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Michael “Midnight” Zupec

Home Forums MNFurs MNFurs 2021 Elections Forum Meet the Candidates Michael “Midnight” Zupec

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    Tell us about yourself

    I am 21 years old from Duluth, which is about two hours north of the Twin Cities metro. I staff a handful of conventions, like Hotel with Furry Migration since 2018 and Midwest Furfest since 2019 and I fursuit. Many know me as Midnight, my blue cat, but I also go by my rabbit character, Clover. Outside of the fandom I am an undergrad senior at the University of Minnesota Duluth studying Computer Science.


    What brought you to the furry fandom?

    I had an interest in anthropomorphic characters for a long time since I was younger growing up with the Disney movies and games like Sly Cooper and Ratchet & Clank. I discovered the fandom years ago when I was about 13 or so but didn’t consider myself part of it until about early 2017. Later that year I attended my first con, Furry Migration. I was a lot shier and more closeted than I am now, and the subsequent cons and MNFurs events after really helped me be more open about myself.


    How will you continue to volunteer in the community after being elected to the board?

    I very much intend to continue to staff conventions like Furry Migration and MFF. They’re fun, challenging, and rewarding. I’ll also plan to help out with other MNFurs functions where I can as well as any other local fandom conventions outside the furry fandom.


    How do you view events like Furry Migration and Midwinter Frolic impact the Minnesota Furs community today and tomorrow?

    I have been to both events and I feel they have a very positive impact on the community. Furry Migration is a con that’s both big enough to have something to do and small enough that it’s not too overwhelming and pretty chill. Midwinter Frolic, back when it was known as Werecamp, is a great example of how we are offering more events for our older community members and is a great event to take a break from the daunting stresses of life for a weekend and hang out with friends.

    Due to current world events, we moved Furry Migration 2020 to a virtual, online event and feedback from the community was overall very positive! When we do go back to physical events, I would like to see this online component implemented for main events for those that are unable to join us in person.


    What are your strengths that you will bring to the board?

    From staffing hotel for Furry Migration and Midwest FurFest, I have a good amount of experience with coordinating with event venues. I do a lot of record keeping for these positions and feel will help out a lot as a board member.


    What do you feel are areas where you want to further develop yourself? Why?
    I’m still very much a shy person still and deal a lot with social anxiety. I definitely want to be more outgoing and this is something that I am making more progress on every day.


    How can Minnesota Furs reach out to other communities local and national in furry and other fandoms?

    We have long-lasting partnerships and relationships with other local fandom and community organizations such as the Geek Partnership Society and Anime Twin Cities, which are the folks that operate Anime Detour. Furry Migration is also part of the FCLR, which is a furry convention leadership roundtable where leadership from furry conventions nationwide and worldwide come together to share ideas and help each other succeed.


    What are two things that you would like to see accomplished/improved during your tenure?
    Two things I’d like to accomplish, or at least get significant progress on, are broadening official events to other parts of the state outside of the Twin Cities metro area, such as Duluth; as well as finding a perfect to good enough balance between events geared for our youth program and our older community members. A great example is with our Midwinter Frolic event for our older members.


    One goal of MNFurs is to promote education. How do you intend on helping promote education?

    There are multiple ways to go about it. Our youth program is a great for youth furs to hang out with one another and their parents can ask questions to understand the fandom better. Room parties at other fandom conventions are also great for those curious into what furries are to come by, relax, and get to know about the fandom and answer any questions correct any misinformation they may have gotten else where

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