Step 1: Identifying the problem through research

After the 2015 burn, we sent out a survey to see what improvements people thought we could use with the camp. 23 people responded. As well, we asked around to a number of visitors and had a meeting on playa to brainstorm ideas. The full results are located here, and as well, here are some of the summaries.

Q – What do you think FUR needs more of?
“Coordinated front.”
“More things that are representative of our community. Anthro art, maybe allowing people to try on furry masks/ears/tails”
“Public dance/hangout space”
“Furry related projects”
“a fire pit to gather around up front would be nice.”
“lounge space/shade/regular bar”
“The dance area could use more sun shade- speakers blasting made it hard to hang out there (I used earplugs while sitting on the sofa)”
“more public shade structures in the front and more couchy type things.”
“cohesive furry themed art, inviting places to hang out”
“Ambassadors and chill space.”.

Q – What do you think FUR needs less of?
“Dance space”,”Separate hangout zones in the rear.”,”Less fragmentation of the camp”,”sound. can’t compete and hinders other displays.”,”People hanging out only in the back.”,”private areas”,”Hanging out in back.”,”DJs.”

Q – In your mind, what is FUR, and what do you want FUR to be more of? (check as many as you like)
A social space for furs from all over the playa to hang out at – 18 responses
A place for furries to create art/interactions – 17 responses
A space for fursuiters to hang out in fursuit – 15 responses
A place for furries to camp together – 13 responses
A bar run by furs for furs – 1 response
An adult only furry space – 1 response
A furry sound camp – 1 response

Q – Would you be ok with paying dues?
Yes – 22 Responses
No – 1 Response

Q – If yes, how much would you be willing to pay in dues?
$1-$49 – 4 Responses
$50-$99 – 4 Responses
$100-$199 – 6 Responses
$200-$299 – 3 Responses
$300+ – 4 Responses

Q – If yes, what would you like that money to go to?
More general camp infrastructure (Shade, Seating, Carpets, etc) – 15 responses
An art grant to pay for a furry art project – 9 responses
Camp only porta-potty – 6 responses
A camp drinking water unit – 6 reponses
A camp gray water unit – 6 responses
A camp shipping container – 4 responses
More general camp infrastructure (gas, propane, etc) – 2 responses

Do you feel YOU do to much to contribute to FUR?
Yes – 4 Responses
No – 18 Responses

Do you feel OTHERS don’t do enough to contribute to FUR?
Yes – 13 Responses
No – 8 Responses

Do you feel YOU don’t do enough to contribute to FUR?
Yes – 11 Responses
No – 11 Responses

What are your overall views of what direction FUR needs to go?
“Split into two camps, a smaller 50/50 interactive and bedroom esplanade camp of the core people that don’t mind spending half their burn building things. And a second placed camp at C or D or something for bedroom community and smaller personal projects.”

“I see camp FUR as a PG place where furries around the playa can mingle, dance, and meet new furs. It was my first time at camp FUR and I was a bit overwhelmed with some of the email chains. Important information was buried among greetings and brainstorming. I was willing to put in the time/effort throughout the year, but had no direction. I spent about 700 on the Infinity mirror, it’s an awesome instillation in my office, but didn’t suit the camp well. My takeaway is this. There needs to be more dancing space. A way to force more people in the front, in order to reach critical mass. A clear direction of the front by December ish. Have everyone pitch in 100-300 for a fantastic stage.”

“Increase the area in the frontage for public art, to allow more open space, which can then allow more cohesion between the different pieces and less feeling of a bunch of random stuff shoved together.”
“I think two things are important: there should be a good hangout space for all the camp to hang out in, to help build a sense of community within the camp. I missed that this year; it was present the last two years. It can be in front. And I would like to see more projects that are representative of our community. Try on an animal costume, see what it feels like”

“We need a more consistent theme, good music when we play it, and good art from good furry artists. And with good placement we need sone degree of quality control. Some basic infrastructure like clean & gray water tanks would be good, but folks need to be otherwise self-reliant. Communal meals & too much handholding will bring an entitled, furry hotel feel.”

“I would like to see more community shade/sheltered space whether it be private or public or both. If we are to have a sound system like the one this year we should have a more defined lounge/dance space out front even if we don’t consider ourselves a sound camp”

“It lacked a feeling of communal space. The hexapong table seemed separate from the stage. It could have very well been part of the neighboring camp. The dance area was covered with coyote garden. I also didn’t understand the point of being a sound stage if all the Furs ran off to another camp or stayed in their private chill space. I don’t know the general direction the camp needs to go in as I don’t think I’ll camp there again (while I do appreciate the opportunity this time!). Several passersby were looking for a fur wall or other furry things to cuddle at night.”

“Not sure exactly but anything that would grab the attention of passers-by, something about us that would pique their curiosity and draw them in to find out more about us. Perhaps some suiters could work shifts (short ones) during the day out front greeting the general public, posing for pics, giving hugs, etc.”

“I think if our aim is to be an Esplanade camp or otherwise major camp then we should focus on a more cohesive presentation. Instead of a lot of little things we should work on a few major things. Little things are fine, but we should look at how they fit into the whole.”

“Fur could use more art, for example we could get permission to print large furry art on sheets that could be hung in the public shade areas. We could staff a ‘furry oasis’ area serving cold non-alcoholic drinks between 1 & 3 pm (an evolution of the teddy bear picnic). More campers in FUR need to contribute service time at the camp. Group meals can help foster communal service (with rotating cooks & clean up). I think we could also have an adult area in the private area of the camp- it might keep frisky furs closer to camp & attract other furs in (vs our campers leaving). Asunyra built an amazing yurt for relaxing & cooling off, it would be a great addition to the private area of the camp, could be used by suiters to cool off in AC. Sure, it’s an adult area but all the fursuiters are adults.”

“About the question above, there is always more to do make camp better, and I plan on kicking in a little higher gear in the future. I did what I could this year and helped out wherever I could.
I’m not sure which direction the camp is going, but if dues are implemented, I think there will be more structure and delegation of duties, which will in turn show FUR to grow and strengthen its design and intentions.”

“More organization, collaboration on creating a cohesive furry theme and feel for the camp. While we did have a lot of things this year, they didn’t feel like they were tied together as well as they could be. A continued focus on creating an inviting space to capture the curiosity of folks passing by that draws them into the camp. Better public infrastructure, furniture, shade, places to hang out. ”
“This should be a camp *OF* furries, not a camp *FOR* furries.”

Was this your first time with FUR?
Yes – 8 responses
No – 15 responses

Continue to:

Step 2: Identifying the problem
Step 3: Problems to solve
Step 4: A solution