WHAT TO EXPECT?
People attending their first Kink event … and especially people who are also new to the Kink/BDSM scene … have a lot of questions about what will happen, what they will see, Interior Kink Fest!
New & Interesting People
Lots of friendly people from around the area and maybe as far as outside of the province or even the country! Kink events such as Interior Kink Fest (IKF) offer a great way to meet people, to visit and learn, and to obtain many new ideas.
Seminars Given by Great Presenters on a Variety of Topics
Sometimes it seems that all the best seminars are scheduled at the same, so be prepared for “seminar selection stress”.
Vendor Area with a Great Selection of Kink Toys & Accessories
Bring credit cards and money! If you see something you like and are unable to purchase it immediately, be sure to ask the vendor how many they have in stock. And if there’s only one, you should consider buying it now! If you decide to come back later to get it, it may not be there.
Bring enough cash! Some vendors don’t take credit cards (although most do). It is always good to have cash in case you want that one piece of equipment from a vendor who accepts only cash. So make sure you have enough to get that special toy, tip the hotel staff, etc.
People tend to “dress up” for the parties, and although a dress code is not enforced it is recommended that everyone attempt to maintain a Kink/BSDM “style”. Dark clothes, leather clothes, and black shoes or boots are usually safe. If you show up in a Hawaiian shirt, shorts and white tennis shoes or sandals, people will probably think you don’t have much of a clue about the lifestyle.
Not Much Sleep
Up early for breakfast before the seminars and back to bed late after the parties. Bring vitamins or 5-Hour Energy Drink!
Tired Feet & Sore Backs
Dress comfortably during the day as you will be sitting in seminars (The chairs in the seminar rooms aren’t always extremely comfortable.) You will also be walking a lot and may be standing.
Event Highs & Lows
The energy level at events is usually pretty high, and you get to see how different people play. (Maybe even with you!).
Be prepared for an incredible high during the event, and for culture shock when you get back to the “real world” after the event. (We call this “event drop”.)
Expect to be amazed, surprised, delighted, shocked, startled, amused, and expect to experience a whole range of intense emotions. Sensory overload and unexpected emotional reactions are a common side effect of kink events. If it gets to be a bit too much, find a quiet corner to sit in and just watch for a while, or find someone to talk to about how you’re feeling. You can also go back to your room to relax for a bit or watch mindless drivel on TV for a while. Then go back to the event and jump back into the pool!
Come With a Very Open Mind
You will see lots of different kinds of people, hear lots of different viewpoints and opinions, and see lots of different kinds of relationships and different kinds of play. People tend to “pull out the stops” at these events, and some of the action can be very unusual. It’s all good, and it’s all a learning experience. (Even just thinking about *why* you reacted in a certain way to something can be a valuable learning process.)
Be Respectful, Courteous & Tolerant of Others
If you’re new to the lifestyle, watch a lot and try to pick up the dynamics of relationships or protocols. If you don’t know how to address someone, and you make a mistake or find yourself in an uncomfortable situation, tell the other person that you’re new to the scene and you’re not quite sure what’s going on. They will very likely understand and explain things to you. We were all new at one time, and we remember what it was like.
Rules of Engagement
READ THE RULES for the event and the play parties! Don’t just browse them quickly and sign them at the registration desk. The rules are important, and the IKF staff enforces them very strictly for the protection of the event, the attendees, and the hotel. Look for the rules on the event website, study them, read them again at registration, and make sure you understand them. At Kink events, as in the legal system, ignorance of the law is no defence!
If you’re new to the lifestyle, it’s important to know that you do not have to play at Kink events … at the parties or anywhere else! Everything that happens at these events is consensual. You are free to just watch, and you are free to play if you want to. If someone asks you to play and you’re not quite ready, just say something like, “No, thanks, I’m new to the scene and I’m just watching and learning.” If you are interested, don’t be afraid to ask for references, and be sure to negotiate the limits of the play session. (If you don’t know how to do that, ask one of the event volunteers, they’ll be able to find someone to help!)
Food is important. Food is part of a balanced diet, and provides the energy necessary to socialize, play, and shop. Nine out of ten Dominants surveyed recommend Food. (The tenth was too busy eating to respond.) Food service at Kink events can be an adventure. Imagine … the last seminar of the day is over, and everyone goes to their room to drop things off and freshen up … and then a few hundred starving kinksters hit the hotel restaurant at the same time! Staff can get overwhelmed, delays can be long, and people can get grouchy.
Here are some possible solutions: If the hotel offers buffets, use them rather than ordering from the menu. Eat early if you can, and avoid the rush. Keep some food in the room. Many hotels have a mini-fridge in the room these days. Have a light snack after the seminars and eat later after the rush. Leave the hotel to eat. The hotel will usually have a list of nearby restaurants at the desk, or there may even be one in your conference packet. Some hotels have shuttles that will drop you off or pick you up at nearby restaurants. Or you can find some friends with cars and carpool to a restaurant.
If your schedule and finances permit, check into the hotel the day before the event. This has a number of benefits. You can get in, get settled in the hotel, have dinner, and chill out before the event starts. (Some Kink events have “pre-event” activities like bar meet-ups for early arrivals). The day of the event you can get up, have breakfast, sit in the lobby watching people check in, and look for your friends.
Be polite to the hotel staff. It’s difficult to handle a weekend with a crowd the size of a typical Kink event. You may run into delays getting room services or dealing with problems with your room. The hotel staff is doing the best they can, so please be patient. Be respectful of the housekeeping staff; don’t leave toys and explicit materials lying around the room. It’s not easy to find a hotel that will host this kind of event, so we need to make a good impression so that we will be invited back. Thank the hotel staff any time you talk to them, and tip well!
The IKF volunteers put in a lot of time and effort to help the event run smoothly. Show them that you appreciate it by saying “Thanks!” or “Good job!” And especially, be respectful of the Security staff. They are doing their job, and the rules are there to protect you, the event and the hotel.
And finally … have lots and lots of fun!!!
This version of “What To Expect At Your First Kink Event” is based on “What To Expect At Your First Leather Event”, written by Master Grey for Thunder in the Mountains, Denver, CO. Reposted with permission.
Link to the original post follows: https://www.thunderinthemountains.com/what-to-expect/