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Eurofurence 25 "Fractures in Time" - Estrel Hotel Berlin, August 14-18, 2019Follow eurofurence on Twitter

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Author Topic: EF20 feedback  (Read 61696 times)

ANTIcarrot

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EF20 feedback
« on: 24.08.2014, 13:17:17 »

Let the annual Hug Box an Complainathon commence! ;D


The good:
Much bigger hotel. Better food. Very nice decorations and even occasionally the ability to swing a cat without hitting five other cats. A left luggage ability for the Dealers Den and Art Show. Room for expansion, especially if/when the Estrel Tower is built. Shorter train journeys for those of us flying in. Reliable, if slow, wireless present through the hotel.

The Bad:
With the best will in the world, the Estrel is located in an area that simply isn't as nice as the center of Magnaburg. Lack of preventative maintenance on elevators is in no way our responsability. Being told the fire escape doors were alarmed when they weren't. The hotel locking the door between Wing 2, 3 & 4 and the only flight of stairs leaving to the lobby; because reasons presumably. Being charged for breakfast, but not learning it was available until Saturday. 'High speed internet' being very glitchy and limited to 3MBps in the lobby. It would be nice if the hotel did not invalidate our free wifi-tokens the moment we check out. The 4 hour delay for the pawpet show.  m( But meh. Par for the course for EF. My Sig is there for a reason. ;)

The Ugly:
However, speaking of the pawpet show... Sending the queue outside when you're next to some of the largest empty rooms in Berlin that aren't currently being used for anything else. Implying there might not be enough seating for everyone - especially given the Estrel's public capacities for this kind of thing, and how everyone seemed to fit in the end. Forcing people to queue next to the smoking area for three hours. Security failing to stop those two groups mixing.


A lot of this is new hotel teething problems, and probably won't happen again in the near future. Perhaps next we we could have a 'meet the hotel' section in the con book? For new visitors and second-timers alike. We should also know enough to put together a neighborhood map for those who want to venture out of the hotel. Nearest pharmacy for example.


The completely unacceptable!!!11!!!
Germanwings losing my suitcase. :'( And then not picking up their phone, answering their email or doing anything to contact me until it turned up Saturday just before the pawpet show; the miserable ########! But I do accept this was for the most part beyond the control of the con staff. ;)


The whimsical:
I couldn't help but notice that, with four 'wings', the Estrel is almost perfectly setup for some kind of Witchcraft and Wizardry theme. You know. Just saying...
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Tinka

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #1 on: 24.08.2014, 18:10:16 »

" Perhaps next we we could have a 'meet the hotel' section in the con book? For new visitors and second-timers alike."

This is a good idea and should be (will most likely be) included in the "Your first eurofurence/furry con panel"

"Sending the queue outside when..."

Queues are queues - you can't stop them, you can't ban them - "don't queue before 1900" - that worked well ;3

All you can do is to manage them and make them tolerable. I've patented the Tinka2000 queueing system for furrycons (1) everyone gets in the queue and is handed an A4 paper which they write their badge number on (2) everyone layes the A4-paper on the ground and goes to the bar until they announce the delays are over >;3 any takers?

"I couldn't help but notice that, with four 'wings', the Estrel is almost perfectly setup for some kind of Witchcraft and Wizardry theme"

more like the wings of a mental asylum >:P
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Suicune

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #2 on: 25.08.2014, 20:36:29 »

Since I wrote everything about that great hotel in another thread, I don't need to mention that here :)

I know everything is new, so everything can't be perfect.

So let's start with the good things:

- Something changed regarding GEMA, huh? There was so much good old music on the Fursuit friendly dance, had a lot of fun! :D
- I noticed much more female furs. Made me feel really comfortable :)
- Really nice dealers den. Bright and much room. Sadly I didn't find the time to visit the art show.
- Great idea to make that corner where I could leave my luggage in front of them and using the registration number for it. Would be nice to see that somewehre in the middle of the hotel if possible. Would reduce the stress on the elevators maybe. Maybe print buttons that people could put on their luggage :)
- The show I was visiting ran without any technical problems.
- The Pawpet show was great! ..and sad. ;__; - I want one of the posters! >.<
- Funny crime scene things here and there
- Orga, Security etc. always nice :)
- Nice that we could go outside in the fursuit lounge. Because of the opened doors it became quite cold at evening/night. I started freezing in the rooms next to it xD
- Plushie panel was funny again. But Redmoon: Why didin't you learn from last year? You know there are lots of lates! xD Especially so early in the morning x.x

Not good and not bad:

- Nice to move the Karaoke on that little stage, but a lot of people who wanted to visit it couldn't sit somewhere and barely see anything. Was it moved because of that privat -soon to be open for all- party in room Paris?
- The inflatable community gathering next to it was annoyed because of that party, so they closed the door. Because of that I didn't knew it was still running after karaoke (wanted to visit it once more), so I went back to my room..

Things that went wrong:

- My roomies T-Shirt size wasn't available anymore on the 2nd day. -> XXL
-You know.. waiting times, LONG waitung times. At every stage event I wanted to visit. It feels like I was waiting 1/4 of the time where I wasn't in my room. -_-
I don't remeber how much later the walk started, but it became really crowdy in from on the fursuit lounge, it was hard to get in and out there.
After waiting for 1hr for the concert I would have loved to see I left the line. And I was lining up earlier to get a good seat.. I wanted to visit the karaoke and Infla gathering too and not wasting the whole evening waiting.
And then.. Pawpetshow waiting. *sigh* Please, do that never ever like this again..
First you say next line up is at 19:00 (what wasn't held since people lined up earlier again..), then you put another delay and then another one on it.. What was it? 45Min and then 30Min?
Then came nothing for a long time and then the final 10 Minutes. Then we could go in at.. 21:40?
After a long time of 1 1/2 hrs you had the idea that people are maybe thirsty and bored. I myself got hungry and started freezing because I had to wait outside. I'm just glad I had my 3DS to keep me kinda busy.
Within that 2 1/2 (3 1/2) hrs wasted with waiting I could have had dinner and could have put on my suit what I rarely did because of a f- up own timetable partially thanks to delayed stuff.
I sadly had to skip the Big Blue Dance because it got too late since my roomie and me were travelling home on the next morning. Couldn't say goodbye to some friends who would have been there.

I would have loved explanations why all the different events were late. But there was none. There was not even a real excuse, just a "We are delayed again haha, sorry, thank you for you patience." and that is what annoyed me the most. I'm sorry, but taking everything  with humor stops working, especially after 2 1/2hrs with hurting feets and legs. Stones aren't really comfortable :D
From what I heard Sardyuon was late because something broke. The concert because of soundcheck.

For the next time if you know you will be late, please choose the hightest possible delay and don't make us queue up forever.

I look forward to the next EF and hope everything will work better :)

Cyrilius

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #3 on: 25.08.2014, 20:40:37 »

Eurofurence was a blast once again. Even though I missed out a couple of the main events sadly, I still had the time of my life!

The hotel is interesting and even though there were a few problems, I think they will improve next year. Every hotel did, after they realized just with what they have to deal XD And the Estrel looks professional enough to adjust a few things ^^


The only thing that bothered me, was the way how the delay at the pawpet-show was handled over EF-Prime. Can't speak for the people in the queue as I don't know if they were better informed, but I think it's a bit rude to simply state "Show will start in 10 minutes" and after the timer reaches 1 minute, it was simply set back to +/-10 minutes... Somehow I don't think that anybody responsible really thought that it would really start in 1o minutes, as in the end it took about 2 hours... I think it would have been better to set it to a more realistic time... like for example one hour.

Time is a valuable thing, especially at the EF. Lots of things to do and if we would have known that it wouldn't take 12 minutes (and even though we expected it after several more delays, we still didn't want to risk missing the show in the end), we might have gone to the lobby to chat with people, go to one of the hotel-restaurant or maybe go fursuiting for another hour.


With that said, I want to thank everyone responsible for this great con once again. For me Eurofurence is still the most important event every year, easily beating Christmas, Easter and even the start of the next Game of Thrones season ^^

Also a special thanks to the whole fursuit-lounge team! You guys really rock. The lounge is already pretty professional and even during the more hectic times just before the walk or the photoshooting they always remained friendly and offered a helping hand.


All I can say is, I'm really looking forward to next year already... just after only a few hours of being at home ^^
« Last Edit: 25.08.2014, 20:44:08 by Cyrilius »
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SiranaJHelena

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #4 on: 25.08.2014, 20:59:20 »

Howdy!

Almost awake again, it's time for me to write some feedback, too. :)

EF20 was not my first Eurofurence but the first after we left Suhl. So I can't compare it to Magdeburg. Also I slept at home, so I can't criticise the room quality.

Location Berlin
As someone who lives in Berlin this new position made it possible for me to visit EF again. Money was one of the main reasons why I had to skip the EFs in Maritim, so I was glad to hear it is moving in the neighbourhood.
Unfortunately the Hotel is located in Neukölln, one of the quarters with a pretty high crime rate and although it fits the topic „CSI“, a less dangerous place would have been better for a convention. However, as far as I know nobody got hurt in one way or another, so maybe we're still a few streets away from the trouble.

Berlin as a whole is a pretty exciting city though there people are used to crazy things and which is offering many crazy stuff itself. Also: Stores which aren't closed 16'o clock are quite helpful. :)

Hotel
It is huge. Really huge. I like that. Also the Hotel Staff is totally awesome! I mean.. waiters wearing fursuits? What the heck? I'm really glad they enjoyed the con just as we did. ^^

The restaurants were quite expensive but I wouldn't be surprised if this was a condition for the low room fee and now where they can assess us a little bit better I'm sure they'll change that next year with some extra menues or so.

There are some negative things I'd like to mention though.
Although everything was very large, many places were obstructed by something. Of course the restaurants needed some tables and it is quite helpful if people aren't standing around holding lots of drinks, almost waiting to spill them. ;) However, with all the fursuits and normal visitors it was hard to find a good place to stand and just talk to someone without blocking someone's path.
Also in the part where the registration was located, there was this small stage in the center. What was that for? I really couldn't figure it out. There was some couches to sit on but I have the feeling it wouldn't have hurt to place them on the ground.

And last but not least: The temperature. Because of the temperatures outside I decided to travel to the hotel with three layers of clothing but I'd never have expected to keep them on when I'm there. Maybe it's just me but in my opinion it was way to cold in the main places. In the lobby you had the doors and additional cold air from the fursuit lounge. In the stage the ventilation overdid it and make me feel pretty uncomfortable.

Food
As already said, dining in the hotel 3 times a day would have made my wallet implode. The opportunities around are quite nice though. There are many restaurants and snack shops aside from McDonalds around which probably earned their monthly income in these few days. :D

Program
The workshops were really interesting and covered many different topics. Sometimes the rooms were too tiny but with 400 more people around than expected it stands to reason.
What bugged me was the schedule around the Group Photo. It was positioned shortly before/while the Dealer's Den was closed. Many artists and also staff people were simply too busy with that to get to the Group Photo in time. In the hours before the artists had to pick up unsold pictures and their money, customers had to pay their art, there was a charity concert right before that and – in theory – the Pawpet Show was about to start afterwards.
Maybe next year it's possible to place it somewhere else?

Art Show and Dealer's Den
The Art Show seemed to be small at first sight because the room itsself was even larger but it really takes time to enjoy it. The light was ok and the space between the panels pleasently wide. Some artists should overthink their definition of „adult“ and „clean“ again though. There had been a hand full pictures which would have fit better in the adult area and vice versa, both concerning blood and porn. ;)
The fursuit photoshoot right next to it was very unpleasing though because of this constantly flashing light you've seen as soon as you were looking in that direction. Please don't forget that this can be even cause medical problems for some people with e.g. migraine or epilepsy far away from just being annoyed. Please move that somewhere else or shield it from the Art Show.

I can't say much about the Dealer's Den as being neither seller nor customer this year. Leaving my bag outside wasn't such a problem for me. If you want a sketchbook signed or need money or whatever, it's easy to just take this out of the bag before you enter. In fact, I really liked the opportunity to left my bag outside as a person without a room. I always feel like an elefant when walking around with a heavy bag, ready to damage something.

I'm wondering if the fact that you have to go through the Dealer's Den to get to the Art Show might have influenced the visitor's decision about where to spend the money. Are there any statistics about that?

Pawpet Show
Best things first: The show was awesome! The main topic might be not entirely new but I really love what the PPS did with it. The puppets were outstanding! Although I will never stop loving Lionel, Poke and all the other cute handpuppet family members, they are too tiny and their actions too limited vor such a large audience and a huge stage. (Sorry pals!) This evolution of the „actors“ is really amazing and offers their players many new opportunities to act.
The music was underlining the play very well and the quality was really high on a scale from 1 to Fox Amoore.. :D

Although I don't want to start nagging now after I know what a hard fight you had to survive before and during the show there are some things I just have to criticise because I hope it helps you to know how to improve it next time.

First thing is the queue for obvious reasons. Eurofurence is no professional conference but a large convention of many talented people who just want to have some fun and the least I want to complain about are the people behind that show who are working their butts off to fix something in the last minute, get a new microphone out of thin air or improvise something McGuiver would be jealous about. If so I wouldn't have stayed in that stupid queue the whole time.

I think it was at EF14(?) where we had a similar delay and I did the same and although it was annoying, I could stand that because for the simple reason we were still standing in the lobby. Yeah, no roomparties for bullheads, no restaurant visits or other stuff but we still were part of the party. It was warm, we had fun anyway and it was easy to laugh about the delay.
This time was different and that's why I'm mentioning it at all: Except for the few people inside it was all but fun. After sunset it became cold pretty fast. It was boring. And from our position next to the main entrance near the end of the queue we could see where the party took place: Everythere else. Also we were standing right next to the smoking people. Not a very pleasant place.
Getting us water was a really nice gesture and surely helped many people who didn't have something to drink with them. Unfortunately we couldn't hear anything from the show Uncle Kage and AJA were doing next to the door where the queue came out but I don't want to blame them for their hartwarming efforts because they aren't able to clone themselves yet. ;)

It was no fun and if the queue doesn't take any other place next year, I won't wait, even if this means that I'm missing my first PPS since forever. I don't want to miss the party.

Beside complaining about „Shit happens“-issues I'd like to mention something else which made me not angry but sad. Although the show was really great I couldn't really get into it. The immersion didn't get me. I thought hard about the reason and I'm still not so sure about it. I think it was the result of many small things. As already said in the beginning, the stage was quite cold. Also the room wasn't completely dark. This doesn't hurt so much during Uncle Kages story hour or the auction but during the PPS it resulted in being permanently aware that this is just a stage and that I'm in a hotel at the con. During the PPS from EF13 I „was“ in Vegas, I tried to get into that goddamn cinema/theater and silently stand right next to the ritual at the end. This time I was sitting in front of the stage because the cold air, everything I saw in the dimmed light and the frustration of that queue-thing before.

Also – and I wouldn't wonder if I'm alone with this opinion now – I had the feeling the music between the scenes was 2-3 seconds too long so I started to look around. I really don't want to discuss about Fox Amoores music skills, they are awesome and the soundtrack is beautiful. But it didn't catch me enough to keep me focused for the whole duration. I know this „Old Scene – Recorded Explanations – Music – New Scene“ cycle isn't new and was already there in my all-time favorite but the music seemed to be more part of it, at EF13 e.g. part of the radio show. Also it wasn't pure instrumental and the lyrics were more than just supporting the topic (e.g. „Locking up the sun“ from Poets of the Fall). Instrumental music doesn't has this effect on me, no matter how epic it is. So I'm getting distracted more easily when it's more than just a few accords.

Wishes
The text is getting longer and longer, so I'm keeping this one short. As a result of this pros and cons there are just a few things:

1) More free space to be aside from the Artist's Lounge. Between lobby and Dealer's Den there have been many empty spaces. Put a few seats there, make it comfortable and I'm happy. Or at any other place. ^^
Additionally please put this useless mini-stage away in the lobby away.
2) Pleasent temperatures! Nobody would have expected August being like a second April but these things happen. Please make it warmer, at least the stage!
3) Rearrange that queue. There will always be queues, so please put it somewhere where it's more or less bearable to wait.

That's all, folks!
Oh, almost forgot:

THANKS FOR MAKING SUCH A GREAT CONVENTION!

Ok, now I'm done. ^^
« Last Edit: 26.08.2014, 00:52:06 by SiranaJHelena »
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Schorse

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #5 on: 25.08.2014, 22:12:21 »

@Starfighter Suicune:
I accidently was given a shirt in XXL instead of XL. If I can get one in XL, your roomie could get mine.
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silverfoxwolf

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #6 on: 25.08.2014, 22:38:14 »

Generally I found things to be not all that bad and most of the issues beyond the control of the con or hotel staff. The lifts for example were failing a fair bit, but that's what happens when you suddenly expect them to deal with a lot more than they are normally expected to cope with. A few times though people did push up through to get in rather than waiting in a queue, however you cannot hold anyone except the individuals responsible for rude behaviour.

I didn't really get the mini stage as it would have been nicer to just have the open space, though it did get used for some events. I'd have suggested locating in in the glassed area on the way to the dealers den would have been a better choice to locate it. I suppose the idea was to create a social space to be used and it did seem to enjoy some success in that regard.

The suit lounge was nicely equipped to handle suiters, the usual problem of dryers being hogged and people not removing suits/paws/heads when dry. Another thing that is down to bad behaviour as opposed to fault of the convention.

I did encounter a problem of one of my cooling vests going missing, but would like to personally thank the security staff involved in that for doing their best to help with that. I would suggest that conops might be better if it had an open public desk all the time.

The only real problems I would like to raise are the fursuit photoshoot, delayed due to other events running late, but really we had no idea where we should meet or which way to face. We couldn't hear anything except when Codewolf shouted to tell us which way to look, thank you Code :) I'd have been facing the wrong way otherwise. I think really it was just down to a lack of clear information, so just something that could do with some posters in the lounge and such so the information is in more places. The other thing was the fursuit walk, nothing was wrong with the walk route itself it was more the waiting around and again lack of clear information on what was happening. Lots of milling around and being hot isn't that fun.

Overall things worked well, I was quite happy wandering around in my tshirts and suiting wasn't that problematic. It might be an idea if there was a schedule published for EF Prime, I really liked just watching some of the things going on and it was nice to be told about one of my own videos making it on there :)

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James The Dog

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #7 on: 26.08.2014, 00:51:42 »

Forcing people to queue next to the smoking area for three hours. Security failing to stop those two groups mixing.

In a similar vain, when it came to the group photo, however much I don't like taking my fursuit head off in public view, I had to because of people smoking and the smoke filling up the inside of my fursuit head... ugh. And similarly people smoking in the queue itself- when you're in a queue and someone lights up, it's not like you can move away easily, and if you get out the queue then you lose your place. Would it be too much to ask people not to smoke in either the queues or while waiting for the photo?

Another thing was the fursuit group photo- it was tweeted that it had been delayed to 22:20, so I suited up and headed down arrived about 5-10 minutes before then, but when I got there, it seemed the photo had already been taken and everyone had left to the fursuit lounge. And the fursuit friendly dance was advertised as starting straight after the photo, but it didn't begin until around 45 minutes later.
« Last Edit: 26.08.2014, 01:05:16 by James The Dog »
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BigBlueFox

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #8 on: 26.08.2014, 01:50:20 »

The only thing that bothered me, was the way how the delay at the pawpet-show was handled over EF-Prime. Can't speak for the people in the queue as I don't know if they were better informed, but I think it's a bit rude to simply state "Show will start in 10 minutes" and after the timer reaches 1 minute, it was simply set back to +/-10 minutes... Somehow I don't think that anybody responsible really thought that it would really start in 1o minutes, as in the end it took about 2 hours... I think it would have been better to set it to a more realistic time... like for example one hour.

Thanks for your feedback, but we strongly depend on statements by the stage and pawpet crew, and when all we get is a "It's done when it's done", we cannot do anything about it.
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Zestence

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #9 on: 26.08.2014, 05:07:06 »

I'll try to keep this short.

Hotel
Hotel was nice enough, I do miss the disco-ball in the lobby though. Deposit charges during check-in came as a little bit of a surprise, as they wanted 600€ each from me and my roommate plus room at first. I did manage to negotiate the charges down after I explained my entire account doesn't even have that much money in it (and it's a debit card so it would have overdrawn my account immediately). In the end they took room+75€. This was not mentioned during registration I believe, or in the emails I got from the hotel. In Finland no hotel does this, and when I asked my bank a week before con they thought I was being scammed. No problems in the end, but a little forewarning would have been appreciated.

Staff/bars
Staff was helpful and polite, and the concierge service especially proved useful. I appreciated the gesture made during the opening ceremony by the hotel manager regarding next year, and I instantly felt welcome. Pricing at the bars was decent after EF-pricing came into effect and the service was great, though it was a little bit of a shame they seemed to close very early (private bar for the Saturday dance was a great idea). Not much to complain here, I just wished they could keep the bars open a little longer next year.

Food
Too expensive for everyday eating at the hotel with my budget, luckily enough there were "restaurants" and a Netto across the bridge. Which, conveniently....brings me to my biggest complaint this year...

Area
This is what I had the most problem with during EF. The immediate area around the hotel seems a "little" ghetto-ish, and I was really nervous about going outside to the store alone, especially later at night. We got harassed by local bums begging for money near the Netto, some locals stopped a car while we were outside suiting near the road and yelled....let's just say not particularly nice things out the windows, very loudly. I was never afraid around Magdeburg, but I wouldn't wonder around the Estrel at night without a decent sized group. This made finding alternate places to eat difficult, and I found myself hiding my badges under my shirt when I left the immediate surroundings of the hotel because I didn't feel safe.

All in all it was a good con. I had to miss the paw pet show because I didn't feel like wasting half a day standing in line, but I still got to see most stage events I wanted.
Big thanks to the fursuit lounge staff, it was a little crowded in there, but the private balcony was a nice touch.
Dances were great despite being slightly late ;), but I still managed to tire myself out.
Basically, assume that if I don't have anything to complain about it, I liked it or at least found it satisfactory.

And bring back 80s dance next year, all night, every night. That is all.
« Last Edit: 26.08.2014, 05:37:24 by Zestence »
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Jorinda

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #10 on: 26.08.2014, 10:16:46 »

I'll try to keep this short.
Me too, so I won't repeat stuff that has already been said. I guess we don't need another text about waiting lines.

Fursuit lounge
The fursuit lounge was organized very well. There were always full containers of different drinks, snacks, and cups. Everything was refilled rapidly.
I was surprised to find free head-dryer slots all the time. I had expected some waiting time for a free dryer at peak times, like just after the fursuit parade.
Also the separation between head-dryer and feet-dryer worked perfectly.

The only negative thing I can say about the fursuit lounge: It was awfully cold. The ventilation was great, but the cold air made people feel quite uncomfortable, even when changing from fursuit to normal clothes took only few minutes.
(On the other hand, the temperature kept people from lingering in the lounge and blocking it.)

About stairs/lifts:
Most has been said in previous posts. Just one small addition: There was the staircase from 1st floor to the lobby. Would it be possible to keep that one open all day? I had a hotel room in the first floor, and could have walked easily, but the doors were locked in the morning (because of breakfast, I guess).

About EF Prime:
Nice choice of videos between the events.
Sometimes there were techical issues such as beeping, no sound or stripes in the image. But those were fixed after the first or second day, if I remember correctly.

The main stage:

Nice idea to put up that dancing poles. But the aluminium caused dark stains on white fursuit paws.

The light during the dances was very nice.

Not sure if that was a general issue or I just had a seat right underneath a vent: I felt very cold during the Fursuit Gameshow. For other events such as Dance Contest and Fursuit-Friendly Dance, the temperature was good.


Fursuit Game Show
Nice creative games.
On the other hand... nice "creative" system of giving the points? I wasn't the only one who failed to understand how the points for the games were calculated. (Well, I won't complain, since my friends won, but still it seemed a bit illogical.)

The moderator seemed to be a bit confused and sometimes misinformed. He announced the winners, and then saw that there were more games to come. I don't know what happened there.
During the "How did this victim die?" game, some of the images were not shown on the screen.

All in all, the games were fun to watch, but lacked information for the audience at some points.

edit: One thing I really disliked: The charity thing in the pre-Games. I was in one of the last teams, and when we came to the lobby with the charity box, everyone greeted us with "Not again, I was asked for money 15 times in a row now." Annoying people isn't a great idea for charity.


The campfire
Big thank you for that! It was awesome. A nice place to sit and chat.


The environments
Well, I see that the con organisators couldn't influence that. Local people showed a wide variety from happy curiosity up to threats to beat fursuiters. But as far as I know, noone was really attacked.

There were some restaurants that were frequented by many furries. For example the "La Terrazza". Maybe they would be partners for a "Show you Badge"-thing next year?



Details and suggestions
Not sure if that would cause too much extra work: Would it be possible to offer con shirts in two colours? Standard black and one non-black colour? This year's brownish colour wasn't liked by everyone. (Well, of course we have the choice to just not get a conshirt if we dislike the colour.)

Maybe some finger posts pointing to the main event rooms? I know there was a plan in the conbook, but most people just carry the pocket guide, and many were searching for panel rooms during the first days.

For the Dealers Den: Someone could earn a fortune by selling punched pockets. Many artists offer unframed prints, postcards and similar stuff that would be easier to take home in a protecting pocket.





« Last Edit: 26.08.2014, 12:31:25 by Jorinda »
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Cyrilius

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #11 on: 26.08.2014, 11:07:10 »


Thanks for your feedback, but we strongly depend on statements by the stage and pawpet crew, and when all we get is a "It's done when it's done", we cannot do anything about it.

Ok, thanks for clarification then!

Redirecting that request for the future to the stage crew then. I think everybody can understand that the stage has to be ready and nobody wants to see a half-prepared show.

But if there are problems, it's better to state a realistic time and keep people informed.
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Fafnir Kristensen

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #12 on: 26.08.2014, 11:21:26 »

summary:

I had one week of great fun :)
thanks to everyone who made it possible :)


in details:

location:

mmm, I miss the feeling we had in Magdeburg, where we were in the city center, near all the people and the life. I wonder why they built the Estrel so far from the center? maybe because the land was cheap, but still.
but there are enough supermarket around to accommodate for any needed "supply", and the ring train station is just around the corner, so it's not that bad.
anyway, we cant really move the hotel location


hotel:

the good:
- I like the new hotel, more space for everything is good.
- Breakfast is nice too, also I dont think I have seem that many people up so early before :D
- Reception/concierge/restaurant staff were very friendly and offered me excellent services.

the bad:
- stairs door locked... seriously, this has been the same problem in all the hotel we have been, why dont they put handle on both side of the doors ? also that would much alleviate the stress on the elevators.
- the bar...
the bar staff was either seriously overwhelmed or not happy, because the service there was not good: long waiting, sad faced waiter/waitress, and please, I order a black ice and they dont have any left? (it seems they were not making these live at the bar but only prepared big jerrycan somewhere else) so I order a Spooge Special and I get a glass completely full of ice and 5 sip of cocktail? I was not happy and never ordered another one).
also, the bar closed at 3am the evening of the pawpetshow/dance, WTF, seriously, thats completely retarded, the bar manager is really bad/clueless (please give me back André the hairless master of alcohol! that guy knew what he was doing).
even the small bar in the corner of the main stage room closed before the end of the dance (but kudo to the waiter who did the service, he was nice and did a good job)
- the wifi in the room (estrel-rooms network) is the absolute WORST i have ever experimented, it was just plain unusable. a 4 stars hotel should be ashamed for providing such low quality service :( :( :( .


dealers den:

the good:
- more space, can fit everyone inside, almost no queue! (but for the opening, but thats normal).

the less good:
- not really bad, but friends who were dealing in the first isle block near the entry where quite cramped and told me it would have been better with a bit more inner space, and when I see all the free space behind the larger tables near the window where almost nobody was, that should be easily possible without causing any flow problem.


artshow:

the good:
- more space
- the item deposal/pickup (at the entrance of the dealers den), excellent idea and it worked very well, please do it again.

the less good:
- lighting was so-so, I often had the lamps reflection in the art glass, making it difficult to really appreciate what I was looking at. though with the big ceiling, I understand it may be problematic to improve.
- I was a bit annoyed by the fursuite photoshooting flashing all the time. I understand you tried to use the space as much as possible, but next year please try to not put the two together in the same room.


the dances:

the good:
- I liked both dance, I had a lot of fun doing both till the end! big thanks to the DJs!

the less good:
- no more ears protection? If I remember correctly these were previously offered unofficially by one of the attendee, did this person not come this year or couldnt offer the service ? please let me know if thats the case next year, and I will try to provide boxes of theses.
I brought my own ears protection, so I was fine, but im pretty sure lots of people would have appreciated having some too.


pawpetshow wait:

the less good:
- making people wait outside of the hotel: really bad idea
- information was slow to come and when an announcement is done, it should get relayed along the queue.

the better:
- thanks to the person who thought about distributing drinks along the queue.


pawpetshow itself:

the good:
- interesting and complex story, nice music, nice props and fun special effects.

the less good:
- the actors voice volume were FAR TO FAINT! sometime I simply couldnt hear what they were saying. the music volume was, in comparison, too loud and covered the voices.
- in some scenes, the puppets were partly hidden by the front pieces of props, for example the scene in the swamp with the remains of the burned house, I had to look a the display to see the amulet part, otherwise it was not visible,
same problem in 2 or 3 more scenes.
for information I was in the exact middle of the chairs between the scene and the control booth.






« Last Edit: 26.08.2014, 13:43:23 by Fafnir Kristensen »
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Token

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #13 on: 26.08.2014, 15:18:26 »

The campfire
Big thank you for that! It was awesome. A nice place to sit and chat.

The environments
Well, I see that the con organisators couldn't influence that. Local people showed a wide variety from happy curiosity up to threats to beat fursuiters. But as far as I know, noone was really attacked.
Glad you enjoyed the campfire! :3

As for external people causing troubles: Luckily this happens extremely rarely. But still, this is one of our (security team) 'major' tasks… keeping all attendees safe from attacks. If you see some sec-people jumping out of every corner and running like stupid somewhere*, this is sometimes the reason. Even if you feel uncomfortable with some outsiders e.g. at the campfire because they look like trouble, go and tell a seccie! We are more than happy to keep a close eye on these and act if needed.

*That one early afternoon you might have seen us all running to the campfire - it was actually a false-alarm. %-)


the bad:
- stairs door locked... seriously, this has been the same problem in all the hotel we have been, why dont they put handle on both side of the doors ? also that would much alleviate the stress on the elevators.
And like every year, there are very strict fire protection rules that cannot be easily changed without getting into _MAJOR_(!!!) troubles. Like every year, we try to negotiate with the hotel and local authorities (yes, also police and firefighters) to sort out as many workarounds as possible. Please bear with us, please do not force-open the doors and please tell off/tell security any dick you find abusing/breaking the elevators.

artshow:
the less good:
- I was a bit annoyed by the fursuite photoshooting flashing all the time. I understand you tried to use the space as much as possible, but next year please try to not put the two together in the same room.
The fursuit photoshoot right next to it was very unpleasing though because of this constantly flashing light you've seen as soon as you were looking in that direction. Please don't forget that this can be even cause medical problems for some people with e.g. migraine or epilepsy far away from just being annoyed. Please move that somewhere else or shield it from the Art Show.
Yes, it was a technical issue that hardly anyone was happy about. And if it is remotely possible, we will not ever do this again. We have to work with what we get from the hotel.


- Great idea to make that corner where I could leave my luggage in front of them and using the registration number for it. Would be nice to see that somewehre in the middle of the hotel if possible. Would reduce the stress on the elevators maybe. Maybe print buttons that people could put on their luggage :)
Thank you, we are glad you liked it. But as for the idea to have to more central/running longer: Sorry, not possible. It already ate a huge amount of manpower. Basically we know how inconvenient the forbidden bags inside artshow/dealersden can be and thus tried to 'ease the pain' for those who do not read the conbook (and signs, and handhouts, and RoC…) and come to the artshow/dealersden with a bag or camera. :-)


Germanwings losing my suitcase. :'( And then not picking up their phone, answering their email or doing anything to contact me until it turned up Saturday just before the pawpet show; the miserable ########! But I do accept this was for the most part beyond the control of the con staff. ;)
Yes, we are really sorry that happened and are planning next year to handle the luggage-operations of the nearby airports ourselfs. We already negotiated contracts with most of the major airlines and will ramp up our security team accordingly. This should not happen again next year, please drop a note, if otherwise. :-)

Now in all seriousness, I am really sorry and can imagine how this can ruin the con experience quiet a bit. But that feedback should be left with your airline. *hugs*


Best wishes and more hugs,
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Fafnir Kristensen

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Re: EF20 feedback
« Reply #14 on: 26.08.2014, 15:50:40 »

And like every year, there are very strict fire protection rules that cannot be easily changed without getting into _MAJOR_(!!!) troubles. Like every year, we try to negotiate with the hotel and local authorities (yes, also police and firefighters) to sort out as many workarounds as possible. Please bear with us, please do not force-open the doors and please tell off/tell security any dick you find abusing/breaking the elevators.

a few questions about this: at the Maritime, on one side of the hotel, it was possible to open the door from both side, was this a very special case of that hotel? was it something which was specially arranged for us? what kind of regulation allowed that to be possible in the Maritime but may not be the same elsewhere?

I understand you may not have the answer for these questions, though I would be really interested to know the answers.
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