Each year, Anthrocon honors a small number of people who we feel have made significant contributions to the field of anthropomorphics. Our guests this year are two people who have the talent of bringing characters to life and making us believe that such Furry creatures exist. Please welcome Ms. Kimlinh Tran, whose voice you have heard in Dust: An Elysian Tail and in many other places, and Mr. Ted Giannoulas, a man who has not only made a career out of fursuiting but who is credited with establishing the modern day sports mascot in the public eye with his incredible partner-in-comedy The San Diego Chicken.
We're no longer accepting tournament requests. Keep your eyes peeled for the schedule release! What do we have lined up so far? Here's the list (in no particular order):
Smash Bros Melee, Kirby Superstar, Mario Kart 8, Steel Battalion, Tetris Attack, Amiibo+Trainer Smash, Retro Royale 2, Smash WiiU, DDR, Pokemon (3DS), Naruto Shippuden and a special Amiibo-only Smash!
We also need your gear! While AC owns some of it's own equipment, we always need our fellow furs to bring their consoles, games, controllers and sometimes even TVs to help us fill our space for the weekend. This year in particular, we'll be adding more retro console space, so dust off your old treasures, test them out and bring them along for the ride. We'll even take them off your hands permanently if you'd rather not take them home! We also really, really need a few more WiiU-GameCube controller converters. If you have one that we can use for even just the Saturday night Smash tournament, that would help immensely. The list of this year's helpful donations is:
GameCube Controllers and WiiU Adapters, XBOX and PS controllers of any generation, any party or fighting games, older consoles and their controllers and few smaller CRTs if you really want to help out.
As you may have heard, Anthrocon's selected charity this year is The Western PA Humane Society, which provides comprehensive, compassionate and humane services to enhance the lives of companion animals for families and the community; and educates to prevent cruelty to all animals in the region. While cash donations made at the convention are great, the plurality of funds are raised via donations of artwork and merchandise to our Charity Auction and Raffle. We're looking for popular items and unique craftwork that will make people say, "I want that!"
While we must distribute items between the Raffle and Auction based on available space, time, and perceived and past value, here are some examples of donations that went big in past years...
Great examples for the raffle: Crafts based on hot trends ("Toothless" Build-A-Bear plus - $381); Popular media (Sherlock Hound DVD set - $147); Art bought at prior convention art shows ("Wrath" art by Terrie Smith - $83); Giant, brand new plush of popular animals or characters (Border collie plush - $129); Merchandise based on popular fiction (Dr. Who's sonic screwdriver - $158)
Great examples for the auction: Fursuit costumes and commissions (Griffon fursuit head - $460); Rare convention memorabilia (Full set of all AC t-shirts since 1997 - $200); Professional sculpture (Softsculp poseable gryphon - $350); Unique opportunities (A speaking part in audio version of Diane Duane's "The Last Meow" - $500); Dorsai fursuit tags (Tag #1000 - $1600)
If you have an item you believe would be appropriate and would like to donate, please contact charity(at)anthrocon.org!
Charity Auction/Raffle FAQ - http://www.anthrocon.org/charity
As expected, there was a big rush for the hotels at 11 AM, and the Courtyard sold out immediately with the Westin following just minutes later. As of this writing, all other hotels are open.
If you successfully reserved a hotel room, we'd appreciate it if you took 2 minutes to fill out our Anthrocon 2015 Hotel Reservation Experience Survey. I will read each survey that is submitted.
Some people reported spending a longer time in the "wait room" than in previous years, this is due to PassKey (correctly) expecting to have even more traffic this year, and making the settings for the waiting room be just a little more conservative than in previous years. We have will be having discussions with PassKey later in the week to see if there's anything we can do to address this in future years.
If you wanted to arrive on Wednesday the 8th but didn't have any luck getting a room on that date, please reach out to Visit Pittsburgh at . They are working with the hotels to try and free up more rooms on Wednedsay evening.
VisitPittsburgh reports that the autoresponder that is supposed to send out registration confirmations is on the fritz. Gail and her hardworking compatriots at the Housing Services offices will be sending out confirmations by hand over the next few days. Be patient!
Hi everyone, this is your friendly webmaster leopard here!
I'm sure there are lots of questions about what will happen when hotels open on Monday morning, and I'd like to cover some of them in this post.
10 AM EST, Monday
Around this time, I will place the website into read-only mode. Any attempt to load a page from our website will instead show our hotel countdown page. The purpose behind the countdown page is to keep the website from falling over under the insane crush of traffic which is expected to hit at 11 AM. This level of traffic is greater than even during the convention itself.
11 AM EST, Monday
This is an automated process handled by PHP code on the server side and requires no manual intervention on my part. This is important because with thousands of inbound connections, my SSH connection may not be very responsive. In theory, this means everyone should be able to visit the website with no issues. In practice, a huge spike in traffic may make the site unresponsive for a few seconds.
That is why, instead of posting the hotel reservation link on only this website, we are also posting it on our major social media channels also at 11 AM EST on Monday:
I would strongly recommend bookmarking these links now, and checking them on Monday morning as an alternative to this website.
11:05 AM EST, Monday
If you plan on staying in The Westin, Doubles sell out within a few minutes, and all other rooms sell out of the Westin within the first 30 minutes of hotels opening.
If you plan on staying in The Courtyard, there are very few rooms available there, and they are in high demand; thus, they can be expected to sell out almost immediately. We must apologize in advance for this, but there is very little that we can do about it. The Courtyard has been extremely gracious with us and has allocated as many rooms to us as they are allowed to under their corporate policies. Having learned from previous years, we limited the number of rooms available to supersponsors for their advance reservations, so we can assure you that there are as many rooms available at the Courtyard as is practical for us.
In short, if you do not see your preferred hotel listed, it means that it has probably sold out. The first thing you should do is try shortening your stay. Sometimes the hotels will sell out on the earlier or later days, but still have plenty of rooms available for the peak nights. If you shorten your stay to just Friday and Saturday, the hotel may re-appear. Book your room, then, and contact housing(at)visitpittsburgh.com to see about extending your stay afterward.
If you experience any issues or have questions or concerns about your reservation, please contact VisitPittsburgh Housing Services at housing(at)visitpittsburgh.com. Do not contact Anthrocon! This system is operated entirely by a third party and we have no access to it, and we will not be able to help.
11:30 AM EST, Monday
If traffic levels last year were any indication, things usually calm down within 30 minutes. When that happens, I'll restore the regular version of the website and things will be back to normal here.
Now that I got a room, what do I do with it?
First, please visit our Anthrocon 2015 Hotel Reservation Experience Survey and let us know your thoughts on the reservation experience.
Next, make travel plans!
Finally, if you need roommates, we have room share forums for that.
You got questions? We got answers!
If this post didn't cover any outstanding questions, please let us know in the comments below or via email!
Best of luck to everyone on Monday, I hope you get the hotel room you want!
Richard Baldovin of Trifocal Production made a promo video for us, just because. We think he did an outstanding job, even if he did make our chairman look fat.
Anthrocon has selected the Western Pennsylvania Humane Society to be our beneficiary for 2015. Their mission is to provide the most comprehensive, compassionate and humane services to enhance the lives of companion animals for families and the community; to educate and to prevent cruelty to all animals in the region. They will be at the Charity Auction and will have a table in the Dealers' Room where you can meet them and peruse information about their organization.
First off, thank you very much for your support! We quite literally could not do it without you.
This is just a reminder of the perks that Supersponsors can expect this year:
1) Advance hotel reservations. A link will be sent out by email on January 30 at 11:00 AM EST. Please be certain to whitelist "anthrocon.org" in your email client; we are not responsible for lost or misdirected emails. If you do not receive the link by that time (after giving it a few minutes to percolate through the internet tubes), contact ceo(at)anthrocon.org. As a reminder, we can only offer a single room for advance booking. If you want to have more than one room, there must be a supersponsor in each one. We apologize if this is an inconvenience, but sad prior experience has made it necessary.
2) Supersponsor luncheon. We can only offer this to pre-registered supersponsors! It will be at 11:30 on Saturday, in the Westin's Allegheny Ballroom, and will be served buffet-style. As a courtesy, we let fursuiters who want to take part in the parade get to the buffet tables first so that they have time to get changed. It is listed as ending at 1:00 on the schedule, but even the chairman can not talk for that long, so there should be ample time to get into costume if you wish to take part in the parade.
3) Advance admission to the dealer's room. We keep a separate line for sponsors and supersponsors, who are allowed in a few minutes ahead of the pack.
4) Advance admission and up-front seating at main-stage events. You get your own line in the prefunction area outside of the Spirit of Pittsburgh ballroom.
5) Nifty stuff. How nifty? So nifty we cannot even begin to describe it! Not yet, at least.
Man your oars! Pull for the Western Shore! Registration for Anthrocon 2015 is open.
We have rolled out a brand-new registration system, which we have tested, re-tested, and finally quietly unleashed on a few unsuspecting individuals to iron out the last of the rough spots. Should you encounter any problems, such as the unexpected sprouting of horns or a sudden association with large hairy fellows named Olaf, please let us know immediately.
To register for the 2015 convention, just click here.
DEALERS: We are still working on the dealer-table module, which we hope to roll out on December 15. Check back then!