Good people and good information made for a good time on March 21, 2009, when more than 80 ferret enthusiasts met in Brea, California, for the annual Ferrets Anonymous (FA) Round Up. Ferrets Anonymous is the statewide ferret-enthusiasts association in California, a state that outlaws ferret ownership.
Hosted by The OC Ferrets chapter of Ferrets Anonymous, attendees received a nametag and an information packet after paying a $10 entrance fee. The day-long event featured plenty of opportunities to meet other ferret enthusiasts and talk ferret. It also featured three guest speakers who gave talks on topics ranging from ferret health to ferret sheltering to ferret legalization history.
The event was also a product bonanza, with a chance to shop for ferret products from the eight participating vendors; bid on products at the silent auction; and enter to win products in the raffle.
A ferret photo contest also livened up the event.
Business items included review and voting on changes to the bylaws and election of officers. In an e-mail interview after the event, Lance M., current and past president of Ferrets Anonymous, said the changes to the bylaws were important. “The new changes allow the organization to be more flexible depending on the needs of the California ferret community. Since there was so much that changed, the Board will spend some time integrating the bylaw changes and modifications into the existing bylaws.”
Lance said other goals for the year include further development of the FA website, organizing safe ferret travel within the state and ferret education tables at pet stores and pet expos throughout the state, and improving communication between intrastate ferret clubs.
The environmental impact report (EIR), which was one plan discussed during the past year to further ferret legalization in the state, seems to have hit a roadblock because the consultant who was considering taking it on has withdrawn. Lance urges ferret enthusiasts to stay positive.
“The most important thing for people to do at the moment is not to become complacent, or upset. Ferret legalization has experienced nothing but hurdles in the past, and there will be more to overcome in the future,” he said. “As far as any possible EIR or other strategy, information is still being actively collected. Just because a single EIR consultant has refused to take on the job, doesn’t mean that there aren’t others who won’t take on the task. We will overcome.”
The Round Up is the only official meeting in 2009 for the general Ferrets Anonymous membership. It’s a lot of work, but Lance was pleased with the outcome. “Round Up is a great time to catch up with friends, but it also takes a lot out of the group that is hosting it. I’m relieved it’s over but am looking forward to the impact FA can have on 2009, as well as the next Round Up. It’s amazing that so much work can truly serve to re-energize everyone!”