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Worldcon Diary Part 1: Bid news

By Petrea Mitchell| September 1, 2012 | Comments Off

I’m at Worldcon, with a brand-new travelling companion: bronchitis! Meaning my blogging from it will be more abbreviated this year.

So let’s start with the actual news, which concerns Worldcon bids, most of it from today’s Fannish Inquisition notes…

Spokane in 2015 improvised Powerpoint presentation

2014: London is still uncontested, if anyone was wondering. One of the things they plan to do is hold parties in a hall in the convention center which will be divided up into smaller spaces.

2015: Joining Spokane and Orlando, there is now a serious bid from Helsinki. Dates will probably be in August. Eemeli Aro, presenting the bid, noted that most Finnish conventions do not have to charge admission fees, being funded by sponsors and government grants. The convention would be non-traditional in some respects, but it would have a dealers’ room, an art show, and “almost certainly” a masquerade.

Spokane (seen above, improvising a Photoshop presentation due to the lack of A/V equipment in the room) said that it is working with numerous groups in the city that have expressed interest in holding special events in conjunction with a Worldcon, including restaurants and the local symphony orchestra.

Orlando is emphasizing lowering costs with a discount for first-time Worldcon members, and opening the dealers’ room to non-members.

Orlando was asked point-blank about competing with Dragon*Con, since it would probably be Labor Day weekend. Adam Beaton’s response was that even being held on a different weekend, it would still be competing with D*C for consumer dollars since few people can afford to go to both anyway.

There is also a new hoax bid for Detroit, named Robocon. Primary tagline: “Detroit: Not as bad as you think.”

2016: Kansas City is still the only serious bidder. Its dates would be August 17-21. The bid chairs promise there will be barbecue.

The Mariehamn hoax bid provided more details of its plans, which involve renting a cruise ship and mooring it in the harbor to use for additional programming space.

2017: The Montréal bid has moved to this year from 2019. It would be held at the Palais de Congrés, the same place as 2009.

The Japan bid committee is looking at three sites in the greater Tokyo area: the Yokohama one where the 2007 Worldcon was held, one site in Chiba, and Makuhari Messe in Saitama. Their theme would be “International Interaction”– getting Western and Asian fans to interact with each other.

Japan was asked about the debt accrued by the 2007 convention. The 2017 funding is entirely separate from 2007, so they are not responsible for filling that hole; they have brought in Vince Docherty, who has experience in that area, to head the finance division; and they now know a lot more about probable attendance and other costs from the 2007 experience.

There were no representatives from the New York bid, but it has previously stated it would not become active until 2013.

2018: New Orleans is still in pre-bid stage and will make a decision in the next couple months whether to move ahead to an actual bid.

Further on: There is still a bid for New Zealand in 2020, and now that Montréal has moved years, no one is bidding for 2019 yet.

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