Wow, these are some tricky times, aren’t they? It’s a mystery in itself how we’ll ever get back to things like fan conventions, like Vanhoover. For months, we’ve been looking at all of our options, and one thing is certain: Vanhoover Pony Expo WILL HAPPEN in January, 2021.
How will we do that? Our plan is to work within recommendations from our local government’s health authority. As of the date of this message, Vancouver and the surrounding areas have done an excellent job of squashing the curve, and our daily cases have dropped into the single, and occasionally double, digits. If this trend continues, 50 people are assuredly able to be in a single room together, and potentially more based on Phase 3 guidelines currently in place. You can see current stats from our area (Vancouver Costal) and the current local government recommendations.
That said, safety will be number one. Among other policies, we will require face masks at ALL TIMES in public space. Catering events will be limited/cancelled if necessary (sorry, ice cream social may be part of that). We will have sanitization stations in as many locations as possible. Seating, if present, will be spaced apart in the same fashion as movie theatres have now done in this area. Vendors halls will have mandatory distancing. Guests/VIPs will have less physical contact. Lines will require enforced distancing.
Vanhoover Pony Expo is fortunate to be a smaller event that can realistically expect to keep distance between attendees. Our venue has already assured us that we will have as much space as possible to make this realistic.
Two weeks before the event, if we find that the health concern is heightened, we may opt to cancel in-person events, and instead allow people to utilize their private hotel rooms in their own social bubbles to watch events over our professional grade livestream of our full stage. Yes, we will have a full stage, even if the only in-person audience is our cameras! We have been livestreaming our event since year one and have plenty of experience making it awesome.
Can you still participate if you cannot attend in person? YES! You can pre-register with confidence that you WILL get pony for your money, all while supporting our little Canadian pony con.
All paid memberships for people unable to attend may be purchased as or converted to a non-attending ‘spirit badge’ at any time and will have items such as badge, lanyard, conbook, and more, shipped to them, anywhere in the world. We’re even working on providing packaging of other items, including potential vendor hall purchases, charity auction items, and VIP autographs, all from the comfort of your home! For Patron and Alicorn memberships, we’re also working on private webcam time with our VIPs and vendors hall!
Unsure if you can cross the border in January? Not sure if you’ll be comfy coming to a con by then? No problem! By supporting our con with your paid pre-registration, you can convert to a spirit badge at any time, and cancel your hotel room with no penalties up to 24 hours before your arrival. All your swag will still get to you and you can attend the con virtually instead!
This is a new idea and a new approach to having a fan convention, and we’re still developing our strategy. The entire Vanhoover Pony Expo team all agreed we want to make this happen, and will be constantly revising and building the best policies we can to allow us all to pony as safely as we can. As always, we welcome your feedback to our social media and email!