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Ponyville Ciderfest 2018 Reflections · 7:56pm Jun 7th, 2019

Ponyville Ciderfest 2018 Reflections

Meant to post this months ago, but never got around to it until today.

Ponyville Ciderfest 2018 was the second ever pony con I’ve been too. I was conflicted over whether to go or not given that I had just gone to Bronycon a couple months prior, but I decided to go ahead with it. I took the overnight train from New York to Chicago and then the train to Milwaukee the next day, and that was a mistake. Sleeping in coach was terrible and I got motion sick, so I felt terrible the day before the con. I spent most of Thursday sleeping in my hotel room, only waking up to get my badge.

I felt better on Friday thankfully. The line to get into opening Ceremonies was quite long, but the ceremony itself got me pumped. Similar to Bronycon’s Renegade Stage, Ciderfest has the Apple Orchard where various musicians throughout the course of the con would perform. Due to the location of the stage and because Ciderfest is a smaller con, you could hear the performances from anywhere on the con floor. Even from the 6th floor where my room was I could hear them if I had my door open. These performances were in addition to the night time concerts in the mane events hall. Sometimes I would stop by the Apple Orchard to hear the musicians play in between panels. The first panel I went to was the Smart and Safe Pony Dating panel. There was a lot of great general dating advice, but I thought this panel would be more about dating within the brony community. After that, I ate lunch at the hotel restaurant. I had my lunches and dinners at the hotel restaurant during the con because I wanted to be as close to the con as possible. Plus the cheese curds are freaking amazing! I highly recommend them. I saved money with breakfast by packing nutri-grain bars. Anyway, the next panel I went to was “Start to Finish: How to Begin & End Your Story”, which was pretty good.

After dinner, I saw a few bands at the Friday night concert. I’m getting more familiar with the brony music scene the more I attend these conventions. My favorite of the night was Crusader. After that, I attended the After Dark Vendor Hall. The line was so long it wrapped around the area on the first floor near the escalators. The hall was a lot smaller than the normal vendor hall upstairs and browsing was kinda difficult. It had some of the things you would find in the normal hall (dakis and art prints mainly, one of the artists even took commissions), but in a NSFW version. I got a couple of very small dakis, but that was it. Too nervous to buy the big stuff. I quite liked the adult vendor hall, I just think it needs to be put in a bigger room.


Woke up, had Breakfast and went up to the top floor again for my first panel of the day, “Joining the Herd Stories”, it was pretty interesting to hear how everyone joined the fandom. Time ran out before I could tell my story. After lunch, I attended the PMV expo, which was pretty neat. It’s cool to see what kind of PMVs people make. Also gives me ideas of new songs to listen to. After that, I attended the Willa concert. I love how people in the audience were chanting “All hail the Dragon Lord!” as she walked on stage. She’s a really good singer.

I attended SFM Ponies: Filming is Magic after that. I’m not too familiar with the SFM scene, but I liked what I saw.

After dinner, I attended “Your Mind and Ponies Effects Upon it!” which was an interesting look at how the show has treated certain issues. Some of the topics hit pretty close to home.


I saw the episode screening for “Best Gift Ever” and it was a great experience to watch an episode with other bronies. I don’t get experiences like that often. Love how someone in the audience shouted “demon spawn!” when Flurry Heart started causing problems. I attended the Sunday Guest of Honor Panel after that, which involved singing along with the guests to various songs from the show and even the movie and EQG. Some songs I knew well, others I didn’t like the ones from EQG. Think my favorite song would be “A Changeling Can Change”. After lunch, I attended my last panel of the day, “MLP in a Nutshell Q & A (with stick figure ponies).” The video they showed was pretty funny and I have since watched all the MLP in a Nutshell videos. After the video was over, the creator showed us how he made the ponies and took requests from the audience.

Afterwards, I caught the end of the charity auction and attended Closing Ceremonies. Unlike Bronycon, this Closing Ceremonies at Ciderfest ended on a positive note. Also, it turns out this convention really helps out the Generations Against Bullying charity. Favorite moment was when the audience sang along while someone from the charity sang “Happy Trails.” Somebody else also sang a song about the convention itself.

Due to my rough experience on the train I flew home via Chicago. Got to see a little bit of the Windy City before I had to catch my flight. It's a nice city, definitely want to visit it again sometime.

Overall, I had a great time at PVCF 2018. It was smaller than Bronycon, but it had all the kinds of things I look for in a convention. I would highly recommend this con. Still love Bronycon, though and I’m gonna miss it when it’s gone. If I would add one thing to Ciderfest it would be a writing room similar to Bronycon’s Quills & Sofas room.

As with Bronycon 2018, I’m still terrible at socializing and I wish I would have done more stuff, but oh well. Speaking of Bronycon, I do plan on attending the final one this year. Things have been pretty crazy in my life these past few months, but hopefully I can get to Bronycon 2019. Not sure if I’ll be doing Ciderfest 2019 or not due to budget and scheduling reasons.

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