Just a week from its scheduled April 27-29th dates at the Baltimore Convention Center, Universal Fan Con has been postponed indefinitely, as confirmed in a tweet.
We see your tweets, messages & concerns. We will have a full update later today on the status of the convention. We realize the immense severity of the situation and our teams will be working to address everything as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience and understanding
— FanCon@Baltimore Convention Center (@UniversalFanCon) April 20, 2018
It was also confirmed in a message sent to backers on Kickstarter.
— Sarah (@seh) April 20, 2018
The event was billed as “The first multi-fandom Con dedicated to inclusion, highlighting Women, LGBTQ, the Disabled and Persons of Color.” so to say this comes as a shock and a disappointment is a massive understatement. When it was first announced, it sounded like the kind of show this space desperately needs.
While we wait for an official statement, I’ll just say that I had seen tweets boosting ticket sales for the last month or so, so I’m guessing the numbers just weren’t working out.
And to reiterate what I’ve been saying here for years: don’t expect to put on a first year show and not lose money. You need to have a lot of money banked.
While I certainly hope the show is rescheduled and not cancelled, people who were burned for travel and hotel (who you can see on Twitter right this moment) might not be eager to support the new date. I’m also sympathetic to the showrunners who went into this with a lot of idealism. While I’m sure the next few days will be rough, let’s see how this shakes out.
For tales of legendary con meltdown, check out our ongoing coverage.
UPDATE: This is like watching a disaster movie unfold live before you. Apparently when the email to Kickstarter backers went out, it was not BCC’d, meaning 500+ people got each other’s emails.
— elmtree (@elmtree916) April 20, 2018
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.