cmshaw: CON.TXT: The duck strikes back (CON.TXT official)
[personal profile] cmshaw
CON.TXT begins with an informal gathering on Thursday night on the lobby level of the hotel. From 8 pm to 10 pm, you'll be able to check into the con and receive your badge, program booklet, and other goodies in the Persimmon Room: go past the restaurant and lounge and it will be to your left. You should also feel free to hang out in the bar area (imbibing or not, as you choose) where there are comfortable couches and chairs. We'll have a variety of games for you to play.

Friday morning, we'll open at 8 am with breakfast and check in on the fourth floor of the hotel; dealers who want to begin setup in the ConSweet may go in at 7 am.

Hey locals! Not able to go to CON.TXT this year? Come to just Disco Duck on Friday for $20!
cmshaw: CON.TXT: The duck strikes back (CON.TXT official)
[personal profile] cmshaw
Here's the weather forecast for Silver Spring, MD, where CON.TXT will be held this weekend.

Temperatures will be about the same all weekend: highs in the upper 80s °F (30ish °C) and lows at night in the 60s °F (20ish °C).

Thursday: Very humid, and a better than average chance of thunderstorms in the late afternoon and evening. If you're arriving on Thursday night, pack an umbrella and remember that you can call the hotel shuttle to pick you up from the Metro if you get caught in the rain!

Friday: Less humid and with a lower chance of thunderstorms than Thursday.

Saturday: The thunderstorms should pass by Saturday, so the weekend will be sunny or lightly cloudy and far less muggy.

Sunday: Clear and pleasant; there's never a good way to leave the con and go back to regular life, but at least we won't be kicking you out into the rain!
gblvr: close-up photo of purple-ish colored yarn (Crafty -- Yaaaarrrrrnnn - purple-ish)
[personal profile] gblvr
A note from your Stitch'n'Bitch moderators, Starfish and Sharkie--

We thought this would be a great opportunity for people to bring things for a swap! Have you ever bought a yarn, gotten it home, and thought "Why the hell do I have this?" Do you have a beginner set of knitting needles or crochet hooks you never use, or a pattern book that you've used as much as you want to? Bring 'em all to the S'n'B and we'll try to find new homes for them!

Please note - due to allergies, please try to know the fiber content of any yarn you wish to swap! Also, if you bring it and no one claims it, it needs to go home with you as the mods do not need even more yarn in their stashes. :)

If you want to bring something for the swap but won't be able to make the S'nB, find one of us and we'll take it for you!
gblvr: close-up photo of purple-ish colored yarn (Crafty -- Yaaaarrrrrnnn - purple-ish)
[personal profile] gblvr
Tip for con-goers: it is very important to remember to eat during the con!

To that end, here is what we'll have for you and what we recommend you find for yourselves over the course of the weekend.

A hot breakfast buffet will be available Friday through Sunday in the con space from 8 am to 10 am.

We'll be placing a group order of box lunches each day (Friday through Sunday) from Jimmy Johns, which is just around the corner from the con hotel. You'll have a choice of 7 different subs (ham, roast beef, tuna, turkey, Italian, veggie, or BLT) on your choice of bread or lettuce wrap, with a pickle spear and a choice of chips and choice of cookie. (JJ's has a lot of other options, and of course you are welcome to place an order yourself and pick it up or have it delivered to the hotel.)

If you want to join in our group order, you'll need to fill out our handy form and turn it in, along with $10 in cash, by 10 am each day. We'll take orders on Friday at the registration table and on Saturday and Sunday at the Orphan Marketplace table. Sandwiches will be delivered at 1 pm (we'll give you a slip when you order telling you when and where so you won't forget).

We will also have nibbles for you at Disco Duck on Friday evening, which will be tasty but which should probably not be your entire dinner (especially if you will be drinking from the cash bar!). The spread won't include much in the way of desserts due to the hotel's limited offerings, so chocoholics may want to seek out a fix beforehand!

For dinners and other meals you'd like to acquire outside the con, you have a number of options including the hotel restaurant, delivery orders, grocery stores, and a plethora of other local restaurants. For information about the local options, please look through our Neighborhood Guide.
cmshaw: CON.TXT: The duck strikes back (CON.TXT official)
[personal profile] cmshaw
  • Directions to the hotel and the hotel phone number
  • Fannish t-shirts, tote bags, and other swag (this is a fashionable crowd!)
  • Fannish stickers, buttons, and pins - there's a lot of real estate on our badges and badge holders
  • Fun and outrageous outfits for the Disco Duck - anything goes as long as it can be worn in public
  • Cosplay gear/costumes - the official MIRROR UNIVERSE cosplay day is Friday, but the whole weekend is fair game
  • Your laptop - the hotel has free wireless internet throughout
  • DVDs, pictures, books, and comics of fannish things - share with your friends or tempt new fans
  • A bathing suit - the hotel has an outdoor pool
  • A sweater - the panel rooms and ConSweet are chilly, especially early in the day (we're not kidding about this - if you get cold easily, BRING A SWEATER!)
  • A refillable water bottle - pitchers of filtered water and glasses will be available, but a bottle is easy to take with you
  • Cash - makes splitting a restaurant check much easier, and dealers in the ConSweet may not take credit cards
  • VCRs or DVD players - we aren't allowed to hook them up to the televisions in our rooms (there will be a TV and DVD player in the ConSweet)
  • Pets - the only animals allowed in the hotel are service animals

The most important expectation you should have is that there will be FANS. Our con will be chock full of fans! There will be lots of hugging (please hug only people who want you to hug them!) and squeeing and reunions between friends who rarely (or never!) meet in person.

Those of you who have been to CON.TXT before probably have a good idea of what to expect. For you, we note that the lobby is now fully renovated and has a lot of really comfortable seating areas, while the hotel restaurant is a bit smaller than before. The names of some rooms have been changed by the hotel, but we will still be using the same spaces. We have updated our list of local restaurants and other resources on the website. Please DO skim down this post to make sure you remember all the details.

For those of you who have not been to CON.TXT yet, read on!

PARKING: If you arrive by car, you'll need to leave it somewhere. You can unload all your gear and extra passengers at the front of the hotel. Parking in the hotel garage costs $14 a day, with in and out privileges. The county lot (Lot 2) behind the hotel offers free parking Thursday and Friday after 7 pm and all day Saturday and Sunday. During the day, short-term (two- and three-hour) meters cost about 60 cents an hour. The county garage (Garage 2) behind the hotel has long-term meters (nine hours) at 50 cents an hour and there is another garage a couple of blocks away at 8530 Cameron Street with long-term parking at 65 cents an hour. You also can take your chances on the street - but read the signs very carefully.

HOTEL CHECK-IN: Because a lot of fans will be arriving on Thursday right around check-in time, the lobby may be crowded from 3:00 until 5:00 pm and check-in will be slow. PLEASE BE PATIENT and prepare to spend some time in the lobby or in front of the hotel, chatting with other fen waiting to make their way to the con. We have warned the hotel to expect a crowd at check-in on both Thursday and Friday afternoon and have asked them to staff the hotel registration desk accordingly. Still, the lobby may be crowded and check-in may be slow at those times.

CON REGISTRATION: You can pick up your registration materials on Thursday at our evening reception (see below) or you can wait until the following day: registration will be open in the hallway outside the ConSweet from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, and again outside the Magnolia Ballroom from 7:30 to 11:00 pm. Saturday registration hours are 8:00 am to 6:00 pm in front of the ConSweet. Pre-registration for CON.TXT 2016 will be from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm on Sunday in front of the ConSweet.

CON SPACE: If you arrive on Thursday, we will open registration and host some informal games and socializing that evening on the first floor of the hotel. Friday through Sunday, everything will be on the fourth floor of the hotel: on Friday night we will hold a dance party and the whole fourth floor will be ours, but on Saturday and Sunday there may be other meetings being held in the rooms we aren't using.

During the day on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday we will have up to three rooms of panels (check the schedule to see what and where!) and the ConSweet open. The ConSweet is a large ballroom with tables and chairs for socializing, dealers selling their wares, an art show, and a selection of snacks. The panels are held in smaller rooms with movable chairs and spaces for users of wheelchairs; the hotel chairs are neither particularly comfortable nor particularly uncomfortable; the panel rooms will be cold first thing in the morning and will warm up as people fill them throughout the day. In the evenings on Friday and Saturday we will have events in various fourth floor rooms (again, check the schedule for more information!).

IDENTIFICATION: You'll receive a badge holder and name tag that is your pass to all CON.TXT events. Your badge will be checked at all con events, so please don't lose it or leave it in your room! It is not replaceable, and you must wear it at all times while in con space. Please note that badges are not shareable or transferable. Anyone attending Disco Duck on Friday will be required to wear a wristband - please note that wristbands are not shareable or transferable. There will be more info about the wristbands at the CON.TXT Context panel on Friday morning.

VOLUNTEERS: At registration, attendees who indicated availability will receive their volunteer schedule. You should double-check the shifts indicated, and if there is a problem please let Dorinda know as soon as possible so that we can straighten out any issues. If you find you have free time while at the con and wish to volunteer, please let us know.

PROGRAMMING: At registration you'll receive a CON.TXT program describing all of the panels, special events, workshops, and services on offer. We suggest you take some time to read through the program as soon as possible after your arrival; in addition to con programming, there will also be information on local restaurants and shopping available on a handout.

SAFETY: Be respectful of other people's boundaries, especially with regards to touching, photography, use of personal names, and sexual discussions. (Do not, for example, fangirl the writer of your favorite pornography by telling them about your masturbation habits! Ask if they want to know first and respect that the answer may be no.) The restrooms on the con floor are designated "women" and "men"; no one should be harassed for their gender presentation in using a restroom. If you have any concerns for your safety, please find a con comm member wearing a purple sash; we will work to make the con safer for you.

FOOD: We will be serving breakfast foods and taking orders for lunches each morning; you do not need to reserve your lunch until the day you'll want it. There will be some light fare at Disco Duck, although we recommend having a heartier dinner beforehand if you plan to be drinking!

ATM: There is an ATM in the hotel lobby; you have to go past the front desk and into the small store just before the front doors. There are also several bank ATMs near the hotel on Georgia Ave, including Bank of America, CapitalOne, Wells Fargo, and Suntrust.

GETTING AROUND: The hotel operates a free shuttle within a 3-mile radius of the hotel. You can use the shuttle to get to or from the Metro station or to get to movie theaters, restaurants, grocery stores, etc.

If you need to be picked up from the Metro or elsewhere within the area the shuttle serves, call the main hotel number: 301-589-0800. They will connect you to the shuttle. If you have some idea when you'll need to be picked up (e.g., if you're coming from the airport), it's a good idea to call in advance to reserve the shuttle. The Silver Spring Metro station is about a fourth of a mile south of the hotel.

For more information about the neighborhood, please see our website under Hotel & Travel.
cmshaw: CON.TXT: The duck strikes back (CON.TXT official)
[personal profile] cmshaw
We're still looking for a few good moderators!

Most urgently, we'd like someone for the panel on "My Gender Is Queer: Negotiating Fandom Terminology". Here's the description:

"What is slash when we shift the gender paradigm? Does slash require both characters to share the exact same gender-identification? Beyond m/f, f/f, and m/m, how can we use existing fandom terminology and create new kinds to describe our queer fiction?"

We have folks willing to help out, but given the topic, we don't want to do it without a mod with knowledge (and ideally, experience) in the genderqueer world. Please let us know if you would like to help lead this discussion!

We are also seeking scribes for several panels: folks who are willing to help with taking notes and otherwise assisting the mods in keeping panels on track. If this is a skill you have and would like to exercise, please email -- or, if you have some time and interest during the con itself, please feel free to talk to the concomm (look for the purple sash!) or the panel moderator(s) listed in the program at the con.
cmshaw: CON.TXT: The duck strikes back (CON.TXT official)
[personal profile] cmshaw
Our cosplay theme for this year is MIRROR UNIVERSE. Show up on Friday as your (or someone else's) mirror universe counterpart! Evil mustaches will be made available; please BYO goatee if desired.

Small print: Please don't be actually evil. Also, please don't bring actual weapons into con space; any realistic replicas should be peace-bonded. As always, only photograph your fellow con-goers with their permission.