HAYHAY

COVID-19 UPDATES

April 2, 2021

To Our AWU Attendees:
As the planned dates of AWU 2021 grow closer, it has put us in a very difficult situation where we must weigh and balance all the moving pieces necessary to hold not only a safe convention, but one which is enjoyable and “feels like home again”. We are encouraged by the distribution of vaccines, particularly in Utah, where it was made available to all residents on March 24, 2021. Cases, hospitalizations, and deaths continue to be on a net downward trend, and some limited sectors of the economy and life are approaching a true “new normal”.

Despite the positive news for many activities, large indoor gatherings continue to be a major area of concern-- particularly ones like ours, where close quarters and frequent interactions are the norm. Dances, headless lounges, fursuit parades, gaming, shows and other common staples of our conventions bring people together from all over the world, and these things cannot take place in a reasonable fashion alongside the precautions necessary at this time. The last thing we want to do is put on an event where you feel like you’re “stuck behind a pane of glass” and unable to freely engage in all the activities you know and love at conventions.

We thoroughly examined the possibility of postponing our 2021 event to later in the year; however, the number of events already making this move illustrates that it would be unwise to do so while still expecting the attendance necessary to sustain the convention. Given this and all other circumstances, the next iteration of Anthro Weekend Utah will now be taking place from July 15-17, 2022. The logistics of this will be noted below, but all text and policies are nearly identical to the announcement made a year ago (because the circumstances are, yet again, nearly identical).

TL;DR

  • AWU will not be taking place in 2021 and will be moved to July 15-17, 2022. The theme will remain the same, and the Guests of Honor and major programming are expected to remain the same as well.
  • 2021 registrations will automatically roll over to 2022, or they can be donated. Refunds are also available for a limited period of time. You have until April 9, 2021 at 11:59 PM MDT to make a decision. No action is necessary if you wish to roll over your registration.
  • As 2021 hotel blocks never opened, no cancellations are necessary with this announcement. 2022 rooms will be re-offered to those who already held 2020 reservations first, as long as your convention registration was never cancelled. If you donate(d) your registration and held a hotel room in the 2020 block, you will still be considered eligible to book early as long as you register for the convention before the 2022 hotel block becomes available.
  • Dealers’ tables will continue to be held and can be cancelled and refunded at any time.
  • Panelists, DJs, Dance Competitors, and Volunteers will need to re-apply this coming Winter. Given that two years have passed, we anticipate that circumstances and interests have changed, and would like to ensure our records are completely up-to-date.

Registrations, Donations, Refunds

All current convention registrations will be automatically moved to correspond to the 2022 convention dates. No action is required on your part to roll over your convention registration. Should the price of registration increase, you will not be affected by these changes.

If you would like to donate your 2020/2021 registration to AWU, we are very thankful for your generosity. To donate your 2020/2021 registration, please send us an email at registration@anthroweekendutah.org to let us know.

Should you feel inclined to help Anthro Weekend Utah cover any operational costs as we reschedule to 2022, you can donate here. We are incredibly thankful for your assistance. Any leftover funds from these donations will be donated to the convention charity, Wild Wonders.

There may be some of you who would like to elect to receive a refund. First and foremost: refunds are available for any attendees who wish to have one, no questions asked, as long as they are requested before April 9, 2021. With that said, however, we do want to be completely human and transparent with you: refunds hurt. Refunds really hurt for a growing convention like ours, where gratuitous financial overhead isn’t a possibility quite yet, and where some businesses we work with to make the convention happen can’t offer refunds either, only postponements. In short, all we mean to say is this: If it fits into your plans and circumstances, we deeply appreciate all of you who are willing to allow your registrations to transfer over to next year automatically. On the other hand, we know that yet another year brings new uncertainties and new plans, and it simply will not work for everyone to make it to AWU 2022. If this is the case, please send us an email at registration@anthroweekendutah.org by April 9, 2021, and we’ll get things squared away with you. Please allow up to three business days for an initial response, and note that refunds may take multiple weeks to process due to the amount of time which has passed since initial registration.

Animals Really Need Help

Our convention charity, Wild Wonders, still continues to hurt due to many of their fundraising events and educational shows getting canceled by COVID-19. Wild Wonders is a state and federally-licensed and insured, 501(c)3 non-profit animal rescue and education facility. They provide a home for injured, displaced, non-releasable, and geriatric animals. If your circumstances permit, we encourage you to donate what you would have donated at the convention, plus any extra you would like to (responsibly) offer. The portal for donating to Wild Wonders is combined with the portal for AWU donations, and you can find it here.

Hotel Reservations

Regarding hotel reservations, our hotel unfortunately does not have the capability to transfer existing block bookings to next year, which means we will be forced to open a brand-new empty block. Due to this, all original (2020) hotel bookings through the Hilton Garden Inn will be automatically cancelled. Because we know how frustrating it is to get a hotel room, lose it, and be forced to re-book, we will work around this hotel limitation by first sending out a private block link by email to all individuals who had a hotel room before our 2020 cancellation announcement was issued. This process will once again begin with Alphas and dealers, old or new, followed by all existing reservations from 2020/2021. The block will then be re-opened to all attendees thereafter. Please keep an eye on social media later this year for updates on new hotel block openings.

Deadlines for Decisions

Now that the convention has been officially postponed until next year, our adapted transfer/refund policies are now in effect. This means that you have until April 9, 2021 at 11:59PM MDT to make your decision regarding your AWU 2020/2021 registration. If you will be letting your registration automatically roll over to next year, you can relax; no action on your part is required. If you didn’t catch the adapted policies when we first shared them, you can review them under the "Revised Refund Policy" tab on this page.

Details

There are many pieces which make up the puzzle of a convention; have a look below at any categories which may apply to you as we roll everything over to next year.

  • Volunteer, Panel, Dance, and DJ Applicants: Due to the amount of time elapsed since sign-ups were open, we will now be requiring all interested applicants to fill out the form again. Plans change, interests change, music selections change, and so on, and we want to have the most up-to-date information. These applications will open beginning this Winter.
  • Dealers' Policies: Current dealers will be able to cancel their applications and receive a full refund at any time, up to June 30, 2022. Current dealers may choose to roll their tables over to 2022, with no action needed on their part. Cancelled tables are not permitted to be transferred to another individual; open tables will be given to the next person on the waitlist. Starting Friday, November 5, 2021, we will begin reaching out to waitlisted dealers with any open spaces and allow them to register as a dealer for AWU 2022. We will continue to work from our list of waitlisted dealers to fill our dealer’s den for AWU 2022, and AWU will therefore not have a new dealers’ den application reopening. If you’re interested in being a dealer for AWU 2022, simply sign up on the waitlist and we will notify you if there are openings available on a first-come, first served basis. If you would like to request a refund for your dealer’s table for AWU 2020, or have any other questions regarding dealers, please email dealers@anthroweekendutah.org.
  • 2021 Registration: We will re-open registration for all tiers Friday, November 5, 2021. Registration for Ultimate and Alpha tiers will be open until May 14, 2022, however these will be limited in number and may close earlier depending on availability. Basic registration will remain open until July 8, 2022, after which it will be available at the door. As always, we highly encourage people to register online, before arriving at the convention space to save time at badge pick-up. We plan on offering our advance badge pickup option for 2022 as well. For those who roll over their registrations to 2022 and opt to pick up their badges from their local post office in advance, we will be mailing badges approximately 2-3 weeks before the 2022 con dates. More information on this will be provided closer to our new dates.
  • Amusement Park Trip / Lagoon: We plan on offering discounted tickets to Lagoon again for July 14, 2022, the day before the convention. For those who purchased discounted tickets this year, we will roll your tickets over to our new 2021 dates. Refunds are also available upon request until July 13, 2022 for the Lagoon ticket only. If you would like a refund of your Lagoon ticket only, please email events@anthroweekendutah.org. Please note that you cannot cancel your convention registration and still hold on to your Lagoon ticket. If you cancel your convention registration for 2022, your Lagoon ticket will also be automatically refunded.