Final Round event organizer Shin Blanka announces possible retirement, potential end of the tournament series

Facebook statement cites dwindling attendance

Posted by Steven 'Dreamking23' Chavez • March 21, 2018 at 9:08 a.m. PDT

Early this morning, Larry "Shin Blanka" Dixon announced his possible retirement from event planning in the FGC. Known for organizing the long-time major tournament series Final Round, Dixon states that it too may be coming to an end.

On his personal Facebook account, Shin Blanka wrote an extensive statement sharing his reasoning for the decision and the current state of things.

The message begins by thanking everyone involved with this year's event -- Final Round 21 -- which took place just this past weekend in Atlanta, Georgia. Dixon goes on to address a troublesome attendee (with some language NSFW), who took issue with the clear bags given out at that the event.

From there, he delves into his retirement. Dixon notes that at the end of this past weekend's event, he provided some quick words to attendees about his decision, though he wasn't really clear about the specifics.

"This leads me to this portion of the post when I address my retirement," Dixon wrote in the Facebook post. "I made a brief statement at the end of the event, but it wasn't fully explained and we had to pack up our equipment and be out the exhibition hall at a certain time.

"Unfortunately, we have never recovered our attendance from the social media witch hunt from Final Round 19. While I've taken responsibility for everything that happened that year and I understand why attendance dropped."

2016's Final Round 19 was met with criticism after limited venue space -- due to the high volume of attendees -- and unclear scheduling made for an unpleasant tournament experience for a number of attendees. Since then, Dixon has made it a point to right the wrongs of the past, however, he states that attendance has been on the decline since FR19.

"I thought last year was a great step in the right direction, but I guess I was wrong as we had less competitors this year (FR21) than last year (FR20), and we lost 2/3 of our total attendance from FR19 to FR20! I went outside my means to get a bigger venue with enough space in one room for everyone to be comfy. I love the venue, but the size of these past two events doesn't warrant that size," Dixon explained.

"The joy of organizing events has been sucked out of my body these past two years," Dixon continued. "I've always known it was a thankless job, but now it was worse because of the constant double standard I see throughout the FGC. I can't and won't continue to waste my money or (most important) my time on a group that doesn't [want] me a part of it anymore."

Though much of his statement reads as bad news, Dixon makes mention of the love and support fans shared upon hearing of the tournament series' end. He also goes on to say that the staff behind the event have already presented future plans to make Final Round bigger and better next year, if he should decide to put on another.

"I've gotten a lot of feedback, but I need time to think about doing another FR again," Dixon wrote. That statement in and of itself appears to imply that the door isn't completely shut just yet and that we might see another installment in the Final Round series.

The final event Shin Blanka plans to work on is The Fall Classic, which will take place later this year.

Photo credit - Chris Bahn.

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