History of MFF: Midwest Furfest 2012

Midwest FurFest 2012 was held at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare in Rosemont, Illinois from November 16th to November 18th, 2012.

The Guests of Honor, were:

The charity for that year was Felines and Canines

Total attendance was 3,216, including 743 participants in the fursuit parade.

Total money raised for Felines and Canines more than $40,500.

History of MFF: Midwest FurFest 2009

Midwest FurFest 2009 was held at the Westin Chicago North Shore in Wheeling, Illinois from November 20th to November 22nd, 2009

Guests of Honor

In celebration of the convention’s tenth anniversary, all of the Guests of Honor from the first nine years were invited back. Of the the 29 Guests of Honor, the following attended in-person:

The charity for that year was Kane Area Rehabilitation and Education for Wildlife. Their table displayed numerous rescued animals (including a lynx, a tortoise, a hawk and a one-eyed owl).

I could not resist this

Total attendance was 2,040, which included 145 sponsors, 55 anniversary sponsors and 357 participants in the fursuit parade

Through various fundraisers, including table donations ($558 on Friday, $734 on Saturday and $508 on Sunday), an impromptu show by 2 and Kage ($773), charity poker ($700), charity auction ($4,526), and a donation from Midwest Furry Fandom, Inc. ($5,000), approximately $12,799 was raised.

Notes about MFF 2009 from Wikifur

Midwest FurFest 2009’s theme was, “10 Years of Midwest FurFest”.

An experimental theatrical event – Too Much Light Makes The Baby Go Blind – gained a positive reception. Who would be back for MFF 2015

At closing, it was announced that the convention would move to the Hyatt Regency O’Hare in Rosemont, Illinois in 2010 it’s current location.

The Art Show increases the number of pieces (1129) and with a total of 81 artists, the art show raised $16,302.

History of MFF: Midwest FurFest 2008

Midwest FurFest 2008 was a convention held at the Westin Chicago North Shore in Wheeling, Illinois from November 21st to November 23rd, 2008.

The theme that year was “North to Alaska”

Seriously there was a film with the same title

The Guests of honor for that year were:

The headless horse-man
Photo by Falada
Ta da!
Photo by Falada

Total attendance was 1,992, which included 358 participants in the fursuit parade.

The charity for that year was  Rainbow Animal Assisted Therapy, for whom the convention raised a total of more than $15,000

FurFacts by Wikifur from MFF 2008

On the first night of the convention, Nov 21st 2008, everyone from both the hotel and Convention Center were forced to evacuate after the fire alarms were set off, indicating a possible fire. After an investigation, it was found someone decided to smoke in their hotel room which was designated as a non-smoking area, unintentionally causing the smoke detectors to set off, which in turn set off the fire alarms in both venues. Everyone was eventually allowed back in after standing outside in the frigid 28 degree weather for up to half an hour.

Due to space limitations, the Artists Alley had somewhat fewer tables than were available the previous year. A lottery system, which had been successfully implemented the previous year and was similar to that used for Anthrocon’s Artists Alley, was used to distribute seats in the Alley.

The art show featured 1,066 works by 68 artists. 524 pieces were sold, with 53 going to art auction. Total revenue from the show was $22,928.

The hot tub was closed for a significant period, reportedly because some attendees decided to have sex in it. Hotel and convention staff were not amused.

History of MFF: Midwest FurFest 2007

MFF 2007 was held at Hyatt Regency Woodfield, in Schaumburg, Illinois from November 16th to November 18th, 2007

Midwest FurFest’s Guests of Honor for 2007 were:[2]

Dar'Rushk the Manticore
Photo by Green Reaper
Photo by Green Reaper It seems they did have Line Con even back then
Photo by Green Reaper
Photo by Green Reaper

The charity for 2007 was Flint Creek Wildlife Rehabilitation.

Through various fundraising activities, including a $10,000 donation from MFF, approximately $15,193 was raised for the charity.

The most raised at any MFF up to that point

Total attendance was 1,690, which included 286 participants in the fursuit parade.

Attendance was up 268 over 2006

This would be the last MFF held at Hyatt Regency Woodfield before moving to Westin Chicago North Shore

History of MFF: Midwest FurFest 2006

Midwest FurFest took place the Hyatt Regency Woodfield, in Schaumburg, Illinois from November 17th to November 19th, 2006

Midwest FurFest’s Guests of Honor for 2006 were:

Photo of the Hyatt Regency Woodfield

photo by Green Reaper

They actually had an Ice Cream Social

both photos by The Green Reaper

As I was going through the photos I had to post this

photo by Green Reaper

Photo from an event they no longer do a Fur Pageant

photo by Green Reaper

Typical crowd

photo by Green Reaper

Another thing you don’t see at today’s cons The Bulletin Board


Total attendance 1,422 up 356 over 2005’s gathering

 213 participants in the fursuit parade.

The convention charity was Safe Haven Wildlife Refuge. Who provides wildlife rescue, veterinary care, direct contact for emergency care, referrals to other facilities, and community support and education.

Through various fundraisers, including the charity auction ($5,570), approximately $13,048.96 was raised.

Update: I am happy to report Safe Haven Wildlife Refuge is still in business

History of MFF: Midwest Furfest 2005

MFF 2005 was held at  Hyatt Regency Woodfield in Schaumburg, Illinois from November 18th to November 20th, 2005. The theme for that year’s convention was:  “Whodunnit? It’s a Mystery!”

The Guests of Honor were:

Fursuit Parade photo by Blue Heel

I would love to know this backstory

Photo by Green Reaper
Another photo by Green Reaper that should have an explaination
A Ninja at MFF?!!! Uncle Kage pretends to die Photo by Green Reaper

According to Wikifur The highlight of the Charity Auction was the auctioning off of an evening with 2 and Uncle Kage entertaining the winner and their friends in a private performance; in the end, two groups who were bidding against each other pooled their funds and the performance went for $650. This was Takaza’s last year heading the convention, as he passed the chairmanship over to Linnaeus for 2006. It was also announced that Midwest FurFest would be returning to the Hyatt Regency Woodfield in 2006.

The Stats

$6,800 was raised for Wildlife in Need, I can not confirm that the same organization is still around.

Total Attendance was 1066 up 107 from the previous year

MFF would only remain at the Hyatt Regency Woodfield for 2 more years before moving to the Westin Chicago North Shore in 2008

History of MFF: Midwest FurFest 2003

Although I could not find the con book cover for 2003 did find badge art

The Guests of Honor were:

Midwest FurFest 2003 was held at the Hyatt Regency Woodfield in Schaumburg, Illinois from November 21st to November 23rd, 2003.

Photo by Tiger Cowboy

By Blue Heel Quasi Skunk and mom
By Blue Heel Artist Alley

Total attendance was 800

$6,500 was raised for Animals For Awareness

History of MFF: Midwest FurFest 2002

Midwest FurFest 2002  was held at the Hyatt Regency Woodfield in Schaumburg, Illinois from November 22nd to November 24th, 2002

First color con book

The Guests of Honor were:

by Javujaguar
by Draconus

$6,088 was raised for Animals for Awareness (which has since gone out of business)

Attendance was 685, but that was 174 more than the previous year

History of MFF: Midwest FurFest 2001

Midwest FurFest 2001 was held at the Sheraton Chicago Northwest in Arlington Heights, Illinois from November 16th to November 18th, 2001.

Guest of Honor

Even though the conventions site shows it’s mascot raccoon for the first time. I have no idea why it is wearing overhauls

The following photos are from the Blue Heel archive

Apparently the fursuit parade was outdoors and divided by species

The Message Board

You will not believe who got there start there 2 The Ranting Gyphon and here’s proof

image from K Turtle archive


511 attendance

$6,800 was raised for Animals for Awareness who has sadly gone under since the donation

History of MFF: Midwest Furfest 2000

MFF very 1st stand alone convention took place November 17th-19th, 2000, not the 1st weekend in December. Which will happen later, and would take place at The Arlington Park Hilton in Arlington Heights, Illinois,

Yes it had a website even then you can find it here at archive dot org

Which does contain a Press Release

The Press Release

For six years, Chicago’s Duckon has been proud to host a strong, vibrant furry programming track. Duckon’s Furry Track has grown considerably over the past several years, and we’ve had a fun time organizing it. There comes a time for change, though, and this is it. It’s time we moved on…

To our own, full-fledged convention!

Yes, you read that right. 1999 will be the last year that Duckon features a full furry track. In 2000, Duckon’s furry track will ‘hatch’ into Midwest FurFest! Featuring all the fun, excitement, and high-quality programming you’ve come to expect from Duckon’s Furry Track, this new format will allow us to do EVEN MORE of all that good stuff.

Midwest FurFest will be held over the weekend of November 17th through the 19th in the year of 2000. Our hotel is the elegant and spacious Arlington Park Hilton, in Arlington Heights, Illinois, and we’re excited to be able to offer rooms at only $66 a night! More money to spend on Cool Stuff!

Organized by many of the same faces you’ve come to know from Duckon’s Furry Track, we’ve also recruited a number of new folk, all with fresh and exciting ideas. We’re still working on all those little details, but rest assured, we have a committed constaff dedicated to putting on a fantastic convention. If you’re an artist, a writer, a fursuiter, or just a fan in general, there’ll be something for you at MFF.

We’d also like to assure the fandom that Furry’s split from Duckon was amicable in every way. Duckon was an excellent nest for us, but Furry has grown up. We simply needed more room in order to continue to host a wide variety of quality furry programming, and Duckon was beginning to get too confining. While we are going our separate ways as conventions, many FurFest staffers will remain involved with Duckon, and Duckon itself is working with us to make the transition smooth and painless.

So, just to sum up:

Midwest FurFest, November 17-19, 2000. Mark your calendars now!

Hope to see you all at Midwest FurFest!

Last updated: Tuesday, September 14, 1999 11:53 AM

Also information as well as photos are few I discovered a small archive but 1st the very first con book. At least what I was able to find.

All photos are from the Blue Heel archive LINK

Please keep in mind these photos are 20 years old.

Now for the stats

Attendance was 473 that would fit in just 1 ballroom at the Hyatt in comparison

They raised $3,522.00 Wolf ParkValley of the Kings big cat sanctuary, and Chicago House So there wasn’t just 1 charity there was 3 and all of them I am happy to say are still around today.