Friday, October 27, 2017

Luskwood and Trotsdale's Anniversary Celebrations

By Bixyl Shuftan

Luskwood is the oldest known furry community in Second Life, probably the oldest community still around. It was founded in September 2003, just a few months after the virtual world was officially opened. They've been pioneers in many ways, including the first line of furry avatars, and the founders and been around longer than practically all of the Lindens. Trotsdale is Second Life's best known and largest pony community, fans of the "My Little Pony" cartoon. The community's current sims came about in September 2011 shortly after the collapse of the original ones. Luskwood has celebrated its anniversary in October, and beginning last year Trotsdale began having it's anniversary at the same time.

LW14B/TD6B/DL5B Celebration
It's anniversary time!
Luskwood has been around 14 years!
Oldest community in Second Life.

Trotsdale is having its 6th anniversary and Derpyland their 5th as the oldest running Pony Sims.

On Saturday October 21, both communities had their anniversary events. Like last year, Trotsdale would go first. But instead of one hour of music, the ponies had four. Derpyland, one of the other pony sims, used to celebrate it's own anniversary up to it's fourth a year ago. But it was decided this year to combine their efforts and expand the Trotsdale event. At 12 Noon SL time, DJ Cassandra started up the music, and it was party time on a disco dance floor that a distance away was obscured a bit by a Halloweenish dark mist.

Contrary to what one might expect, there was little music from the cartoons. Instead there was trance, 80s rock, and other kinds of tunes. There was a 'sploder in the room. Unlike most around Second Life, no one had to contribute a Linden to it to be eligible for a prize, so it was a few free Linden dollars given out to several residents every time it went off about every ten minutes. There was no tip jar next to the DJ booth. If anyone wanted to pay a tip, it was suggested they instead put a few Lindens into the sim payment fund board nearby. Later in the Trotsdale events, there was a "Caption This" game in which people were invited to make up captions to various pictures.

There were a number of people I recognized. Some I knew from Luskwood, such as Death Berger, and the popular Michi Lumin. Michi wasn't in the black stovepipe hat with goggles and black pants with purple suspenders I had kept seeing her in, but a burgundy dress and her hair dyed a shade of burgundy as well. During the event, she would briefly change to a pony form which had a smaller version of the hat. One person I recognized from a year earlier at Luskwood was Tiger Kitchensink, or "Pumpkin Spice Soprano" as she calls herself now. Some neighbors of mine from the Sunweaver/Angel Estates, such as Skylark Lefavre, were also there.

At 1PM, Cassandra handed the DJ booth to DC (Death Berger) to play for an hour. At 2PM, DJ Crayzee spun the tunes until 3PM. Finally came DJ Cera, who played for the last scheduled hour. As Cera played her last tune, people began heading over to Luskwood for it's events. Once the hour was up, Skylark offered to DJ for those who remained behind, and the ponies were happy to let her play some music for a little while longer.

The Luskwood half of the celebrations that day, the LW14B, began at the Retroskunk Cafe, located in northern Tehama southeast of the Lusk sim, at 4PM SL time. Shannon O'Herlihy was the singer at this event at the open-air venue, which had some fallen autumn leaves on the wood deck, on which a mix of furs, ponies, and human avatars listened to. Mounted to the side was a poster of the event, the Luskwood symbol in grey in the middle of a triangle with some lines from a document of some kind, some words blacked out, and stamped "Classified" in onr corner. In this conspiracy/secrecy theme, some had taglines such as Michi's "Double Agent," and Shannon was refered to in one or two of Luskwood's announcements as "Agent 0014."

We're very lucky to once again have Shannon O'Herlihy performing for the Luskwood birthday celebration! Shannon will be onstage performing her gorgeous music at the RetroSkunk Cafe in Tehama (landmark included) from 4-5 PM SLT today, to be followed by Keeba Tammas at the Amphitheater at 5.

Shannon sang for a while, then at 5PM the people headed over to the Luskwood Amphitheater in Perry. This location would see the most of the celebration time, two hours. From 5 to 6PM, Keeba Tammas and her Tiny Maniacs played for the crowd. This live band of a human and several tinies got cheers from the crowd, "My face is hurting from smiling too hard.  I love this!" "~*~ W00T!! It's KEEBA! W00t! W00T! KEEEEEBAAAAA!!!~*~" Some of the tinies were in costume, including a ghost, skeleton, "rattle dose bones!", and vamp. Keeba herself was wearing a "Bride of Frankenstein" hairdoo and a bloodied dress.

When the act was over, they got off stage and the tinies did a "tiny riverdance," with the sounds of stepping feet. Someone wasn't so sure if the structure could take even their small feet, "I'm not sure this balcony can handle riverdancing." But after the footwork, there was something missing, "Ohoh morton, someone stole your blue suede shoe." "Look, they gone." "We hafta buy him sum new wuns."

Woot, we're playing at 6pm for Luskwood's 14th birthday, and Trotsdale's 6th!  It's a bit laggy due to all the folks but hope you can make it.

At 6PM, the live music duo Jaycatt Nico and Frogg Marlowe got on stage. But they weren't in their usual feline and amphibian avatars. Instead, they looked like shaggy monsters, Jaycat the pianist as a white creature, and Frogg the guitarist as a black one with a huge mouth that looked more like he was eating the guitar than playing it: Specimens E92 and E30. "I am doing things for SCENICE!" Jaycatt tried to explain. Frogg responds, "No, things are being done TO you for SCIENCE!" "They said I'd get a cookie," Jaycat stated as his reason for volunteering, "when the testing starts, I hopes there is no needles."

Keeba, who was still around and listening, exclaimed, "no one said there would be testing! I was told there would be no math!" Michi gave an uncharacteristically sinister laugh, "Just a little pin prick. Keeba. there'll be no more... aaaa-aa-aah." "You can't test on my band! NO ANIMAL TESTING!" But not all of the tinies were alarmed, "Wot awesome monster up dere." Despite their very different forms, Jaycatt and Frogg would go on to play the good music they're known for.

At 7PM, it was time for the last act of the celebration. The crowd headed to a "Restricted Area" somewhere in Perry. The place was a mock-up of the legendary "Area 51" government facility that the authorities continue to refuse to acknowledge whether it exists or not. Nearby was a flying saucer abducting a cow and a smaller building in which an alien was on an examination table. There were a few other aliens about, including one next to a "take me with you" sign wearing a tinfoil hat. And there were "No Trespassing" and "Photography Prohibited" signs which were ignored by the crowd.

Haley Maruti, the busty squirrelgirl DJ, spun the tunes for the event, next to an alien with his own DJ headphones, "Dig through the ditches and burn all the witches and eat a big bowl of Count Chocula!" The floor was packed, and occasionally a 'sploder like the one for the Trotsdale parties would rain down a few Lindens on a few partiers. There was also a bomb, presumably defused, hanging from the ceiling. Behind the DJ booth was a mounted shark's head, not something normally associated with a military facility.

Besides Michi, Liam Roark was there, but he was becoming less active due to sleepiness. Others I recognized included Hagalaz Nilsson, Fury Rosewood, Tengu Yamabushi, and Ardy Lay. Cynthia Farshore, a friend of the Newser, came by, "Just left another place that was steampunk having a 7th annual Halloween ball, and (it) had half the size of this. ... Glad I made it here to see this first hand, was really busy tonight, first DJed a club, then ran over to another to dance, then drop in here" People danced to the music, chatted about things like what happened to the Munsters, or looked at photos of Luskwood's early years on the back wall.

The event had no set ending time, but as it went on and on, people began heading to bed. Eventually, Halley had to hang up her headphones, "Gonna need to pass out soon, but goodness this was a fun time tonight." Michi kept up the music a little longer. But unlike some previous anniversary celebrations, she couldn't stay up past Midnight. Well before that time, she told everyone she had to log off, saying she had to make a trip tomorrow. And with the popular but tired skunkgirl gone, the crowd soon dwindled to a few. The party was pretty much over.

But for those who missed the event, don't fret too much. Luskwook is sure to have some goings-on at Halloween. And next year marks Luskwood's fifteenth anniversary  And Second Life's oldest community will have it's pride on the line to make their celebration grander than ever.

"Happy Birthday Luskwood!"

Bixyl Shuftan

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