon Pub, during which the convention was also discussed. Dan claims that prior to this meet, he had "made an open invitation for people to join an organizing committee for the convention", that he "started the first discussions with the founding committee", that this dinner was the first in-person committee meeting, and that he had organized it, "coinciding with a furmeet there run by Morgan". By mid-March, a private mailing list was created to take a more practical approach to organizing the convention, and to move the discussion away from the drama on the message board. Pakesh De was chosen as the head of the committee, and would later become co-chair of the convention with Blindsight.
- June 2009 - the committee registered a corporation called Anthropomorphic Events of Ontario, which included Dan Skunk as one of the initial directors. However, six weeks later on July 20, Dan Skunk, Danruk and Sparrow were voted out by the other members. FE claims the reason for the dismissal was that "as the FE team began to shake itself out and make serious decisions, it became clear that [Dan's] continued involvement would have resulted in the dissolution of the concom."
- Since then, Dan Skunk has openly discussed his disagreements over the voting process and the organizational decisions made by concom; he has expressed his viewpoints on LiveJournal, Ontario Furries and WikiFur. FE has claimed that Dan's comments "...have been almost universally and unfairly critical of the convention; this has hampered our efforts to promote the event."
- In contrast, Dan has claimed he "continued supporting the convention through [my] web site ... giving them constructive criticism on their management ...", and that this was "a gesture of goodwill towards the success of the convention, and to prove my value to [its] success ... Instead, the recommendations were met with contempt and derision from the convention's remaining organizers. The wholesale rejection of these recommendations, to me, showed that the success of the convention and service to the community was secondary to the organizers recieving personal recognition for their efforts." However, Dan Skunk's WikiFur edits have similarly been viewed as self-promoting or self-aggrandizing, an assumption not entirely without merit, given that Dan's edits at the time of Sept. 11, 2011 about himself, Ontario Furries and Furnal Equinox contain no less than 42 mentions of his own name.
- April 2010 - A month after the first Furnal Equinox had been held, Dan deleted its forum from the Ontario Furries website, and some of the FE staff members were banned. In July 2010, an editing war broke out on FE's WikiFur page. Although Dan had been briefly acknowledged in FE's conbook, he wanted the WikiFur page to better reflect his involvement. Both sides have since accused the other of mis-stating the facts, and from Dan Skunk's point of view, making insults and slander.
- During the editing war, Dan called for an outright boycott of the convention, adding that its supporters were not welcome on his message board. Following this development, the chairs of FE posted an official statement, and the What The Fur convention severed their relations with Ontario Furries.
- August 2010 - The call for a boycott was contentious enough that Echelon (who hosted Ontario Furries), deleted the site and invited all the users to a new site, www.canadianfurries.ca, . Some members of Toronto's furry fandom, dissatisfied with Ontario Furries, had initially moved to another forum in early 2010 at torfurs.com which was run by Shane.
- 2011 - Torfurs.com closed down and redirected to ontariofurs.com. Dan set up a domain at furnalequinox.org to state his viewpoints and continues to host Ontario Furries under a new provider.
- August 2013 - Dan Skunk removed all bans against Furnal Equinox from Ontario Furries. No announcement was made.
- Notes on Bans on ontariofurries.ca, ontariofurries.ca (accessed 25 November 2011)
- Furnal Equinox: coming to Toronto in March 2010!, furry.ca (accessed 10 August 2010)
- FAQ, Furnal Equinox website (accessed 17 September 2011)
- About Us, Furnal Equinox website (accessed 17 September 2011)
- Charity, Furnal Equinox website (accessed 17 September 2011)
- Thank You FE 2011 Attendees, furnalequinox.com (March 15, 2011)
- FE Statement re: Ontario Furries, furnalequinox.com (August 3, 2010).
- The founding of a furry convention in Toronto, by Dan Skunk, viewed on July 9, 2011.
- CrushYiffDestroy post by AshleyAshes, Feb 17, 2009 1:14 am. Viewed on Sept. 16, 2011.
- Talk:Furnal_Equinox edit 300778 by Dan Skunk, 14:59, 24 July 2010.
- Talk:Furnal_Equinox edit 302390 by Dan Skunk, 11:48, 9 August 2010.
- Toronto Furries attempting to run convention, democratically, viewed on Sept. 16, 2011.
- CrushYiffDestroy post by AshleyAshes, Mar 3, 2009 8:54 pm. Viewed on Sept. 16, 2011.
- Talk:Furnal_Equinox edit 301056 by Wolfmist, 00:18, 28 July 2010.
- Talk:Furnal_Equinox edit 299960 by Dan Skunk, 01:39, 19 July 2010.
- Talk:Furnal_Equinox edit 300654 by Scani, 16:45, 23 July 2010.
- Talk:Furnal_Equinox edit 300697 by Scani, 00:30, 24 July 2010.
- Talk:Furnal_Equinox edit 301071 by Dan Skunk, 01:30, 28 July 2010.
- What The Fur and Ontario Furries, posted by Feli on July 29, 2010, 10:00:53 pm. Viewed on Sept. 16, 2011.
- Furnal Equinox on YouTube
- Furnal Equinox on Facebook
- Furnal Equinox on Twitter
- Furnal Equinox on LiveJournal
- Furnal Equinox on Fur Affinity