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Whedonesque - a community weblog about Joss Whedon
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September 13 2010

WhedonFest (Toronto) cancels convention. Due to low ticket sales, this first time convention has been canceled 3 weeks before the event was to take place.

That's a real shame.
That's terrible. I would have bought a ticket, but I won't be back in Toronto until next spring.
With the Toronto FanExpo convention busting from the seams, with huge 2 to 3 hour line-ups to get it, it's too bad the city couldn't support WhedonFest. I wonder what promotion it did as if I didn't often read I wouldn't have heard of it (I live in the suburbs of Toronto). Or did the event perhaps need bigger or more names to support it.
Pity for the folks that put their blood, sweat and tears into organising it though it sounds like everyone will get their ticket money back which is something. Have to say, $55 seems pretty reasonable for a 3-day event though I suppose everybody's tightening their belts these days. Or maybe there just isn't the interest in the Toronto area (or it's purely down to people not knowing about it) ?
I would've went if it was in the US. preferably east coast-ish. I was actually so sad I couldn't go, and now i'm sad no one will.
There is a lot of Whedon-love in the Toronto area - just don't know why this didn't fly. Must be difficult starting something from scratch, when everyone is looking for something proven. Organizers did a great job with the site and line-up, especially being able to get Amy for her first Canadian apperance, but it wasn't meant to be.

It's like there is a hole in the world.....
Well that is sad. I just found out I could go yesterday, and was planning on buying my ticket tomorrow.
I should have known it was in troubl, when I got my ticket at the last minute and the gold tickets (limited to 125) were still available. At least I won't fell bad about missing the dessert buffet (limited to 50 tickets and sold out before I could buy it). I really wanted to meet Amy Acker, and eating from a chocolate fountain with her would have been even better.
They shut down ticket sales on Saturday hoping, I guess, for a last minute boost. I know people who were going to wait until the last minute to buy. But the organizers worked hard to get the word out. I think too many people were just not willing to take a chance on a first time con.
From running the CSTS screening for 5 years I know how slowly and painfully publicity and a reputation is built and the Whedonfest people just didn't have the kind of money to wait a year or two.
Yeah, that's a real shame. The Fan Expo in late August really was overflowing and had way too many people. I would have gone to this, I think, though I never buy tickets several weeks in advance. Sigh.
It seems like a self actualizing prophecy. There were a few people on the boards who were concerned about the event being cancelled and what would happen in that case. I think that may have scared off people who were considering going. I know it made me think twice about buying a ticket. It does suck that it's not going to happen though, because it certainly won't inspire anyone to try something similiar any time soon.
I had no idea this existed until now and I live 1 hour from Toronto.
After reading what was on their forums, I was going to buy a ticket closer to the actual date of the convention, just in case it did get cancelled and I wouldn't be able to get my money back.

...which I guess makes me more a part of the problem than the solution...
Anybody notice Serenity on the web page is upside down? Lack of quality control could have been the answer..... :-/ Just sayin'.....
Maybe they tried the wrong coast? I know plenty of Browncoats and Whedonites in the Vancouver area who'd love a good Whedon convention...
Seriously, I was going to book my flight today. Thank god they announced this today or I would've been in some deep shit.

It sucks pretty hardcore, though. My friends and I were all going to trek up from our respective regions (New York, Wisconsin, LA and Montreal) to go meet Amy Acker and now it's ruuuuuuined. Sigh.
Ahhh double post. Fail.

[ edited by pathsunbeaten on 2010-09-14 02:29 ]
There's plenty of Whedon love in the Toronto area. I remember being interested when I heard Nick Brendon was involved months ago. Then I heard about Amy, but I never really heard about it again, and I guess it slipped my mind. I had been considering going at the time.
Well, I just got the confirmation that they have refunded my money, so they made good on their promise to do so.

But I'm so upset (not at the organizers, just the situation). My friend and I bought tickets last week; we knew it was a risky thing, but if it actually happened it would have been awesome and pretty much the best weekend ever, since we did our Con-ing separately this year (she went to Comic Con, I went to Fan Expo; neither of us could go to both). It would have been great to meet up with some fellow Whedonites outside the Fan Expo experience since the vastness and crowdedness of that place can crush the hurrah for individual fandoms. I was gonna buy a white dress and somehow find a fake crossbow and dress up as Buffy from "Prophecy Girl."

*sigh* It would have been also really nice to meet Dichen, Christian and **AMY**. *double sigh* I had dessert party tickets. (The fact that I bought them on Wednesday, and there were only 50, and the last day to buy was Saturday, didn't bode well.)

I can kinda understand why this didn't happen, though; I mean perhaps people didn't know about it or were confusing it with Fan Expo since James, Summer, Tamoh and Felicia were there, undoubtedly the most Whedonful guest list I'd ever been to at Fan Expo. But had they pulled it off, it would have been nice, awesome, and intimate. I feel really bad for the organizers; there must have been a lot of biting fingernails and pulling hair as the deadline got closer and tickets weren't selling. All I can say is thanks guys for trying, and I'm sorry it didn't work out (for all of us). Also, thank you even more for fulfilling your refund promise.
Perhaps this is some reflection on inadequate performance in, say, some medium to which, say, some primary Whedon character has been, say, not wholly well-written & behaving, say, oddly . . . ?

Naaaaaaaaaaaa hhhhhhhhh . . .
And i'll add a huhwha (cos you can never have too many noise-words of bafflement) ?
Was that a reference to the comics? I had to read it a couple of times, like understanding Sartre...

This is a shame, however I still remain surprised that conventions like this get so busy, I can understand comic con, but, for instance, the Hallowhedon thing that's coming up in October in London, it just seems like a massive rip off, maybe they just weren't offering good enough stuff. (The website doesn't have any info about the programme or guests anymore so I dunno)
wha-huh-ha-hoo?/confusion reiteration
Illyria, there are 2 Whedon meetups/shindigs every month in Toronto, so you needn't miss that part anyway. A lot of us are attending the Dr. Horrible Singalong Blog event this weekend and then seeing Tom Lenk's show next weekend.
I was sorry to see it not happen. I bought my gold ticket pretty soon after the con was announced and was looking forward to it. I have notification that my money is in the process of being refunded.

We have had three years of a Whedon con here before - Sunnydale Central. They were always a struggle for the organizers though. It did mean I got to have dinner with J. August Richards.

Whedon Fest was a very ambitious idea. Perhaps they should have started smaller and worked up, but that doesn't always work either. There are already a lot of cons in Toronto (Polaris, Fan Expo, Ad Astra, the new SFContario, Futurecon...) so perhaps it's just stretching the community too far. As Lioness said, we have two very active Whedon groups (Canadian Browncoats and Buffy Angel Meeters) so we won't go hungry in our mutual Whedon love expression.

I did need Amy and Christian's autographs in my copy of Bite Me, though. :(
Perhaps this is some reflection on inadequate performance in, say, some medium to which, say, some primary Whedon character has been, say, not wholly well-written & behaving, say, oddly . . . ?

Naaaaaaaaaaaa hhhhhhhhh . . .

That is undoubtedly the most inane comment I have ever seen on Whedonesque.
Did they do any promotion at Fan Expo?

It would have been a golden opportunity.

Glad that fans are getting prompt refunds but this sucks both for organisers and fans
debw, one of the main organizers handed out flyers to all of us standing in line to get in and again to all of us standing in line to get autographs or pictures of people like Summer Glau or Tahmoh or James Marsters. I'm guessing their budget didn't stretch to a big ad anywhere.
And redeem147, that's the Toronto Browncoats of which you speak. The Canadian Browncoats is the Canada wide group. ;)

[ edited by Lioness on 2010-09-14 17:52 ]
The organizer was handing out flyers at Fan Expo.
It's a real shame that the flyers didn't do the trick but it sounds like the organisers did all they could . I only hope that they aren't going to be left too much out of pocket by this . Kudos to them for getting the refunds out so promptly.
And redeem147, that's the Toronto Browncoats of which you speak. The Canadian Browncoats is the Canada wide group. ;)

True. We're a sub-group. :)
This is heartbreaking; I couldn't make it to Fan Expo this year, so I was really excited for this... hopefully, hopefully it can potentially happen at another time, because I'd still love it.
Two friends mentioned it earlier in the summer, but I forgot and I think a break-up kinda sidetracked them, though one did go to Fan Expo and didn't enjoy it much--too overstuffed. Haven't been to Fan Expo in a couple years and, as with the Toronto Film Fest, just doesn't seem as exciting anymore--even being excited for quality directors' works like Black Swan, I feel I can easily wait. Plus any extra cash goes more toward travel to see friends and such, leaves less for entertainment (and I intentionally didn't work much this summer).

Dunno if I'm a fan of the way Fan Expo's gone. It's trying to be too many things to too many people and, while I've heard that San Diego and a number of other cons pull it off beautifully (though with crazy crowds, yes), it's just not my thing. Was so crowded this year, my friend couldn't even adequately browse the back-issue bins, one of the simpler pleasures of Fan Expo that she enjoys (me, I've given up on 'em when I'm missing back issues--you waste too much time browsing through them, when you could simply order it all online, often for less--although I suppose there's the advantage of supporting local comic shops).

If I'd remembered/been reminded, probably would've gone to WhedonFest. Friends were eager back when we talked about it, and she had really gotten her [now ex-]boyfriend into Buffy & Angel these past couple years (I think they were at the beginning of Buffy Season 7/Angel Season 4 when they split--so close and it took them a good long while to get that far into the franchise). The fresh fanboyism was infectious, new person to discuss with/get reactions from was fun, I miss it/him/them together. :(

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